Anorexic Fat Boy: 50 Winter Rides


Goal: 50 winter rides before spring. 

Total Time
Total Distance
Thursday Nov 10th 2011
150 min
150 min
~25 miles
25 miles

Monday Nov 14th
168 min
318 min
~25 miles
50 miles

Tuesday Nov 15th
150 min
468 min
~25 miles
75 miles

Thursday Nov 17th
239 min
707 min
36 miles
111 miles

Monday Nov 21st
211 min
~ 26 miles
134 miles

Tuesday Nov 22nd
180 min
1098 min
~25 miles
159 miles

Thursday Nov 24th
~26 miles
182 miles
Very mild!

Tuesday November 15th, 2011 Ride #4 of 50 

Total Time: ~ 12 hours
Total Ride Time: ~3 hours
Weather: Wind west 18 km/h, minus 5 with wind chill -11C, mostly cloudy
Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. 
Gear: 36-19
Distance: ~25 miles
Conditions: Just gray with a few flakes 

I started recording my winter adventures last year but got busy, and couldn't keep up with the blogging. It's not that I wasn't riding. I was. It's not that I was no longer interested in sharing the challenge, and wonder I feel in the depth of winter on a bike. I am. It's just when you put in an 80-hour week something has to give. This year is shaping up to be just as busy as the last was, but I will try to post when I can. 

Summer has come and gone, I am one year older, and I am a little greyer with a little less hair under the helmet. I didn't win the Elite MB Cup Series, Mountain Bike Provincials, or “Where is the Beach?” but I did somehow managed to grab the top of the podium at Other then dislocating all my fingers on one hand just before the 24-hour of Falcon, and breaking my arm at, it was an uneventful summer. Disappointed? Not at all! I did not rake in the hardware, but I did share some wonderful experiences, make new friends, and collect enough memories to warm my heart during even the coldest ride. 

I have hung the cross bike right next to the mountain bike for well-deserved rest. To make room for these old friends I took down my anorexic fat bike. The end of one season is just the beginning of the next adventure. 

Now if we only had some snow.  


December 27, 2010 Ride #47

Total Time: ~ 9-hours
Total Ride Time: 3-hours 33-minutes
Weather: Wind south 30 km/h gusting to 50, minus 10 with wind chill, mostly cloudy
Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. 
Gear: 36-19
Distance: ?
Conditions: Windy with large snow drifts

Comments: What is the cure for indulgence and gluttony? Punishment or therapy?   Physical, mental, inhalation, occupational, behavior, speech, rehabilitative, child, family, group, drug, massage, electroshock, electroconvulsive, light, radiation, oxygen, heat, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, hydrotherapy, heliotherapy, electrotherapy, and psychotherapy are all garbage. What the doctor ordered was a late night bike ride. 

Date: 28-12-2010 Ride #46
Total Training Time: ~ 12-hours
Total Ride Time: 3-hours
Sunny. Wind west 30 km/h, - 3, wind chill -10, wind SW 26 km/h
Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. Gear: 36-19
Conditions: Lots of soft chewed up snow, and windy 
Comments: Being sick sucks, but the weather was looking so good today I could not resist getting outside. The sun and single digit temps makes for a good weather attitude. The feeling of fresh air in my lungs, and clear skies to ride under makes me feel that all is right with the world.  Nice way to end the year. 

Date: 30-12-2010

Comments: Opted out of -32C Iditarod training today in favor of rollers in the morning and circuit training in the evening. I have to work all day and party all night Friday so the next possible chance to get on the snow will be Saturday. Sunny skies with a high of -15C are in the forecast.

Date: 2011-01-01 Ride #45

Total Time: ~ 15:33-hours
Total Ride Time: ~3-hours 30-minutes
Blowing snow in open areas, Wind north 40 km/h gusting to 60! Wind chill -30C, Cloudy

Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. 
Gear: 36-19.
Distance: ~50 km

Pre Ride Contemplation:
Wow it is the 1st day of a new year 2011 and only 45 rides to go. I could hear the wind pounding the house as I was contemplating how many layers to wear. What I was actually trying to do was avoid thinking too much about pushing into a 60 km wind at -30C. Time to HTFUP!

Post Ride Reflections:

I glanced at this while re-fuelling after 3-hours and 30-mins of pushing through deep snowdrifts, and hurricane force artic winds at -30C.

If you live in WinterPeg and followed her guidelines, you would never ride or ski and be weak as piss. If you followed her guidelines, I would tell you to HTFUP!  Why are adults so afraid of everything including working hard? When did we forget how to play, and why does our play have to always be ‘perfect’ or “it sucks”? The problem is not the weather, but the attitude about what exercise is, and what it should be.

If you are falling down in the snow… you know the value of pushing the edge of your ability. If you are hammering into a horrid mind numbing winter wind… you know the value of being warm. If you are skate skiing at -30C… your gonna have some kick ass quads.

As I see it, winter is an adventure in the snow, and that my friend will always be fun!

Date: Monday 03-01-2011 Ride #44

Total Time: ~ 19:33-hours
Total Ride Time: ~3-hours 30-minutes
-19C, Wind SW 15 km/h, Wind chill -26C, Sunny and then I could see the stars.

Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. 
Gear: 36-19.
Distance: ~50 km

Date: Tuesday 04-01-2011 Ride #43

Total Time: ~ 23:33-hours
Total Ride Time: ~4-hours
-13C, Wind S 18 km/h, Wind chill -21C, Cloudy.

Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. 
Gear: 36-19.
Distance: ~50+ km Gramin crapped out

Happy New Year! I have many people to thank for many things, but I am not going to, because if I need to thank them here, I have not been thanking them all year, and that is just wrong.  I do not have any ‘new’ years’ resolutions, but I will be working on (again) many of the ‘old’ resolutions from 2010. I decided to recycle the widely popular ‘lose weight and get fit’. I still need to tame the bulge, get more organized, and of course ride my bike. The only ‘new’ resolution for 2011 will be to continue to share the joy and happiness that riding and racing has brought into my life.

Date: Thursday 2011-06-01 Ride #42

Total Time: ~ 27:03-hours
Total Ride Time: ~3:30-hours
-22C, Wind 11 km/h, Wind chill -29C, Snow.

Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. 
Gear: 36-19.
Distance: ~50

Multiple hours, multiple miles on multiple days: I have been getting my fill of sweet winter single-track goodness this week, but my stupid cold (the same one everyone has had) is still hanging on. I have deforested half of North American blowing my nose 13-million times a day.

Date: Friday 2011-07-01 No Ride

Had to work all day, and I was dead from a long week in the saddle, resistance and that stupid run. Running sucks and my legs are destroyed. More to the point, I suck at running and my legs are destroyed.  Thankfully, the end of the first week of the New Year is bringing warmer weather with cloudy periods in the morning, and a predicted high minus 13. I might try something long on Monday or Tuesday if the mild temperatures hold, and I can sneak a way.  

Date: Saturday 2011-08-01 Ride #41

Total Time: ~ 31:33-hours
Total Ride Time: ~4:30-hours
-24.9C, Wind 15 km/h, Wind chill 79 million below… so much for milder temps!

Bike: Anorexic Fat Boy, single speed, fixed. 
Gear: 36-19.
Distance: ~50

Over the last few days, I have avoided the usual careful documentation of nothing much in favour of the documentation of nothing at all. Seriously, it has been the same old every day. 3-4 hour ride on the same route, bike, gear etc. Multiple hours, multiple miles, and multiple days can be  boring and tiring.  Wednesday’s intervals left me a wreck, and on Thursday, I managed to squeeze in a ride on the fat bike before a brief run, which was (a mistake but) a great changeup from riding. By Friday, I needed some R&R. One thing lead to another and Saturday’s the ‘fist thing in the morning ride’ turned into the ‘late night long-ish ride’. Interestingly, I was at MEC prepping for my twilight adventure, when I bumped into the Mother Teresa of Manitoba Cyclocross. He was also scoping out lights for some late night training. Turns out he is getting ready for Cape Epic. Can you say jealous?

The extreme weather really makes you thankful for reliable equipment, or perhaps crappy stuff makes you appreciated good gear. So depending on your perspective, I was either fortunate or unfortunate to have both on this ride.

You know its cold when your backpack crackles, and crunches like brittle toffee while you try to break the layer of ice off the zipper. I stopped at about 2-hours into my adventure to fuel up. A heavy coating of ice had formed over my zipper, and I was afraid that all of my food had been entombed in the depths of my pack. It is my experience that Mr. Murphy loves the cold as much as I do.  By that, I mean zippers are prone to fail at the most critical moments when misused or abused. However, a little respect for the limitations of your equipment, and prudent choices prolongs their lifespan. Using the pack at –79 million below probably meets the definition of misuse, and trying to open the pack when frozen shut is definitely abuse. There was no getting around it however. I needed food, and that bag need to open, or I was going to bonk. I held my breath, pulled the zipper leash, and it open without complaint.  Thank you Deuter.

Good equipment does not have to be expensive or trendy however. It seems that my ‘hand shields’ are most effective when the temperatures dip into the more extreme ranges. My hands – lovingly protected by Folgers Classic Roast - were relatively warm compared to my exposed legs and arms. This was the first ride where I wore a facemask – which froze solid and stayed that way - for the entire ride.

Face mask and hand shields aside, I was actually seriously underdressed. Riding in tights, knee warmers and a fleece pullover at -25C straight temperature (or colder with the wind chill) is not a good plan! Riding faster only made me colder so I stopped just long enough to put on my soft shell jacked. Windproofness and breathability are the perfect combination for winder training, but what I like most is an extra large hoodie you can slip over a helmet.  Thank you MEC.

Staying warm in the winter is all about breaking wind. Crude jokes aside, the wind chill on a bike is an insidious monster that creeps in for the kill when you are dumb enough to expose any flesh for more then a few minutes, or even seconds in WinterPeg. Accordingly, I have been in the habit of protecting my face and eyes with ski goggles, because frostbite can mess you up. I guess I am a lucky guy, since I had never had any fogging issues until now. I am guessing tucking my facemask under my goggles to prevent the moisture from my breath from freezing on inside of the lenses would have been a smart thing to do. I am also guessing that preventing moisture from entering between the lenses by letting them dry out after each ride would have been a good idea. There is no need to guess what came next however, since I did not do either of these intelligent things. Halfway into the ride I was blind, and forced to remove the goggles, and pull my fleece neck warmer up to my eyelashes. Have you ever had frozen eyeballs? By the end of the ride, my frosted eyelashes, and inability to focus or move my eyeballs was killing the joy of riding. Well as Douglas Adams said “you live and learn, or at any rate you live.”

That’s me for the first week of the new year, and fist 30+ hours in the saddle.

Date: Friday 15-01-2001


Chance of light snow
  • -20°C
  • 30%


  • -10°C


  • -20°C
  • -22°C


  • -21°C
  • -30°C


  • -20°C
  • -23°C


A mix of sun and cloud
  • -18°C
  • -25°C


A mix of sun and cloud
  • -15°C
  • -20°C
Issued : 9:51 PM CST Thursday 13 January 2011

Comment: I have to work all day, and could use the extra rest any, but the weekend is looking good for testing out my equipment, my resolve, and my ability to survive in the extreme cold. -30C straight temp should be seriously insane. 

Bring it on! 

Current Conditions
-29 °C

Observed at:
Winnipeg Richardson Int'l Airport
10:00 PM CST Monday 17 January 2011

  • Condition:
    102.2 kPa
    24 km
    Air Quality Health Index:

  • Temperature:
    65 %
    NW 15 km/h
    Wind Chill:

Ride Time
Total Time
27 -12-2010 Ride #47

~3-hours 33-minutes
~ 9-hours
28-12-2010 Ride #46

~ 12:33-hours
01-01-2011 Ride #45

~3-hours 30-minutes
~ 16:03-hours
03-01-2011 Ride #44
~3-hours 30-minutes
~ 19:33-hours
04-01-2011 Ride #43
~ 23:33-hours
06-01-2011 Ride #42
~ 27:03-hours
08-01-2011 Ride #41
~ 31:33-hours