Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Thank You....

As we end the year 2011, I want to extend a heartfelt Thank You to all those who have helped support The Fuller Center by contributing to my effort to ride across this great country. We stopped seven times along the way to help families in need of affordable housing, and they were all thankful for your generous support

Here are a few pictures of our 2011 bicycle trip.

This is what it is all about; here we are working on a rehab house.

The homeowner struggled to get out of bed to thank us; he now has a safe patio to enjoy.

It is only a ride of 20 miles each day. We just had to repeat the 20 miles 3 to 5 times each day.

The road can get lonely--you need to be good company to yourself.

Ahhhh....the beautiful cornfields.

Then we stop and talk, trying to raise more money for affordable housing

Some days were tougher than others.
Ray and Lady O like each other but are really just trying to stay warm long enough to get the picture taken.

We ran into a few unexpected stops without the sag wagon to snack from.

Not all the action was on bikes.

Before long, we were eating and drinking anything that didn't run away.

After each ride we worked on our bikes.....

or watched a movie.

Jonas, on tall bike, always got second and third looks.

We had photo ops at almost all 14 states plus D.C.

And then it was over....the joy and the tears.

'Mother Krystal' reading a children's story our last night together......

which put our warriors to sleep.

Sign language for "I Love You'....thanks for supporting The Fuller Center

Please consider joining or supporting us in 2012


Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year....

As the year winds down, I find myself putting the weight back on from all the holiday eating, which would not be a problem if I were at least bicycling occasionally. The last time I was on my bike was November 18. Normally I am able to ride more often than that in Colorado, but we have had more snow this year combined with colder temperatures, so the snow is hanging around, and I don't like riding unless the temperature gets up to 39 F. We have had a few days that I should have been riding, but other things, like medical appointments, raptor care and feeding days, shopping days, arthritis days---you know, ordinary life has gotten in the way of those few days I could have ridden. So I am now up to, and a little over, 200#  again.

So.......New Year's resolutions come to mind at this time of year. I don't normally actually write down any resolutions, I just put them in my mind to do them. Of course, then if I ever even start them, I never seem to follow thru. However, when I decided to run a marathon (26.2 miles), I researched, and laid out a complete training schedule to accomplish the goal of running that marathon. Deciding to run a marathon is an excellent time to learn goal setting! My goal was to complete a marathon in under 4 hours. I got a calendar and marked down my training schedule for the next 4 months. I missed very few training days preparing for the 10th Annual Dallas White Rock Marathon in 1979. 2,608 runners started, 2,144 finished, and I was the 1,983rd person to finish, which reminded me of my standing in my high school graduating class. Granted, I was not competing with anybody but myself, but I missed my goal, completing my first marathon in about 4 hours 50 minutes and 32.6 seconds...way too far over my 4 hour goal.

My second attempt fell short because of a lingering illness, and I was not able to complete the run in 1980. So, on to the Houston Tenneco Marathon in 1981. This course is a big circle needing two laps to complete. I stopped as I circled around to start my second loop to watch Billy Rodgers win this race in 2:12:19, after stopping at least once with stomach cramps. He was flying, and hardly looked like he was working hard. I was feeling very good for this run, and finished in 3 hours 51 minutes and 19 seconds. I reached my goal, my weight was around 175 lbs, and I was 38 years old. I finished 196th in my age group out of 424. Over 2,400 entered and 1,527 finished.

That was my last marathon. In between bouts with back trouble, I also completed a number of short triathlons. I ended my running "career" with lower back surgery in 1983.

So back to resolutions, which, remember, I do not make. However, I have started working with a yoga instructor, and I am about to interview a couple of trainers to find one to work with to help me get motivated. I have an appointment with a physical therapist to help establish exactly what I can do with this old body to cross train for the upcoming biking season. Of course my summer of 2012 is dedicated to The Fuller Center for Affordable Housing, with the Natchez Trace Spring Ride, the East Coast ride, and finally the West Coast ride.

If you're not bored now, just stay tuned as the new year gets started...it can only get worse.

As always,