Getting Ready

Loaded Up!

Twice Across (planning on adding the “+”)

I have been asked what I did to train for this ride. Well, I did what I did last year. And the year before. Which is essentially that I didn’t do anything different than I normally do as far as riding is concerned. That is, I typically ride 3 times a week with a group of riders from the Lamorinda area. Our Tuesday and Thursday rides are 25 to 30 miles, with an occasional 40 miler thrown into the mix, and our Saturday rides are usually 40 to 60 miles. Those aren’t as long as what I will be doing on Laura’s Ride Atlantic Coast but they are usually at a much faster clip so slowing down lets me add quite a few miles. Plus, while riding alone I will stop when I start feeling tired since I figure I have enough miles in my future that there is no reason to push too hard. It is not a race. I’m not masochistic enough for that.

Some of our more interesting rides – usually on Saturday – have included our “2 bridges loop” which takes us over the Benicia and Carquinez bridges for about 50 miles with some great views of the Bay or Canal. We also did our 7th Annual Sacramento Ride from Lafayette to Old Town Sacramento for lunch with a ride home on the train. I have included a couple of photos from that ride, including one on the ferry near Rio Vista which was closed down for about an hour. That meant that this year we had lunch in Rio Vista instead of in Old Town. The restaurant we visited had an embarrassing collection of animal trophies, from a huge elephant to bears, elk, a moose and much smaller animals. There are some of us wo would much prefer that hunters would be content shooting their prey with cameras rather than rifles.

Greg’s Garage pre-Sacramento Ride

Rio Vista Ferry

Toast In Sacramento

In addition to riding, this year my preparation has included weekly sessions with my chiropractor over the past 4 months or so. They started because I couldn’t lie on either side for more than a minute or so, or drive for more than about an hour, without causing pain to go down my leg. While that seems to have improved considerably, now I am hobbling around because of discomfort in my right hip and down my right leg. However, according to my x-rays, the arthritis in that hip is fairly minor so I was prescribed an MRI to see if the cause could be determined. I guess that is still up in the air. The good news, though, is that the discomfort hasn’t been much of an issue while I am actually riding. I’m hoping it stays that way. No one said that getting older is easy.

My preparations also included quite a bit of packing. I know that Dave B. just rode to Los Angeles with nothing more than a small back pack could hold but I will admit to pretty much filling up my Suburban, which has a roof top carrier. I have attached a photo of Day 1 of Dave’s ride; I joined him on that first leg from Moraga to Half Moon Bay. I also have attached a copy of my packing list for anyone who might be interested. Also included is a photo of our cat, Bear, lying on some of my cycling clothes while I was getting ready. He is so dark that you have to look closely to see him against my black shorts. Although he looks nothing like a bear now – more like a sleek panther – when I named him as a kitten he was rolly poly and very much resembled a little black bear.

Dave’s Day 1 (to Los Angeles)

Last Friday about 30 friends and family gathered for dinner at our home to offer their good luck wishes for the ride. A number of them also used the occasion to donate to the Lazarex Cancer Foundation to help breast cancer victims. THANK YOU to all! And Kent, a long time neighbor, said that he would add a “+” to the “Twice Across America” logo on my bike’s top tube when I have completed this ride.

Ale left for Quebec City on Sunday with the truck, my 2 bikes and everything I have packed for the ride. I will fly to meet her this coming Thursday. We will spend a couple of days visiting Quebec City – primarily the Old Town – before I start riding on July 2.

‘Til later,
Rick

 

 

 

With Sandi

Farewell Dinner

My Collection

Thank you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

https://goo.gl/maps/ymDYMeZta6z

Twice Across + : Add Border to Border to Coast to Coast

I was just reminded that after last year’s ride I insisted that I wouldn’t do it again. Not wanting to totally destroy my credibility, I insisted that I am not doing it again. The last 2 years I rode across the country, from coast to coast. I have now seen more of the central part of our country from the seat of a bike than I want to.

I am not doing that again. No, I am not riding coast to coast. This time I am riding from border to border. Well, sort of. To add a few miles, I am starting in Quebec City, Canada, which is roughly 275 miles north of our border. And I am ending in Key West, Florida, which is pretty much on our southern border because I can’t go any farther south without drowning. Hence, after this trip I will be able to claim, “Twice Across +,” this ride being the plus.

Greg C, one of our riding buddies when he isn’t holed up in Texas, just asked me why I am doing this third ride. The first, from Santa Monica to St. Augustine, was because riding across the country had been a long held dream. The second, Astoria to Portsmouth, was because I started feeling that I had taken the easy route the first time by avoiding the mountains of the Northern Route. (The fact that the Southern Route was sweltering didn’t ease my sense of guilt.) This time I am looking forward to seeing the scenery and small towns of our East Coast, while hoping that foul weather, bad roads, heat and humidity don’t make me regret my decision. There is also an element of wanting to show myself that age hasn’t yet made this impossible joined with the satisfaction of knowing that through your support this ride will help raise money that will help at least a few victims of breast cancer.

Being an avid Warriors fan for the last 5+ years I have read numerous articles about how this year’s championship season was the most difficult because the team had to deal with issues of fatigue, complacency and a “been there, done that” attitude. While I don’t equate my rides to championships – I am not racing, or even competing, and many people ride across the country – the parallel has nonetheless occurred to me. Having already ridden across the country, there won’t be the same excitement when finishing the ride as there was when Nick and I dipped our wheels into the Atlantic Ocean. And my regular visits to a physical therapist over the past few months, not to mention today’s MRI, suggests that my body has experienced a bit of fatigue from the past 2 summers. And having proven to myself that I could ride across the country, this time I won’t take the chances that I did the first time when I insisted on riding through temperatures that were far too hot to be safe. However, I trust that the goal of being able to change the “Twice Across” that is now on my bike to “Twice Across +” will be sufficient motivation to keep me pedaling.

 

I am set to fly to Quebec City on June 28 and expect to start the actual ride on July 2 after Alejandra and I have had a chance to enjoy some of that beautiful city. And yes, I did say Alejandra. Because she will be joining me for the THIRD TIME. Thank you, Ale.

And thank you to all of you who support this ride, both through your donations to help breast cancer victims and through following my posts and occasionally commenting on them or on the ride. All of that is definitely appreciated.

Rick

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