Merry Christmas
Back into the Routine

Christmas in St George

Img_0061aUhl in Eagle, ID – We just got back from St. George, Utah where we spent Christmas with Heather's family. We headed to the airport early Friday morning, during the first real snow in the Treasure Valley...I actually had to shovel before we left! But due to a delay and a missed connection, we spent part of the day at the SLC airport and didn't get down to St George until mid-afternoon. We were flying stand-by, as usual.

So Heather and I decided to just take Friday off and spend time with family. Our little niece Melanee, was the center of attention during most of our visit. She's only 8 months old and growing like a weed. For the most part she is a well-behaved little girl, but got a little fussy when auntie Heather or uncle Uhly held her for more than a few seconds. Img_0010Seems like she didn't like our baby-handling skills! But to prove it wasn't just us, she got a little cranky at times, even with grandma...so we're not taking it personally!

On Saturday we headed out to do some in-line skating. Heather's sister and I skated while Heather rode her brother's old mountain bike. St. George has a great network of bike paths and since they don't get much snow or frosts, the paths are really smooth. It's great for in-line skating, unlike many of the sections Boise Greenbelt. It was mostly an "easy" workout for me, but for fun, I threw in some sprints on a few hills we encountered. Not sure sprinting on skates will translate to a neuromuscular workout on the bike, but it sure felt hard. So it must have done something?!

Well the next day I found out what it did...my hip flexor and groin muscles were super sore the next day, ouch! I still went skating again but I didn't do any hard efforts. Heather put in a solid 2-hour trainer ride on her brother's old bike and trainer.

Img_0024_2After a nice Christmas Eve and a morning watching Melanee attempt to open her presents, I decided to go for a ride on that old bike Heather used yesterday. I wasn't really planning on it, but I did bring my clothes and shoes, since Heather was already bringing down pedals. I tried to setup the bike to fit me as best I could, but I could not get it comfortable with what I had to work with. My biggest gripe was the saddle, but I figured one ride on it wouldn't kill me.

I wore my HR monitor but for some reason most of the time it was giving me erratic readings. So without power data, HR or even a cyclocomputer for speed, I basically just rode by feel. To add to the "retro" feeling, the bike was so old it even had down-tube shifters! But aside from some wacky low speed handling and the awkward fit, the bike was OK once up to speed, albeit a little harsh.

Since we were staying west of town, I went out to do a lap of the old Tour of St. George road race course. I went by Gunlock Reservoir all the way past Gunlock to the steep hill up to the town of Veyo. I had forgotten how long it was! Back when we were living in Utah we raced this course a few times and most of the time I got dropped on this hill and had to chase back on. Aaah...such pleasant memories?! The air felt thin by this point of the ride and I confirmed why, once I got home; the town of Veyo is at 4,500 feet, whereas St. George is at a more Boise-like 2,700 feet. From Veyo I headed south on Hwy 18 where the road climbs a little more, then rolls up and down for a while until the final descent by Snow Canyon. I rode tempo for most of the ride, pushing it on the hills. The ride was 2:10 minutes and a "guestimated" 140 TSS.

Today we got up super-early again to fly back home. We lucked out and were able to get on all our flights and made it back to Boise by 9:30 AM. It was a short trip but it was good to spend time with family and the outdoor workouts were an added bonus!