Winter is tough on a cyclist. As the rain falls outside in the dark, the motivation to get out of bed starts to drop. The knowledge that the layer on layer you are putting on is in futile does nothing to help.
So you skip that early morning ride with the best half-baked and foggy-brained self-justification you can muster.
The riding and the weather doesn't get easier, but the excuses do.
The clothes don't dry from the morning, and even the spare pair of shoes is wet.
You eventually get out on a ride. Things feel sluggish under a winter coat, and the excuses get easier. It's a self-perpetuating downward spiral with no end in sight.
Frigid days fall into a routine of starting and finishing in the dark. Energy bars snap when they should give and numb fingers fumble on wet shifters while shivers wrack the body.
Rapha calls it 'glory through suffering'. Whatever your take, there is no doubt that it makes those first blossom infused tendrils of spring all the more sweet.