Friday, March 21, 2008

Video: MaryAnn Tries Riding Into a 50 mph Headwind

BOSQUE BIKE PATH--It was good weather when we started out last Sunday. We rode the 10 miles north to the Corrales bridge easily. fact it got easier and easier!

You know what that means...a tail wind had crept up on us. Well, coming back south was a different story. The winds howled at up to 50 mph. And they were straight out of the south.

Dust. Galloping tumbleweeds. Hard pedaling. I had a hard time convincing MaryAnn this was fun! It took almost 2 hours to get back to the car.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

He Wore His Brand New Jersey

NOB HILL--In what may be regarded as a sign of over-confidence, I ordered a new bike jersey from Adventure Cycling Assoc. It reads "TRANSAMERICA" across the front. The back has a big waving U.S. flag.

Now what would possess me to start off a 4200 mile bicycle trip across the U.S. wearing a shirt that indicates the trip is a done deal, a snap, and finishing is a certainty...just keep those pedals moving?

Actually, I am anything BUT confident. After all, I am a 65-year-old asthmatic with a bad ankle and dangerously delicate knees. And the biggest worry of all is that for most of the trip I will be riding solo. My friend Mike can only ride the first 500 miles or so with me.

Here is the story: the shirt is part of my bargain with destiny. It is my way of acknowledging all the risks and hardships that might stop me, and still I announce my intent. I do not take this trip lightly. The new jersey is my way of coming to grips with all that might befall me.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Training for the Big One

NOB HILL, ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO--I have been training for the last 4 weeks. I started pretty much at zero. Here are the mileage totals so far:
  • Week #1: Feb. 17th, 90 miles
  • Week #2: Feb. 24th, 106 miles
  • Week #3: Mar. 2, 107 miles
  • Week #4: Mar. 9, 133 miles
The goal from here on out it to increase the mileage by 20 miles per week until the last week. That week is not totally certain, but I am planning on leaving someplace around April 20th. So that gives me 4 weeks to get ready!

I am riding the bike I plan on taking cross country, a Gary Fisher Tassajara. Yes, this is a mountain bike. I am training with heavy, fat tires and carrying two bags and half a gallon of water. I'm not sure what this all weighs, but the whole thing rides like I'm trying to pedal a pickup truck.