Sunday, September 30, 2007

LiveStrong Challenge

Days like today you really discover what "LiveStrong" is all about.

I volunteered with the Portland Velo club at the 1st reststop at the LiveStrong Challenge. About 40 people showed up on a rainy miserable day to "see Lance" and give a helping hand.

Well, we got to see Lance as he turned the corner and gave us a wave. Turns out he wasn't the one that inspired me today.

Working the rest-stop I jumped on handing out the PowerBars. It was 10 miles into the ride and you could tell these folks needed some movitation in the freezing rain. Well, when you try to provide some inspiration, you find that you'll get alot more inspiration in return.

LiveStrong is the riders who aren't typically bike riders. They are doing the ride for a reason or a person. They were all in different abilities, shapes, sizes, and personalities. They wore signs that said "Survivor". Lord knows what kind of story they had - there wasn't enough time to find out as they stood in the pouring rain and grabbing a PowerBar for some physical energy. However, you could tell there was no doubt they would finish the ride. They had a reason inside them that was driving them to complete that ride today.

There was one fellow in particular. He was an odd duck - everyone was wondering who is this guy talking to. But, when you listened to his story, you saw his "passion for life". Young kid, must have been in his twenties, from Modesto CA, obviously was expecting sunny weather because he was definitely not dressed for the occasion. Testicular cancer survivor - he was proud to show the scar on his belly. He had no idea what idea he was doing on that bike, but as he rode off there was no doubt in my mind that he would finish. He was proud and full of passion for life.

Met Chris Carmichael, Lance's coach, as you can see from the photo below. Lance canceled out on the speech he was going to give at 1pm. However, there was no disappointment in me. I already met and saw plenty of people that LiveStrong everyday.

A day a today confirms that saying, "give alittle to others and you'll receive more in return".

Now that's LivingStrong!!!!

Another amazing story that was posted.....

The last rider to finish was a cancer survivor who road alone through the rain and wind for most of the day. At one point she was at least 5 miles behind the next to last rider. Often moving along at barely a walking pace, with inspiring fortitude she never wavered in her determination to finish. A sag wagon stayed with her and even offered to give her a ride back when it seemed she was not going to make it. She replied, "I've got three hours until the course closes, I'm going to keep going". And she did. She finished the 70 mile course in just under 8 hours, long after most of the participants had gone home. Maybe the second hardest thing she's done in her life. You know what the hardest thing was.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Kermeese - 9/15

Wow, it feels good to be back in a race. It was a great warm up for cross season at the Kermeese at Sauvie's Island. The course was about 1.5 mile lap around a guy's farm. It was a great course to hammer on the cross bike.

I felt great the first few laps, slowed down during the next 4, and hammered the last two. You really need to dig deep in the middle. I think the taste of blood from the bottom of my lungs got me motivated. Always remember - PAIN is a sign of WEAKNESS LEAVING the body!!!!

The bike performed well - no mechanical issues.

Saw a collegue from work - his son and grandson were out there. His grandson is about 10 years old and he's really into it. Great to see.

Welcome Cross Season!!!!!!!!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Back in the Saddle Again

It's been more than a few months since I got on a bike, so I haven't been "inspired" to blog much.

The separated shoulder kept me off the bike for awhile. Then I figured since I was down, I may as well get "fixed" at the the same time (those male procedures at 37 years old gives a new meaning to "saddle sores").

Well, after 3 months without reasonable heart pumping excerise, I was a physical example of how biking is directly proportional to happiness. I lost my mojo, man.

The good news, is that I started riding at the beginning of August. It took a few weeks, but the MOJO IS BACK. Over this weekend, 6000ft+ of climbing and 30mph decents on gravel roads - I found it.

Don't miss the Bike Film Festival this weekend. I'm planning to go Thursday night and program 4 and 5 on Saturday.

Cross season is almost here and I'm pumped. It's definitely the most fun you can have on a bike while busting your lungs for 45 to 60 minutes. Here's an excellent blog on cross racing by a local racer (best I've seen).... Laatste Ronde

Here's the races I have circled on the calendar. Hope to see you there.

Sept 15th: Krugers Kermesse
Oct 7th: Cross Crusade at Alpenrose
Oct 21st: CrossCrusade at Rainer
Nov 4th: CrossCrusade at Hornings Hideout
Nov 18th: CrossCrusade at Hillsboro Stadium
Dec 2nd: Cross Crusade at PIR (national guys will be here, you don't want to miss that).