As we all know it's sometimes hard to squeak out ride time.  When it comes to hitting the trails living in Chicago, it's even harder.  Either you need to wait for our nearest trails at the Palos Forest Preserve to be dry or be willing to drive a bit away.   This weekend had some beautiful weather starting on Friday.  

With the sun shining in the office windows and then the unexpected early departure of the boss, I made a quick connect to my teammate Jen M. to see if she'd be free to meet up at Palos.  As luck would have it, she could!  (Fellow teammie and hubby PB would be on baby duty).  I hurried out of the office to get home, quick change and head out.

We met up two hours later ready to have our first ride of the season.  First, however, Jen commented how her mix of layers and socks looked a bit ridiculous before looking up at me to see my melange of old, new, and non-kit, each element in varying color schemes in what I felt 'delightfully' clashed.  But who cares about fashion, it's about riding!

Since we didn't have much time, we decided to do the standard race loop.  For the most part it was all dry save for a few mud puddles here and there where I rediscovered my cx dismount and tried to hop over.  Jen pushed up the climbs with ease, I gasped my way (sometimes walked) but felt for the first day out...not so bad.  In fact, it felt great.  

It wasn't until after my track season last year that I rediscovered trail riding.  Perhaps it was the new found fitness that I gained by the end of summer or perhaps the complete change in ride style, but I was sad that I only got the bug in September!  I've been eager to get back out there since.  Unfortunately, the rest of the weekend did not provide an opportunity to ride again, but I was greatly appreciative of that hour.  Besides, my legs and arms were still feeling that ride 2 days later!

Erica C.