Happy New Year!

1 Jan

Hey all, I hope nobody had too much fruitcake or figgy pudding to eat over the past week!  I think I managed to do all right in the consumption department, judging by the lack of discomfort I had on my ride this afternoon.  Or maybe I wasn’t riding hard enough… In any case, this was the first time I had a New Year’s Day ride, so for now I’m one for one in 2012!

I did get a chance to test out one of my Christmas gifts on the ride, Mad Alchemy’s Mellow Warming Embrocation.  For those who aren’t cycling fanboys, embrocation is a type of muscle ointment made of various vegetable oils, essential oils, and a dash or more of capsaicin (the heat component found in peppers) to add a warming sensation.  Rubbing the ointment on your legs will not physically make your legs warmer so much as give the sensation of feeling warmer (if that makes any sense).  The dork factor is that embrocation is another proud tradition of cycling, right along with leg shaving and tight clothes.

With the sub-40 temp, I thought this would be a great time to give the Mellow Warming Embrocation a spin.  The contents look like a nuclear-orange version of vasoline, but goes on much less greasy.  I rubbed it onto my knees, calves, and shins, then put on my thermal tights and went on my way.  Due to the lack of activity over the past week or so, I decided to just take it easy and enjoy the afternoon.  My legs felt comfortable, but didn’t feel hot or burning at all.  So far, so good.  After I arrived home and took off my tights, I suddenly noticed the heat.  And it felt warm.  Like having a heater blowing on my legs.  So yes, the stuff works!  My legs actually felt normal to the touch, despite what my skin was telling me.  After I showered, my legs continued to feel warm for at least two more hours.  Next step, figuring out a better way to wash it off, or the right kind of soap to do the trick.

Anyone have new year’s resolutions or anything like that?  I don’t have anything specific, but I do plan to figure out what my “racing calendar” might look like, and go about setting up the training plan from there.  Not sure how that will look yet, but will start exploring that soon.  The upcoming forecast looks pretty mild too, so will hopefully be out some more. Here’s to another great year!

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