Wednesday, March 30, 2011

WIN A TREK FX TOMORROW NIGHT TO BENEFIT LIVESTRONG!

Danny's Cycles, one of our sponsors and the folks who will be providing mobile support at our ROCK the RIDE & RUN on April 10, has just upped the ante for our raffle at our Melting Pot Fondue-Raiser benefiting LIVESTRONG tomorrow night

How would you like to go home with a TREK FX BIKE?!? These are fantastic bikes for riders of all experiences! A frame light enough to compare to a road bike, the handlebars and shifting system comparable to a mountain bike, and the style and comfort of a hybrid! I'm not exaggerating when I say I love these bikes for their flexibility! You can ride them on a bike path (not a bike trail, but a path) as easily as on the road! When I did the LIVESTRONG Challenges last year, I saw folks doing the 100 mile as well as the 25 mile on these bikes - and they were keeping up with all the roadies! It's not too much bike for those just getting into the sport, but it's fierce enough that an experienced cyclist will enjoy the ride! (I'm waiting for details on the exact model, but I can say with all assurances, there is no model that is bad!) Thank you so much, Steve!

Show up and/or contact me for information about the raffle and the event! Hope to see you soon!

RSVP today if you haven't already (when making a reservation, be sure to mention that you're coming for the LIVESTRONG event!):
The Melting Pot (White Plains)
http://www.opentable.com/the-melting-pot-white-plains
(914) 993-6358

You're cordially invited...


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Fighting cancer isn't a 1-person job. It takes a team.

If you've ever battled cancer, you know it's not just you fighting this disease. It's your doctors, your nurses, your family and friends forming a team to support you.

If you haven't, but know someone who has fought themselves, or been a team member for a cancer fighter, you can see it on their faces that every supporter they had meant the world to them.

Running a 5k and riding a 30 mile bike ride may, at first glance, seem to be a solo event. But, in truth, with more of us running and riding as a larger group, it will be more meaningful, (not to mention easier) to get from start to finish.

My good friend, Mike Terry, with his support

Bring a buddy and share with them what LIVESTRONG is all about. Train with them in the days before the ROCK the RIDE & RUN. Share with them why you're participating and for whom.


Challenge yourselves as a team, not just as individuals.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Pick your fight: Coq au Vin, Bourguignonne, Court Bouillon or Mojo?

I've confuzzled you, haven't I. (Better than me vajazzling you, trust me.)

Allow me to untangle things. On Thursday, March 31, we will be having our second Melting Pot Fondue-Raiser benefiting LIVESTRONG at The Melting Pot in White Plains, NY. For those that attended our March 10 Fondue-Raiser in Darien, CT you'll know that, despite the miserable rain storm (which shut down some cities just north of us!), we raised over $500 between raffle ticket sales and donations from the dinners!

Our goal for White Plains? Let's double those numbers - if we can fill the restaurant, I'm told there is a 100-150 person capacity. And if every one of those good folks orders off of the special LIVESTRONG menu, $10 of every meal will be donated. That means we have the potential to raise over $1000 for LIVESTRONG!

Why not?

Want me to sweeten that fondue pot? Ok. Can I throw in the chance to win some awesome prizes? $100 gift card to The Melting Pot? A free Teeth Whitening by RD Dental? Personal training with Demas Body Sculpting? How's about some handmade jewelry by COURSE? A Mary Kay Gift Basket? A super, surprise prize by Danny's Cycles? Or perhaps some autographed wristbands by cycling pros like Sergio Paulinho of Team RadioShack?

Every tables that participates in the Fondue-Raiser gets one ticket. But, for a small amount, you can buy additional raffle tickets throughout the evening!



Reservations are recommended and be sure to wear yellow to show your support!
http://www.opentable.com/the-melting-pot-reservations-white-plains?rid=17812&restref=17812
The Melting Pot
30 Mamaroneck Avenue, Lower Level,
White Plains, NY 10601
(914) 993-6358

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Who says Video killed the Radio Star?

aka "Bring the Cheese On!"


Ok. Calling myself a "Radio Star" is an exaggeration. But that still totally applies to Tony Reno of WICC-AM in Bridgeport, CT. Thanks to the good folks at The Melting Pot (and their PR folks at CPR Media Services), a radio interview was arranged this morning at 9:00 am (stay tuned - I may have a link to a recording soon!). While it meant that I had to leave my darlings to catch the bus on their own (since no one called to say that the house burned down, or that two wandering gremlins were discovered roaming the streets, I can safely say they made it to the bus in one piece), I was thrilled to be able to promote the message of LIVESTRONG and the efforts we're putting forth locally to raise funds and awareness.

I'll admit it - I was afraid that I'd drop the f-bomb. Not that I drop the f-bomb that frequently, but, as I explained to Tom Arbon, one of the account managers at the station, it's like when you learn how to mountain bike. You're told to keep your eyes on the trail and not to look at that tree in front of you. Don't look at it - don't even think about it - because if you do, you're damned to crash into it. I was afraid that I'd be on live radio what I am on the mountain bike trail - the idiot that works so hard to avoid thinking about the tree that I crash into it and make a fool of myself.

But I didn't.

Tony & Mike and Stormin' Normin (from sister station WEBE-108) were so friendly, as was Erin and the station manager Ann McManus, that I felt so welcome as a guest. Erin told me that Tony makes it so easy to be interviewed, and she was absolutely right. We joked before going live, and next thing I know, we're talking about Lance on-air, the Foundation, how my son missed meeting Lance because "some guy" by the name of Patrick Dempsey was in the way while we were in Austin, and why I got involved with LIVESTRONG. Our first commercial break was upon us, and then we got to focus on our upcoming Melting Pot Fondue-Raisers, first in Darien on March 10, then in White Plains on March 31 as well as the ROCK the RIDE & RUN on April 10.

Hopefully, we'll get some new RSVPs and registrants. But, at the very least, we got to spread the word about LIVESTRONG, hopefully inspire some folks to join the fight and made great friends with the crew at Cumulus in Bridgeport.

Here is the interview:
video

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Back in the saddle... and... wow, not what I was hoping for!

What my lips felt like I'd been doing.
I knew this morning's commute was going to hurt. Realistically, with the weather, the extreme cold temperatures, insane dumps of snow and the cities' absolute inconsistent street grooming, it's simply been too dangerous to commute to and from work this winter. Which bummed me out, though it gave my back time to continue healing. (I think these sprained sacreiliac ligaments are the injuries that just keep giving - as soon as I think I'm past the pain of the injury and can start easing into what, for me, is normal physical exertion, some gremlin decides to play cat's in the cradle with my ligaments and I'm back to square one.)

I dropped my car off at the gas station for inspection, and started what is my normal route from Scotts Corners in Pound Ridge, NY to the office in Downtown Stamford, CT. All was going well until I hit the uphill of Trinity Pass. Now, it usually takes me a couple of weeks after not riding for a while to be able to climb TP with my backpack on without having to stop or dismount and walk. (Many of you know this climb. It's not easy when you don't have a 20-pound backpack on when you're in pique condition.) What was scary, though, was heading into with an 18-mph pace and all of a sudden, being seized with a blinding coughing fit. And I mean blinding. Murphy's Law dictated that just as I was starting to take some deep inhalations preparing for the climb, a fierce cold gust of wind blew right into my face and into my lungs. I pulled off to the side of the road and dismounted. In so doing, the bike fell over into a pile of ice-mud-sand-salt-mush-chunks and the derailleur derailed itself. Let's see - 20-pound backpack, coughing fit, awkward incline, uneven road and a bike repair. Can you spell, "N-O-T-S-O-G-O-O-D-F-O-R-T-H-E-B-A-C-K"? Because, stupidly, I didn't take off my backpack when I leaned over to pick the bike up to flip it over to re-align the chain and all the bike's dangly bits. Do bear in mind, this hill is in the first 3 miles of my ride. I still have another 9 or so to go. Including a couple of hills.

The walk up was not fun. Between dragging my sorry butt up the hill, the backpack, the bike, the coughing fit which evolved into a constant wheeze along with the coughs, and the incline, I wasn't happy. And I was dreadfully late. Of course, if you know Trinity Pass, you'll also know it's not the most cell friendly. So I couldn't even call a co-worker to rescue me until I'd walked all the way to High Ridge Road and down a ways.

Might as well have used a nutmeg grinder on my lungs. Would have been more pleasant. 
After what seemed like an eternity, I got to the flat stretch that leads to High Ridge, re-mounted, and continued to ride. But I noticed that anytime I had to breathe with any force, the coughing returned. Violently. I was hocking up loogies like a frat boy dared to hit a tree across a field on a bored, drunken Saturday night.

I was really hating myself for riding into work.

I put in a few miles, and then as I was heading into the last incline before the downhill ride and Frogger moves to the office, the coughing started again. And it was ripping up my lungs. Yes, it was sunny. Yes, I was warm in body. But the wind was frigid and strong and hitting me in the face. My lungs were burning, and not in a good, "I'm a bad-ass cyclist" kind of way. More like a, "Oh, dear lord, is this your way of telling me that I've come down with my daughter's miserable chest cold and this ride has accelerated it into pneumonia?" I made it half-way up the slope and I had to get off. I had to get the backpack off because I couldn't open my chest up enough to breath.

I called in to work to see if one of my co-workers could pick me up, only a mile or two away. I felt like a dork. But what could you do? Knowing I had a dangerous couple of intersections ahead, including a quick, high-speed 3-lane shift from the far right to the far left amidst a major fare-way merge, I didn't want to risk a coughing fit that would prevent me from paying attention. I called every extension. No one was picking up. I called incessantly for almost 10 minutes. Finally, my CFO picked up. He told me everyone had disappeared, but the CEO, whose car he'd have to use, but he was on the phone. So I waited. And waited. And waited. By now, my lips were cracking, and I was so miserable that I didn't care if I got sandwiched between delivery trucks headed downtown and soccer moms en route from dropping kids off to their spa day appointments. Rica-squishing be damned, if I was meant to die today, it would be on two wheels and not standing like an idiot on the side of the road. I called the CFO, told him not to bother and I'd see him in a few.

I remounted and went as fast as I could. It was a miracle - my lane-shifts were traffic-free! I floated into the parking garage at the office and carried the bike cyclocross

This ride sucked. It flat out sucked.

I am reminded of the sage advice of Andrew Reischer who told me never to ride when it's below 30 degrees. And he advised me to take wind-chill into account.

Dear Andrew,
You are wiser beyond your comprehension. Ne'er shall I under appreciate your advice again and try and bad-ass my way through a ride.
All hail Andrew.

Needless to say, me thinks I'll have to ease into my usual commute with a bit more patience and reality. I'll drive a little further into town and then add the miles back on once my cycling legs, lungs and back are feeling better.

Of course, my commute is very different from my fun riding. Looking forward to taking my Madone out for a (backpack free) long ride one of these days soon...