Monday, August 27, 2012

2nd Annual Remember Big Timmy Ride

The second edition of this event is finally in the books. It took 3 reschedules and some shuffling of other things to make it happen...but it did! This ride is to remember my beautiful niece's father that passed away two years ago. He was my wife's brother and the guy that got me started riding. Click here or here or even here(here first) for some history ;)

It was perfect weather. I got up early and loaded the cooler and had the truck ready to go for Chelle and the girls. Zack and I loaded our bikes on the VW and off we went. We got to Fort Custer right at 9am. Dan, Lisa, and Jay were waiting at Eagle Lake. J.J. was on his way. We geared up and off we went to pick up Ron and Barb at the trailhead. J.J. got there and off we went.

The trail was perfect. Fast and hard packed. We rode the red loop first, but Zack and I cut off part of the Amusement park because he had racked his hand and it was hurting. We got back and everyone else was just pulling in too. First lap done. Fun lap.

Second lap, Zack and Barb rode together as we went down the green. I knew this pace would be quicker, and I was disappointed when I bent a pedal axle before the switchback climb. Not sure what I hit, but it is bent....dangit. Anyway, we rode together and would wait for everyone to regroup. Ron and I stopped at the boat launch to wait for Barb and Zack and the rest went onward. Once we directed Barb and Zack which way to go Ron and I headed out to finish up the Green loop. It was a lot of fun. I was riding pretty hard because I knew the others were waiting by the car and I wanted to say goodbye to all of them.

We got back and headed to the water. The family came and we had an awesome afternoon of swimming and grilling. Thanks to everyone for coming out and helping us remember our Brother!

(on a side note....last year when Dan asked me about Tim a butterfly landed on me. It then landed on my helmet and hung out until we left. Yesterday, a butterfly landed on Jeff's jersey and just kinda hung around for a while. In my opinion.....and you believe what you want....but we think this was no coincidence. Thanks for coming Tim, we miss ya brother.)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Luton Park

This past Sunday a group headed up to Luton Park for a few laps. What an awesome trail. The plan was to ride around 9am and then head to a pool for a dip. My buddy Don from the east side of the state was over so we loaded up the bikes and headed up. We were one bike heavy because I talked a co-worker into joining us for a lap.

When we got there temps were still in the 60's. It was Don, Lisa, Dan S., Andy, Brian, Mike G., Jeff, one other person I don't know and myself getting ready. Then I saw my co-worker. We geared up and headed out. The plan was to ride a cruising lap and then a faster second lap.

Jeff led the way as this is his home course. Luton is interesting because it is a main loop with spur loops going off of it. If you want to ride short, you cut left and take the inner loop. Want the full 9 miles, hang a right at each signed intersection and you get the full trail. We took the full trail and it was a total blast. I have not ridden here in over two years. One because of location, and two....I didn't realize the WMMBA had such a nice 9 mile trail up there. It has a little bit of everything and our group looked like a snake going through the woods. I had two different people ask me where we were from....apparently they never see bigger groups riding out there...and there were 10 of us...so I am sure it was a shock.

My co-worker did awesome. He had not really ridden in years, and that was BMX and just around the neighborhood back then. He was not afraid to attack anything. He jumped into the line and just followed along. Even the stuff that was harder he just rode like he had been riding forever. He did really good until about 7 miles...and he hit a wall. He asked "how much further" and we gently told him a few more miles. We got back and regrouped for the second lap. My co-worker headed home, he was worn out...but he did awesome and I am hoping to keep him moving towards buying a bike and riding with us more.

Second lap was Dan, Lisa, Andy, Jeff, Brian and I. The pace was much quicker and the speed only added to the fun of this trail. Jeff was not feeling well so he peeled off, and then we lost Andy too. So the four of us were chugging through the woods and trying to keep up with Dan. Brian was ahead of me and Lisa was right behind me. Brian made a minor mistake and I shot past him and tried to catch Dan....which didn't happen. All in all we rode 18 miles of trail that was new to me...and new to a few of the others as well.

We jumped in the pool for a bit and headed home. Great day on the bike with some great friends. Lets do it again soon!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Robin Hood

I saw a picture on the interwebs about an hour ago. It was a huge bag of money in various denominations with rubber bands around them. Some were rolls and some were just folded. It looked like a lot of money. The question being posted was whether or not you would return said money....if you were to find it somewhere. It got me thinking about what I would do.....and here is my take on the situation....kinda.....

If I were to win the lottery....I would be come Robin Hood.


Now...this is not the Robin Hood that robbed from the rich and gave to the poor.....it is simply my take on the fairy tale.....because that is exactly what Robin Hood was and is....a fairy tale. Shit like that just doesn't happen.......

Say I win 150 million dollars in the lottery. I might bring home around 100 million before its all said and done after taxes. I would first and foremost give a chunk of change to each of my family members.....making sure that they are taken care of and that my children, along with my nieces and nephews, have college paid for in full with a car to drive too. So...the next step is simply to blow some money....on stuff. Bikes, campers, cars, house, vacations...ect. But.....am I really blowing money.....or am I a twisted Robin Hood?

Technically....the money from the lottery is not stolen from people....but rather donated to my cause. People across the United States have donated to this fund and it is my duty to put that money to good use. Sure....my stuff is on the list....but lets think about how this can be good....for the economy. If I have 100k to spend on bikes....that money is going to Custer Cyclery. In turn, the money made here will go to bills, gas, food, ect. Whatever money was used to purchase my bike stuff will to go the companies such as Giant, Niner, Mavic, Stans, or whoever else sells the stuff that I buy. These companies make more money and are paying their employees. The employees are then buying more products in their local markets spurring a national economy boost.......I am Robin Hood.

Now....all I need to do is win the lottery.....hmm....

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Look me in the eyes

It was hard, but I was finally was able to look into your eyes. I was finding it difficult to catch your attention....or even to get you to look up from the ground. When you walk you stare at the ground ahead of you, refusing to raise your head with any resemblance of confidence. How have you been? I know you were doing very well. You had your weight headed in the right direction. You were riding faster than I have ever seen you ride. You were finding confidence with every pedal stroke you took. You were driving the pace on the Tuesday night rides. You were able to ride two centuries in the past two months. But then you changed......and I am here to tell you that I don't like what I see.

You went from making the right choices to making poor choices. When you would choose a water, you are choosing a pop. Granola bars gave way to snickers and m&m's. Single plates of dinner turned into second helpings. You stopped caring about the food and I saw you falling back into your old habits. Maybe you are comfortable heavier......but I know you are not happier.

I saw you improve dramatically when you focused on your training even just a little. I watched as you hit a goal weight that you have been chasing forever. I saw you walk with your head held high. I watched you participate in a race and complete two laps at a faster pace than you ever imagined. You were on track. Eating healthy. Exercising. Portions small. Avoiding fast food. No pop. Making the tough decisions...to be healthier. No brownies, ice cream, ect.

So what happened? Stress? Life? Laziness? Comfort? Sure, I know you can be stressed out...but that is why you ride those bikes my friend. Blow that crap out....leave it on the trail or on the road. Let it melt away. Put the damn brownie down. Leave the pop in the cooler...drink a water instead. I know you can do it.....you were doing so good before. I think it is easy to be lazy. Easy to eat three times as much as you need. Easy to pack on the pounds. Don't you remember how you felt when you hit your last goal weight? You felt amazing I am sure. Confident. Skinny even. Sure, I am sure that losing weight has negative side affects too.....like a lower blood pressure and pants that fit baggy. Sounds awful. I am sure you are more comfortable stuffing yourself into your jeans and cinching up your belt. Sure.....eat. Be Merry. If Santa kicks the bucket you can take his place.....won't even need to alter the suit.

Honestly....be true to yourself dude. You know what you have to do. It is more than the bike. You don't ride enough to eat whatever you want. It doesn't work that way. You have to make the choice.....time after time. Dont let one bad choice derail you completely. Stay on target. If you have a bad day....forget it and make the next day a good day. When I see you I want you to look me in the eye with confidence. I want to see you reach your goals. I want to see you happy. I want to see you out on the trail kicking ass. I want to see you finishing centuries. I want to see you....period. It is that simple.......

Remember this....when you look in the mirror tomorrow morning......