Thursday, March 31, 2011

It Takes Two

Today was my day off and didn't get anything accomplished; pretty much a blah day. In the morning I ended up reading at a coffee shop for a couple of hours, then I came home and took a three-hour nap. I know, I know: I'm living the dream. When my wife got home from working a very hard and stressful eight-hour day (totally different than my day) she asked "What should we do tonight? Want to go for a bike ride?" And of course I said "I would love to!"

 My wife and I have never really ridden together so I was pumped! On one hand it was fun to push her and to teach her everything I have learned over this past year (which isn't a ton). On the other hand it was great to share this hobby together.

 We ended up riding 12.86 miles which took us a little over an hour. It was such a great night to be out and just enjoying it with my other half. It brought me a huge smile to look over and see Kristin riding and just having fun. During our ride  Jake, my brother in-law, rode past us on our way out of Ankeny and on the way home 
we ran into him again. It worked out awesome so that he could take a couple pictures of Kristin and I.

 You can really tell its getting nice out because the trails had a ton of people on them, which is always fun.  I'm super pumped for Saturday to ride again with Kristin. We are going to double our milage; should be a lot of fun! I'm really stoked to see Kristin get into biking, I can't think of anything better than both of us riding together!

Monday, March 28, 2011

A Beginner with a Commuter's Heart

In the biking world I'm not sure what I would call myself. I don't race, I don't commute to work (yet) and I'm not training for anything. So, what should I call myself?

A few things about why I started biking. I was out of shape and wanted to do something. I started walking, jogging and running. During a conversation with my uncle I was informed that if I kept running by the time I was 40 my knees would be shot. With that being said, I still wanted to do something, so I started biking.

I went to my local bike shop and bought my first bike on a whim. I didn't get the best bike, I simply bought what I needed. To my surprise I fell in love. Last season I rode everywhere. I rode to coffee shops, church and on any trail that I could find. I couldn't believe I was doing something physical and actually liking it.

I was blown away at how many people biked, doesn't matter your age, size or type of bike. If you can pedal you can ride a bike. What's so awesome about biking is that it is so easy to push yourself. On my bike I rode up hills that I thought I could never accomplish, but I pushed myself and when I got to the top it was always an amazing feeling!

Even though I had just gotten into biking, I soon wanted a lighter bike and a lighter me. This winter the wife and I purchased two new bikes and we started Farrells. I've completed 11 weeks so far and have lost over 30 pounds and Kristin just started this week. With that new bike and 30 pounds lighter I feel like I move so much faster in the saddle. Again, my bike is not the best and the clothes I wear are not biking clothes, but they work. I simply want to ride any chance I get and push myself harder and faster than the previous year.

With all that being said I'm not sure what that would be called in the biking world. If I were going to call me something I think I would go with "a beginner with a commuter's heart".

I would encourage anyone reading this that doesn't ride to check out your local bike shop and test ride a bike and see what you think. I bought my first on a whim and have never looked back.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Should Have Checked the Temperature

I started out wanting to ride to Woodward (22 miles away). That sounded nice. I hadn't even gotten out of Ankeny and I realized I wasn't going to ride that far. Why? Because it was FREEZING! Still wanting to get a ride in I decided to at least ride to the Oasis (8.6 miles away). I thought I was prepared for this ride; I had on 2 pairs of socks, 2 shirts, a jacket, under armor pants and wind pants, yet I was still frozen to the bone. By the time I got to the Oasis I couldn't feel my toes and my nose wouldn't stop running. I am very glad I decided to turn around at this point. After I regained feeling in my toes I decided I better get heading home. Luckily, on the way home I had the wind on my back which made it quicker, but it was still cold. Even though this ride was a very cold one it was awesome to soak in what God has created. An owl flew next to me for about two miles and I saw a few hawks and some other critters, but above all I just got to soak in some beautiful scenery.

During this ride I was testing out my new Osprey Manta Hydration Pack this pack worked awesome. With the reservoir  full, which is 100 ounces, it didn't feel heavy on my back at all. The pack had ample space for my tools, gear and food to refuel on.  The pack does a great job spreading the weight and the magnetic sternum mouth piece was fantastic. I would recommend this pack to anyone. Feel free to purchase yourself one at REI for $130. Its worth it!

I learned something on this ride, I either need to stay home when its this cold out or talk my amazing wife into letting me get some warmer clothes!


Debut Ride

I tested out at Farrells today and lost 30 pounds. Crazy! I took my new bike (Cannondale Synapse 105) out for its debut ride at Grays Lake! It performed awesome. We only rode 14.6 miles, but man this bike flat out FLIES! During our ride I yelled out, "Holy Mackrel, the fish is back!" which prompted Ashley Feldman to see what I was talking about, which then caused her to tip over. It was so funny! Also, Kristin and Hannah went out on their debut rides! Kristin did amazing and Hannah hit the bridge and in another incident she hit a bump and fell off her bike.

Quote of the day: "Don't bring a jeep to a road race." -Dave Warrick