Woman escapes Japan’s tsunami by bike

19 03 2011

My heart goes out to all the people in Japan since the horrible events on March 11. As if the earthquake itself wasn’t enough, they have to deal with the tsunami, a nuclear disaster and now are likely facing typhoid and cholera and who knows what else. I know there are many stories of survival that we may never learn about, but I couldn’t help but share this story of 83-year-old rice farmer Tsuna Kimura escaping the tsunami by bicycle.

My apologies for the delay in blog posts. We’re in the process of selling our house, packing, etc., and it’s consumed much more time than I expected. I’m hopeful all the details will be worked out soon and regular weekly posts will resume once things get settled.

           _O
        \<,
…( ) / ( )

Thanks for visiting.

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Bike riders = dopers?

29 01 2011

As most everyone knows, Lance Armstrong is still in the news fighting the drug allegations. And while it sounds like that investigation may not wrap up for quite a while, Alberto Contador‘s “tainted meat” defense seems to be falling apart as he received a one-year provisional suspension and may be stripped of last year’s Tour de France title (depending on the outcome of his appeal). Obviously, I have no idea who does or doesn’t dope during their career in the Tour (and in a way, I don’t really care). This guy, though seems to have it all figured out (warning: language is probably NSFW). Still, it cracked me up. Enjoy:

It’s a shame that performance-enhancing drugs seem to tarnish just about every sport to some degree. But as long as athletes have to compete against other athletes who do use drugs, there’s no good way to level the playing field. New guidelines and testing will continue to be done, but each new drug test just opens the door for someone to figure out how to cheat and circumvent the drug tests. It’s a never-ending circle. Still – drugs or no drugs – I always enjoy watching the Tour each year. I can’t wait to see what happens this year!

Life’s a journey. Enjoy the ride!

           _O
        \<,
…( ) / ( )

Thanks for visiting.





Day 365: Woo hoo! I survived 365 days!

3 01 2011

This time last year I embarked on a project I wasn’t sure I could finish. I started this blog 365 days ago. The original intention of the daily project was to share my thoughts about cycling and my attempts at weight loss. I had success with some things … other things, not so much. I plan to continue the blog posts, although it will probably be on a weekly rather than daily basis.

Looking back over the past year, this blog project has been a learning experience which enabled me to meet quite a few fellow cyclists (both in person and in the online world). While I may not have accomplished everything I originally set out to do, here are some of the things I learned from the project:

  • A 365-day commitment is much more time-consuming than I expected. Silly me. I figured each day’s post would only take a few minutes. Most of them took close to an hour, depending on the post’s topic. Some needed a bit of research, which took more time. Other posts just took a while to write because I’m not terribly comfortable writing. Getting past the initial stage of staring at the blank computer screen took me some getting used to.
  • Carrick has the patience of a saint (see previous item above). I’m not sure which one of us is happier that the daily posts are ending and life will return to normal. She’s been very patient with me through the project and is always very encouraging, which was a huge help. Thank you, Carrick.
  • I lack willpower for dieting. My original intention when I started this blog was to learn better eating habits and lose 20-30 pounds. I enrolled in Weight Watchers in July and have since lost 11 pounds. Not as close to my goal weight as I wanted to be by the end of the year, but I’m trying to not beat myself up about it. I’m learning to view my food choices as a lifestyle change rather than a diet. It’s been a slow and sometimes frustrating process, but I’m getting there. And I’m not giving up.
  • Life sometimes gets in the way of plans. Work, after-work commitments and daily blog posts sucked up much more time than I anticipated, cutting into my cycling time (not to mention my neglect of my photoblog). I’ve now learned I need to allow for time in my schedule to enjoy regular bike outings, whether those are regular rides with Carrick, group rides or solo rides. By not planning in advance, I often let the opportunity slip by.
  • I learned to fix a bike. Not a big deal to most people, but if you knew how mechanically uninclined I really am, you would understand how pleased I am that Carrick and I went a little out of our comfort zone and took the Park Tool School classes to learn maintenance and repairs.
  • Louisville is a pretty awesome bike-friendly city. In fact, it’s #21 on Bicycling Magazine’s list of America’s Top 50 Bike Friendly Cities.
  • My “rides wish list” keeps growing. Each time I hear about an interesting ride, I add it to the list. In 2011, I plan to make a more concerted effort to do some of the rides. I’m particularly interested in trying to do some long-distance overnight touring with panniers, tent, and other necessary equipment. The only thing I lack is a touring bike. Maybe that’s the next big thing to save money for.
  • I had a lot of fun rides. I may not have racked up a few thousand miles on the bike this year, like several commuters I know, but I still had a blast. Some of my favorite rides this year included (in no particular order): The Indy N.I.T.E. Ride; Lexington’s Legacy Trail; Back Bay Nature Preserve in Virginia Beach; McAlpine Locks and Dam; the Louisville Loop; and the annual Hike & Bike event.
  • I can do anything I put my mind to. Actually, I knew this before I started the blog. As I get older, I realize that really the only thing preventing me from achieving my goals is myself and I need to work on that. I intended to ride my first century ride this year, but I didn’t make it. I did, however, ride a half century during our Louisville Loop to Farnsley-Moreman ride this summer (and 50 miles of the 100 Miles of Nowhere ride back in May). Small victories, but ones I’m excited about. I learned how rewarding it can be to push myself past my comfort level at times. The sense of accomplishment inspires me to keep trying and keep pushing myself.

Thank you to everyone who has followed my blog this year and for leaving comments, tips, suggestions and encouragement. I greatly appreciate your support and I hope you’ll continue to follow the blog even though the posts will be weekly instead of daily. Probably a relief to everyone. 🙂

Life’s a journey. Enjoy the ride!

           _O
        \<,
…( ) / ( )

Thanks for visiting.





Day 324: Text-to-movie cycling videos

23 11 2010

I thought I’d share some bizarre videos I ran across recently.

I’m considering signing up for spinning classes soon. But I’m absolutely 100 percent positive my cycling outfit won’t look like this:

And in case you need help in dealing with your non-cycling friends:

Life’s a journey. Enjoy the ride!

         _O
        \<,
…( ) / ( )

Thanks for visiting.





Day 322: Joey Ruiter’s Inner City Bike

21 11 2010

Michigan-based industrial designer Joey Ruiter built one of the more interesting-looking bikes I’ve seen in a while. His minimalist bike concept is built around the idea of city commuting and short-distance rides. The bike has no chain, a free-wheel rear hub, 150mm cranks, 36” x 2.25” wheels and an adjustable position for the rider. According to the Web site, the 29” model will reach speeds of 7-14 mph while the 36” model has a range of 11-29 mph. Depending on the model, grips, brakes, wheel sets and tires can all be customized to rider’s preference.

I didn’t want to steal the photos from his Web site, but here’s a video of the bike in action.

No word on cost yet, but pricing will be added to the Web site soon. Or you can email buybike@innercitybikes.com to be put on a waiting list. Be sure to check out Inner City Bikes or the designer’s Web site for photos and details about the bike. Pretty cool stuff!

Today’s food journal:

Breakfast/Lunch:
– Organic yogurt with granola = 5 points

Snack:
– Power Bar = 3 points
– LF chocolate milk = 3 points

Dinner:
– Spicy stir-fry chicken with peanuts and brown rice = 10 points (est.)
– Iced tea = 0 points

Snack:
– Skinny Cow ice cream bar = 2 points

Life’s a journey. Enjoy the ride!

         _O
        \<,
…( ) / ( )

Thanks for visiting.






Day 321: Danny MacAskill

20 11 2010

I love watching this guy! Truly amazing stuff.

Today’s food journal:

Breakfast/Lunch:
— Organic yogurt with granola = 5 points

Snack:
— Power Bar = 3 points
— LF chocolate milk = 3 points

Dinner:
— Turkey sub sandwich = 9 points
— Iced tea = 0 points

Snack:
— Skinny Cow ice cream bar = 2 points

Life’s a journey. Enjoy the ride!

         _O
        \<,
…( ) / ( )

Thanks for visiting.





Day 303: The pup is coming home

2 11 2010

I’m happy to report that our pup is coming home from the animal hospital tonight! It’s been a long (and expensive) several days, but she’s worth every penny and we’re excited to have her back home and on the mend.

The cat’s probably not as excited as we are to have her home. They’re not the best of friends, but I told the cat to be nice – the dog has had several ruff days (sorry – I couldn’t pass up the pun). The cat has always been a bit jumpy even before the dog came into the family. He doesn’t understand the dog just wants to play so he chooses to ignore the dog – mostly from the vantage point of the kitchen counters. Someday we hope they’ll learn to get along. Lucky for you readers, I can’t sing or dance. Otherwise I might be inclined to make a video of our goofy pets. Something like these:

The Meaner Kitty’s answer to Sparta:

Today’s food journal:

Breakfast:
— Organic LF yogurt with granola = 5 points

Lunch:
— Jimmy John’s Slim Turkey sandwich = 8 points
— Iced tea = 0 points

Dinner:
— Lean Cuisine Fettucini = 6 points
— Diet Root Beer = 0 points

Snack:
— Skinny Cow ice cream bar = 2 points

Life’s a journey. Enjoy the ride!

          _O
        \<,
…( ) / ( )  

Thanks for visiting.