Finding the right competitive sport has been hard for me. I’ve tried paintball, running, soccer, and triathlons, each of which has its own appeal, but none of which have the perfect combination of training time, intensity, and technical challenge.

So what’s next? Last week, I made a pass by the local bike stores to see what kind of old stock they were trying to get rid of.  One store only had 2014 models with very little discount.  The second store had several 2013’s and they were blowing them out the door.

Now I’m commited.

Saturday, I came home with a 2013 Trek Superfly AL. It’s a 29’er hardtail race bike with a 100mm poploc Reba RL, deore drivetrain, and tubeless ready rims.  It is awesome! 

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Braving the 17 degree weather, I made a couple loops around Shawnee Mission Park, stopping every half-mile to warm my hands. Every minute was an absolute blast, the bike is so fast.

My first modification is to swap over my current saddle that is on my old ’06 Trek 4300.  After that, I’ll probably go tubeless and perhaps spring for a set of Maxxis Aspen tires.  The stock tires are alright for dirt, but they are not quite burly enough to survive the punishment of the Shawnee Mission Park trails.

I now begin my training for the 2014 UFD cross-country racing circuit.  Over the winter, I’ll also be training for an olympic distance triathlon.  Lots of base fitness, weights, core, and easy distance training until the season starts to heat up, when I will start to conduct more high-intensity, race-specific skills workouts.

For now, I’m living for the dry, frozen days when I can hit the trails and not cause any ruts!