Monday, February 28, 2011

Start Wrenching

Well snow over night on Saturday (again), forced me to run on that damned treadmill again for Sunday. Got a quick 3 mi (roughly) in . The work week is looking pretty dry, so I should be able to get some out door activity in.

The lack of "perfect" weather forced me to get into my "shop" yesterday afternoon. Now mind you, my shop is really just my fancy name for my basement. A couple weeks ago I decided to get down there and do a little cleaning. I threw things away, and rearranged until I had what I felt to be a workable bicycle maintenance area. So yesterday I gave my first try at keeping my stable in working order.

First on the table was my Gary Fisher Advance, who I affectionately refer to as just "Gary". I had gotten a new rear wheel a couple weeks ago, so I started by degreasing the rear end (that sounds questionable), and putting the new week on. I then degreased the chain and re-lubed it, checked the bottom bracket for trouble, and checked my shifting to eliminate any clunkiness. It was a pleasant 45 min. Next on the table is my wife's Trek WSD 3700, and then my '85 Trek 400 series road bike, also known as the "Cougar" (because it's older, yet still attractive). That's just the winter maintenance. Once I get through that, then the patients will start again for their spring tune-up.

Other than that, just biding my time until we get a little thaw around here. Next race coming up on March 19th. 5k to benefit the FDL police K9 unit.



Saturday, February 26, 2011


Hard to believe it was a week ago that I ran the first race of the year. Last Saturday - temps in the low 30's, sunny, and almost all of the snow melted. Today - temps in the low 20's and big 'ole snow flakes just a coming down (not to mention the 10-11 inches that we got last Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. Oh well, got a good 3 mile run in on the treadmill (I hate looking a wall for 30 minutes), had a nice cup of Royal Kona Blend this morning, and am treating my wife and I to some good Mexican food tonight (not too much though, official self imposed weigh in on Tuesday morning).

I'll try getting in another treadmill run in tomorrow so at least the weekend isn't a total loss. Anybody else doing any races or anything outside this weekend? I'd love to hear about it. Give me hope for spring.



Friday, February 25, 2011


Welcome to the first post of my new blog!

For those of you that followed my other blog, as the years went on, I found myself growing and expanding my interests from just trail biking, into road biking, running, and probably some new ones that I don't even know about yet. I felt it necessary to "start over" with a fresh, clean blog that speaks more to what I do on a daily basis, not just when I go out and get on a bike. So I hope you continue to follow my active life, and as always, your comments and dialog are more than welcome.

For those of you that are new to me and my story, first of all thank you for stopping by. I am a 35 year old male living in Wisconsin, USA. I have been married for 11 years and have a gorgeous 3 year old daughter. 4 years ago something snapped inside my head. I was weighing in at 305 lbs, I felt like a huge pile of monkey crap (and looked about as bad). I wish I could pinpoint what flipped the switch for me, but I don't know exactly what it was. I got on my bike again. Slowly at first, not really doing any thing special, but was able to drop 30 lbs. just by going for 3-5 mile rides 3-4 times a month.

In August of 2008, Jonny K asked me to join him on a 25 mile charity ride. I agreed, and then thought what have I gotten my self into? I've never ridden more than 10 miles in one day. I started getting up at 4:00 in the morning during the week ( a little later on weekends ), to make sure that I would not look like a total fool trying to lug my 275 lb frame up and down hills in through the Kettle Moraine state forest. I made it, and I was addicted. The active life style had set it's hooks in me, and it couldn't have come at a better time. I also ran into a ghost from my past. A friend of mine from a time gone by, who we refer to as the Big Cat, who had also started his own journey to a new and improved self.

In December of 2008, I fell on ice and fractured my ankle in two places. Surgery was required to repair the damage done and I was on the shelf for a little over 2 months. This was another wake up call for me. I had to get fit! Even with this little set back. I began to run (jog slowly really), to try to help speed up my rehab. Guess what? The running bug bit me too. I got delusions of grandeur of becoming a multi sport athlete. Well, maybe sometime down the road.

In September of 2009, Jonny K, Big Cat, and I set our sights on doing the same charity ride, but this time 50 miles. By now, I'm up at 3:30 A.M. on weekdays to get a descent workout in. My family and friends are ready to declare me certifiable. In the end, we all completed the 50 mile ride. But I was left thirsting for more. I had been running no more than 1 mile at a time. I saw a flier for a duathlon, and figured I'd try to train for it in the spring. Notice the slight weight loss at this point. After getting back up to around 285 lbs. during my ankle rehab, I was down to about 250 lbs. for the 2009 ride.

Spring of 2010 came, and I decided I need to up my running distance if I didn't want to look like a heel for the duathlon. In the beginning of April, I had worked myself up to 5k without stopping. My cycling suffered a bit through this period, but I felt it necessary to grow as an athlete. Around this same time, my doctor told me my cholesterol was higher than it had been and my good cholesterol was significantly lower. I was placed on medication, but decided the time had come to change my intake to a healthy diet. WOW! I cannot stress what a healthy diet will do for a person. I felt 10 times better. The weight shed off.

September of 2010. Time for the annual charity ride again. Let's take it up to the next level. 70 mile ride this time. I went for a training ride with the Big Cat , and was completely trashed. My body felt like it wanted to shut down at mile 35. I researched, and decided I needed to adjust my diet for one week before a big event like this. I adjusted and it paid dividends (we can get into my pre-race diet at another time)! I finished the 70 miles in almost exactly 5 hours. Here I am at 220 lbs. standing next to the Big Cat's ride with my '85 Trek 400 series in the background.

The duathlon fell through because I just plain couldn't afford to fork over the entry fee.

I did enter my first running race on Thanksgiving Day 2010. I ran a 5 mile race in right around 42 min 30 sec.

For 2011, I've joined the local running club and competed in their first race of the year last weekend. I ran the 3 miles in 24 min 4 sec. Plenty more coming for me in 2011. I'll have a list of upcoming event up soon.

I look forward to continuing my relationships I've made with friends from my other blog, and welcome the opportunity to make some new friends. Thanks for checking out this blog. In my other blog, I usually end with the word "Kippis", which was Finnish for "Cheers". I find it more appropriate to end this one with the Finnish word for "health". So until next post my friends.