Sunday, October 1, 2006

Photos from

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Every sponsor, rider, and optimistic spectator at the City Hall plaza, Boston.
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Banner for my triathlon team sponsor, Wheelworks.
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One cyclist expressing a common sentiment at the start of the ride.

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Just towards the river from Beacon Hill, cyclists "own" Storrow Drive.
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Riders in mass...
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Riders waving hello saying "it's great to have the road to myself!"
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including the littlest rider. Ride one, ride all!

Bike Day in Boston

I woke up to skies threatening to rain and that bittersweet sadness that my 'race' planned for the day would be cancelled. Naturally I wanted to ride before it got wet and messy outdoors, so I went to downtown Boston to see the riders take off for their 10, 20, or 40 mile jaunts through the city. I had almost signed up for the event myself, but then decided to just photograph and ride along the part of the route that would be the most scenic: the Esplanade and Storrow Drive.

As I waved from a bridge, hundreds of passing cyclists waved back. I saw smiles and hear hooting calls of glee from the car-free 3-laned road below. It was a magnificent sight! And as the last riders passed, I knew that those rare moments of blissful, bike-friendly roads would come to an end.

I rode along the closed route for the last mile, savoring the peace and tranquility, calling out *and* being heard by the one other rider out enjoying the silence with me. "See you on this ride next year!" I said before getting off of the road, back on to the bike-path beside it, where bikes "belong" and then I heard it...whoosh...and then another whoosh. Cars were coming back on to the road that had been closed. The city was going back to it's normal, bike-oblivious, car-centric self. But it was ours, the cyclists, sharing it so well during that hour of the ride -- and it made me well up with tears to think that it'd be another year before Storrow Drive would hear only the sound of freewheel hubs again.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Getting and giving the boot(camp)

Fitness training is by its very nature a trendy business. People pay trainers to help them "look good" although some will also say that the de-stressing benefit of training is also worth every penny, but let's face it: we want training to make us into "new hotness"

Well, I'm noticing that the latest trend in fitness seems to be based on the grunting soldier-in-training style of workout known as a bootcamp. Just as with the Marines, "bootcamp recruits" are put through the rigors of 4-12 week programs emphasizing strength, endurance, and speed. (What about flexibility, you ask? Not so much...afterall, who needs flexibility to run in combat boots...according to most bootcamper leaders, that yoga-stuff is for girly men.) Bootcamp trainees at Boston's Ultimate Bootcamp may not learn to do full-on bodyweight pullups in just 4 weeks, but they do learn to rise and shine at 0500 hours. Meeting at the running path along the river, the local HS track, or the nearest jungle-gym playground, similar early morning bootcamp groups are popping up everywhere. And there's usually not a celebrity-style trainer dressed in camoflage to lead the group. Nike tights and New Balance shoes are much more de rigeur. The typical bootcamp instructor, unlike in the armed forces formal bootcamps, has no megaphone, no pointy brimmed hat, and no combat boots. You may not even get called "maggot". So what are you paying them to do?

More on that next time...

Monday, January 16, 2006

First posting

Welcome to my own little corner of the blogsphere where thoughts on training and tidbits on the fitness lifestyle can gather dust or shine brightly. That's the thing with blogs and bodies: you either use them or they become useless altogether. I have great plans to use both, although my blog less frequently than my body. Two links in the sidebar will direct you to more info about my training and eating. That's where you'll see the most up-to-date info about what I'm doing, how I'm feeling. The blog will just glean out some commentary and daydreaming along the way as I progress though the 2006 training and racing season. Stay tuned and enjoy the ride!