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Cold Dark January

The first months of the year tend to be the hardest for finding motivation to get out and ride. The nights are still long and the weather does nothing to help motivate anyone to step away from the warmth of their house. It’s also the time of year people feel most sluggish; we’re all in that post Christmas sluggish state and the days of peak fitness still feel so far away as we plan for summer.

The good news though is that despite a gloomy January, we’re finally starting to see the daylight creep into the evenings which means those longer rides are that much closer to being a reality. I miss that ability to get out for a head-clearing ride after work without the risk of hitting some ice in the dark and breaking a bone.

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It’s only February, and we’re a long way away from the days of shorts and jerseys but at least those days are getting closer, and with them the adventures that everyone has planned for the long summer days.

It’s been a tough start to the year. Despite managing clocking up 1,200 miles in January and riding each day I still feel like I’m behind where I want to be. The reality though, is that I’m probably bang on track as I’m following the same plan I follow every year. It’s about trying not to panic now and patiently wait for the gains to come together in spring.

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I’ve been snowed under at work which means that on a weekend I’m feeling pretty tired and less motivated to ride. Thankfully though I’ve had a little bit of motivation to spend some more time outside thanks to Ribble dropping me one of their new gravel adventure bikes. I really needed a change of scenery and what better way to do so than to leave the tarmac for something a little more scenic.

I’ve also managed to keep making good use of Zwift like so many people I follow now. I still don’t have the motivation to ride for five hours online though like some of my friends.

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Right now I’m moving on from the gloom of January and looking forward to some of the things that I’ve planned for 2019. My first real test of the year will be completing the 200km of the Dirty Reiver up in Kielder Forest; what’s not to love about 200km of off road? The thing I’m looking forward to the most though is riding across Europe to Venice and ticking off as many countries as possible along the way.

I can’t be the only one to find January a tough time of year?