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One week to go

Wow, this is the last week of training before leaving for Colorado.

A sign of a great country road with little car traffic!

Sunday found us riding along country roads for a 26 mile ride. It was quite beautiful! You know you are in the middle of nowhere, on great roads when there are NO lines on the road (yellow or white), grass growing across the road, and only a few cars!

Monday was more of a rest day, doing things around the house. Tuesday found me out for a quick 15 miles in less than 1 hour. This has been a nice improvement over the summer. While it was quite warm, there was a light breeze which made a difference.

Wednesday found us riding around Lake Mendota in Madison. We had asked about the distance and were told, by someone at a local bike shop, that it was 60 miles. Well, it was a far cry from that. We rode 23 miles around the lake, on roads that were lakeside, main roads and meandering through some very nice homes. The best part was the fresh ice cream from the UW Agricultural program! YUMMMMM ! ! ! It was a fitting end to a ride that averaged over 92 degrees warm.

Some well needed rain derailed our Thursday morning hopes, but it was ok. Tired bodies are not so responsive!

Saturday found me on a local chain of lakes with some great friends. We paddled our kayaks for 3 hours in very nice water. By the time we quit, the lakes had become quite busy. We picked a good start time and had the lakes to ourselves.

Sunday, I went out with my friends who are training for the Ironman in 3 weeks. They had planned to ride 100 miles, so I just joined for 40. It was so fun to ride with them. 3 of us are quite well matched in our speed and style. We were moving for 2:32, which made for a nice ride. The wind was in our face for the first 1/2 and when we turned toward the start, it was a nice change – but the wind was still in our faces!  HA, HA, HA….it is a Cindy wind meter!

We also got our team gear! WOW is it great. Coach Karl’s Chain Gang is ready for the road!

If you still are interested in donating, contributions are accepted until Friday. Here is the link to my donation page: http://laf.livestrong.org/site/TR/Partnered/Partnered?px=1015407&pg=personal&fr_id=1351 

Thank you again for all your support!

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Last of July

Wow, this month has passed quickly, with not as much riding. Thank you heat wave that covers the middle of the US. While in Colorado earlier, I was hopeful that I could find some pedals and ride with the Venus de Miles club last weekend. But, NO. . . They could not be found. ARGH. . .

But I did get some hiking in while in Breck. It was an amazing conference and it is always great to be in the mountains. So, back to the riding details…….

I got three rides in this week, for just over 70 miles. Yes, that is not too great, but it is a huge improvement. The first ride was a quick loop from home, past 3 cemeteries. One is a national historic site. The things you find out while riding your bike.

The view from my bike….. saw lots of cornfields, with ok looking corn.

Saturday found me riding with friends who are training for the Ironman in Louisville. Thank you for including me on part of your 75 mile ride! The ride was through rolling hills and corn fields! And we got some great rice cakes from the Feed Zone Cookbook!

So, our team for the B Strong Ride, Coach Karl’s Chain Gang, is starting to get very excited. We should get our team kit in the next few weeks. Thank you all for your support in this adventure. Without all of your support and donation, it would not be possible for me to undertake this adventure!

If you would like to donate, here is the link to my page for the B Strong Ride donations: http://laf.livestrong.org/site/TR/Partnered/Partnered?px=1015407&pg=personal&fr_id=1351 

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Back on the roadie

Wow, I got back on the road bike…. what a treat after the camping bike. I so love my Madone 6.x. Monday was hot and humid, with no AC. So, I had to be at home for the HVAC guy to fix our unit. No coolant = hot house!

Tuesday found me out for a quick 1 hour ride. 16.9 miles in 1 hour 6 minutes. It was hard to get into the grove again at times, but towards the end of the ride I found my grove. I rode past 3 cemeteries, 1 road kill skunk, a few dead squirrels or chippies, 2 birds of black color, a frog or two, but NO snakes! Thank goodness. I was also struck by the overall dryness as I watched a dirt devil in a corn field. Not good for this time of year. I was well hydrated thanks to my Lemon Skratch Labs exercise hydration mix. It was so nice to have a little flavor without GI issues!

Wow, so it has been a crazy few weeks. Lots of heat, humidity and NO rain. House work has been keeping me busy and made my back a bit wonky. I was unable to ride for almost 2 weeks due to some issues with my back. Darn deck! But, the deck is clean and looks beautiful again.

During this time, we experienced temps in the range of 102-109 degrees. The most striking thing was seeing the temp read 107 in the shade at 530 in the evening. OUCH. It is hard to know how to train during this type of weather.

We were supposed to go camping, but the heat and non-electric site convinced us to go camping at home.

Well, it was difficult for him to find a tile to play!

We had a great time with Drew, Rachel, the boys and the dog. Spent time in the lake, playing games, using the campfire app on the iPad and drinking ‘white flour’. Really, we made sangria and it was in a container labeled ‘WHITE FLOUR’ during the weekend. So, we are now calling it white flour. It was a time of lots of laughter!

I did get another project done – the shore station is ready for the pontoon boat. It should be put into the lake on Monday! Yeah!

Back in Colorado for one week – work and a conference. Perhaps I can find a D-D & D this week.

While the riding has been less than stelar, I have gotten some miles in each week. I forgot my shoes and pedals in the rush to leave for a surprise party and the trip out to Colorado. So, I will make do with whatever comes my way!

News flash . . . . found my old shoes and some shorts. I will ride this weekend with Venus de Miles! I am excited. Now to find the old pedals for those shoes. THAT could be a problem.

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Camping week

Well, I went from moving week to camping week! Sunday found us packing up from Mahoney State Park and heading home. It was a great day to drive, not too hot and some mixed clouds. The bike bus made it home with only a little bit of rain!

Riding through Peninsula State Park – this is the typical view!

Unloading the camper and truck took most of Monday. Meeting friends, who are riding in the B Strong Ride also, Monday night was fun. We had a great time and got caught up!

Cleaning out stuff, putting things away and getting ready for camping again on Thursday were the focus of the week.

I ran out of time to ride here on Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday found me finishing up the camper and heading out for Peninsula State Park. Wow, what an amazing state park! We rode on Friday and Saturday. Here is the view from the Friday ride.

We rode about 17 miles on Friday – oops, something went wrong with the Garmin. I turned it on and off, but it only got one of the rides. Perhaps I reset it…. user error! Then we hiked about 5 miles along the shoreline, up the cliffs and through the beautiful hardwood forest!

Saturday found us riding to Stone’s Throw Winery! A nice ride. Average temp was 94, distance was 22 miles and fastest speed was 34 mph. That was a fun downhill run! We spent a few hours at the beach, and the cold water was so refreshing for our tired and hot legs. Boy, I am not used to the humidity. Thank goodness for Lemon Lime Exercise Hydration mix – Skratch Labs!  I did not seem too dehydrated after our little jaunt!

Sunday was just too hot and humid at 0900 to even think of a ride. The temp was 90 by 1130 today.

So, a beautiful week with great friends!

Again, I can’t thank all of you enough for your support in my quest to raise $1,000 for Boulder Community Hospital and the George Karl Foundation. I am quite close to my goal and I would like to blast by the $1K mark! Both of these organizations are the benefactors of the B Strong Ride and are dedicated to fighting cancer. If you would like to assist me in this effort, here is my fundraising page for the ride: http://laf.livestrong.org/site/TR/Partnered/Partnered?px=1015407&pg=personal&fr_id=1351 

Overlooking Green Bay near the end of the Saturday ride.

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Moving week

Well, it was moving week, with little bike riding to be had. We thought about doing the Bolder Boulder on Monday, but the alarm was turned off at 505. More box packing, cleaning and unpacking at the new place.

Tuesday found the movers at the old place at 0900 and unloading at the new place at 1230. Now for more boxes. We unpacked until 545, when I left to meet the carpet cleaner. Boy, Peaks-2-Plains does amazing work! Thank you Nate for the great work at a great price!

Wednesday found us doing more cleaning, unloading and heading to boulder for some last minute things. We missed the Venus de Miles Bicycle Club presentation, but ate dinner at Foolish Craig’s Cafe. Another DDD joint that was a good find.

Thursday found us cleaning the old place for the Friday inspection. Lots of dust and a successful friday inspection.

Work, work, work and no play is not good. So, we spent the rest of the day doing small things to get organized and planned to leave on Saturday. Saturday found the bikes going about 450 miles. They were on the ‘bike bus’. No riding, but they did get a bit of traveling in for the week.

Here is a picture of the ‘bike bus’ at the camp ground that was our stopping point on Saturday. Hopefully this next week will find me on the bike traveling and not the bike on the truck traveling!

Again, I can’t thank all of you enough for your support in my quest to raise $1,000 for Boulder Community Hospital and the George Karl Foundation. Both of these organizations are the benefactors of the B Strong Ride and are dedicated to fighting cancer. If you would like to assist me in this effort, here is my fundraising page for the ride: http://laf.livestrong.org/site/TR/Partnered/Partnered?px=1015407&pg=personal&fr_id=1351 

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Rain, animals and friends

Well, Saturday was a rain day. Thank goodness as we so need the moisture. Sunday, I spent the day around the house as my housemate (and good friend) has a very severe case of vertigo. I was able to do some work on the camper (replace the CO/LP detector) so we can use the unit on the drive home next week. Also loaded most of our dishes, linens, repair buckets/tools and just tidied up generally.

Monday – my question for the day….. who wins if you hit a deer on your bike? I rode, well most of the way, the North Carter Lake loop and was greeted by about 12 deer at the top. What really happened: there is one mile that is brutal. I rode as far as possible before almost tipping over, walked some, rode some, walked some and then rode. It was humbling. Once at the top, it was fun with some small downhills and climbs. There are some beautiful campgrounds up there! Once back on the way down, 40 mph was sustainable on a road with little traffic. I am TIRED!  Skratch Labs, thanks for keeping me hydrated! What would I do without your great products! I decided around 4:30 to ride here and not head over to Boulder for rides up NCAR with the Venus de Miles Bicycle Club. But, I learned that I could use climbing practice and lessons! Almost 29 miles.

Here is a picture of the real ride! 

Tuesday will bring a new day…. I think for something less vertical! Perhaps something in the 25 mile range. Oops, it once again came crashing down for the ride plans. This moving thing has got to end soon!

We got access to the new place on Saturday, so painting and cleaning could begin in earnest! We had to paint 2 of the rooms, changing the colors from bright pink and intense royal blue to something a bit more adult.

I had lots of help from friends, used 4 gallons of Kilz to cover most of the color and then great paint from SW paints.

You can see the results for one of the rooms here. The blue room color matched the blue painting tape color.

So, it has been a moving and painting week once again. I am excited to be almost done with this adventure.

I want to thank all of you for your support in my B Strong Ride fund raising. Our team, Coach Karl’s Chain Gang, is coming along with our quest to raise $5,000. While this has not been a good training week, it has been a good week in life, sharing with friends and family. Thank you all.

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Back to biking on the real bike

So, Sunday found me eating out for Mother’s Day and doing things around the house. My mom is gone on a great train adventure, so I did not spend any time with her on Sunday. Monday found me working on a new raised bed for the garden. Yes, 6 x 4 feet! It will house tomatoes, broccoli, and a few other things.

Tuesday, I rode some on the road tank! Yes, tank it was. Here is a picture of a bike ride that I am spoiled by: The bike path in the Grand Teton National Park!  I need to get a better picture of the road bike!

Well, not the real road bike, but a little tease for all of you!

Thank goodness for Wednesday and the training ride with Traci! She worked us well. Some of us were commenting that we couldn’t stand as our legs were so wobbly after the third set of sprints. Yes, we did another set and all of us learned so much! I will miss her coaching when I am in Wisconsin. I have to be proud of my group – Jennifer was voted into the ‘championship’ sprint group and she won. The two of us were neck and neck, or tire and tire, during our training laps. We did three sprints in one set. Then Traci provided some insights, then more set!

Thursday was a wash due to the smoke from the Hayden fire. I am so grateful for all those people up in the canyon fighting to save houses and stop the fire. We had smoke in the house at 0700. It was a day where the mountains were not seen due to the haze from the smoke. Friday – well, I was at work until 5:00 pm and then had dinner with some great friends. NO riding = NOT good.

Saturday found us having the rides cancelled due to RAIN! Thank goodness for the rain. They got over 1/2 inch on the fire which helped to contain further growth. The fire stands at over 7,600 acres!

So, it was not a great biking week in terms of mileage. That is not too good, but I am looking forward to next week with NCAR rides, longer Carter Lake rides and a few more adventures with Traci!