Trek Women
February 28, 2008

Think, Think, Think

Images18 One of the issues on the top of my list is Safety.  Whenever I am planning to go anywhere, this seems to be in the forefront of my thoughts.  The grocery store, to and from work, errands etc; I always look around, check out the car and watch for people around me.  Not only am I looking out for unsafe situations, I am also looking out for safe situations.  I want to know in my mind that I have a plan "B" to switch to if something goes wrong.  Maybe it's the Girl Scout in me but it never hurts to be prepared,

Now that I am riding a bike I am very aware of "Bicycle Safety"  You can wear the gear, hats, gloves, shoes, clothing, etc. but it's important to know Where you are riding.  Stay with familiar places and conditions that you are sure you can maneuver.  I prefer to ride with company or at least one other person, plus it's very social, but if that is not possible I am never far from someone.  I stick to populated, familiar areas and ride in the daylight.  Sure it restricts me but if I need a ride and the conditions are not right, I go to the gym.   Please feel free to share additional tips that I might have forgotten.  This is the start of the real bicycle season and everyone needs to be informed as much as possible.

Come Ride With Me.      

February 26, 2008

"More Please"

20080225091504459_00012 It seems that everyone is worried about weight loss these days, and I am among the concerned masses (pardon the pun)  After I started  down the path of life alone, I managed to work off 60+ pounds as described in my original story.  How was I crowned? with Diabetes 2.  I have not mentioned this until now because I had plenty of other stories to tell.   It's kind of embarrassing because diabetes is often linked with obesity and I have enough demons without other reminders from where I have come.  I am not a weight loss snob, and even though I have a very curvy figure that will never go away, I want to take off more weight.   The problem is, I cannot starve myself.  I must eat healthy while trying to keep my blood sugar in balance.  With all the exercise I do, sometimes I get overwhelmed and I actually become very discouraged.  It's difficult to manage weight AND eat 6 small meals a day AND keep from gaining AND keep blood sugar from spiking.  Sometimes I feel myself sicken at the thought of jumping on the scale, and I try not to do that too often using instead, my glucometer as my scale.  I thank Coach Mary who is aware of this issue and has encouraged me tremendously.  When I did my metric century, part of my victory was managing my blood sugar while doing all those miles.   

I must admit when I hear of fad, and quick weight loss diets I am somewhat jealous and somewhat annoyed.  It takes a lot of patience and determination to plan healthy meals, but I know in the long run that I will be healthier for the effort.  Why am I sharing this? maybe it will help someone else to ignore fad weight loss promises and hang in there with a proven plan and quietly work through it like I try to do.   I WILL say the healthy person that needs to lose 5, 10 or 20 pounds, to quickly reach a goal, can withstand some calorie and nutrition deficit without any problems.  Let's all be mindful that everyone has to stick with his own path to achieve goals; and it's good, to have goals.   

Come Ride With Me.   

February 25, 2008

"My First"

Bottom1 I made the trip to experience my "First" bicycle event, the Tour of California.  While we had rain here all weekend, and I was armed with very little information about the event, I decided to visit the "Santa Clarita Event Day" as this had less chance for rain.  It seems like nothing is easy but I got there, and while waiting for the event to begin I ran into our Trek representative for the men's bicycles.  I saw some vendors set up, a stage etc.  turns out I wasn't even in the right place.  By the time I found my way around to the correct location / The Finish Line; there were so many people I could barely see what was going on.   What did I learn?

  • Next time I'll travel with a "veteran"   
  • The Tour of California is getting more popular every year
  • Find more events to participate in to become a "veteran"
  • Don't be discouraged, keep getting out there
  • I'm not invisible, but this is a high profile event
  • More stuff to learn about; including myself
  • Build a stronger support group 

Do I sound a little down?  I am, so somehow I need to turn the page, move on to what's on tap for tomorrow, and get started on the next poject.  Tee Hee

Come Ride With Me 

February 22, 2008

Come Ride With Me


I received an invitation to join a team that will be participating in the Lance Armstrong Challenge.  This is an event that will take place in California in July 2008.  I really want to do this for many reasons.

I received such a nice letter and invitation from one of my readers.  I have always tried to keep Cancer Awareness in the forefront of all my journalizing whenever I could.  This is for the memory of Cliff and all the families that have been touched by Cancer.  It's something I can write and report about on my Blog.  Lance Armstrong will be there, I think, and I would love to see him or get a picture with him. Maybe TREK can intervene here on several levels.

Here are some of the things I need to work out. 

  • I need to get a company to sponsor my ride.
  • I don't know these team members, how do I work through that?
  • I  will need to drive myself to San Jose and it is quite a clip on my own, although I can do it.

What I am asking from you folks is this; do you recognize anything here that I am not seeing?  Does anyone have any suggestions for the "Newby".  Any concerns or tips you could pass along regarding the travel, the sponsor, participating in the actual event?  I have got time but would like some help putting this together and making this happen.  Not only is it a great cause, but it would be another milestone for me to accomplish and I think that is one of the reasons I was chosen for this venue.  I have nothing to loose and everything to gain.  Please let me hear from you.

By the way "Go Levi"

Come Ride With Me


February 21, 2008

"My Two Cents Too"

Levi1 I just don't get it.  With the many sports figures holding press conferences claiming innocence about doping, lying and insulting our intelligence, the most important thing the public needs right now is a good Role Model

My Trek sisters, Susan, Laura and Jen have done a good job on their blogs, explaining the story of "Let Levi Ride"; no need for me to repeat everything here.  If you need further details click on this link to read more.  Here is a chance for you to speak up and keep our young athletes in the spotlight where they belong.

I have my opinions on this subject and I can get going on this stuff and have a difficult time stopping.  Instead of me doing that within this forum, please let your voice be heard where it will do some good.  That's what I did.

Come Ride With Me

February 20, 2008

"The Warrior"

Kits_043 During this week, especially in California we see every newscast telling a story about abuse to cows at a meat packing plant in Chino, California; about 15 miles from my home base.  This has caused one of the biggest meat recalls in our history.  I sicken as I wonder how a human being can abuse a beautiful, gentle animal such as a cow.  They stripped them of their dignity and their creature spirit.  I won't go into details, but if you saw any of the clips, it was just disgusting and disturbing.  When someone says, "I don't think I can eat any more beef". I remind them that there just might be inequities with turkeys, chickens and the like.  I am not a vegetarian, although I don't eat much meat anymore.  But I do believe in Karma and feel that every animal abuser has his day. 

On Valentines Day, when I was working on my challenge, I was unaware that "The Warrior" was starting his new life on the Other Side where he will be waiting for all his friends.  For most of us, in this lifetime or any other, the most difficult moments of our lives stem from the loss of a family member.  If you are an animal lover like me, the loss of a beloved pet is as devastating as the loss of a person.  I want to dedicate today's blog to my bicycle Guru, Bruce's beloved pet, "Trouble", known to the immediate family as the "Warrior".  He was a very good boy and a wonderful companion.  When all our dogs were together, he was the spokesman for the group.

Trouble, we will see you again someday.  Go strut your stuff little guy; run and play and watch over all of us. 


February 17, 2008

"Excuse Me, Coming Through"

Mariewillbike1 What could possibly be better than watching your child take his first bike ride?  I found something; taking your first bike ride with a grandchild. 

I was delighted to see Will navigate his little Trek "Mountain Cub" with such determination. (wonder where that comes from).  He had only borrowed one of his friends bikes the week before to practice at the park.  He doesn't care that the bike came from a garage sale for $15.00.  It's a Trek and that is the same make as Gran Marie rides.  I told him to keep riding and maybe in 6 months there would be a new bike to learn about and grow into.  One for Jackie too; currently Jack is riding Will's old Batman bike with training wheels.

So we made the outing a lesson.  We learned how to cross the street by walking our bike making sure everyone can see us before stepping into the crosswalk.  We practiced courtesy while passing pedestrians.  I cautioned Will to pass them on the left.  "Do you know which side is the left?' I asked.  "Sure, it's the hand that I write with".  So as we got ready to pass.  He announced very proudly.  "Excuse me, little boy coming through on a bike with his Grandma."  I was laughing as the couple we passed said to me, "You better not let him get ahead of you" 

So my hope is that the boys will always remember the day at the park and many more to come.  The Grandma With The Bicycle, and all that implies will remind them of Fun, Health, Love and Memories.  By the way, notice the Shrek Jersey; the boys loved their surprise.

Come Ride With Me.

February 14, 2008

2-14-08 Crush "60 @ 60 in 6"

Cayucos_132 It's not about how many miles or hours, it's about why we did it.  Did I say that?  Well, here it is.  I did it because I was afraid to try but thought I could.  I wanted others to know what can be accomplished and I did it so that next time I can improve upon it.  I tried to measure to the best of my ability and that was either or both time and mileage.  Here it is: 65 miles in 5 hours and 40 minutes.  Now the details.

It rained last night and this morning but I was out and about early to start with full expectations to complete all 60 miles on the bike.  The sun was shining for about ten minutes, it was then that I thought I was experiencing the coming of Moses with the "tablets".  The wind was so bad I could hardly stay on the bike and it was going through my mind to trash this whole idea.  Why could this be happening when I told everyone that I was going to attempt this challenge.  I quickly executed plan "B" and moved to the gym.  For those of you that think it's easier in the "Gym", let me just say this... you have to pedal for every darn mile and there is no coasting in the gym.  I worked hard for my miles and I am claiming them all.  So don't be sending me comments about not being out on the road.  I am happy with my results and I can now raise the bar for my own personal goals.

By the way, I did not eat any chocolate today, smell any fresh flowers, or exchange a kiss with anyone.  I was isolated, and I feel good about what took place today.  It shows me that I can keep going forward and find new roads to travel.  I hope your day went as well and that you feel good about something that took place during your day.  Now, let's move on. 

Come Ride With me 

February 13, 2008

Is it Possible?

Images15_2 Is is possible to die from a broken heart?  As much as I try not to link Valentines Day to my late husbands passing, it happens because that is the day he was laid to rest.  It's been a tough road for me during these last five years and although I don't speak of it too often, I am professing this to you for one reason.  Yes you can die from a broken heart but it doesn't have to happen that way.  I use this day as a reminder to accomplish something great that I can be proud of and to do something with myself during this week that gives joy and meaning to my life.  When some of the WWR girls decided to mark the day with a challenge, I jumped on the bandwagon.  As I see it, it's not how many miles or how many hours, it's about why we do it.

I just finished e-mailing coach Mary about my preparation for tomorrow's "Crush" and I thought I would share part of it with you.  I have my nutrition ready, I have a few clothing changes ready, the I-Pod is charged, there is air in my tires, I have a journal in hand and I have been resting for two days.  I am both nervous and excited so whatever happens, happens.  I agree that any time I spend on the bike is a good challenge and I always try to celebrate whatever I can accomplish.  I will take away the knowledge and know that whatever I complete, I can just add to, for the next time.  Thanks for your support. 

Ladies and Gentlemen and all who are accepting a challenge on 2-14-08, good luck and know that just getting out of bed some days is a challenge but it's also a Victory.

Come Ride With Me


February 12, 2008

"Blind Date" Part 2

31806lert1 Here we go again, rolling down the road.  I was able to keep up with these two ladies pretty well. There were only two places that I slowed down; both on a hill climb.  Part of the problem is that I am uncertain how and when to shift my gears as I approach a hill.  If I shift down too soon, then I sit there and spin but I don't go anywhere.  If I shift a little later, it's too late.  I admit I need to work on my shifting and I dream of getting that trainer for my bike, so I can master this technique.   At one rare point in the day's ride the girls were approaching me from behind, they said "Marie, you need to raise the seat on your bike.  Your legs are going to start to hurt".  "Going to?" I said.   So as they passed approaching a hill, I screwed up my shifting and dropped my chain.  (You gotta love how I keep trying, even though I look so pathetic trying to learn this stuff basically on my own.)

So the girls are now out of sight, over the hill and there I stand suddenly looking way up into the face of a this "Stud".  "You need to raise your seat" he said,  "OK, anything else?" I said sheepishly.   "Let's fix the chain", he offered, "I know how to do that because I had a triple once."  I am beginning to quiver wondering about the triple he had with chains.  Don't worry, by this time I know it's all about the bicycle.  So he gave the pedal this magic jerk and the chain was back into place.  Oh my gosh, this just gets better.  Then he said, let's check the seat.  "Get on the seat", and he straddled the front wheel.  Now I have seen a picture of Krista Rettig doing this in our training book, but, sorry Krista, this was worth writing 100 blogs.  Anyway, isn't it nice that there are people along the way to help you. 

As I rode up the hill Arlene and Doreen were waiting for me very patiently.  "I made it, I said with a big grin.  This bike riding is really fun." We finished our ride and promised that we will do it again.  Thanks ladies for taking me along..

Come Ride With Me.