Way back in January, while celebrating the New Year at Burnt Dog Lodge, the conversation eventually came around to New Year's Resolutions. Now, I'm not a big fan of making impossible statements about life changes or claims, but as folks talked about what they wanted to accomplish in the new year, I made a pretty bold statement - "Before the year is over, I will make it to the top of the subdivision on my bike."
Now, for those of you who have not been to Burnt Dog Lodge, our cabin is the second house in a subdivsion that goes up to the top of a mountain. It is only .8 of a mile to the top, but it is almost all up hill, at very steep grades, I'd estimate around 18-20% in places. I tried, unsuccessfully back in July on my road bike. I made it about 1/3 of the way up the first climb before I felt like I was going to puke and my heart explode from my heaving chest.
This time, on our Christmas trip up, I packed a different weapon - my mountain bike. It is geared differently than my road bike, more suited for climbing. Well, after laying around most of the day on Christmas Eve, it was time for an attempt. I got dressed, Suzy did as well. We hopped on, rode one of the side roads to get a little warmed up, and off we went. It was not to be Suzy's day, as she needs more warm up than I, and she stopped about where we did in July. I gave her the keys to the cabin, telling her I was going to attempt it solo. After catching my breath, and realizing I could not ride straight up the climbs without my heart exploding, I modified my plan of attack and started zig zagging up the climbs. I would stop and rest periodically to get my heart rate back under control, but I continued on until I rounded the last corner and saw the crest of the road. After I rested enough to start looking for a suitable place to take a self portrait, I saw a welcome sight - here came Suzy walking up the road! She had gone back home, put up her bike and gotten out her running shoes and her ipod and come on up after me.
It was a nice sense of acomplishment, and a heck of a fun ride back down the hill. I don't yet know what I will make as my resolution this year, but it feels good to have accomplished what goals I set for myself this year.
Merry Christmas everyone, and it's not too early to start planning that Resolution for 2008!