Just got home

I just got home from TERRACycle and Whipped over in Brooklyn Heights, Michelle, GK, and Gregg were all there. Like the band is getting back together–LOL! TERRACycle was pretty good, GK told me that I had changed and I didn’t want to work hard anymore, that only pissed me off, and I was killing it in spin, it felt really good though. I am so amazed at the amount of sweating you do when doing a spin class. I wear a long sleeve jersey because I hate having a pool of water around me, I am such a diva!

We then had Whipped right after–our usual Wednesday double, I felt really good throughout the class, the day off really did help me, I felt so much stronger. Maybe this rest stuff makes sense, irregardless, it definitely works. I have to work thru not listening to my body, I don’t know what it is, but I feel like I might be missing something for some reason, and I’m really not, I can’t get sexy in one day–but it never hurts to try!

Tomorrow it’s METCON3 with Adrian, this guys is nuts, but his workouts are great, so lets see if I can kill it tomorrow too.

So begins a new day

So begins a new day, waiting to go pick up a cable modem, seeing as I am never home I have switched my Internet service to the phone company. GK, calls tv ‘chewing gum for the eyes,’ which I do find amusing, but I get it though, it really is mindless at times. How many times am I going to watch the same thing over and over. You know what’s funny, I had the top of the line package, paying $250 per month for tv, cable, and phone, but yet still mainly watched the over the air broadcast channels!

I’m still a little bummed with the dog situation, but I keep telling myself this will be a good thing for HIM, he is such a cutie, and I don’t like him to be all alone. We got him when he was about four weeks old; I responded to an ad on Craigslist and the person claimed to be a shelter, when I said I would pick the dog up she had me meet her in a hotel parking lot and wanted $250 cash. I refused to pay her cash, I gave her a check and hoped for the best. He’s a great little dog, I always tell everyone why I chose a cockapoo; one of my housemates in college had a Rottweiler, when we would go out and I would come home this dog would leave a pile of crap as big as Mt Everest by my bed–what was he trying to tell me? My only criteria for my dog would be he has to make small poppies. This dog fit the bill, he’s just as active as I want to be. If I am lounging on the couch he is there lounging, if I go out to run, he’s a runner. Let me stop before I start to cry again.

Ok, so today is our Wednesday double TERRACycle and Whipped, I feel ok, still a little sore but not too bad overall, should be able to kill it today. I think I’m going to sign up for the Crossfit running class, I’d like to improve on that, maybe some interval training. The other day at Caitlin’s class, the last exercise we did was run around the block, and it was a big block! I actually felt good, I actually passed people at the end and wasn’t the last one in, I could have passed more of them, but got a slow start for some reason, dare I say my wind is improving I think–I did it now I may have jinxed myself.

Well, today has to be better than yesterday, so let’s get moving on making it count!

Navajo Nation

Ok, so we were on the Navajo Nation when I took this picture. Every stereotype you have seen or heArd was true. We were accosted by a Native American selling beads, then some othe Native Americans came to ask us for money. We fed them, gave them out OJ to drink and off they went.

We gave them some Granola bars, we joked that they were probably on the shelf inside the gas station we were waiting at as we speak. I wanted to go a check but it was
Tough enough. I felt sorry for the guys, but I mean come on!

It was a nice ride thru, we saw many Navajo Nation Police while there. I mention it because I don’t. Relieve we saw many police or state troopers throughout our entire trip. You’re talking to. Guy who drove Cross Kansas at 100mph, not being careless, but trying to catch up to our boys!

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Well, it’s over now…

Well, it’s all over now, the racers are in, the awards and trophies have been given out, and the excitement is over. 6 days 21 hours and 29 minutes–WOW what an accomplishment! I am so honored to be around these extraordinary athletes, because like it or not that’s what they are–ATHLETES.

I learned a lot from the race, admittedly, I came here for selfish reasons, as I have always wanted to do this race but wanted to get an idea of the logistics and some of the hurdles one would face doing it. I did and got so much more out of it. I met some really cool people that I am sure we will be lifelong friends, and I am sure I will be back here next year as a rider. I am confident of that, I say that because I found that if you let everyone know what your goals are, the more you will be driven to achieve them.

It is a daunting task I am taking on, I am by no means an ‘ultra-cyclist,’ but would like to take n this challenge. People who know me know that when I put my mind to doing something, that I do it, o matter what. Or as someone said to me, ‘you’re the right kind of stubborn to do the race.’. Thanks Jenn, you know me well! As I said, it is an extremely tough race, and it is extremely expensive, I will have to,raise at least $10,000 to do it, and since I want to put together a four man team, that means $40,000, a really big number. The next thing I have to do is find three or four other committed souls that will raise the money, train, and be crazy enough to attempt this thing!

The other thing I am thinking about is, recumbent or diamond frame? I prefer to do this on a recumbent, but I am sure I will find more interested parties on a diamond frame. I have to figure out if I want to do 750 miles on a diamond frame, which I don’t but if that’s the team I can put together then I will have to make that sacrifice. I will have a year to train and raise the necessary funds, I don’t see the fundraising as a problem, really, I do see the training as an issue, but since my new found fitness, getting not the gym isn’t that big a deal.

So, tomorrow I leave to go back to NY, I was supposed to leave on Monday, but I really just want to get home already. There is so much going on that I just want to go home and deal with it. I wrote about my wife moving out, and how sad I was, but I haven’t thought about it n a few days with all the excitement and such. It’s funny we started to talk when she moved out, which is ironic in that had we talked prior to that I may not be in this situation, but c’est la vie, right?

I don’t know if I am looking forward to tomorrow or dreading it as I will dredge up emotions that I have been fighting since this all started happening. But, I have to be a big boy and deal with it I guess. As I write about it now, I am still sad, but in the long run I think it will be best for both of us. I keep feeling like I failed at this, my friend Scott says ‘everyone’s entitled to a starter marriage,’ but I didn’t want a starter marriage, I wanted one that would last a long time, and it sort of did, but not the way I wanted it to. I don’t know how long these feelings of inadequacy will last, but I hope they go away soon.

My friend Diesel, says that look once you go out there and start dating, you will feel a whole lot different. I don’t look forward to that, as I have always been a little on the shy side. YES–I did say SHY! I never liked the whole dating scene, too many games being played, just not into that really. I say I’ll never get married again, but then my friends tell me I’ve heard that before and then that person ends up marrying the next person they start to date! Will this be my fate? I make it sound so dooming…or is it damning?

I am supposed to workout with Gabriella and Eileen tomorrow, I have been extremely bad the last two weeks between my nutrition and working out, but I knew that was going to happen, since I was in a CAR for the last week! I will weigh myself tomorrow and see just how bad I was. I pray to be the same weight at least instead of gaining, but then after starting to go back to the gym, I am sure the pounds will be gone again soon.

I was watching the Olympic trials tonight and damn are those chicks fit! I always said if I ever had
a six pack, I would NEVER wear a shirt again, it seems like my belly is a problem area, but I guess it is for everyone. Allan says it’s all nutrition, which I believe is true, but it’s got to be something else. If I don’t start seeing a difference soon, I will have to start planning my extended vacation to Thailand–if you know what I mean…

What else, it seems the more I share my story, the more readers I get of my blog, which is great, I guess everyone loves a good soap opera right and boy oh boy do I ever have one going on in my life! I don’t mind, I don’t write this blog to slam anyone or spread my business out there, I write it because it is cathartic for me, it helps me to read how I felt on ‘x’ day, if that means I am sharing it with the world then so be it, I don’t have anything to hide, I have a great life!

RAAM final day for us at least…some teams/guys are STILL riding!

We are up early, the boys will be in soon. We are going down to the dock to meet them at the official finish. I wrote about the strength and character it takes to finish RAAM, it really isn’t for the faint of heart. The riders ride 24 hrs a day for us, it’ll be around 6 days, 17 hours and some minutes, that is a long time to be on a bike.

In our case we have a four man team, there are people who do this solo, in the the thirty one years of the race there have only been about 250 people who have raced across the US and completed the race under the cutoff. RAAM, honors you be retiring your number if you complete it by yourself. If you do the race again, you use your retired number as it is your for LIFE!

I don’t know that I would ever attempt this as a solo rider. We passed some of the solo riders on the road the further east we rode. The solo riders left last Wednesday, and the teams left on Saturday. The solo riders had things that were keeping their necks up, ice packed around their neck, riding slowly and purposefully to the other end of the country. The teams on the other hand are usually out in two man shift, in our case four hour shifts, one man one the road for about a half-hour depending on the terrain. For instance for the 10,000′ climb over the Rockies, we put all four guys out there as the climb was so severe. Remember we are riding recumbent bikes, which don’t climb we’ll, we got left behind on the climbs, but we smoke everyone comes screaming downhill, we hit 60mph in some spots!

All of this excitement ends today. It was a lot of fun, although I drove the gofer van, I had a lot of fun. No one likes the gofer van as you’re not ‘in the action’ so to speak. Honestly, I felt that we were definitely in the action, it really is what you make of it. Once we got our stuff done for the day, we pretty much had carte Blanche to do whatever we wanted to do until we were needed again. Somedays we would hang out and leap frog with the riders as they were switching, some days we were doing laundry, actually EVERYDAY was laundry day, but if your ego can get thru that then you won’t have any problems! I think I made a niche for myself, as everyone has a gofer car that no one wants to drive, but if I am willing an able to drive the gofer, I am definitely going to be invited back!

I’ll let you guys know how the banquet goes later.

We’re in Kansas Toto

So here we are in Greensburg. KS. Allan and I have the sexy job of laundry again, seems like there is more and more each day, but when you’re rolling 24hrs a day it’s bound to happen right?

We chased the boys down since around 6:40 this morning. This part of the race was relatively flat so our boys were moving and fast! Evidently at one time station they were averaging 29mph, makes sense because there was a tailwind last night. We finally caught them around 12:30pm.

There was a strong headwind today, it was blowing, right to left and then it was blowing directly into their face. Remember I cycling the wind is the thing that fatigues you the most. One may not think he/she is working hard, but you are because you are fighting that headwind. That all being said one of our riders got dehydrated and is currently in the hospital. It’s really not a big deal, he will be fine they just kept him for observation.

This does happen from time to time. As I have never done an ultra cycling event before, I was speaking to Steve & Peggy, they said the easiest way to rehydrate ate is either pedialyte or ensure, I have to keep that in the back of my mind for my events. I don’t want to say I was worried as the crew does take great care of the races and we took no chances.

So, as Chris is laying in the hospital right now, we are ‘living it up’ at The Budget Inn in Pratt, KS! Seriously though tomorrow we will pick Chris up around 10:00 AM and the we have to go chase down the racers again. We figure they will be about 3 hours ahead of us, and will take us abut 4-5 hours to reach them. Tomorrow is relatively flat so they will be motoring again!

I had a really perplexing conversation with GK today. She is really intense when it comes to her workouts. She wants to get more out of the time that she is spending working out being more efficient that is, not working out more. I get what she was saying, but I think she has to make wholesale changes n everything, it just working out in my opinion. If one isn’t getting the results he/she wants then obviously something is wrong. Whether it be the training or the nutrition, which I think it is. I know we can’t fight our genetic makeup, or can we? Maybe we just have to work a little bit harder to makeup for our genetic defects.

I am in the beginning stages of my workout, I am still seeing results, but I do agree with her in that I am sure I will hit a wall and stop seeing the results, but that time hasn’t come yet. I am still motivated to get it done, my problem is that I worry about staying motivated. She does motivate me, as does Michael, there are still times that I don’t want to go to the gym, but between her, Eileen, or Michael they’ll shame me into going in.

I am going to take on the task of training for RAAM for next year, I would like to find some other crazy people who would like to do it also. I know I can get very lean and get this done. Seeing what happened to Chris today was a real wakeup call, even yesterday the 10,000 ft of climbing was very daunting on paper, but when you’re n the heat of the bAttle it didn’t seem that bad. It was great that the entire team attacked the mountain though. I’m sure it would be ‘easier’ on a ‘wedgie’ bike, but that remains to be seen I guess!

Don’t forget you can follow us at the link below, Team Sarcoma powered by Bachetta Bikes.

RAAM CURRENT STANDINGS

We’re in Colorado tonight, on to Kansas tomorrow…

We started the day out in Monument Valley, UT. We left our hotel around 7:00 AM and man oh man was it spectacular. I am saddened slightly as it is so beautiful but a lot of people may never get to experience this place, the beauty and the majesty it was. For those who don’t know what I am speaking of, if you saw Forest Gump, the part where he stops running and wants to go home, he’s running in Monument Valley. It was spectacular, I am sure you can see photos of it online and on my Facebook page!

We caught up with the mothership around 9:00am, they didn’t get as far as we thought. Remember this is an ultra cycling event, the riders are on the road 24 hours a day, doing 30-40 minutes segments depending on the terrain. By the end of the ride, each rider will have done about 750 miles!

There were a lot of hills today, the racers climbed to 10,000 ft in the Rockies, which is the highest point in the race. We had the racers do .5 mile pulls as they are riding recumbents and recumbents descend well, but don’t climb too fast. So about every .5 miles we would switch riders, we were holding our own with some of the other teams, but it wouldn’t help THEM, we would blow them away on the downhill.

What’s the reward after climbing 10,000 ft, well a 65 miles descent of course hitting speeds of 50-60 mph–ON A BIKE! I know you are shaking your head, I wish a cop would give them a ticket–it would have been a badge of honor! The race went over the highest point today, and it will be relatively flat for a while, there may be some small hills tomorrow, but the next major climbs will be in Missouri and the Appalachians I believe.

Allan, who was supposed to ride, but had knee surgery and couldn’t was in the car again. He is so jonesing to get not a follow vehicle and navigate or drive. The gofer van is not the sexiest job, but we have managed to make it quite sexy. We have been in on all the stages of the race so far as well,as taking care of the mundane tasks associated with the race in general. I feel really bad for him because he isn’t making a big deal about it, but he does want to be more involved, I think it’s shitty that the crew chief hasn’t actually volunteered someone to take his place because it seems that’s the only way he’s getting out. He’s a good guy though and I am sure he’ll get in the car before the end of the race.

Towards the end of the day I started to feel a little melancholy, I am missing going to the gym and my normal routine. I was slightly bummed out, then with everything else going on, my mind was racing about all kinds of stuff. There are going to be some big changes when I get back and although I know they are what is best, I am like everyone else I hate change!

GK, texted me, evidently one of her friends committed suicide and she was a little upset. I felt bad I couldn’t be there to comfort her, but we texted and spoke briefly. She takes things so hard–why does she have to care so much for everyone? I guess that’s one of the things I like abut her, but it can be taxing as it does take a toll on her mentally.

Anyway, we have stopped for the night at the lovely The Lodge Motel, I understand I’m not buying a condo here, but the cigarette and air freshner smell is hard to not notice! All I can say well at least I am sleeping in a bed as opposed to the RV, and not stinking up the place as some of those guys on the RV were RIPE!

Tomorrow we’re on to Kansas and the flats, we’ll really make up a lot of time there. We are currently 10th out of 14 teams, but one team was disqualified today, so we are 10th out of 13 teams now.