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October 28, 2006

Why I Love Colorado - Part 1

A few months ago I started to mountain bike as a park of my workout regimen. My mountain bike has been staring at me for the past few years every time I went into the garage to see it hanging from the ceiling. So I dusted off my mountain bike and started to ride. Less than a hundred yards from my home is an incredible open space area called "the bluffs" that includes a 2.6 mile trail that ascends and declines a few hundred feet as you go around it. It's such a great workout, especially at 6,000'. When I started doing this, as a newbie, I noticed the other bikers, all decked out in their latest gear. You know, the biking shorts, team Italia shirts, a camel back for water, head gear, etc. I was in it for the workout so I started with a t-shirt and a pair of old shorts and my sneakers. I quickly learned I needed at least the biking shorts, then the sunglasses (gotta have the right Oakley's). Dscn0769_1I've stopped there....for now. Anyway, after the first couple of rides I wondered just how much of a workout I was getting as I was gasping for air, so I got a Timex Heart Rate monitor with a wrist watch, etc. - actually Christine got it for me. I was blown away by the stats, for about an hour ride I was burning 950 to 1000 calories, my high heart rate was up around 165, I was averaging in the low 150s for the entire ride. Pretty good workout. Over the past few months those stats have declined a bit as I've gotten use to the ride and more in shape so I started to go a different route to mix it up a bit. I was up to 5 or 6 times a week - I was addicted. As I was cooling down one day after a ride I was talking to another biker about his watch, he's got one that includes a satellite feature so you can tell how much elevation change you're going through. I did some research, it's pretty cool, you can download the data right to your PC and you can determine what parts of the ride you're burning the most calories, speeds, etc. It's amazing what's available for someone that really wants to train and master something. He also looked at my sneakers and pedal baskets and smirked as he took off in a cloud of dust. I gotta get the biking shoes with toe clips now! Anyway, one of the huge benefits I get from this is just being outside, in the Colorado air. I never get tired of the views of the mountains and the crisp clean air we have. Perfect for clearing the mind. What a great place to live.

October 28, 2006 | Permalink

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