My 2014 Race Schedule


I'm a member of Team (plus I thought this was funny) :-)

I’m a member of Team (plus I thought this was funny) 🙂

As much as I have been enjoying my extended off-season, I’m getting physically and mentally restless. Luckily I have been able to stay active through yoga and my bike on the trainer. And thankfully I just got cleared to run and also to return to strength training so my activity levels can soon “normal” swim, bike, run.

For the past couple of weeks I have been putting together my “Yearly Training Plan” or YTP (also known as an annual training plan or ATP). For the past couple of years I have been guided by an excellent coach who transformed me into the athlete I am today (well, not quite the broken down athlete at the moment, but the one that set PR after PR over the past couple of seasons). This year I have decided to coach myself, which could end up being the best decision or the worst decision on the planet. Only time will tell…

Speadsheets galore!

Speadsheets galore!

In order to construct my YTP I needed to decide what races I planned on racing in 2014. It was a tough decision to make. A lot of races have been opening up for registration and I see on Facebook and Twitter what races people are signing up for in 2014. I’m an impulse race register. If I see a friend doing a race then I automatically want to do the race too. It’s kind of a problem, especially since I pledged to myself to only race the small, local races this season in order to focus on healing my body, getting faster and stronger, and growing my own coaching business.


I was debating on signing up for a Half-Ironman this coming summer. It’s my favorite distance and when Ironman was advertising the price of $199 for Timberman 70.3 in New Hampshire I got suckered in. I opened up my wallet and took out my darn credit card. So much for self-control…

So without further ado, here is my tentative 2014 race season:

4/5/14 – Race the Runways Half-Marathon

5/3/14 – PolarBear Sprint Tri

6/8/14 – Pirate Sprint Tri

7/??/14 – Norway Sprint Tri

8/17/14 – Timberman 70.3

10/19/14 – BayState Marathon (maybe)

Those are the major races that I plan on racing in 2014 with Timberman being my big “A” race. I would absolutely love to qualify for Worlds (most likely a roll-down slot), but my chances are extremely slim. I checked last year’s results and there was over 100 women in the 25-29AG with the winner going close to 5:00. Speedy, speedy women!

I will probably register for Beach to Beacon again this year and sprinkle in some 5ks here and there. I may or may not run BayState in October. It will depend how my run fitness is going (and if it comes back)! I want to focus on quality versus quantity in 2014. Of course, everything is always subject to change.

What races are you signing up or have signed up for in 2014?

~ Happy Training!

An Unhappy Pelvis


My pelvis is an unhappy camper. She’s always been a wee bit of a crooked fellow, but over the years she has usually just stayed mute. However, since 2011 she’s been making a bit of a racket. And she has taken no mercy this Fall!

I’ve recently been doing a lot of research about hip injuries and fascia tissue. A friend shared a really great article last week about fascia tissue on Facebook. Check it out here if you haven’t read it yet. I found one point very interesting: old accidents that we think have healed can reek havoc later in life. A couple of years ago I saw a sports chiropractor about a nagging shoulder injury and he mentioned it was due to an old injury. I pondered for a while what that accident was that could have caused that injury.

It took me awhile, but then I remembered my old horseback riding accident that I had when I was 12 years old (actually I don’t remember much of it…). I got bucked off a horse and fell on my right side, hitting my head so hard that I knocked myself out, had a seizure, and ended up in the hospital with a contusion to the brain. It was great fun. Side note: WEAR A HELMET!

Even though my accident happened well over 14 years ago, I still have lingering issues. But, I think the main culprit to my hip issues is actually the severe frostbite I got on my right big toe in January 2011. I was lucky that my tissue was able to return to “normal” and the doctors didn’t cut it off. And of course, me being the idiot that I am some days, I tried doing too much on a damaged toe. Due to the fact that my toe was so swollen and the nerves were not functioning for several months, I walked very funny, which obviously led to a major gait change. I didn’t think much of it at the time, I just wanted to resume normal training again and I succeed to train for multiple races, including my first half-ironman. Towards the end of my half-ironman training, I was getting a lot of piriformis pain. A friend suggested that I see my current chiropractor. Boy am I happy that I did!

So, in a nutshell, my pelvis issues are due to a couple of old injuries that just don’t want to heal. My pelvis has a tendency to get twisted, thus causing a whole host of other injuries linked to the hip. Plantar fasciitis? check! IT-Band issues? check! Piriformis syndrome? Check!

Currently, my right adductors and hamstrings are so tight that they are pulling my pubic symphysis apart. Major ouch! The problem lies in the fascia tissue and not the actual muscles. Recent science is beginning to realize that most injuries are actually fascia-related versus muscular or tendon-related.

An example of pubis symphysis seperation - clearly an extreme case (Source)

An example of pubis symphysis seperation – clearly an extreme case (Source)

Unfortunately, no matter how much I foam-roll or roll on a lacrosse ball, the fascia tissue will not release. I had 90 minute massage a couple of weeks ago focusing on my right hip region… all without the use of massage oil… Let’s just say I could have used a rag soaked in whiskey…

I’ve been doing a lot of yoga lately, which has helped a bit. I mostly use it as my current strength training regime, since I can’t strength train or run currently. I was cleared last week to ride my bike finally!

Hello bike trainer!

Hello bike trainer!

My latest pelvis issue is nothing short of frustrating. I hate not being able to do the things that I love. However, I think this injury has really confirmed my decision that this coming race season will be a light race season so I can focus on getting my hip healthy.

Do you have any nagging injuries?

~ Happy Training!

Race Report – Ironman Lake Placid – Part II

If you missed part I of my race report then click HERE so you can read about my pre-race and swim!

The Bike

During the final lap of the swim it had started to rain a bit. Not crazy downpour rain, but enough to wet the roads. As I ran through transition a volunteer had my bike ready to go for me. I grabbed Azul from the volunteer and ran to the bike out. The mount line was a bit scary. It’s very narrow and there were a lot of people. I was nervous that I was going to run into someone or someone was going to run into me, but luckily everything was fine. The first half mile of the course is narrow with multiple sharp turns and steep hills to navigate before embarking on the actual 112 mile journey. Soon enough I found myself riding by the horse show grounds about a mile from town. It is around here that you begin climbing out of Lake Placid.

My goal for the first loop was to take it stupid-easy. The climb out of the town of Lake Placid is no joke. Once you think you get to the top and begin the descend down to Keene, you hit rollers and climb some more. The bike route was quite congested because everyone and their mother was on the bike by now! Everyone was in everyone else’s drafting zone, but how could you not be! I was getting passed on the right by impatient men. I took my time spinning up the hills. I absolutely did not want to be stupid and go out too hard and blow up later on the second lap like a lot of people tend to do.

Finally I made it to the top of the hills and began the crazy 10k descend into Keene. The roads were wet from the shower and the road conditions themself were not that great on this section of the road. I stayed to the right, sat up, and rode my damn brakes down the hills! Large men barreled by me going about mach 10 in aero. Go for it dude! But, I prefer my skin on my body if you ask me. I coasted down the hills hitting in the 30 mph and when I could I would pedal to push myself over the little rollers in the middle of the descend.

Next thing I know, I’m in Keene and making the sharp left turn towards Jay. This is the flat-ish section with nice wide shoulders. I made sure to push it here to make up for time because I knew the slow part was yet to come on the backside of the course. I stayed aero and did a lot of eating and drinking during this section. I hit the out-and-back to Ausable Forks. The road was super crowded. I passed a lot of people and was passed by a lot of people. I swear for every women in the race there had to be at least 15 men! I saw a couple of TriMoxie athletes zoom by in the other direction looking strong!

After the out-and-back section to Ausable Forks you take a sharp right up Route 86 to begin the climb into Wilmington. This is the real meat and bones of the course. As soon as you make the turn you begin a long climb. I believe it’s a cat 4 climb, but I could be wrong. This is actually my favorite climb of the whole course. I know, I’m weird. A lot of the local people who live on the route were out and cheering us on. One guy was sitting on his ATV with a cooler and sign that said “free beer.” It made me giggle.

After we climb into Wilmington and could see Whiteface Mountain in the distance we make a right-hand turn onto Hazelton Road for a 2 mile out-and-back. I made a pit-stop at this aid station to pee. As soon as I dismounted my bike and handed it to a volunteer they asked me what I needed. Just the bathroom I said. In and out and back on my bike. I looked down at one point to take a sip from my aero bottle and a volunteer had stuck a purple smiley face sticker on my bottle. It made me smile! 🙂

I reached the 4-way intersection and made the left-hand turn to begin the long climb back into town. This is the slow section of the course. Everyone’s split for the second half of the course is much, much slower than the first since you have to climb a couple thousand feet (okay, maybe not that much…) back into Lake Placid. I took my time. The wind had picked up, but I made sure to keep spinning and stay patient. That’s all you really can do. I passed our hotel on the way. Looked at it and kept going. As hard as this section of the course is, it is absolutely stunning in scenery. Lots of river and waterfall views with Whiteface mountain looming in the background.

After a long while of climbing I passed Riverside Road and knew the famous Bears were coming shortly! Almost done with the first loop! I climbed Mama Papa and Baby Papa and approached Papa Bear. People were lined up cheering you on! It was seriously like it was right out of the Tour de France. There was a guy in a bright pink speedo jumping around and with another guy holding a sign saying “smile if you wet yourself.” As I crested the hill I heard people yelling my name! I saw Pattie and Pam, friends from camp last year and TriMoxie coach Ange! I was pumped! As I made the turn by the golf course a guy rode by me saying I had quite the fan-base. Why yes sir, I do enjoy travelling with my entourage! Ha! 🙂

Top of Papa Bear (Photo Credit: Jodi Turner)

Top of Papa Bear (crooked helmet and all) (Photo Credit: Jodi Turner)

I made my way through town and stopped quickly at special needs to grab new bottles and nutrition. I forgot to put on chamois butter, which I paid for at about mile 100. The energy in town was unreal. People were screaming and cheering like we were all rock stars. I couldn’t help but smile! Just like that I was out-of-town and climbing out of Placid again. I could begin to feel the fatigue build in my legs knowing I had another 56 miles to go. Half way at least. The wind had picked up a bit. To stay focused and keep both my power and heart rate from spiking I began counting to 10 over and over again on the climbs. It helped. My power and heart rate stayed low and I felt good and strong. I began the crazy descend into Keene again this time more confident. The roads were dry and less crowded. I definitely let Azul fly more this time topping out in the low 40s before riding my brakes. The flat sections of Jay were uneventful. The second time around on the out-and-back to Ausable Forks was boring. At least it has pretty views again. I ate and drank a lot. Pissed again at an aid station.

I was playing cat and mouse with quite a few men at this point and occasionally we would chat. At one point a guy told me to go and he wasn’t afraid to be “chicked.” I noticed a lot of people on the side of the roads with flats. One guy had a broken derauiller. That sucks! Finally I hit mile 100. My crotch was killing me at this point. I couldn’t wait to get off my bike! I ran into another TriMoxie athlete Leigh around this time and we chatted a bit. She actually lives next door to my cousin. I passed and was soon climbing the bears again. Fewer people this time cheering and Papa Bear seemed to have gotten a bit bigger this time around.

Finally I rode through town again and made my way to the transition area. YES! I could get off my bike. I gave Azul to a volunteer and began running to the changing tent. A volunteer asked me if I wanted to take me shoes off. No. I’ll run with them on. A woman yelled at me to take my helmet off. Okay, but I’m pretty sure I’m not going to run a marathon with my space helmet on!

Bike: 7:11:48 (15.56 mph)

The Run

I surprisingly felt awesome coming off the bike. I was really worried prior to the race how I would feel off the bike. I knew my major limiter for the race was going to be my knee. It wasn’t going to be a question of “if“, but “when” my knee was going to give out. My knee was a bit sore during the bike portion of the race and would sometimes shoot a sharp pain up to my hip, but I generally ignored it on the bike. I changed in the women’s changing tent and made sure to grab my salt sticks this time. I forgot them on the bike and felt a bit foggy at the end. Perhaps it was from being in the same or similar position for 7+ hours!

I put my shoes on and headed out for a short 26.2 miles! My legs felt great! I kept the pace easy because I knew it was going to be a long day. I chewed on a salt stick for a bit. I don’t advise that to anyone, but I felt I needed one that badly. I ran through the mile one aid station and saw my coach and her daughter! She said I looked good. I felt good! I ran through the second water station at the horse show grounds and soon began my descend and turn onto Riverside Road. I hit the 3 mile mark quite fast. My pace was good. I kept focusing on moving forward. Mentally I was in great shape. I just kept counting the miles. 4 miles down. 5 miles down. Holy cow, this thing is going by quicker than I thought! I would run to each aid station and then walked through each one getting hydration and nutrition in at each one. I would stop and piss at a couple of the aid stations.

Around mile 5 or 6 my glutes were on fire! I guess I used them to during the bike leg to climb! My pace was slowing a bit, but I still was moving way faster than I had predicted. I walked the giant hill back up towards the horse show grounds and headed back into town. The crowds were picking up and the energy was insane. I could hit Mark Reilly announcing people as they crossed the finish line. I walked the big steep hill into town. There was a guy holding a sign saying “how does your taint feel?” I looked at him and said not good. We both laughed. I jogged through town to the out-and-back by Mirror Lake. I crossed the half-way mark and began my second loop. I still felt good.

Around mile 14 my knee started hurting. It also marked the furthest that I have EVER run in my life. This was all new territory for me. I began a run/walk method. I was hoping to run the flats and downhills and then walk the uphills. Unfortunately, I couldn’t run the big downhill over the bridge to Riverside Road. My quad was on fire and my knee did not like it. So I walked and then began jogging at the bottom. The walk/jog method worked until mile 18. At mile 18 my knee was done. I have a high pain tolerance and generally can and have run through the pain. However, at mile 18 it was a different pain. It was sharp and almost a weakness feeling, like my knee was going to give-out feeling and I was going to crumble to the floor. I began walking. I was content with this. I knew it was going to happen, but I didn’t know when. I was impressed that my knee lasted until mile 18. I was hoping for mile 20, but I’ll take 18! I could have probably have pushed through it if I really, really wanted to, but I wanted to be smart. I wasn’t going for a specific time for this race. I know that I want to be in this sport for the long-haul and I didn’t want to do permanent damage to my body.

The walk wasn’t bad. A lot of people at this point were walking. What did suck for me, was that every fiber of my body, except my knee of course, wanted to run. I probably averaged between a 14-15 minute mile moving pace. I eventually made it into town where the crowds were even larger. It was starting to get dark and I vowed that I would not finish with a glow stick in hand. I tried running a bit through town but every time I tried I would wince in pain from my knee. Finally I made it to the last turn-around and headed for my last mile through town. People were screaming my name and encouraging me to run. With about three-quarters of a mile left, I decided to suck it up and run. The pain in my knee made me wince and cry at times, but I sucked it up and ran.

The Finish

Honestly, it’s challenging to come up with words to describe my emotions as I approached the finish line. Let me start by setting up the scene for you. Lake Placid has one of the best finish lines out of all the Ironman races. You finish on the Olympic oval where they did the speed skating races during the winter olympics. The crowds of spectators and volunteers are amazing. They are lined up several people deep, all screaming your name and cheering you on. The music is blaring and you can hear Mike Reilly, the voice of Ironman, yelling “YOU ARE AN IRONMAN” as people cross the finish line. Mary and another TriMoxie athlete and soon-to-be husband of another TriMoxie athlete both told me to step back and remember the finish of your first Ironman. It’s tough to do.


 As soon as I made the turn onto the Olympic oval I knew I was almost there. A volunteer told me I was there. I was an Ironman. It hit me like a ton of bricks. People were yelling my name and cheering me on. They told me I was an Ironman. I started to choke up. I smiled. I told myself not to cry. I was in excruciating pain from my knee but I kept moving forward. I rounded the last bend and could see people crossing the line. One man in front of me did the Blazeman roll and the crowd went wild. I looked behind me to see if anyone was coming. I wanted to cross that line alone. I wanted that moment to myself. Ten feet from the line I threw my arms in the arm. I was crying. I was smiling. I honestly didn’t know what was happening. I was in a daze. I couldn’t believe that I just swam, biked, and ran 140.6 miles through the breathtaking Adirondack Mountains. Mike Reilly said those magic little words that I have been waiting to hear for the past 7 months… YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!

Two volunteers quickly grabbed me. They offered to take my timing chip, asked me how I was and what I wanted. They gave me my medal. I wanted food. I was hungry. They sat me down and got me pizza and fruit. They asked me if I wanted chocolate milk. I said “no” and secretly giggled thinking about what Vinnie Tortorich would have said about that. I sat around for a bit and then got my finisher picture taken and the wandered around a bit to find Mary and Jordan. Everyone around me kept saying “congratulations.” It.was.awesome.


Run: 5:31:54 (12:40/mile)

Total: 14:13:33 (43/68 AG; 1674/2536 OA)

 ~ Happy Training!

First Ride of the Season!

Yesterday, Azul and I embarked on our first outside ride of 2013! I decided to drive out to Cape Elizabeth and ride out there instead of my house because the roads are much wider and cleaner than the little country roads out in the boonies where I live. I bundled up in all my winter riding clothes including my booties and headed up for Prout’s Neck. The high was right around the mid-40s with a lovely headwind of 21 mph. I was supposed to ride 1:50, but ended up cutting it short at 1:30 due to the fact my feet were getting cold (I later finished the day off with a 20 min spin on the trainer). Since I had severe frostbite 2 years old on my foot I have to be careful with my feet to ensure I get to keep all 10 little piggies I currently have. Last thing I need is for one of them to get lost at the market and become bacon…

Azul is ready for her first ride of 2013!

Azul is ready for her first ride of 2013!

I was surprisingly confident hoping on my bike and pedaling away into the sunset! Ha! I didn’t expect much from my first outside ride. I just wanted to get my bearings back before I start concentrating on power-specific workouts outside. I spent most of the time riding avoiding potholes and sandy shoulders. Actually the roads out in the area weren’t bad. However, the roads by my house right now are a death trap. Please send the street sweeper out soon!

A view looking across to Scarborough Beach from Prout's Neck

A view looking across to Scarborough Beach from Prout’s Neck

My ride was rather uneventful. Hills were tough. My heart rate was higher than it should be. My cadence was lower than average. There was lots of other cyclists out there. My transition run sucked. My legs wouldn’t turn over. They felt like lead. But gosh darn it, it felt great to be outside! Spring is here! 🙂

My ride by the numbers:


Temperature: 46 degrees

Average wind speed: 21 mph

Total miles: 22.22 miles

Average cadence: 76 rpm (suckerfest!)

Power VI: 1.21 (total embarrassment! My goal this year is to work on my perfect VI. Looks like I have a lot of work to do.)

Number of snot rockets: 27

Number of loogies spit: 12

Number of cyclists seen out on the road: 37

Number of cyclist seen out on the road without a helmet: 6 (and boy did I want to slap them across the face for that! Wear your helmet!!)

~ Happy Training!

Cycling Etiquette and Road Rules: Be Prepared!

May is National Bike Month! So go outside and ride your bike!

If you live anywhere in the Northeast region of the country then bike season is finally here (well, it was here a while ago thanks to a mild winter)! As the weather warms and the race season begins more and more people are starting to put the trainers away and hitting the roads and thus I think it’s a good time to remind both cyclists and motorists of proper cycling etiquette and the rules of the road!

Proper Cycling Etiquette

1. Safety is your number one priority!

2. Behave predictably. If your riding in a group this is very important. Members of your group need o “know” your next move so don’t verge off to the side, speed up or down dramatically, or slam on your brakes. Motorists also need to “predict” your moves too so this also applies riding solo.

3. Stay in control! When riding with a group, never ride in “aero” position. This is why most group rides do not allow tri bikes. Some groups do, so it is best to ask before just showing up, but stay out of aero unless you have the space and permission to do so.

4. Communication is key, especially when riding with a group! If you see a large pothole or something potentially dangerous in the road, let your fellow cyclists know by pointing it out and/or saying something.

5. When riding in a paceline or a peleton avoid overlapping the front wheel of your bike with the rear wheel of the rider in front of you. Try riding behind that person’s wheel at a distance your comfortable with.

Rules of the Road

The average cyclist weighs usually between 150-250 pounds. The average vehicle on the road weighs 2,500+ pounds. Cyclist vs. car? You do the math! It is very important to follow the rules of the road. A cyclist on the road has the same rules as a vehicle on the road. Know the driving laws of your state.

1. Red means stop! Don’t ride your bike through a stop sign or light. Obey the laws.

2. Ride with traffic! I’ve seen so many people ride against traffic, but that is wrong! (When running or walking on the road you go against traffic)

3. Cyclists may use full lanes (in most states)! However, it is best not to use the full lane unless you really have to. It is best to ride close to the shoulder of the road to allow vehicles to pass you. For drivers, please be aware that cyclists can use the full lane! Do not get mad at us and try to pass us while honking and giving us the finger! It makes you look like an idiot! That cyclist that you almost hit might mean nothing to you, but to someone that person is everything!

4. Be visible! Don’t ride in a driver’s blind spot, which is just to the left of the rear wheel. Wear lights and bright clothing if you ride in the dark.

5. Use hand signals! Let vehicles know if you are taking a left or a right turn. Unfortunately, some drivers don’t understand this even though it’s commonsense. Two weeks ago I was riding on the yellow line with my left arm out just about to make a left hand turn when a jeep decided to pass me on the left!

6. For drivers, put down your cell phones and pay attention to what your doing — DRIVING! Unfortunately too many drivers are distracted and that can cause accidents. Be smart!

7. For drivers, please down yell, honk, or throw things at cyclists as you drive by them! It can distract us and scare us since we’re not expecting it. I’ve had my fair share of drivers honk or make cat calls at me. It’s not cool and again it makes you look dumb.

7. There are bad drivers out there on the road. It’s just a fact of life. When someone cuts you off or almost hits you on your bike, it’s really not a great idea to egg them on by giving them the finger, chasing them down, or throwing water bottles at them. I know it’s super hard not too. I’m guilty of all of the above. Sometimes it’s just best to let it go and not try to anger the driver even more.

Other very important things!

1. WEAR A HELMET! This one always gets me going. I’ve seen so many people without helmets, especially people who ride their bikes around the city of Portland. Helmets can save lives! When I was 12 years old I had a really bad horseback riding accident. I honestly don’t remember what exactly happened, but I fell off my friend’s horse while mounting her. I woke up to being backboarded by paramedics. I had absolutely no idea what just happened and I was very combative to the paramedics. I can only imagine what it must have looked like to see an 80 pound 12 year old girl take swings at the town’s paramedics! It turned out that I had fallen, hit my head, knocked myself unconscious, had a major seizure, and in turn a ride in the ambulance to the ER. I had a contusion to my brain, which luckily stopped bleeding relatively quickly. The Pediatric ER doctor told me point blank that if I had not been wearing my helmet I would have been dead at 12 years old! The moral of my story… wear your damn helmet! Sure, it might not be “cool,” but I’m pretty sure that your body in a coffin isn’t cool either! (Side note: Make sure the helmet fits properly and that you can only fit about two fingers between your chin and strap)

2. Wear ID! If you’ve been a cyclist for awhile now, you at least know someone or perhaps even yourself have been involved in a cycling accident. It is important to carry ID with you at all times because if you can’t talk for yourself then your ID can. ID’s serve a multitude of purposes. The first is to let people know who you are and who your emergency contact(s) is! It can also let the EMTs and other medical professionals know if you have any medical conditions (i.e. diabetes, Heart Disease, etc.) or if you have any drug allergies that they need to be aware of to successfully treat you. On most IDs you can also indicate if your an organ donor or your blood type too! I’ve been wearing a RoadID for the pass two years when ever I’m outside doing any of my workouts. I HIGHLY SUGGEST that you purchase one, not only for your piece of mine but for your loved ones too! I recently just purchased a new wrist ID slim for $15.99. I have provided a link below to purchase one. Also, spread the word about road IDs, especially to EMTs, paramedics, firefighters, etc. so they know what they are and to look for them on people!

3. Always pump your tires before riding! I hang out at the bike shop a lot. So many people come in with flat tires. We always ask them if they pump their tires up before every ride. The answer is almost always no. That is your problem. If your tires do not have enough air in them then you can pinch the tube and get a flat. Buy a tire pump and pump your tires before every ride. I suggest buying the most expensive (but within reason) tire pump because it will be the best quality and last longer. When I first purchased my pump I bought the $35 pump because I thought paying for a $70 pump was ridiculous! Instant regret! The $35 pump was inefficient and broke within a year. My more expensive pump has worked flawlessly for the past two years. That’s just my advice and opinion.

4. Carry a flat kit and know how to change a flat! Most local bike shops offer flat repair and tire changing clinics. Go to one and learn how to change a flat! It’s never fun being stuck on the side of the road with a flat tire, not knowing how to change a flat or not having the tools, and having no cell phone reception!

5. Have your bike tuned by a professional mechanic at least once a year (or more if put a lot of miles on in a year).

6. Bring your cell phone! You never know if you might need it. You can program your “in case of emergency” (ICE) numbers into your phone also, but be aware, if you ever get hit by a car, your phone could be smashed and thus it’s best to have another form of ID attached to your body! Also, if you think it might rain during your ride, put it in a plastic sandwich bag.

7. Bring plenty of water, sports drinks and/or nutrition! Riding your bike is exercise and for most of us a hard workout! Be prepared with plenty of substance to get you through your ride without bonking.

Happy Training!