Wednesday, August 6, 2014

20 Miles and still slow....

I did a 20 miler today early this morning and it was glorious. I am trying to pick up the pace though because 8.8 MPH is slow mo fo sure. At that rate I will finish the ride in 4 hours. It's a community ride and not a race, but my concern for this is that we start at 8 am and it seems I will finish at 12 noon. The trouble with this is that the beer garden closes at noon. I need to find a way to pick up the pace between now and then so I can make it to the beer garden in time for a luscious frothing iced coldie.

Today I rode from my house in North Park down to Seaport Village, over to Harbor Island, Through Point Loma and back up to Little Italy. Its so nice to ride the bay in the morning when barely any people are there and the breeze is light. As I approached the airport bridge a man swooped in from behind and said "good morning Mandi" I replied with "oh my goodness I didn't even know that was you" He rode past me very fast and I thought it was my neighbor Omar. I thought to myself "this would be really weird if it was Omar because I have never seen him ride anywhere, ever. I have seen him write a ton of food reviews and if I were to have seen him at the local breakfast spot or lunch eatery, it would have made more sense. Seeing him on a bike trail at 8 am just is a little weird." Minutes after this brain trail, he rode past me again, the other direction and after looking at him in the face I realized this was not Omar my neighbor. It was just a stranger on a bike. How did he know my name? this time when he rode past he said "Hi again darlin'" and he rode past me really fast. I was really creeped out. Then I realized, my name is on the back of my bike. My husband's cousin Sam bought me a "MANDI" liscene plate for Christmas last year. It was very nice, but, now that creepy old men are saying "Mornin' Mandi" and "hey darlin" I may have to take it off to protect my bike riding anonymity. I am sure it was just a nice morning gesture, visualizing that he is just a nice random bike riding dude that just delves out well wishes by the dozens to other morning riders. This is what I am telling myself anyway.
Despite the creepy greeting from the Non Omar, the ride was pretty easy. I ended my ride with brunch in little italy. Instead of riding the final 5 miles home all up hill, I called an UBER SUV who picked me up in 5 minutes flat and loaded my bike into his suburban. Why hadn't I thought of this before? In the past when I ride longer than the training ride and need to get home I hop on the #2 or #6 bus. UBER SUV, way to be.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Mission Bay Bike Path

Today is an excellent day to ride the Mission Bay Bike Path. I found so many new things about it I never knew before. First, I started at DeAnza Cove entrance. The parking lot is free and tons of open spaces. It's easy to get to off Claremont Drive exit off the 5. The trail takes you through the DeAnza Cove trailer park which was actually quite peaceful. I have such a mental block about trailer parks which isn't fair because we live in San Diego and these things cost at least $200K which is a mansion where I am from. They may be onto something. Get something portable and live on the bay. Seems like an open idea I had never explored. Anyway, the trailer owners were nice as I sped through their front yards on my bike. I weaved in and out until I got to the Mike Gotch Bridge which opened in 2008. It's the bridge that goes over Rose Canyon that connects East Mission Bay to West Mission Bay. This dumps you out into Campland By the Bay on the other side of Crown Point. Easy, flat ride from DeAnza Cove to DRAFT is 8.5 miles. Draft is a new eatery attached to Wavehouse that sits right on mission beach. Killer views, great food. I had the pickled vegetables and green salad. Very good portions and priced right for a mid ride lunch. The huge LED screen in the middle splits into 13 little screens. Much to my delight, this is a Ohio State bar as well. Oh what football fun can be had here.  On the way back I think I found a more direct route because I only went 5 miles and ended up back at my car ni record time. In total 13.5 miles for my first time back on the bike. I am sore and need to explore better bike short protection. OUCH. Also, although I wore sunscreen, I have a horrible farmer's tan which will not fare well for my strapless dress I want to wear to date night tonight. Something else I learned is that I am slow as molasses since the last time I went riding. Average speed was 8.72 MPH, OUCH. I have been way faster in the past so unless I want to finish Bike The Bay in just under 5 humors, I need to pick up the pace for sure. A good first training ride down. Next step, protective and bike gear...

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Day 1 Re-Train Bike Ride

I've been super sick this past week with some weird summer cold. It's delayed my Bike the Bay training by a week but I am ready to hop on it today. Today's venture is the Mission Bay bike path. Easy peezy 12 mile flat loop along the country's largest Aquatic Park--Mission Bay.   I have a hard stop at work today at 2 pm so I can do my training ride and get back out there. Man, I remember the days where I would be riding all day every day and now there can be months without me being on my bike. Must-get-back-to-bike-basics.

In other news, I discovered the grade of the hill for the Coronado bridge is only 4.73% and the total bridge is really only 2.1 miles. Next up on my training schedule is to find a couple hills in San Diego that are 5% grade or more and 1 mile or more for training. I used to ride every day up Broadway which is about 7% so if I can get back to where I was with that hill, I should be golden.

Wish me luck, more to report in a bit.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Did you know that people drive their cars into canals--by accident??

When I was a little girl I saw a Ripley's Believe it Or Not?! where they showed people in some ass backwards town in Holland driving into canals, literally. It's like they missed the "Canal in 1 mile" sign and the road ended so they just drove right into it???  Water pressure, not escaping the car, people drowning.. the memory of this episode was horrific.  It has been cemented into my mind that at any moment, the road could end, and you too could drive into a canal. Now, Ohio does not have many canals and Lake Erie is pretty stinkin' big. It would be very hard to drive into Lake Erie with all those "watercraft" signs and "Lakeshore" drive signs. Never-the-less I was petrified to be in a car over a bridge ever since. I would cry, sob, hyperventilate and create all sorts of dramatic panic moments. My family dreaded getting in a car with me where there was a body of water within 50 miles of our destination.  Fast forward to the year 2000 when I moved to San Diego. When I first saw that bridge the Coronado Bridge, I was petrified. It's skinny, and curvy, and high in the air. It goes straight over the bay and into the ocean. Check this thing out:
I've combed the intrawebs and found this to be one of the best bike over the bridge moments. It's too long to watch the whole thing, start at 3:5

Monday, July 21, 2014

Bike The Bay--30 miles, no probs!

My dear friends Sandy and Andy Hanshaw run an amazing ride in San Diego called Bike The Bay. Every year I volunteer and every year I don't ride. My usual volunteer hub is the beer garden. My beer wenches and I arrive at 6 am, set up the beer garden, ice it down, sell it and celebrate. The view is amazing cuz it's on the Embarcadero, right on the San Diego bay with the curious buildings just observing us from across the bay. We also stare straight at the Coronado bridge.

It's nice to welcome riders back after their 30 mile jaunt but after 7 years of volunteering, I am finally going to ride this one. I've turned over the beer garden reigns to my trusty gal pal Tansy Woods and am doing the ride. 30 miles, spanning 5 San Diego neighborhoods, all on the water. I've done this ride before NOT including the Coronado bridge which is appx 24 miiles. It's called the Bayshore Bikeway.   My husband and I will typically ride from the San Diego Convention Center, around the path, land in Coronado, have a beer and a meal at McP's which has a rad outdoor deck and live music most weekends. We then hop on the ferry with our bikes and circle back home. Adding on the Coronado bridge is going to be amazing. San Diego only closes the bridge down twice a year and this is one of them. The view from that bridge is astounding and it always reminds me of why I live in San Diego. The water, the boats, the city skyline, it brings me peace every time I ride over it. So, I am gonna ride it. I have not been on my bike consistently for quite some time so I have between now and August 24th to train for it. Wish me luck, here we go, back on the bike brigade.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Hail to Chicago. I recently went to Chicago for a trade show and client meetings. One full week in the windy city in the middle of spring was a sheer delight. The traffic was not a delight, therefore, I rented a bike. Much to my happiness it was Chicago Bike Week. Everyone was biking to work, so, I followed suit and marched down to the Bike and Roll, fetched  a bike and rode away. The streets are super bike-able and the drivers are really nice. My fav ride was from McCormick Place Convention Center, 28 minute on the Lakeshore Bike Way to the Gold Coast. Gorgeous ride, passing many museums and monuments. There are bike locks everywhere and it was super affordable. I highly recommend renting a bike in Chicago next time you were there, and guess what??? All those fools that took cabs everywhere spent more than I did in cab fare, got stuck in traffic and didn't burn off the booze from the networking events the night before. I burned 800 extra calories a day, had a great conversation piece and was raring to go for each appointment. Such an awesome experience.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Nature's Make Up-My Happy Place

My fella and I kibitzed about our "happy place" the other day. Mine involved starting at the top of Island Street in Golden Hill and riding as fast as I can down the hill, without stop signs, oncoming traffic or the danger of being "doored" by some unsuspecting car owner. It ended with me laying on my back on a patch of grass in the park. Well, today, he inspired me to make my happy place a reality--at least a part of it. I had 2 meetings today, 1 in Southpark and 1 downtown. So---before going to bed I did my morning duties so I would have time to ride to the meetings. First meeting, 9 am, Grant's Market. I connected with an old colleague and it was awesome. 12 minutes via bike from my house to the coffee shop. One hour meeting, quick change into my tennis shoes and headed for Island Street. Got to the top and cruised all the way down. Wind in my hair, only a few pigeons in the way, and all the cars behaved unusually well. It made me wonder, "What ever happened with that Island Street project?" A local reporter said he has an update for me from SanDag so I will email later today to see the scoop. Hit the bank, grabbed a bowl of fruit and cup of coffee at COFFEE ART on F and 6th. This place is cool. Free wireless for patrons. The bathrooms are big....big enough for me to do wonder woman change, quick spritz and get some emails done for a couple clients before my next meeting. "Right Now" by Van Halen is playing in the background and I totally forgot how inspiring this song is. Remember what a rad video this was? I got a bowl of berries here, and it's delicious. Peaches, berries, bananas, plain yogurt and honey----nummalicious. For a cup of coffee and a huge bowl of berries, free wireless and a big wonder woman change bathroom--$8.00---pretty kewl deal. Kewl as in Miley Cyrus speak. Try it out....www.sdcoffeeart.com

Something I learned over the last couple weeks is the power of Nature's Make Up. My helmet serves as a flat iron and the wind serves as glowey rouge. I blow dry my hair just enough so the top is dry, I keep the bottom wet. By the time I get to my destination and take my helmet off, the wind and helmet work as a flat iron. When I take the helmet off, the ends of my hair are flipped so it looks like I styled it. After I go to the bathroom for wonder woman change, wash hands, splash water on face and apply lip gloss--the wind has created a special light red glow to my cheeks--looks like make up--but it's nature's make up. Thank you bike ride bliss.....