Bike MS: Breakaway to Key Largo 2014
40 for 40!!!
In honor of those I know living with MS:
Linda Capalbo Iarocci (Pedal Partner)
Nicole Marie (Pedal Partner)
This will be my 6th consecutive year supporting the MS Ride. For the last 4 years, I have raised over $10,5000.00 cumulatively for this great cause. With the generous support of family and friends, I was #30 on the top fundraiser list for 2013 by raising over $3000.00. I have at least 4 friends whose family members have MS and I am happy to ride in their honor again this year. This year, my goal is to raise $1 for every person in South Florida struggling with MS.
Last year, the average donation was $70.00 per person but please donate what you can. Every dollar helps. In lieu of birthday or holiday gifts, I ask that you make a tax deductible donation to a great cause. Better yet, sign up and ride with me this year. This year, I will turn 40 and ask that you make it a 40 for 40 donation. $40 for 40 years of THE HAWS.
Why We Fight MS
Having multiple sclerosis means that you may suddenly have blurry vision. Or that your memory will fail you for no apparent reason. Or that you may not always be able to walk, let alone ride a bike. The symptoms of MS are different, and devastating, for everyone - the only certainty is that it will affect yet another person every hour of every day.
Why I Ride
I've registered for the MS Bike Ride because I want to do something for the people who have been diagnosed - and because I want to do everything to educate more people on what it means to live with this disease. Today, there is no cure for multiple sclerosis, and with diagnosis occurring most frequently between the ages of 20 and 50, many individuals face a lifetime filled with unpredictability.
I ride because this is the best supported ride in Florida. The volunteers that support this event are top notch. They include the SAG (Support and Gear) vehicles, officers directing traffic, all rest stop volunteers, the start line group, the finish line group, the shuttle service, UPS/FEDEX/DHL for shipping the luggage, and lastly the finish line in Key Largo. Ice cold beer is a wonderful thing when you've been on a bike for 100 miles. The volunteers are want make this event awesome. All I can say is Thank You.
Why You Should Sponsor Me
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society will use funds collected from the MS Bike Ride to not only support research for a cure tomorrow, but also to provide programs which address the needs of people living with MS today. Because we can fight this disease by simply riding a bike, because we have chosen to help thousands of people through a contribution to the MS Bike Ride, we are now getting closer to the hour when no one will have to hear the words, "You have MS."
Funds from this ride will serve the 6,000+ South Floridians living with Multiple Sclerosis. If you have a company or product that you'd like to promote, I am looking for a corporate jersey sponsorship for this year's ride.
This year's Start/Finish line will be at FIU. Come out and cheer on all the riders.
My Personal Web Log
Back in the saddle
The last 2 weeks have been good on the bike. I've logged over 100 miles each week since my race and feel like I am getting my cycling legs back. Tomorrow, Frank and I will be riding Loop the Lake for Literacy. He is involved with the charity and assists with the event. It is a 116 mile ride around Lake Okeechobee. Frank and I tackled this ride a few years ago with disasterous results. We ran out of food and water in the NE section of the trail where there is absolutely no civilization. We ended up knocking on someone's door and buying some bottled water from them to make it to the next town. Frank rode this ride last year and said it was better being in a group.
Post Miami Marathon - Back to cycling
Now that the Miami Marathon is over, I can shift my focus back to cycling. It was hard to get my running miles in and fit in group rides. It was just too much on my legs and I definitely noticed a difference in my legs when I dialed back the cycling in the last few weeks of training.
My goal for my first half marathon was to finish under 2:30 and not walk during the race except water stops. It's difficult to run and drink at the same time for me. I was able to finish at 2:25 which I was quite happy with. The Kenyan that won the full marathon finished in 2:19. I figured since he weighs half what I do, we tied.
Last week was my first week in months that I passed 100 miles for the week. I got in a charity ride and some mountain biking too. Although my Garmin didn't survive my crash on the trails. RIP 305. You were a good training mate for the last 4 years.
Goose Eggs and Thanksgiving
I haven't been on my bike since the Gran Fondo ride 3 weeks except for 2 15 mile rides before work 2 weeks ago. I hate looking at my Strava progress and seeing goose eggs up there. I was able to ride my brother's bike this past weekend on his fancy rollers. It took some time to get used to but by the end of the hour long session, I was quite comfortable that I was not going to crash. I'd consider buying in the future but at $850, it's a little pricey. I could buy another bike with that kind of change, preferably for Tracy.
This Thanksgiving, I was extremely thankful that I was able to spend it with all my siblings. It was the first time in a long, long time that we've gotten together for Thanksgiving. We typically do Christmas every other year but with 4 siblings in 4 different states, it makes the get togethers tough to schedule. It was a blast spending time with my neices and nephews. They are getting so big. I was supposed to get some running in last week too but with month end close and the holiday, that got thrown out the window. No worries, it was 17 degrees when we arrived in TN. THAT, is why I live in Florida.
My buddy Jason missed the memo about donations instead gifts for my birthday. Well, he missed my birthday party too but that's another story. Anyway, he registered me for the Gran Fondo ride on November 10th. I was riding with him and his brother on Team Capone. I did this ride 2 years ago with Frank, Ali and Katie. I was not impressed with the SAG and the running of the event. Somewhere along the ride, we lost Frank as he cramped up from doing Miami Man the weekend before. They wouldn't give him a ride back to the finish. On top of that, my registration included a jersey that I never received. I was basically told to piss off by the company that puts on the race.
So Jason is not much of a cyclist. I'd say I ride more in a month than he does all year. He signed us up for the 108 mile course which I was fine with. His brother Patrick is a strong cyclist and could definitely keep pace with me. The first 37 miles of the ride were nice through the Gables and Coconut Grove. At the rest stop, Jason told us to ride ahead so we didn't miss the cut off for the 108 mile route. Jason went and finished the 62 mile route by himself.
Patrick and I quickly picked up the pace and were clipping along nicely around 20 mph. We passed several small groups but no one that was riding at our pace. We tried at rest stops to roll out with group but most were going too slow for our liking. We made our own rest stop along side a farm that was watering crops out in Homestead/Redlands area as the mist was filtering into the road. We hooked up with a large TNT group just in time to head east into the wind tunnel. Pace dropped quickly down to 10 or so and we soon abandoned the group as there were many beginners riding.
Closer to the end, we were both getting tired and just wanting the ride to end. I lead most of the last 20 miles as Patrick seemed like he was bonking. I just wanted to get off my bike seat. Around the last 4 miles, a group of fast TNT riders passed us and pulled us to the finish line. We finished around 8 hours including the rest stops.
Not to complain about the event but the "gourmet pasta dinner" they advertised was not gourmet at all unless you consider a serving of pasta with 1/2 cup of pesto on it a gourmet meal (3 TBSP is the right amount). At every rest stop, they did not have anything to drink other than water. No Gatorade or electrolyte drinks at all. Who does that in the South Florida heat? I had to buy my own Gatorade at the Robert is Here rest stop.
I wouldn't do this ride again at all. I'd rather do a charity ride with the money going to a good cause. I can't see supporting a race with a big entry fee that comes up short on support for the riders. There wasn't even water or food at the start line. Again, when you ride an event that is so well supported like an MS Ride, all the others seem to come up short.
Sub par October
Work and birthday activities have kept my mileage down this month. I was averaging 100-150 miles a week the previous few months. I didn't even break 100 miles once in October even though I came pretty close my birthday week with rides of 60 and 39. My 2 regular weekly rides have been missed mostly to working late. Hoping that changes in November.
Not sure why this blog doesn't separate paragraphs. It looks like my posts are long, run-on sentences. Oh well....
Hoping to get out early tonight to make the Urban ride. Haven't done this ride in weeks and I feel I'm getting slower without the sprint work. Nothing like idly watching your standing in Strava segments slide. Need to get back to bike commuting too. The weather is starting to cool and the daylight is getting shorter. Need to buy some additional lights so I'm well seen at night.
Huge thanks and props to my baby sister Jen Andrew for the multiple 40for40 donations and current top donor. Love you Jen.
Well, the century ride started off a little rough Saturday. I had a worn tire that needed to be replaced and my shifter was not working. I replaced the tire and was running late. The park where everyone was meeting is a mere 2-3 miles from the house so I hauled tail to get there with less than 10 minutes before the group was leaving. I didn't know the route so I needed to catch them before they left the park. I managed to get to the park as they were pulling out.
The ride started with 12 people including me and a 13th rider met up with the group on A1A. We headed south along the beach before cutting around the airport. I topped out my speed at 34 mph coming down the 17th street bridge. I thought I was going faster. I made sure not to sprint up the bridge so I could save my legs.
We may several stops along the way including a lunch stop in Miami at 35 miles. I had a roast beef sandwich which had more cheese and veggies than it did meat. It was nice to stop and relax but I felt we stayed way too long. It was more of a social ride and some riders had a drink in a smokey dive bar while others jumped in the ocean. I felt the stop could have been planned better and was not enjoying the extended break. At 4 hours into the ride, we had only covered 35 miles.
We meandered through downtown Miami and hit just about every traffic light. By the time we hit Key Biscayne, I was ready to turn around and go home solo. We headed back north and stopped again at the dive bar for another round.
I had plans with Tracy and friends to go to the Funky Buddha that night so I couldn't wait around. I announced I was heading back solo and Todd, who rides a sweet recumbent bike, said he'd ride back with me. He's a fast cyclist and we averaged around 20 mph. I ended up getting home around 8. Total cycling time was 6 1/2 hours which is pretty slow for me. I enjoyed a Fat Tire and a shower before heading to Tap 42 for a Drunken Goat and a few beers.
I have never rode to Miami before but really enjoyed the ride. I can see myself doing that ride again with less stopping. There are plenty of places to replenish water/gatorade on the route so I can easily do it solo or with a small group. Maybe Frank and I will end up doing it one day.
100 miles to nowhere
Just signed up for my 6th consecutive MS Ride to Key Largo. I'm glad that they made it earlier in the year as the weather should be cooler and drier.
This has been a rough week for cycling. Work has been kicking my butt lately and I haven't been getting in my nightly group rides and I haven't been cycling to work in 2 weeks. I was averaging about 5 rides a week and 150 miles but I have a goose egg so far this week.
That will change tomorrow as I head out on a group ride to Miami and back with some friends from my weekly Critical Mass rides. It should be ~50 out and 50 back after a lunch stop and at a decent pace. Time on the bike is ALWAYS better when you're going fast. I am looking forward to some time on the road.
Enjoy your weekend.