Sunday, August 08, 2010

Training for a century ride

Kyle and I have been ramping up to do the hilly hundred in October. As we do longer training rides, we begin to realize that 100 miles is no short distance. 45.3 today

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

"Trail Tails 2" aka "Life at Bicycle Speed"

Biking along the Pinellas trail never gets old - it seems there is always something new to see, even though most of my miles are logged on a 10-11 mile stretch between St. Petersburg and Clearwater.

One recent day I spent 15-20 minutes tracking the movement of a dolphin in the bayou, watching his sleek body rise from the surface of the water in a gentle arc and immediately submerge again. I kept trying to catch him/her on my phone camera, but unable to detect a discernible pattern in his movements, I found it impossible to guess where he would next rise from the water and I never succeeded in positioning my camera lens within a chain link diamond in time to snap the photo before the dolphin submerged.  I have a dozen photos of "empty" background to go with my memory.

A week or two later I braked to a stop at that same spot to see if the large pelican standing on the front of a small fishing boat was alive or just a whimsical "hood ornament".  As the boat pulled closer, I saw it was indeed a real live pelican, hitching a ride with a crab fisherman, hoping for a handout from one of the man's many buckets.  The fisherman directed his boat in numerous looping circles, reaching into the water to tug on crab lines while the pelican stayed at his post, adjusting his feet for balance and occasionally flapping his wings for a small circle flight around the boat before settling on the bow once again.

It reminded me of the children's story, "Come Again, Pelican" by Don Freeman, which my boys had enjoyed so much that I tracked down and purchased a worn out copy of the then out-of-print and out-of-library-circulation book to read to my grandsons.

This week I saw a man in a viking mask and shorts running toward me - he had a long red beard and a helmet that reflected the bright summer sun.  "You just never know the craziness you'll see", I thought.  When he finally got close enough, I saw that the thick red beard was real, the ends tied in a knot 4-6 inches below the chin, but the "helmet" had morphed into a incredibly reflective bald head.

Sights like these are hard to catch when you are going at car speed, and far enough away from home that I would never see them walking or running.  Perhaps that partly explains my love affair with the bike.

If anyone out there is still reading this blog since Sam has been too busy with family life to post, I would like hear what are your favorite trails, rivers, etc. and some memorable sights from your neck of the woods.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Back on the Trail Again

Kyle's comment to me yesterday, "You know....running's addictive!"

Oh, yes it is...and how thankful I am to be able to partake.  After far too many weeks /months of no running due to injuries and URI's I couldn't seem to shake, I was THRILLED to have an overcast (read cool) morning to start back.  Just run/walk intervals, but boy did it feel good.

And whether I walk or run, there is always something that catches my eye or pulls my heart to thanksgiving.  Here a double crested cormorant  drying its wings in Walsingham Park.

I'd like to know what tasty morsel this armadillo was after.  It never did pull its head out of the hole and scurry for coverage even though I stood just a few feet from it with my phone camera clicking away.  Also Walsingham Park.  I use the treadmill and elliptical when time, joint and training constraints dictate, but it just doesn't come close to the JOY of walking and running outside.