Sunday, May 25, 2008

First Training Update!

Our first official training date was last Saturday (May 17). The team met on Sauvie Island at 9am and it was already over 70 degrees. It was a scorcher of a day! I had liberally applied sunblock everywhere but still managed to get a bit of a burn. Coach Becky went over some typical road rules with us and we were on our way at about 9:45. The plan was to do a 12 miles loop through the island with an option 3 mile extension for those that wanted to complete 15 miles. Since I typically already do 15-20 miles every weekend that was a no brainer for me!

The ride was great. We started out a bit slow as many were getting used to the road and the bikes. Sauvie Island is really pretty filled with farms, lamas and views of Mount St. Helen’s. We picked up the pace a little in the middle which was great because I was getting a little antsy. I’m have to keep reminding myself though that a slow pace will needed as the miles get up there.

We finished up the 15 miles (actually 15.5) in 1:05 so that’s a pace of 14mph. Not too bad. I was so pumped up though that I really wanted to do the 12 mile loop again. Alas, French toast, bacon and eggs were awaiting me at Fat Albert’s breakfast cafĂ©. Poor Michele, huh?

On Sunday I decided to head back to Sauvie Island to do that loop again but headed out one road for a longer extension and ended up completing 20.2 miles. I’ve never spent much time out there so it was fun to explore it by bike.

On Wednesday we had an optional coach led ride after work. The plan was to meet north of OMSI and head out the Springwater Corridor as far as we could get in 30 minutes then head back. It was a rainy gloomy day and only 4 people (including the coach) showed up. We got rained on the first 10 minutes but then it let up and we had a great ride. Funny enough, the turn around spot was only 1.5 miles from my house. We clocked 15.5 miles that night.

Yesterday was our second Saturday training. The team met on Marine drive and headed west toward Blue Lake Park. Thought we were going to get rained on but 10 minutes into the ride, the skies cleared and it was gorgeous and sunny. It was fantastic riding along the Columbia with the sun glistening off the water. On the way out to the park I was really booking it. I thought – hot dang! I’m like Wonder Woman clocking a 16.1 mph average. Okay, for experienced riders that may not be much but for me it was! At the Park the few people I was riding with stopped for a bathroom break then we headed back. THAT is when I realized why I thought I was Wonder Woman. I had a tailwind the ride out there which meant I had a headwind the entire ride back. Oops. So that awesome average dropped to 14.7mph by the end of the 20.3 mile ride. That's okay - it was a fantastic ride and I can't wait until the next ride.

Wonder Woman:

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Training Theme Song

I recently discovered this song that I'm claiming as my new cycling theme song! If you haven't listened to it, go check it out! Here are some of the lyrics:

"No Handlebars" by The Flobots

I can ride my bike with no handlebars
No handlebars
No handlebars

Look at me, look at me
hands in the air like it's good to be
and I'm a famous rapper
even when the paths're all crookedy
I can show you how to do-si-do
I can show you how to scratch a record
I can take apart the remote control
And I can almost put it back together
I can tie a knot in a cherry stem
I can tell you about Leif Ericson
I know all the words to "De Colores"
And "I'm Proud to be an American"
Me and my friend saw a platypus
Me and my friend made a comic book
And guess how long it took
I can do anything that I want cuz, look:

I can keep rhythm with no metronome
No metronome
No metronome

And I can see your face on the telephone
On the telephone
On the telephone

Look at me
Look at me
Just called to say that it's good to be
In such a small world
I'm all curled up with a book to read
I can make money open up a thrift store
I can make a living off a magazine
I can design an engine sixty four
Miles to a gallon of gasoline
I can make new antibiotics
I can make computers survive aquatic conditions
I know how to run a business
I can make you wanna buy a product
Movers shakers and producers
Me and my friends understand the future
I see the strings that control the systems
I can do anything with no assistance
Cuz I can lead a nation with a microphone
With a microphone
With a microphone
And I can split the atom of a molecule
Of a molecule
Of a molecule

Look at me
Look at me
Driving and I won't stop
And it feels so good to be
Alive and on top
My reach is global
My tower secure
My cause is noble
My power is pure

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Welcome to my training blog!

Over the course of the next 4.5 months, I am training to complete a century (100 mile bike ride) as part of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Team in Training program. I hope this blog will keep you entertained and informed about my progress and The Society's mission.

Last year I completed the Portland Marathon (walked, ran, crawled) as part of this same great cause. This year I switched to cycling for many reasons. I enjoy it more, I can go faster and further and it's not as hard on my asthma.

At this point, the furthest I've cycled is about 22 miles. The first two team training sessions are 15 and 20 miles so they should go smoothly. After that is when the real work begins. I'll tell you now - hills freak me out. I ride a few on my way home from work (go bike commuting!) and they always stress me. So expect that to be one of my many "tribulations" along this journey.

If you're already willing to donate to this fabulous cause check out the links to the right for my fund raising page. I have to raise a whopping $1800 so every penny counts!