Wednesday, April 30, 2014

#30daysofbiking by TTM

Below is a blog written by my husband Jim.  He took a 30 day challenge to ride his bike in April. Doesn't sound too hard does it? Especially if you love to ride bikes huh?  Read below and see how it went.

So there it is, in all it's glory.  My #30daysofbiking all summed up.
How did it start? I stumbled on a "Challenge" on FaceBook.  I was to commit to 30 consecutive days of riding a bike.  Who doesn't love a good bike ride?  Well let's on cold, rainy, snowy, drizzly, grey, windy, freezing COLD days.  Which it seems that we received many more of these types of days than my favorite type of sunny and 75 degrees with a light breeze.   Gray days make it tough to throw a leg over a bike and head out.  So I told myself that "1 mile is better than none!".  This became my sort of my mantra for those nasty days.

My commitment to the #30daysofbiking was that I would ride a minimum of 1 mile every day.  Why only a mile? Life, it has a way of getting in the way of those little things that we want to do for ourselves. Besides that why set goals you can't reach?  It's ok to have easy attainable goals. Just because they seem overly simplistic doesn't mean it will be easy.   So I chose 1 mile distance and time didn't matter. Everything doesn't have to be race.  It seems at times that when I hit a group ride the pace picks up and race mode happens.  Sometimes I just like to ride my bike and check things out. So 1 mile, no time limit.  Reality is though that I would ride many of these days at 1 mile or so and it wouldn't take less than 15 minutes from putting on a helmet to clicking stop on the Strava or GPS.
I rode my bike everyday and though I might not have felt like it, and believe me I had dozens of excuses lined up, I did it anyway. It's done now so here is the Top 5 things I learned riding my bike everyday for a month.

#1 - Sometimes you have to just HTFU and do it. Yup, just walk out the door and grab your bike and pedal.
#2 - You can ride a bike and clear your head in ten minutes. It's sometimes that simple. Betcha keep riding when it happens.
#3 - I didn't lose any weight? Nope, probably gained a little as my goal was to ride my bike not lose weight. If I was shooting for losing weight I wouldn't have had those beer runs on the calendar as bike rides. But my goal was simpler, just ride my bike every day for at least a mile. You want to lose weight? Don't eat shitty food and do something besides watching other recreate.
#4 - The streets in my neighborhood look like crap, and need some serious maintenance. Time to call city hall.
#5 - Always think about how your are transporting those bombers of beer before you buy 3.  When all else fails walk over to the curb and drink one. She will be just as happy as you, if you only bring her one beer back.

What's next - Dirty Kanza 200 training of course.  200 miles of Gravel Roads in 1 day on a bike. My time to beat - 19:30 minutes. After reviewing my April mileage on Strava(24 hours of riding, 195 miles total. Longest ride was 20.7 of singletrack and gravel road) it appears I may be a bit behind in the DK training plan.  I guess I better get out the Chamois Butter cause the new leather Brooks saddle is gonna get to know my sit bones really well over the next 31 days!

I have a new mantra for DK200 this year - 200isbetterthannone!


Even you can ride a bike, people learn everyday.

Written by Jim Davis

Friday, April 11, 2014

Lifestyle Doesn't Take A Vacation

Recently my husband and I surprised our eight year old with a Spring Break trip to Florida.  We told her the morning we were going to leave, you should have seen her face.  We would be driving our Subaru Outback the 800 miles to Pensacola, Ft. Pickens Campground to be exact. We would be staying in hotels for three nights and at the campground for three nights. Our vacation was going to be an active on because we planned it that way.  In my opinion, vacation does not mean sitting around all day on a beach drinking alcohol and eating endless amounts of crinkle bag chemical laden non-foods or slamming pizza and cheeseburgers. That is no longer my lifestyle and I certainly don't want it as my vacation.

While vacations are not the time to lose weight they are not the time to add a notch on your belt either.  We went for long walks on the beach, several hours at a time.  We went on many hikes, a hike of a historical monument, a hike at Blackwater State Park and several hikes around our campground. The trail was literally just ten feet from our tent. Of course our bikes went.  We rode them as much as we could.

  Sydney definitely got the most miles. She received a new bike for her birthday the week prior and was really enjoying breaking it in by doing hot laps around the paved campground.  She made two friends, a brother and sister duo, and they had street races for a solid hour.

Now I am not saying it isn't okay to splurge a little , I enjoyed several delicious high octane micro-brews and indulged in some of the creamy sauces. Beyond that I did not step out of my box of normal eating.  I ate fresh vegetable platters, salads, fresh fish and basically what I would have eaten if I was at home.  My spurge was definitely the beers and I am happy with that.

Along with eating right and exercising we made sure to get our sleep.   We were in bed relatively early every night and asleep by ten our three nights in the tent. Morning came and we were up by seven.  A quick breakfast and coffee and we were off to the beach to find shells. Walking and running in sand was a fabulous workout.

I planned most of our snacks which helped keep us on budget and kept us from overeating when we did go out.  I brought along granola bars, bananas, apples, trail mix, nuts, grapes, cut up cucumbers/tomatoes, baby carrots, hummus, whole wheat crackers, cheese sticks, peanut butter, nutella and yougurt.  I whipped up a special batch of tuna salad that morning and cut up some peppers.  We used one cooler for cold foods, one cooler for cold drinks, and one cooler for all other items. We have an orange box that we keep all our cooking stuff in, jet boils, baggies, foil, cooking and eating utensils, pots, trash bags, paper towels, you get the idea.  This system worked out well for us and probably saved us a couple hundred dollars.

I hope you will be able to use some of my tips on your next vacation.  I just wanted to get you to think a little differently when you go on vacation.  You don't have to come back from it exhausted, experiencing stomach distress, feeling guilty, and ten pounds heavier. Make a few changes and you can return feeling healthy, well rested and happier than when you left.