Thursday, February 18, 2010

Hey, Boy! Are those your legs or are you ridin' a chicken?!

I'm not sure how many times this comment has been thrown in my direction from a certain friend of mine, but I always come back with the same response; "No chicken here, just a pair-o-stick-legs." Skinny? yes. Lanky? yes. Calves thinner than table legs? yes. Strong? ummmm.....sure. Are they gonna carry me across the country? Damn right.

Less than three months till departure and training is now in full force. Yes, I was going to start two nights ago, but I was suddenly approached by an invite for an open bar, post-workday. I'm not talking hours and hours of binge drinking, but instead a quaint hour of beers and friends. I feel it's much more important to keep/maintain/begin friendships than to sit in a gym and spin during a cold night in New York. Friends are the ones that will always be there, well actually, this may not be the most accurate statement, but at least a handful of them will be. And for that handful, I am grateful.

Alright - enough sap. Training. It's simple really. Ride, ride, ride and ride some more...maybe I'll even do some squats. I don't have a sophisticated plan as you would find in Bicycling mag, perhaps I shall adopt one, but for now I'll cruise my Specialized cycle when the weather is decent, otherwise you'll be sure to find me in the gym swimming, spinning and lifting.

As the weather improves over the next couple-o-months, and my gear starts to accumulate, I'll begin making long overnight rides in the tri-state area. Gear-up with all my planned supplies and head out to Montauk (do some surfing), Heckscher State Park, Fahnestock, or just long day rides through the five bouroughs. If anyone would like to join or even offer up the miraculous ride you've been dying to tell someone about, please reach out. This saturday is supposed to be great and I'll be cruising into Central Park for a few laps and small hills.

And then there is diet - but I need to give that one some more thought. In the meantime I'm gonna grab a pint of Half-Baked and think it over.

Monday, February 8, 2010


A few reasons, which in short, can be answered by the heading atop this blog. And if you're one of those people, such as myself, that loves a quick, short answer then read no further, but if truly interested, please, my friends, read on.

Why? Why not? Why not pedal a bicycle across the country carrying everything behind me in small bags? Clothes, a stove, utensils, spare parts, shelter, toiletries, sustenance, pen, paper, a camera - basic gear that will become everything I know, love and hate. Why put my body and my mind through at least 72 days and 4,400 miles of, what some would call, physical and mental abuse? Why spend hot, wet, long, cold, lonely, beautiful, stressful, strenuous and windy days spinning my legs in circles along strips of asphalt and cement? The answer is easy. Absolute adventure. True uncertainty.

Yes, it's true I have a route planned out, and thanks to cell phones, I'll most likely have contact with anyone at anytime.  But what is uncertain is each road, town, forest, river, lake, meal, park and, of course, the people.  The chance to explore and experience all of these variables across the United States is intriguing and without a doubt liberating.  Liberating from a 'normal' life.  I leave the definition of 'normal' up for interpretation as it is bound to vary from mind to mind.

My personal search for all things liberating and desire for adventure can be stemmed from my childhood.  I grew up with an adventurous family; road-trips, camping, backpacking, biking and playing sports were just a handful of activities we all did.  Also, my dad was in the Army, so movement from here-to-there was always thrown into the mix. I guess adventure and spontaneity was just bred into my mind but it was not until September of 2001 that I truly realized these passions.  On September 20th of 2001, after nine months battling Burkitt's Lymphoma, my dad died from the illness and hence the title and cause for my adventure.

I am riding in memory of my dad, for my family and for the people and families that have suffered and are suffering from Lymphoma.  I am teaming up with the Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF) with hopes of raising money and awareness for the fight against the disease. The Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF) is the nation's largest voluntary health organization devoted exclusively to funding lymphoma research and providing patients and healthcare professionals with critical information on the disease. LRF's mission is to eradicate lymphoma and serve those touched by this disease and has also funded over $37 million in lymphoma-specific research. 

I would like to invite anyone and everyone to join me on this adventure and be part of it either by throwing a warm comment my way, following along on this internet thing, even riding a leg along side or most importantly kicking some donations over to the Lymphoma Research Foundation.