The weather this past Saturday proved to be nice enough to pull the road bike off of the trainer and hit the mean streets of south Johnson County and test out my new MWI Showers Pass Soft Shell Trainer.
My kitchen thermometer read 37 degrees, with a light wind from the southwest. I dressed up for the cold with a sleeveless base layer, a long sleeve base layer, my regular short sleeve jersey, and the soft shell trainer on top. I was a little cold to start, and had to stop to put on shoe covers to keep my little piggies warm, but once I got warmed up, I was reasonably comfortable.
I headed south and west from the house to Kenneth, just west of the state line, and hit a couple of my favorite local "hellingen" (no cobbles) before cutting over to State Line Road and about 3 miles of gravel south of 199th St., including one of the steepest gravel road hills I've found around here, before looping back to Mission Rd. for a straight shot home. It turned out to be a great ride of just over an hour and a half, aided on the way home by the unseasonable south wind.
I was really happy with my Softshell Trainer. The fit (size M) was very good, and even with the other layers under, it never felt bulky or constricting. I liked the all of the zippers: the two under arm vents, the one rear vent high on the back, the two zippered pockets, and the cuff zippers. I think that the cuff zippers and the two big rear pockets (rather than 3 on a regular jersey) turned out to be my favorite features. The cuff zippers made it really easy to get a good seal around my gloves and the big pockets were easy to get into with my gloves on, and deep and wide enough to hold a lot more stuff than I needed on my short ride.
And the sodium reference in the title? Well, about a week ago, we got about an inch of snow, and Johnson County laid down a lot of road salt. Enough salt that it is now dried out and caked on the roads, and riding over it can cause it to dust up a little. That dust found it's way to the nozzle on my water bottles, and I got my daily sodium intake via my salty water bottle nozzle.
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