The Sams Club Bike MS Ride, and the Witch on a Bicycle

What does one have to do with the other? Well, my church has decided that we are going to participate in this ride, which is basically Frisco TX to Ft. Worth TX over 2 days.

I was invited to participate in the Plano Cycling team but as a poverty-stricken bike blogger I’m going to need some assistance from people that have money, i.e. Not Me.

One of the things that has been discussed is creating a way to use the church’s PayPal account to collect online donations for this. Another thing that was discussed was my using this venue to promote both my doing this and my church, which I think is a great idea. Sacred Journey Fellowship does a lot for the community, but most of what gets done happens behind the scenes away from the glare of publicity and we have gotten a reputation of not doing a lot of charity work, when actually we have several ongoing charity projects pumping steady cash and goods to our partner organizations. This time we want to let people know about it. Everyone thinks I’m going to be doing the “hard job” of riding the bike and posting about it in my blog. HA! The hard part for me will be the getting in front of people to raise money, the 150 mile bike ride is my reward for surviving the fund raising. As a minimum I have to get $325 to cover my registration and bare-bones fundraising for MS, naturally I would prefer to get substantially more than that.

My long-term goal for this is to start a Witch on a Bicycle team, with jerseys and everything, maybe in a couple of years. We could do a picture of Gigi on the jersey… or maybe not. While part of that would be about promoting the blog, part of it is a sincere desire to help people. That’s what this whole dang shooting match is about, helping people. I help by telling about wrecks, and what you can do to avoid getting hit in the same situation. I help by pointing out infrastructure projects that will work, and also when they are a colossal waste of time and money. And if this goes through I will help by raising money for deadly diseases by riding bicycles. I can see eventually doing the MS 150 in the spring, and the Livestrong Challenge in the fall without impacting the regular work of this blog too much, or messing with what passes for my “normal” life.

So, training for the ride. I do a bunch of short rides on Blue, just about every day, but I don’t do any kind of extended long rides very often. When I do long rides my ability to withstand the pain in my backside from the seat on Blue is more the limit on my endurance than my aerobic or physical endurance. maybe if I could install the same kind of seat I had on Gigi my butt would stop being the limiting factor of my bike rides. “Butt” for the time being I have to live with the seat I have. In the meantime I really need to work on my ability to make long rides in the 50-75 mile range, in any kind of weather. The best way I can think of to do that would be to ride up TX 78 to Farmersville, which is about 65 miles round trip, until I can do it regularly with minimal stopping. There are several turn-around points on that ride that allow me to tailor the ride from 16 miles to more than 70 if I decide to go as far as the TX 121 junction, to more than 120 if I decide to go through Whitewright and Tom Bean to Sherman. This will be a major departure for me because I usually don’t ride just to ride, I ride to get someplace and it usually doesn’t matter how far I ride to get there if the only way there for me is by bike. As I have posted in this blog before I don’t do that “e” word very much, I just ride my bike and that’s pretty much all the workout I get. Riding to not get somewhere is coming perilously close to that “e” word, “exercise”.

I haven’t decided yet if I will do the ride with or without the commuting gear on the bike. Part of me wants to do the ride with those kitty-litter buckets hanging on the bike with the cut-down license plates and the mailbox reflectors on the back, while part of me is thinking about keeping up my average speed with all that junk on Blue slowing me down.

That’s a lot to ponder, so leave a comment about doing the ride, keeping my butt from giving out on me, and on riding continuously instead of in 3-10 mile shots.

PSA, Opus

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