Happy new year?...hmmmm...sure. The new year, the time it falls during the year, has always been a somewhat depressing time of year. New year, happy...not so much.
Full disclosure: All of my life I have been a summer sports guy.
In college I was a runner. Since college, I have been a paddlesport athlete. More recently I have been trying to teach myself to be a somewhat better mountain biker on a singlespeed hardtail 29er. I continue to train for all three. True, my training is not really all that serious anymore, but enough (in the words of new daddy of twins Nathan Davis) to not get fat.
Being a summer sport guy, what New Year's really means is the beginning of January and February. Both suck magnificently for training. Days are short and I have a full time job. This means a massive volume of time spent in the absolute pitch black at five in the morning on the water in teens to twenty degree weather by myself.
When the alarm goes off at five in the morning typically involves a debate with myself. Running is quick and easy, but paddling...I always am glad once on the water. Paddling though, it is a lot of gear, and a rather miserable trundle down to the water. As far as the bike, my wife rides a trainer every morning. I hate treadmills with a passion and the same idea for a bike sucks even more. Biking in the morning is out.
True, a training partner makes winter workouts, especially early morning winter workouts, much more palatable. I almost had a winter training partner. There is only one problem. He went to Chile for two months...the same two months I am currently complaining about. So much for that idea. I am training alone.
There is one upside. Ten minutes from my office is a six and half mile moderately technical single track loop. It is twisty and comes at me fast enough to make me pay attention, but easy enough I can just attack it and crush my way through it on my lunch break. At least this allows for some possibility of getting in a session in the daylight...what a concept, right?
Hence, I do not have much use for the New Year. It reminds me of the long, cold and lonely months of training ahead. Instead, I like the idea of starting the year on 01 Mar. Nine days later on 09 Mar, the time change occurs, we spring forward and get our evenings back. Here in the south, March is when we say goodbye to winter temps and hello to springtime temps. Sure, there are still a lot of drysuit days, but at least the icy days are pretty much gone.
Instead of celebrating a new and fresh start now, I propose we wait until 01 Mar. We can celebrate the anticipation of getting our evenings back and really get fired up about getting fit for the coming season. Here is my idea. How about a spring conditioning camp during the first week of March to kick off the new year?
A celebration of the new year like this, it would provide a little motivation to not get too sedentary and fat during the long, cold and dark winter months. It would be a way to take some days off from work and enjoy being outside and getting fit just as we get our daylight hours back to be able to do just this.
How about it? Let's put it on the calendar for the first week of March. Let's celebrate when the year really starts by getting fired up and ready for it! Who is in? Respond to this post if you are interested and I will see what ideas I can come up with.