Friday, August 30, 2013

1,000

I rolled over 1,000 miles for this season last night. Mary and I went for a leisurely ride up to Rockford along the White Pine Trail. We decided to go after dinner since before dinner the temperature was still in the high 80's. That was a good call since it cooled off a bit, although the bugs did come out and we needed to turn on our blinky lights for the last few miles. We finished with 15.5 miles, which gives me 83 for this week and 1,004 for this year. I set a goal to have 1,000 miles by the end of August so I'm pleased.

Three weeks from today we will be in Nashville getting ready for the JDRF Ride for a Cure. 100 miles and 4,400 feet of climbing in one day. I think I'm almost ready.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Thank you to our donors

As we approach both the date of the Nashville ride and our $9,000 family fundraising goal, I'd like to take a moment to thank the people and companies that have supported our effort this year. This list isn't complete because if you were one of the many who gave a cash donation at Jake's Music Festival we have no way to track that. But thank you all the same. In no particular order, here is this year's honor roll of donors...so far.

Tru Vue, Inc.
The Gordon Group
Fat Tire Beer
Frame's Unlimited
Roy L. Dodman
X-Cel Chemical
Seaver's Lawn Service
The Holland Hundred
Robert Edveld
Kim Summers
Leo Isaguirre
Brian Mogg
Chris Machuta
Mike & Jean Oele
Paul Weninger
Chris and Paula Briggs
Karen Kleinheksel
Keith Robb
Mary Ellen Kozoil
Walter Bujak
Heather Allegrina-Bowe
Tom & Florence Scheidel
Christine Behrens
Third Coast Cycling
Pam & Ralph Hanson
Dan Ayers
David & Rebecca Behrens
David Darling
Reg & Anne Goetz
Kim & Dennis Moline
PJ's Sound & Backline
Connie's Cakes
The Scheidel Group
Clay Grueber
Amore Trattorie Italiana
Carrettino Italian Market
Spirit Dream
West Michigan Whitecaps
Grand Rapids Children's Museum
Grand Rapids Ballet
Grand Rapids Art Museum
GR Bagel
Founders Brewing Company
Central District Cyclery
XS Energy Drinks
WYCE
and all the people who have given us cash donations to help us move one step closer to finding a cure for Type 1 diabetes.

You can still contribute to the cause by clicking on the "Donate to..." links on the left side of the page.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Big miles

Some of the team discussing the hills between loops.
We are getting to that point in the season where the miles are starting to rack up, both on the individual rides and overall. Sunday we had a JDRF team ride. We did two loops that left from Long Lake Park which is near Cedar Springs in northern Kent County. The first loop was 32 miles and took us to the high point of the county- Fisk Knob. It's a pretty tough climb, about 100 feet of elevation gain in a half mile. But there would be many more climbs on this day. In fact when we were all done we had an elevation gain of 1,069 feet. Normally that wouldn't bother me but I was not having a good day and struggled mightily, especially on the second loop.

The second loop was 36 miles and took us out to the apple orchards along Fruit Ridge and Peach Ridge Avenues. Notice the word Ridge in the name of the roads. Ridges are at the top of hills and/or mountains. To ride on them you have to ride up to them. Thus it was a long, slow, painful day for me. I did manage to finish both loops under my own power to end up with a 68 mile day. That gives me 987 miles for the year. My intermediate goal is to hit 1,000 miles by the end of August, which I should be able to do on my next ride.

25 days until the Nashville JDRF Ride for a Cure.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

One of those nights

I wanted to go for ride tonight. I got my gear on, filled my water bottle and went to the garage to get my bike. Unfortunately the rear tire was flat. I was getting a late start and this was only going to make me later. Little did I realize how much later. As I removed the rear wheel and started to take off the tire I notice some cracks and wear marks on the tire. In fact the tire was toast. Luckily I had a couple of old tires, not in great shape, but better than the one I just took off my bike. I replaced the tube, put the new old tire on the wheel and started to pump it up. Sure enough, another flat. I knew I had another tube, but it was in my car and Ian had my car. I was about to give up when I realized Ian and I are close to the same size. So I jumped on his bike and rode up to Rockford and back for a 15.7 mile ride. Being close in height and limb length is good, but not being exactly the same was noticeable. Our coach, Mike Clark, does a great job fitting our bikes to our body. Because Ian has longer legs and a shorter torso then me I felt like I was riding sitting almost straight up. After about 10 miles I started feeling fatigue pain in places I wouldn't have on my own bike. While I appreciated having a bike to get out on tonight I will be getting new tires for my steed tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Cycle-rrefic weekend

This past weekend was all about cycling. On Friday I rode one of my favorite routes. It's 21 miles long and goes up the hill on Post Road and then follows House and Edgerton up to 13 Mile Road before turning south and heading home via the White Pine Trail. I had an average speed of 15.1 miles an hour with 420 feet of climbing.

Sunday was a Team Scheidel ride. Mary, Ian and I again went up Post Drive but this time we turned left at 9 Mile Road and rode it until the end. We went south on Stage Road to 7 Mile and turned for home. This route goes past lots of apple orchards. Let me tell you there will be plenty of Michigan apples on the store shelves in a few weeks. The route was 25 miles with 413 feet of climbing. This was a leisurely ride because I was pretty beat from what I did on Saturday.

ODRAM riders roll across Michigan

ODRAM. My alarm went off at 4:00 a.m. on Saturday because I had to be in Montague by 5:30 a.m. to set up for the One Day Ride Across Michigan. This is a 144 mile ride from Lake Michigan to Lake Huron across the center of the state. I am one of the organizers of the event so I didn't ride it. However 350 people did. This is the largest contingent since our group picked up the ride in 2010. Saturday was a beautiful day with temperatures in the mid 70s, low humidity and little to no wind. Perfect cycling weather. Everyone who rode had a great time and we raised a lot of money for JDRF. You can see more photos of the event at the ODRAM Facebook page.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Tonight's ride

Because hills are fun.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Tour de Taco

Our coach Mike Clark holds an annual team ride from his house in Holland. It's called the Tour de Taco because afterward Mike fixes up a whole passel of Mexican food. It's always really good and the ride is always fun. This year we did two loops. The morning loop started at 10:00 a.m. this past Sunday and incorporated parts of the Holland Hundred route. Sixteen of us rode south out of Holland toward Fennville and Hutchens Lake. We went around the south side of the lake and past Fenn Valley Winery. Since it was too early to stop at the tasting room we kept riding toward Saugatuck/Douglas. As we headed north back to Holland we picked up a pretty good head wind. We ended up with 41 miles. Truth be told, a few people (Mary for one) ended up with 44 miles because they missed a turn.

Loop number two headed out at 2:00 p.m. This was a shorter 30-ish mile route that took us in the reverse direction of loop one to Saugatuck and then back up to Holland. We had about 25 people on this route. After finishing with the lead group in the morning I was very happy to be middle to back of the pack in the afternoon. I ended up with 68 miles for the day. Add that to the 31 I did on Friday and I rode 99 miles in three days. So I feel like I'm where I need to be to be ready for the century ride in Nashville in six weeks.

The West Michigan Team enjoying post ride tacos.