30 January 2009

A Phun Video For The Weekend!

First off, I would just like to throw out a quick reminder that I'm riding the Philly Leg of the LIVESTRONG Challenge. As I’ve mentioned before, I will be riding in honor of my father who was taken by cancer on Fathers Day 1993, and as a part of Team Fat Cyclist: Fighting for Susan. My goal is to raise $2,500 for Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) through participation in the 2009 Philadelphia leg of the Lance Armstrong Challenge. If you would like to help and donate to LAF on behalf of my fundraising effort, you can go to my secure LIVESTRONG Challenge Page HERE, and make a secure donation. You can also track how I am doing, and there is a link to donate on the right hand sidebar of this blog. I would be stoked if I could reach 25% of my goal ($2500) by the end of January (Saturday). I am currently at $430, and 17% of my goal! Some people who donated are family, others friends, some acquaintances, a few who I've only met in the blogosphere, and yet others I've never known except for the fact that they donated because they know someone that I know. Its awesome how generous people are! Thank you SO MUCH to those of you who have donated and in advance to those of you who will!

Now, for a touch of phun for your weekend. I am just curious about something here... How exactly do you figure out that you can do this stuff? Seriously, at what point in your life do you think, "Hmmmm, I wonder if I could drop a six foot ledge, land it on a handrail, bunny hop it off that onto a stack of pallets, and finish it off dropping off and riding out a wheelie!" I guess I'm just too old (cough) to keep up with these young whipper snappers. Anyway, I hope you enjoy the video, my family and I got a kick out of it. Now, if only I could make sure the kids don't try to repeat it!



29 January 2009

Snow (And Cleveland) Is Crazy

OK, quick question before I get started on today’s post. Why is it I have no willpower in the winter? Winter, you know? The time where I get almost no exercise whatsoever because, again, I have almost no willpower. I ran the errand I had to at 5:30 Tuesday, came home and had a brunch. I had a 1:3 yolk to white ratio scrambled egg, with Tapatío. This was not the problem. Here, you tell me what the problem is.
Right! I also had a buttermilk biscuit with homemade sausage gravy! Mmmmm, pork fat is wonderful. Oh, sorry. Totally not cool when I’m trying to lose weight. I also had a Diet Coke®, hey at least it was diet, right? I needed the caffeine. Anyway…

I stopped in at my LBS (local bike shop, if you’re a newb), to say hi and catch up with the LBS crew. The crew are all pretty much fixtures, that’s to say I could tell you exactly who is working there everyday, mainly because it’s the same people every time I’m in there. Don is the one I ride with when we could get schedules to match up. If they’re open, he’s in there. Thom is another who, I swear, is there anytime the front door is unlocked. Then there are a few other part time evening and weekend guys.

OK, now for a quick back story… It is every bit January in Cleveland. By that, I mean it is cold as hell and snowing all the time lately. How snowy?
That snowy! Wednesday brought about a foot of snow in my neighborhood. Enough that I shoveled about eight or ten inches, I had about two inches to shovel a mere two hours after that,
and within a half hour after that, it looked as though I hadn’t even shoveled. Eh, it’s Cleveland.

Well, Thom was working and, apparently, I made a serious faux pas. You see Thom is ridiculously hardcore. Far more than I think I will ever stand a chance of being, but a level that I hope to be able to reach someday. Anyway, that’s when I made an INSANE blunder in our conversation. I looked dead at Thom and it just came out, “so you ride even in this crap?” Yeah, it was like I asked the Pope if he Prays, like asking Lance if he’s ever ridden a good hill, like asking Wah if he enjoys cross racing. You get the point, right? The “new kid”, I haven’t been formally introduced and I suck at being polite, actually snickered and said something to the effect of, you have to ask? It was awkward to say the least.

How about you? I’m just curious how many of you commute in the winter. I’m also curious what it would take for Thom to not ride in to work. I mean, it’s not “just around the corner”. He probably gets about fifteen or twenty miles one way. Does he do this in a foot of snow and a whiteout? Do you do commute in inclement weather like this?

28 January 2009

LIVESTRONG Challenge Update

Hello all! Fat Cyclist just reminded me to ask for your help. Fatty put together a team for the LIVESTRONG Challenge this year. We will be competing in all four cities to try to have the largest team, and raise the most money. This is where you come in! We need donations to the Lance Armstrong Foundation. If you have a friend, relative, or (god forbid) you yourself have been touched by cancer you know just how difficult it is on the person who has cancer and the people who love them. I will be riding in the Philly Leg of the LIVESTRONG Challenge. As I’ve mentioned before, I will be riding in honor of my father who was taken by cancer on Fathers Day 1993. My goal is to raise $2,500 for Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) through participation in the 2009 Philadelphia leg of the Lance Armstrong Challenge. If you would like to help and donate to LAF on behalf of my fundraising effort, you can go to my secure LIVESTRONG Challenge Page HERE, and make a secure donation. You can also track how I am doing, and there is a link to donate on the right hand sidebar of this blog. Thank you so much to those who have donated, and in advance to those of you who will!

Weekly Roundup January 28, 2009

Hello all. The snow is flying once again in Cleveland, and it remains to be seen if we will get the twelve or more inches they are calling for. All I know is that I need it to clear up soon so I can get out and start building up my stamina. I need to get cracking so I look decent when I ride the Philly Leg of the LIVESTRONG Challenge. As I’ve mentioned before, I will be riding in honor of my father who was taken by cancer on Fathers Day 1993, and as a part of Team Fat Cyclist: Fighting for Susan. My goal is to raise $2,500 for Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) through participation in the 2009 Philadelphia leg of the Lance Armstrong Challenge. If you would like to help and donate to LAF on behalf of my fundraising effort, you can go to my secure LIVESTRONG Challenge Page HERE, and make a secure donation. You can also track how I am doing, and there is a link to donate on the right hand sidebar of this blog. Thank you so much to those who have donated, and in advance to those of you who will! GO! Check it out! But first, read on as I give you the Weekly Roundup!

Bluenoser: Finally a break! Bluenoser’s taking a week long hiatus in the thick of the winter, and it might just stand a chance to make something happen with the Lean Look Challenge®. I would, however, encourage you to use this as a time to catch up on some Bluenoser posts over at 50K Loops NS. Also, keep up with Harp on account he’ll joining in as soon as he gets the book read. Also Harp would like to know; “Need Shoes? Tires?” He’s got some to sell.

Outside of that? Well, outside of that, I there must’ve been a full moon this week.

Ray’s Racing Adventures: Ray was at Wal Mart, and had an experience that just blew my mind. So funny that he felt compelled to share, so funny that I felt compelled to write about his sharing. He asks the simple question Wal Mart, Can You Spare It? Honestly, I want to go into more detail, I simply cannot without giving the story away. I will say two words, customer service. Hey Ray, got a stick of gum, and some lint? At the office in you desk? I could wait. No, go ahead… I’ll wait.

Cozy Beehive: It’s been a minute or two since I threw some love Ron’s way. This was great just in the Further Explorations In Aeroness: What They Won’t Tell You. It’s an explanation of the aerodynamics of the helmets, but it’s made with the video. The video, it makes the post. Seriously. (Ron – I dislike you, there are certain things you can never “unsee”. Heh heh heh.)

Well, that’s all I got for now. I’m going to run and catch a quick Chai, enjoy the company of my wife, and try to get some sleep after being up since about 5:30 am. As usual, I’m the Phun Cyclist, you stay classy Cleveland.

27 January 2009

I Am So Psyched I Just Have To Share

I have to be up at 5:30 am today... That just sucks! Especially on account it is 12:11:19 right now and I am up, wired, and typing this. I then have to drive for two hours. The positive side to this is that I should be back at my home by 8:00 am at the latest, where I will have breakfast. Since I am working from home tomorrow, breakfast will consist of scrambled eggs, with a buttermilk biscuit, and sausage gravy. I know, the diet. After driving for two hours at 5:30 am, the diet can bite me! There, I said it.

That has nothing to do with why I am psyched, however. The reason I am psyched is my sisterpictured here at age fourteen, started a blog. OK, so she was, like, twenty when that picture was taken... aaand she's not really my sister either, by blood anyway... That's not important, it's just technicality! The bottom line is she is a cyclist... with a blog about crafty type stuff. Oh, and she's likely to beat my ass for posting that picture.

I know, you're going to tell me that her blog has nothing to do with cycling. OK, I'll give you that, for now. But she is wicked cool, and totally insane (in the good way, not the scary old guy with the panel truck with 'kandy' spray painted on the side kind of way), and she reminds me that I oft take life too serious, and... I can go on an on, but I would risk redundancy. So, I would like to encourage you to check out her blog, and keep up with it.

Now for a bit of unfinished business. Since I totally forgot to post it yesterday, I will post my Monday Measurement Madness® today. Thank you for not calling me out on this yesterday!
Weight: 182.8
Waist: 36.5
Neck: 15.5
Body Fat % Calculation Estimate: 21
So, the bottom line is my weight was down three pounds over last week, which was up two over week one, which is five up over the week before Thanksgiving, which is driving me freaking mad! I'll get back into the swing of things... I have to. Harp will join me and Bluenoser soon too... That'll be fun, I can't wait!

26 January 2009

Crazy Weekend

I must say that I agree with Rick Smith, er, Yehuda Moon...I totally hate winter riding. OK, that's a bit strong. I don't mind riding in the snow, depending on the depth. Furthermore, I don't entirely mind the cold, however the colder it is outside the worse the asthma is. So I guess the bottom line is I dislike riding in most cold wether situations with deep snow.

Friday I cut out of work early. I wasn't being productive anyway, and everyone and everything was making me extremely and violently angry. I was nearing the point where I was finding myself wanting to cause bodily injury to someone, just to do it. I knew what I needed. I cut out, flew home, and jumped on the MTB. I got to the "improved trail", read: crushed stone, and the second I hit hit came to a dead stop! It had been in the mid thirties durring the day, and had fallen into the twenties now. I hit the snow and both tires crunched into the snow, and than sank to the rotors of my disc brakes. As a matter of fact, the calipers were buried and completely seized packed with snow and ice. It was futile to continue down this path, no pun intended.

So I quickly headed off to the roads, I basically got to run a set of intervals. It was nice to get back into the saddle. It's been since sometime in the first week of the new year. One big issue was the cold. It was in the twenties and the winds were gusting pretty hard. Hard enough to blow me sideways into the next lane if I wasn't paying attention. Also, I accidentally grabbed a pair of cotton socks instead of the wool ones I meant to. I felt like Yehuda, "...the feeling will return to my feet." Saturday and Sunday just kind of stunk. Ran into craziness on SaturdayWe weren't even supposed to have snow, and I was stuck on the freeway in about a half foot. Cleveland freeways SUCK normally (no one in the city knows how to drive) so when it snows it's, like, suicidal. Sunday was a day of errands, and exercising a bit. Not too exciting. Now? Well, back to the grind. Hope your weekend was great!

23 January 2009

Dilemma Of Guylike Proportions

This is a dilemma that only a guy could fully understand and appreciate. Well, and maybe some women in different ways but I want to focus on the guy dilemma side. You see, guys have major issues with hair. Whether it's hair migration (you don't actually lose hair, it migrates. Serious! You don't believe me? If you're "losing" hair do this... check back, ears, nose, etc. It's there! Just not on your head!). Sorry, as I was saying... Whether it's migration, graying, too much, too little, whatever! Guys have MAJOR issues when it comes to hair.

In my case I understand I am a bit thinner, still full - no spots, up top. I shave every summer and the jury is out as to which is better. I like the shave because I don't have to do a thing when I get out of the shower. But this doesn't even begin to bother me. Hell, half of the people who try to bag on me for thinning, have actual bald spots... I just laugh it off.

No, what concerns me is this...What? You don't see it? The facial hair. I just don't know what the hell to do with it. It's so spotty, it just seems pathetic to me. Kinda like when that fourteen year old kid in school try to rock facial hair and has, like, eight pubes on his chin. Or the same fourteen year old, but with really fine fuzz on his upper lip.

This is where you come in. I need advice. What the heck can I do with the mess that it my facial hair? I like having something, I just don't like how it looks. Also, it insulates in the winter, which makes riding more tolerable. So please, give me a hand. I need suggestions, email me with photoshops of what you think I should do, anything. PLEASE!

Thank you in advance, and have a great weekend!

22 January 2009

Mmmmm, Buuurrn

You know, I have to say... There is nothing quite as invigorating as that burn you get from working out. That is, while the burn is there. Come tomorrow morning I likely will be slightly less invigorated and a lot more in pain. But it will be a good pain. The kind of pain in a can, that tastes like pain in a bottle. (Sorry for that, but does anyone else remember those Keystone Beer commercials? Their specially lined can made the beer taste as though it was beer from a bottle. Crappy, crappy beer from a bottle, but... Digressing-I digress a lot) The good kind of pain, the kind that reminds you that you have a goal and that you're now that much closer to achieving it.

Admittedly I am off of Lean Look right this moment. That's not to say that I'm just slacking, it's just to say I've found enough reasons (read: excuses) to not have the time to set aside to consciously keep up with it. I have, however, been weight training and doing cardio like a beast. Today, I got out the dumbbells and went to get work done. I got to the point where I was just in pain, soooo I grunted, deep breath, and hammered it harder. My legs and arms are actually tingling now for about an hour or so, and I'm loving it.

The one regrettable thing is that I really want to get out on the bike, but have not been able to due to some things at work and the fact that I'm not even close to my house let alone bike when there are daylight hours. I am anxious for this weekend in hopes that I will be able to get even a couple handfuls of miles in. It's supposed to be a balmy 20ºf Saturday and Sunday. One thing I would love to do is plan a snowy ride on the Ohio Erie Canal Towpath through the Cuyahoga Valley National Park just south of Cleveland. If anyone is interested in the idea, drop me a line at the contact me at the top of the sidebar.

21 January 2009

Weekly Roundup January 21, 2009

I’m cooked even more this week than I was last from the work. This week kind of went like: work, shovel, work, ride, work, work out, work, eat, work, work, make muesli, work, whatever. I’ve come to the conclusion that I hate working with people. My job depends on people to not be, er, a douche, and when people are they cost me money. I wish that I could write a post that wouldn’t infringe on confidentiality agreements. I had EIGHT separate incidences this year that cost me as much as I made this year. As in I made half of what I should have on account other people are idiots. It is for that reason I have not been myself, and I apologize for being less than on top of things and not my usual happy funny self. Likewise, I’ve wanted to post a bit about my love for Lance Armstrong Foundation, but I haven’t had the chops, if you will, to get that deep. I will, I promise, because I want to share with those who have donated or will donate to my Livestrong Challenge goal why I am doing it. Alright, without further adieu I give you the Weekly Roundup!

Bluenoser: Bluenoser is rocking some great weight loss. I, on the other hand, have been in a serious state of stagnation. I’m anxiously, still, awaiting Harp joining us on the Lean Look bandwagon. For now, while you’re checking out the Lean Look weigh in for Bluenoser, take a minute to read his post on the Bicycle Wheel. It’s an excellent, albeit humorous, post.

Travels With A Tin Donkey: My favorite purveyor of Muesli returns with some help, and teaches us how we too could rock The Complete Tour de Basement. That’s right, just as Lance Armstrong is turning into a buff marketing god, you too could get a rawkin’ head start to your year with some help from Sprocketboy via Men Health, Lance, and a few websites.

Highway Munky: Meanwhile Munky is left shouting “Look What I’ve Got”! He had the opportunity to rock out, and review, a 2009 Specialized Stumpjumper Elite. I am wicked jealous, and cant wait to hear more thoughts on the bike.

Fat Cyclist: Fat Cyclist went to great lengths to explain how Rock Racing Clarifies “Here To Stay” Slogan. Apparently they are truly here to stay, in more ways than one. Fatty also has some great marketing and money making ideas for you Padawan Ball.

Miles And Madness: Finally this week, Judi gives us some humor. It’s been around for a short while now, but it’s still pretty funny. Not to mention it reminded me that I should mention the Cycling Phun facebook Page. So check out this video, and then go join Cycling Phun on facebook!



Well, that’s all I’ve got for this week. I’m going to get my muesli together for tomorrows breakfast… and lunch... again! I remembered bananas this time, WOO! As usual, I’m the Phun Cyclist, you stay classy Cleveland.


20 January 2009

Chaotic Thoughts

Where the heck to start? I just don't know. This will be a bit chaotic, as work is chaotic and extremely stressful right now, and cover about a hundred or so things in about a five minute read. Hmm, OK. First off sorry the video on yesterdays post crapped out. It was supposed to be dueling pianos playing the Saturday Night Live hit "D*** In A Box". It was comedy gold, even though the sound and video kind of sucked. But it still would've been funny.

Today... I've kicked back and forth what I did or didn't want to post surrounding events in the US today. In case you haven't heard, today will be the inauguration of our forty-fourth President Barack Obama. With that said I will leave it at this. President Bush, thank you for your leadership over the last eight years, God Bless and enjoy your time back at home in Texas. To President Obama, may your journey from this point on be blessed, and may your future and the future of the country be bright.

I'm already back down on my weight. Part of the weight gain was likely salt, the other part was probably, uhmmm, lack of fiber. Get it? I hope so because I'm not going into those details. I need a break in the weather. We're looking at about a foot and a half to two feet of snow currently sitting on the ground, and today was downright balmy, as the temps didn't have a 'negative' preceding them. Not only is it murder to ride in that kind of cold, it wreaks havoc on my lungs. It's really bad for asthma. I'm really feeling lethargic and need to get back out. I also can't wait for Harp to get in on the Lean Look Challenge.

Finally, and I'll leave it here for now. As I write this (Monday) it is my dad's birthday. He would've been 66 years young today. That said I am reminded, as I've mentioned before, that I will be riding in the Philly Leg of the LIVESTRONG Challenge. I will be riding in honor of my father who was taken by cancer on Fathers Day 1993, and as a part of Team Fat Cyclist: Fighting for Susan. I have started the journey to reach my goal of raising $2,500 for Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) and my participation in the 2009 Philadelphia leg of the Lance Armstrong Challenge. I have amazing family, friends, and people I do not even know who have donated so far. So far I have raised $310 toward my goal of $2500, which is about 12%. If you would like to help and donate to Lance Armstrong Foundation on behalf of my fundraising effort, you can go to my secure LIVESTRONG Challenge Page HERE, and make a secure donation. You can also track how I am doing, and there is a link to donate on the right hand sidebar of this blog. Thank you so much to all of you who have donated, and likewise to those who would consider donating in the future.

Alright it's 11:30 pm (Monday), so for now it's back to work. Hope your Tuesday is great! Go watch D*** In A Box again, and enjoy!

19 January 2009

A Rough Weekend To Say The Least... In So Many Ways.

It was truly just one of those weekends. Friday was atrocious, so much so that just about everything going on was cancelled in the morning. I mean, they had the Cavs game and such but waking to -13ºf with -30ºf was enough to close schools, public buildings, so government offices, etc. Getting to work was even lame. Snow covered roads everywhere, to top it off I swear the city in which I work lost their plows, or sold them on the black market.

Saturday started considerably better. I woke up early, got out and shoveled, got into the Y, and worked out for a while while listening to Fugazi. I love Fugazi, but more on that another time, or maybe not... we'll see. I got some errands run, got home, healthy lunch, some veggies, exercised a bit, relaxed and it hit me. I felt like death warmed over. Scratch any further exercise or work for that matter. Woke up, quick dinner and then went to Howl At The Moon. Great little dueling piano bar, they did cool stuff like this...D**k In A Box Sorry about the quality and sound. It was loud, and weird lighting. Went with the wife, and our "little sister" (in theory only, no blood relation) and her husband. Had a couple Mich Ultra's with the old lady (which is likely the healthiest part of the night, believe it or not, listened to some funny stuff, and high tailed it outta there. It was snowing near whiteout on the freeway on the way home, and cold as hell. Decided to stop off for something warm. Turned into Denny's. Hot Chocolate, Mozzarella Sticks, and chicken tenders... at 11:00 pm. 'Nough said? Right... Got home around 1:00 and straight to bed.

Woke up Sunday and just felt bloated as sin. Found myself up a solid three pounds over my Saturday morning weight, a bit disgusted with myself now. Got the wife, kids, and snow tubes and headed out the door for a day of sledding. It was crazy fun. Actually, I forgot just how much fun it is! When I was there found a bit of humor as I pulled in, just thought I'd share it before the weigh in. Caption: But maaahhm.... I have to poop!Gotta love humor in everyday life, right?

OK, so I would love it if someone could explain this to me. Actually, I think I have it figured out, but feel free to throw in your opinion. How am I up just over two pounds in one day, but my measurements are the same as last week? That was rhetorical, I don't want the answer, on account said answer would be disgusting. On a serious note, I ate enough sodium late Saturday night to kill a horse, and I have a feeling it is showing in my weight. I'll be interested to see what happens after reintroducing fiber (Muesli) into my diet today. Anyway, here are the measurements. Lost about 1/8 of an inch in the waist measurement, but you round up to the nearest half, so it's unchanged. Neck, I don't think, is going to move... ever.
Weight: 185.8
Waist: 36.5
Neck: 15.5
Body Fat % Calculation Estimate: 21


15 January 2009

Boy On Bike Hit By Bus

I was, er, inspired? Not the right word. Compelled! Yes, I was compelled to write this based on the Analysis-Car Hits Boy On A Bike that Ron gave over at his blog. I was a bit freaked out by the timing of his post, which was coincidental.

File under: What The...
January 13, 2009
To paraphrase a Cleveland Plain Dealer article
Boy Hospitalized After Being Struck By Cleveland School Bus

Cheryl Hill, a 49-year-old bus driver in the Cleveland City School System was in her bus driving kids to school when she hit 'a pothole'. Taylor Price, a 14-year-old James Ford Rhodes High School student was geeked, like any other kid, just to get on his bike and ride to school. Even on cold winter mornings it apparently wasn't unusual to for Taylor to jump on the steel steed and pedal his way in, hell I did it as a kid and you probably did too. But Tuesday January 13 would prove different. You see the aforementioned 'pothole' that bus driver Cheryl Hill hit? You guessed it, was 14-year-old Taylor Price in what resulted in a school bus driver hit-skip accident. Police said the boy was hit on Fulton Road (a fairly main road in Cleveland) near Interstate 71 (a freeway) as he made his way to school, and as of Tuesday nights news was in critical condition. Taylor broke both his legs and suffered a punctured lung, broken collarbone and is unconscious among other things. Now, Cleveland police arrested Hill, who has worked in Cleveland schools since 1989, and charged her with leaving the scene. Apparently the police thought that she may have hit the boy when they found the bike wedged under the bus still upon stopping her.

So, here's my question. How do you drive a school bus for 19 years and not have the common sense to know the difference between hitting a kid on a bike and hitting a pothole? I mean, I can tell the difference between hitting a squirrel and a pothole, how do you not realize you hit a 14-year-old. I mean, I guess even a 4 year old on a sixteen-inch bike; you’re in a bus, small kid-small bike. I guess I could give you a pass on something like that as a pure accident, but this just seems asinine.

My only hope is that Taylor doesn’t get freaked out by this, and gets back on the stead and hits the road. I know as a motorist and a cyclist one of my greatest fears is hitting a cyclist. I mean, most people would feel that way, right?

14 January 2009

Weekly Roundup January 14, 2009

In the interest of just plain being honest with you, I have nothing witty or wise to say. I’m cooked from the week. Work, shoveling, riding, working out, whatever. So, without further adieu I give you the Weekly Roundup!

Bluenoser: You may have heard this already, but Bluenoser and I are banging out the second annual Lean Look Challenge®. His first full week came to an end with his very first weigh in on 11.01.09. He did an awesome job for week one dropping an inch in his neck and an inch in his waist! Now we’re just waiting for Harp to get his book and get in on it too!

Harp: While we wait for Harp to get his Lean Look book, he did get his Shiny New Slippers! When Harp says shiny, I think he means bright. By bright, I think he means retinal burning. You know what’s absolutely crazy? They’re the coolest kicks I’ve seen… ever. Especially in Mavic yellow!

Highway Munky: I can definitely say that with single digit temp on their way, we don’t have these problems in Cleveland. Munky was out riding And Then There Was Mud and on Another Weather Note there was rain, and crazy wind to boot! In all of it, the English countryside looks great, Munky.

Fat Cyclist: Finally, Fatty had me spit take a mouth full of water on my computer monitor. That is the best way I can think of to sell Fat Cyclists Open Letter To Bryan Smith, Director Of The Garmin Chipotle Argyle Club. I am quickly learning that I cannot eat or drink while reading Fat Cyclist, as you might remember last week I shot Yogi® Peach Detox out of my nose while reading the Shot Bloks Experiment, which By Popular Demand was continued.
PS: Once again Yogi Tea®, please feel free to send some tea love my way of you’d like.

Well, that’s all I’ve got for this week. I’m going to get my muesli together for tomorrows breakfast… and lunch! As usual, I’m the Phun Cyclist, you stay classy Cleveland.

13 January 2009

My Goals For 2009

Those of you who know me well, or at least half way decently, know that I am a procrastinator! Why do today, what you could put off until tomorrow… or the weekend? In true Don fashion, I have once again procrastinated. How, you are asking yourself? I’ll tell you. I said, about two weeks ago, that I was going to post my list of goals for 2009. I guess I should add “not procrastinating to the list. Regardless, here we go.

Work was, well, interesting (?!) in 2008. I had eight separate occurrences that cut my pay for the year completely in half. EIGHT! I had a couple drinks a while back and slurred out some bitching and complaining about it. Now the economy has taken a steaming dump! All that said, my first goal is to have $20,000 by April. Second quarter is always a rocking quarter, so if I could make 20K in the first quarter another 20K in the second should be a cakewalk. That should set me up for a pretty solid year. Now, let’s just see if the economy will play nice.

Goals two, three, four and five are all kind of “bike geek” and all, in one way or another, related to LIVESTRONG Challenge. Two is pretty simple. I want to be my riding weight for LIVESTRONG Challenge by August 1, 2009. That means that I want to be 170 lbs, or lighter, by August. I’ve got fifteen pounds to lose, and six months and change to do it. Thought here, I need a couple “gimme goals”. The key to setting goals is to set a few achievable goals as motivators; this is one of those.

Goal three is also LIVESTRONG related, as well as related to the second. Simply put, I want to be a brick shithouse. There I said it, and I don’t feel bad. Seriously though, part of the Lean Look Challenge that Bluenoser and I are doing is not just to lose weight, but to get lean, fit and buff.

Goal four, I want to be riding fifty miles solidly by August 1st. I did a few 30-40 miles last year, but I did them “just OK”. I want to be able to pound out fifty solid miles, and then look at the guys I’m riding with and say, “that’s it? Really? I was just getting warmed up.”

Finally, and this is where I would ask for any help that you are willing or able to give. I would LOVE to raise $2500 for Lance Armstrong Foundation for my participation in the Philadelphia leg of LIVESTRONG Challenge. If you would like to donate to help me meet this goal you can at My Secure LAF Fundraising Page. I have to thank my family, friends, and perfect strangers for donating. Right now I’m 12% of my way to that goal, at $310, and I have six months left to make it. I will put up a short post, soon (?!), about my reasons for wanting to do the Challenge, and a bit of back story.

I guess I should throw in a sixth. I should work on the procrastinating thing too but, likely, I will not.

12 January 2009

"Snow" Phun (Being Cold)

If you haven't heard yet, today is the last day to nominate for the 2009 Bloggies. Fatty has his idea of who he thinks you should vote for, I on the other hand I have my own thoughts. OK, I don't disagree entirely. He has a couple of blogs listed that, I have to admit, are pretty decent.

So, here's my thoughts on the 2009 Bloggies. Go to the website (Note here, I have to quote Fatty as I thought something was wrong when I got there. Fatty's Awesome Quote Of The Day: "...head over to the (very strange and hard to navigate [Side scrolling? Really?]) Bloggies site..." Yeah, they seriously have a L-O-N-G scroll to the right set up. Anyway, go to Bloggies Website and follow these simple tips...

First and foremost I think you should throw at least one vote in for me. I would suggest either Most Humorous Weblog, or Best-Kept Secret Weblog... or maybe Best Topical Weblog as a long shot. You have three votes for each category, so other suggestions I have would be:

Best Sports Weblog: Harp Rider, http://harprider.blogspot.com -and- The Wah Report, http://jaredroy.blogspot.com

Best Topical Weblog: Autoblog, http://autoblog.com -and- Highway Munky, http://highwaymunky.wordpress.com/

Most Humorous Weblog: Fat Cyclist, http://fatcyclist.com

Best-Kept Secret Weblog: Pistols and Popcorn, http://www.pistolsandpopcorn.com

Best Canadian Weblog: 50K Loop NS, http://50kloopns.blogspot.com

Best Art, Craft, Or Design Weblog: Knit Grrl, http://knitgrrl.com


There are so many more good ones, look at my sidebar for more ideas like; Cozy Beehive, Ray's Racing Adventures, etc.

Once you fill out all of the crazy nomination stuff, make sure you scroll all the way to the right edge of the page (yes I'm serious about that... it's a long way [have I mentioned that?]) and do the following:

1. Fill in the little captcha box (the one with the stupid hard to read words)(then curse it, then hate it!).
2. Check the checkbox saying you’d love to be on the panel that chooses the finalists.
3. Enter your email address.
4. Click the Submit button.
5. Check your email inbox (and your junk mail folder) for the confirmation email.
6. Click the link in said email to confirm your vote.


Truly 's no fun being cold, and that's what we're heading for in Cleveland. With temps getting into the single digits fahrenheit, it was nice to have a weekend in the twenties to enjoy... the warmth(?!). Friday was a cardio day for me in the Lean Look Challenge, so I cut out of work about an hour (or so) early to run a couple errands and get home with just enough time to hit the trails. They had been saying that we'd get pounded on Saturday, so I knew if there was going to be any hope of riding, Friday was it.

I got out on an "improved trail", read that as a "year round, crushed gravel trail". This is the time of year I am most grateful for them. I hate riding them in the summer, when they are dusty and dry. Come winter they're a God sent since you can get a bike on them and not tear them up. Especially when they are frozen.Doesn't that look beautiful? Cold, snowy, frozen tundra looking. There wasn't much snow on the ground Friday, which was nice (I'll get to that comment), but there was about three or four inches.

One thing I learned last year, you have to prepare to ride in cold weather. One thing to do is wear long pants. I hadn't thought too much further than that, until I spent about five minutes on the ground, laughing my rear off, trying to dig my pant leg out of my chain ring.Yeah, I know... I look like an ass. Guess what? It works. I had a Velcro band last year, can't find it. Anyway, necessity is the mother of invention, right? Friday night was a party in the homestead, and while I didn't eat exactly healthy, I prepared for it by making arrangements to cut the calories earlier in the day, and such. Had some appetizer type food for dinner and a couple of cold sudsy ones, and waiting for the impending storm to come. The snow hadn't been crazy, about a few inches. Went to bed and that's when it happened.

Saturday morning comes. It's cool, about six additional inches, not too bad, but it never stopped coming. When all was said and done, we were left with a solid foot of snow. I was going to do my lifting Saturday, but to be honest skipped it. After shoveling, I couldn't move. Well, OK. Right after shoveling it hadn't sunk in just yet. What to do? Yup...Quick ride. What made it difficult was there was a great deal of powder, covered with some pack, covered with some powder. The bike sunk like lead in the stuff! The discs were covered, frozen solid, no brakes, but hell, I'm in snow. Who needs brakes anyway, right?

All in all it mad for a great weekend. Sunday was spent on some projects, relaxing, letting the muscles recoup from the shoveling. Tomorrow? Tomorrow is back to the grind. Now I'll leave you with the weigh in, and a quick video from Friday.
Weight: 185.4
Waist: 36.5
Neck: 15.5
Body Fat % Calculation Estimate: 21

video

10 January 2009

I Think I May Have Found Something Just Sick Enough That I'd Be Geeked To Try... Right After Puking

Sorry I skipped out on a Friday post. I was busy at work and it was about 25ºf, in a whiteout, with about four inches of fresh powder on the ground. What? You need an explanation? Sheesh, I got out on the mountain bike! It was nice, cold, but nice. Now I'm looking at, what seems to be, at least a half foot... if not more so I wanted to take a minute to drop a line to make up for Friday. Nothing crazy, but some fun for your weekend!

When I was a teen, we always got ourselves into the crazy stuff. Stuff that you do that makes you wonder how you survived. The one regret is that I never got to skydive. Anyway, we used to cliff dive, climb hills (I say hills on account I don't believe Ohio has "mountains") with no gear and that we had no business on, drag race cars, and on and on. You know, stupid teenager stuff. Now, I think I found something that might be cooler! Mind you, I'm wicked afraid of heights. I'd have to do this after I threw up from the height issue.

wingsuit base jumping from Ali on Vimeo.
Have a great weekend, and try to get a good ride or two in!

08 January 2009

Not Losing Weight, Getting Lean

If you haven't heard yet, nominations are now open for the 2009 Bloggies. Fatty has his own idea of who he thinks you should vote for, I on the other hand don't agree. OK, don't agree entirely. He has a couple of blogs listed that, I have to admit, are pretty decent.

So, here's my thoughts on the 2009 Bloggies. Go to the website (Note here, I have to quote Fatty as I thought something was wrong when I got there. Fatty's Awesome Quote Of The Day: "...head over to the (very strange and hard to navigate [Side scrolling? Really?]) Bloggies site..." Yeah, they seriously have a L-O-N-G scroll to the right set up. Anyway, go to Bloggies Website and follow these simple tips...

First and foremost I think you should throw at least one vote in for me. I would suggest either Most Humorous Weblog, or Best-Kept Secret Weblog... or maybe Best Topical Weblog as a long shot. You have three votes for each category, so other suggestions I have would be:

Best Sports Weblog: Harp Rider, http://harprider.blogspot.com -and- The Wah Report, http://jaredroy.blogspot.com

Best Topical Weblog: Autoblog, http://autoblog.com -and- Highway Munky, http://highwaymunky.wordpress.com/

Most Humorous Weblog: Fat Cyclist, http://fatcyclist.com

Best-Kept Secret Weblog: Pistols and Popcorn, http://www.pistolsandpopcorn.com

Best Canadian Weblog: 50K Loop NS, http://50kloopns.blogspot.com

Best Art, Craft, Or Design Weblog: Knit Grrl, http://knitgrrl.com


There are so many more good ones, look at my sidebar for more ideas like; Cozy Beehive, Ray's Racing Adventures, etc.

Once you fill out all of the crazy nomination stuff, make sure you scroll all the way to the right edge of the page (yes I'm serious about that... it's a long way [have I mentioned that?]) and do the following:

1. Fill in the little captcha box (the one with the stupid hard to read words)(then curse it, then hate it!).
2. Check the checkbox saying you’d love to be on the panel that chooses the finalists.
3. Enter your email address.
4. Click the Submit button.
5. Check your email inbox (and your junk mail folder) for the confirmation email.
6. Click the link in said email to confirm your vote.


Alright, now that that's out of the way... This Lean Look think might just kill me! I worked out hard today, and it left my muscles burning. Ever notice that it's so easy to fall out of fitness and become a (pardon me) lardass, but when it comes to losing the weight and getting heathy... Yeah, it's murder! I would love a clinical explanation on why on freakin' Cannoli can put on five pounds? They weight, like, eight ounces! Whatever. Bottom line is this, I have a little more than six months to get down to my goal weight of 170 lbs. With that I have a little more than six months to get into better physical shape, that is to say toned. I'm not asking for miracles, I don't expect to be ripped like the 'ripped centerfold' in Mens Health (as an aside, why the hell is that there? I don't want to see some dude who is so ripped that he could turn me inside out in under a minute. Furthermore, I don't really want to see him shirtless and oiled while I'm sitting on the porcelain throne), but I'd like to get solid muscle tone. That is what the The Lean Look is all about.

So taking into account the fact I should be building muscle as I lose fat, I hope to lose two pounds per week. That said, even if I only lose one pound per week, I would still be ridiculously happy if it's because I am gaining serious muscle tone. I'm anxious to see how it goes for me. Likewise I'm excited to be doing this with Bluenoser and Harp. If you're interested in joining us, this is about as late as possible. If you can get your hands on a copy of The Lean Look, let us know and we'll give ya time to catch up, but please do it by January 17th.

07 January 2009

Weekly Roundup January 07, 2009

Happy New Year! A new year brings many new things. I hope for you and yours it brings happiness and prosperity, for me it brings lots of goal, that I swear I’ll get into sometime soon. One of those things is I will be riding in the Philly Leg of the LIVESTRONG Challenge. I will be riding in honor of my father who was taken by cancer on Fathers Day 1993, and as a part of Team Fat Cyclist: Fighting for Susan. I have started the journey to reach my goal of raising $2,500 for Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) and my participation in the 2009 Philadelphia leg of the Lance Armstrong Challenge. I have amazing family, friends, and people I do not even know who have donated so far. So far I have raised $275 toward my goal of $2500. If you would like to help and donate to Lance Armstrong Foundation on behalf of my fundraising effort, you can go to my secure LIVESTRONG Challenge Page HERE, and make a secure donation. You can also track how I am doing, and there is a link to donate on the right hand sidebar of this blog. Thank you so much to those who have donated, and in advance to those of you who will! GO! Check it out! But first, read on as I give you the Weekly Roundup!

Bluenoser: Bluenoser is well on his way to being a thin, mean, cross racing machine! His second day of the Lean Look Challenge®, 2009.06.01, seems to have him in the mindset to lose some serious weight in a healthy and positive way, while gaining muscle. We’re doing the Lean Look program, Harp is supposed to be joining us as well. The goal isn’t to lose weight, as much as it is to get lean, and to wind up in better shape when all is said and done. Keep up with me, Bluenoser and Harp to keep track of how things are going, and to find out more if you’re interested in joining!

Travels With A Tin Donkey: Sprocketboy has a special place in my heart. I think about him often as I eat the Muesli from his super secret Muesli recipe every morning for breakfast, and afternoon for lunch! He seems to have some New Years Resolutions, some resolutions that upon reading make me jealous. He has some amazing sounding rides planned, and some great, and extremely realistic! (that’s a key to keeping them) resolutions. Wish I could join you in Italy! Here’s wishing you the best in ’09!

Highway Munky: This post has a special place in my heart, as I just got in from a car ride in freezing rain. It seems that Munky has got himself into some Frozen Rides of his own. But these are commutes to and from work. I have to give Munky credit, way more hardcore than I.

Fat Cyclist: Finally, My favorite ‘fat man’ Fat Cyclist! Fatty took some time over the weekend to clean out his pantry which included the ‘bike food shelf’. For the record Fatty, I have one, doesn’t everyone? He found, in said pantry, a few packs of year passed expired Shot Bloks, and performed The Shot Blok Experiments. What exactly are Shot Bloks that are more than a year expired good for? I’m not even going to start to get into it. There’s the story, with pictures, and VIDEO! It’s a riot… I shot Yogi® Peach Detox out of my nose. PS, Yogi Tea®, please feel free to send some tea love my way of you’d like.

Well, that’s all I gots for this week. I can has Muesli! As usual, I’m the Phun Cyclist, you stay classy Cleveland.

06 January 2009

Day One: Cooked

Wow... Yeah, that sums it up. Just, wow. OK, so trail off after wow with an unbelievably dazed look on your face. If you've been following along you know that I stopped killing myself working out and doing intervals the week of the CMHAHTDWCS Race. You may also remember that I started to feel ill the day before, or that I came down with an ass kicking style cold right after. Well, the bottom line is this: I came up with enough excuses to merely get by and maintain my weight, that come Christmas and a large number of parties I was starting to lose fitness right along side Fatty. So, with that said, I give you day one.

Day one started out with me finding that I was a solid seven pounds over my low of 178. I am a bloated, disgusting, and (apologies for the graphic nature of this one) constipated mess! I've been eating so much meat (and fatty meats like: ham, bacon, steaks, burgers, wings, etc.) potatoes (mostly with cheese in some form, sometimes with cheese and bacon!) that my digestive tract want to, in no uncertain terms, kick my ass. Today, back to reality. I started out with Sprocketboy's famous Muesli on a banana for breakfast. More Muesli with banana and some dry Muesli sprinkled on top for lunch. An apple and some Yogi Peach Detox Tea for a snack, and a sensible amount of tuna casserole with a serving of kidney beans, for protein, for dinner. Then... my first Lean Look workout.

Ahh, the Lean Look. So I'm revisiting the Lean Look Challenge® (as we coined it) with my buddy Bluenoser, and apparently Harp is going to join up with us very soon. Hey Harp, don't worry... I won't be too far ahead! I promise. Anyway, we decided to have some fun with the weight loss, once again. Today was day one. I started from scratch. To be honest, I forgot the whole deal so I kinda had to start from scratch. Man did I feel it! I started with the first week, of the first phase, the only change this time was to use heavier weights than the first time around. Did I mention I really felt it? I did? Good. I am c-o-o-k-e-d, cooked! Muscles I don't think I knew even existed are in pain right now. Not bad, mind you, that good kind of burning pain. I also just want to take a nice hot bath, and go to bed now.

You know what the weird thing is? it feels good. I was extremely happy to start up the challenge again, and I'm really psyched to see if I hit my goals. I've got fifteen pounds that I want to lose between now and August, I think that's a more than reasonable goal. Seriously that's juuust a tad over two pounds per month. I could probably hit goal weight by April. The other side of the coin is what will be interesting. The build and tone portion. I also want to see a noticeable transformation in the muscle department. That is what will be interesting, to see how much building occurs.

Again, if you want in on the weight loss program get out and buy The Lean Look: Burn Fat, Tone Muscles and Transform Your Body in Twelve Weeks Using the Secrets of Professional Athletes, , drop me and/or Bluenoser a line (heck I suppose you could let Harp know too) and we'll accommodate you! Just please do it soon, so we don't have to start two months over.

05 January 2009

A New Year Means The Lean Look Challenge Revisited

Welcome back one and all, hope you had a great holiday, and hope the New Year brings you prosperity and happiness for you and your families. It's great to sit down and write an entry again, it seems like it's been months rather than days. Without further adieu, I'd like to jump into my first official post of the new year.

For those of you who are regular readers, you might remember back to Weekly Roundup June 18. At that time I purchased the bookThe Lean Look: Burn Fat, Tone Muscles and Transform Your Body in Twelve Weeks Using the Secrets of Professional Athletes by Paul Goldberg and Matthew Fitzgerald. I had to use the full title as I was amazed at how long it is.

Anyhoo, I Started the book and kept up with it in large part until right about the time December hit. I didn't full out give up on it, I just took a bit more lax approach. I had about 12 holiday parties, business lunches, etc. that I knew would hamper my progress slightly, and after dropping fifty pounds in a year was allowing myself some fun. Well... fun is over, now back to reality. I'll be getting a bit more serious now to get in shape for my ride in the Philadelphia LIVESTRONG Challenge in August, and just generally want to be a brick shit house as soon as possible. I'll fill you in on my 2009 goals in the coming days, for now, more about the Lean Look Challenge®.

So, once again my friend and neighbor to the (extreme) North Thom (aka: Bluenoser) will be joining me. Apparently, according to his 04/01/2009 post he has already started. I, on the other hand, am a slacker and cannot be trusted to make ANYTHING happen on a Sunday, so I started today. I will post my measurements and the like on Mondays. I would also encourage anyone who is interested in joining us on the journey to get in on it ASAP. I would be willing to 'restart', if you will, as late as February 2nd, if that's cool with Bluenoser, but must warn you I will NOT regain the weight I lose in that time. It will be more for support and such. The only requirement is you will need to buy the book, and please be on top of measuring and posting and stuff. Don't forget the 'stuff'... most important part!

So there you have it, the Lean Look Challenge® 2009! I encourage you to keep up, not only, with my progress but Bluenoser's progress as well. t should be pretty cool, especially since Bluenoser and I are about the same height, weight, etc. I'm excited to start up again, and who knows, maybe I'll get around to getting the weight bench I've been meaning to pick up, courtesy my 'lil sis'. If you want in on the weight loss program, drop me and/or Bluenoser a line and we'll accommodate!

Here's to a happy, prosperous, phun philled, healthy 2009!

Don

Weight: 185.8
Waist: 37
Neck: 15.5
Body Fat % Calculation Estimate: 22