DDOORN's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=DDOORN DDOORN's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community SparkPeople.com http://assets2.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/logo_spark.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/ What Goes Around... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5676047 A few years ago my neighbor was duly impressed by my health efforts and getting into bicycling. So he reclaimed what was once an interest of his in the past (cycling) and got back on the bike himself. Soon he was biking with his son and other friends and relatives. His forte is mountain biking while mine is road cycling, so our paths, despite being neighbors, haven't crossed too often. <BR> <BR> Over recent years I've noticed many folks coming around to his place talking bikes and bikes com... Sat, 19 Apr 2014 23:51:44 EST 3 Days, 3 Hour-Long Jogs http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5672643 These past few days have been such an amazing spring preview, with temps in the 70s, that I simply could not resist putting myself right out there and jogging to soak it all up before the hammer falls tonight dropping to 18 chilly degrees with snow yet one more time. <BR> <BR> But: Holy quads afire I've got a good aching soreness that comes from working different muscles. Each year I re-discover how differently one works muscles with running as opposed to my usual spin bikes and elliptical w... Tue, 15 Apr 2014 08:56:04 EST When I Grow Up... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5671813 I had such a wonderful jog yesterday in my favorite local park, Dorchester: <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/7/9/l796574783.jpg"> <BR> <BR> I maintained my jogging gait as I went up the ridge to jog along the top of the dam...the same angle as this photo was taken. This ridge is such a GLORIOUS place to be in the part as one is right on top of the dam which creates the lake you see on the one side and on the other side you see the valley of Whitney Point and its scho... Mon, 14 Apr 2014 08:45:31 EST Salty Upper Lip: Prepping for 5K http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5670801 We've been graced by stupendous spring-into-summer-like weather this weekend and EVERYBODY'S heading outdoors! Today I began in earnest to prepare for the Binghamton Bridge Run, my only 5K of the year...good timing since I am still taking the anti-coagulant and am staying off the bike. <BR> <BR> So I focus on jogging...or fast-walking...lol! <BR> <BR> One voice told myself before heading out to our Vestal Rail - Trail to jog 4 miles: first of the season, take it easy, it's okay if you need... Sat, 12 Apr 2014 22:56:31 EST Safety Not Guaranteed http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5659982 I just have to give this movie one of the most heart-felt shout outs and and jump up & downs I've had over a movie in a long, long time. I knew way back when it came out that this was going to be a special movie. Check out the reviews below and see the trailer on YouTube: <BR> <BR> <link>www.rottentomatoes.com/m/safety_not_<BR>guaranteed/ </link> <BR> <BR> <link>www.imdb.com/title/tt1862079/ </link> <BR> <BR> <link>www.youtube.com/watch?v=73jSnAs7mq8 </link> <BR> <BR> FINALLY o... Sun, 30 Mar 2014 11:31:46 EST The OTHER NSA: Pile With A Smile! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5659664 I've enjoyed getting back into the swing of things at Spinning Class this week along with some nice walk / jogs outside now that the temps are rounding the bend again and warming up some. <BR> <BR> Rather than naming these Non-Scale Victories as is often spoken about 'round these parts, I prefer to consider them Non-Scale Awarenesses (NSA)...not necessarily a whoop for joy but a smile of appreciation and a valuing the progress that I am making. Doubly so in that I appreciate the progress no... Sat, 29 Mar 2014 23:25:33 EST Working the Spark: The Pay-Offs Keep Rolling In! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5654959 Today started off with a bang when I hit my new low weight of the year...woo hoo! Only 17 pounds away from my goal of 200! <BR> <BR> I had already had a plan to clear the closet of all my old clothes that are really too big. I don't want ANYTHING around to make it easy to backslide! <BR> <BR> However little did I know what treasures I would find among the SMALLER clothes that I had forgotten I had outgrown! VERY nice stuff! And I'm re-kindling the fun and self-satisfaction of being able to ... Sun, 23 Mar 2014 23:14:02 EST Quiet Leadership http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5648643 Another member inspired my blog for today when she pondered the fact that others considered her to be a "leader" but she wasn't so comfortable thinking of herself in that way...it didn't seem to "fit" her perception of herself. Here were the thoughts I shared, plus a little "bonus"... <BR> <BR> "Leader" is one of those tricky words isn't it? Often we can think of a leader as a General Patton taking the bull by the horns and barking out orders. <BR> <BR> But I prefer to think of a leader as ... Sat, 15 Mar 2014 19:41:35 EST Another First! Thanks & Shout Out to Our SparkFamily! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5647559 Thank you everyone for all of your TREMENDOUS support which pushed one of my recent blogs ("A Change in Perspective: Preparing for Maintenance") toward achieving my very first Popular Blog Post award! <BR> <BR> It's not only a super day for this reason alone, but have notched down in another couple of ways that have me psyched as well: 1) I've crossed another big number by dropping below 220, which would be 100 pounds below where I started when joining SparkPeople in 2007 and 2) This led me ... Fri, 14 Mar 2014 08:55:03 EST First Day of Spring! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5645724 Who cares what the calendar sez? Who cares that we're gonna get DUMPED on with another half foot of snow tomorrow? <BR> <BR> Today was truly the first day of spring! 50+ degrees and sunshine / blue skies EVERYWHERE! A nice, teensy NSV was to decide instead of pulling my long-sleeved t-shirt down over my jeans I was going to tuck it in! I have forever pulled my shirts down, figuring somehow it hid the fat better? Silly me...! But hey, as I trim I figure I have less and less reason to be self-... Tue, 11 Mar 2014 22:02:22 EST Breathing In & Breathing Out... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5643134 Sending a big shout out of appreciation and thanks to everyone for your support on my last blog! Took you all "with" me on my latest medical journey which went very smoothly. <BR> <BR> The ablation was completed Thursday, bumping my HR back up to 55-60, however due to my heart still dropping beats it was going to be pacemaker time after all. I was relieved as I figured I'd only likely have to return within the near future to have it done. One twofer special coming right up! <BR> <BR> So Fri... Sat, 8 Mar 2014 20:17:15 EST Heart School http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5639336 I've had this absolutely weird, humorous preoccupation with this old "Far Side" cartoon ever since I knew another intervention was going to be necessary to correct my heart rhythm: <BR> <BR> <link>jerrytravis.blogspot.com/2011/11/tut<BR>ored.html </link> <BR> <BR> So here's how I've twisted that chuckle to "fit" my circumstances: "Hey Biff, I'm going off to the hospital to get my heart "schooled" so it beats right!" :-) <BR> <BR> I've been WAY pleased with my weight loss efforts lately.... Tue, 4 Mar 2014 09:26:49 EST A Change in Perspective: Preparing for Maintenance http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5636066 One of our members of "At Goal and Maintaining" SparkTeam recently expressed worries about relapse and "obsessing" over food. This got me thinking about some of the changes in my thinking since 2014 began. <BR> <BR> I once upon a teensy sliver of time reached my goal of 200 only a few years ago in 2010 and am clawing my way back to goal again (SHEESH but the pounds are getting stubborn, but I'm MORE stubborn!) but with a different attitude this time around that I think will pull me through t... Fri, 28 Feb 2014 12:04:29 EST Ablating We Will Go! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5633427 Well my "electrician" or more formally, electrophysiologist got right down to business and scheduled me for my cardiac ablation next week! I'm pleased to get going on this and am hopeful that I'll be putting this behind me so that I can hit the roads on my bike this year just like any other! <BR> <BR> The way that I understand the procedure is that he will be zapping (with a radiofrequency catheter up through the groin) the electrical current in my heart to see if it restores a proper rhythm... Tue, 25 Feb 2014 12:15:58 EST Nordic Swing Dance! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5631069 Sometimes a workout is just that: a WORK out! It just doesn't come easy and it just doesn't crank up those endorphins the way one would like. <BR> <BR> This morning was one of those mornings. The old upper body ST moves just weren't happening without a lotta OOF and there were no new increments of weight added...just the same-old, same-old. So after almost an hour of that I move on to Spinning Class for an hour. But again it just wasn't happening. I was going through the motions but none of... Sat, 22 Feb 2014 18:53:53 EST Finally: Down To New Weight Loss Low for 2014! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5629025 Beginning in January I've been on a zero-sugar, zero-grain approach and for the heckuvit I've been trying what some refer to as an intermittent fasting where I only eat from noon until 8-9 pm and leave myself food-free for around 16 hours. Keeping calories around 1400-1600 a day. <BR> <BR> During the first few weeks BAM! I dropped 20 pounds. I was thrilled, but I knew it wouldn't last...but but but...I've been almost totally flat for Feb. following the same approach that dropped all those i... Thu, 20 Feb 2014 09:23:34 EST Valentine's Day: The Heart...It's Complicated! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5623794 Here I was ready to march off and either zap ye olde heart or slap a pacemaker in and be good to go! <BR> <BR> Sadly no such simple solutions await... <BR> <BR> My EKG confirmed a return of the atrial flutter, however with some worsening features that make a solution tricky and outside the range of my current cardiologist's area of expertise. She is more of a "plumbing" sorta gal. Me? I need an electrician. My right atrium is not filling completely, nor is it emptying completely. The other... Fri, 14 Feb 2014 09:43:49 EST What Is It About February? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5620209 It was a year ago when I had my atrial flutter and electrical heart block with low resting heart rates around 20-30 or so. Got my cardioversion zap and was finally taken off coumadin and cleared for no restrictions in my activities this past June. My resting heart rate was consistently in the 60s. <BR> <BR> I was warned, however, that this electrical gremlin might return and haunt my heart yet again. I got lax. Haven't been checking my heart rate. Last week after my fitness center workouts I... Mon, 10 Feb 2014 09:45:24 EST Holding Firm / Addiction http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5617331 The pounds they have grown stubborn, but I'm MORE stubborn and sticking with my zero sugar / zero grain approach. Also sticking with my 16 hour daily fasts and limiting my eating to the hours between noon & 8-9 pm. Calories varying between 1400-1600 mostly with occasional dips to 1200. <BR> <BR> I was impressed by Russell Brand's editorial comment about Phillip Seymour Hoffman and the lesson of addiction that he brings front and center to the world: <BR> <BR> "Like any drug addict I know ex... Thu, 6 Feb 2014 22:05:45 EST Stronger Than Food! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5608954 I'm thinking of that old Ajax commercial: Stronger Than DIRT! <BR> <BR> Well this week began my "Season of Pain": <BR> <BR> ...all the "easy" pounds have been lost! <BR> <BR> While following a very similar food plan this week...the same plan that brought me nearly a one-pound-a-day loss during my first two weeks, I did a mid-week weigh-in and EEK! I was a pound UP! <BR> <BR> Now a calorie range of 1400-1600 doesn't seem all that luxurious, but I knew I was going to be SORELY disappointe... Wed, 29 Jan 2014 08:43:06 EST Food: Slowing Down and Savoring http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5606972 I've been trying to focus on savoring food that I eat. <BR> <BR> One of the best examples for me are natural almonds. I always keep them on hand in my car for snacking. However in the past I would mindlessly snack without limiting myself. <BR> <BR> Now I count out my 24 almonds for my single ounce and eat each almond by itself, cracking open the almond between my teeth and savoring the creamy, smooth inner flat between the halves and chew each half separately, taking in the flavor and tex... Mon, 27 Jan 2014 09:33:14 EST From Driven to Driver! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5602065 I've noticed another change in my thinking since beginning my re-set two weeks ago. <BR> <BR> First, a confession about a bad-old-habit I picked up along the way. Despite knowing logically that it is the easiest thing in the world to out-eat any workout, witness many long bike trips and events where I torch hundreds, perhaps THOUSANDS of calories yet still gain weight, I still carried that fallacy with me and allowed it to PROPEL me toward a workout compulsion where nary a day would pass wi... Wed, 22 Jan 2014 08:49:06 EST Killer Fact: 30-40 Percent of Health Care Spending in the U.S. Is Tied to Excess Sugar Consumption http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5599967 <link>www.alternet.org/food/killer-politic<BR>s-big-sugar </link> <BR> <BR> This is an extremely sobering article filled with very eye-opening information such as: <BR> <BR> “Basically, the U.S. healthcare system spends about $1 trillion per year (and possibly more) fighting the effects of excess sugar consumption.” <BR> <BR> "American politics are organized to protect corporate interests that make voters and taxpayers sick, and there is no better example: in a candy bar or a bowl of h... Mon, 20 Jan 2014 11:05:39 EST Better Scale-a-tude! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5597720 Felt like I needed a mid-week boost so I jumped on the scale...and three more pounds bite the dust! Beginning to feel my clothes loosen a bit, too. <BR> <BR> Yes, I know I won't always have that sort of pay-off, but here's a pay-off I'm planning to hold onto: using the scale as another friend in my journey! <BR> <BR> Alongside with hunger, self-support (as opposed to self-bashing) & numbers my scale sidles up to join the powerhouse pack! <BR> <BR> I used to play lots of games with the sc... Sat, 18 Jan 2014 08:17:29 EST Re-Set Pay-Off! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5594465 All righty...last week was my first weigh-in so THIS is my first week of seeing the pay-off: SEVEN POUNDS! <BR> <BR> Here are some of the numbers I'm seeing on the nutrition tracker: <BR> <BR> Daily calories totaling around 1400-1500 <BR> <BR> Daily carbs totaling around 130-150 <BR> <BR> Daily protein totaling around 80-100 <BR> <BR> What confidence boost to see that I really, truly *KNOW* what my body needs and can take control so effectively! <BR> <BR> Before going to sleep or when I... Wed, 15 Jan 2014 08:54:54 EST Rolling with my Re-Set! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5593481 I have really gotten rolling with my re-set: <BR> <BR> ---No sugar, no grains <BR> <BR> ---Eating only between noon - 8-9pm, resulting in a daily "fast" of 16 hours <BR> <BR> ---Tracking all food <BR> <BR> ---Weighing in weekly. <BR> <BR> I've avoided the latter two for too long and I don't wanna hit spring filled with coulda/shoulda/wouldas. Being at the upper limit of my clothes...nothing nudges me like THAT! <BR> <BR> The irony, which I'm able to take without self-bashing, is that ... Tue, 14 Jan 2014 11:23:03 EST Re-Framing Hunger, My Best Buddy! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5589744 It was a late work day yesterday (heck today too!), after 8 pm when finished and I was HUNGRY! Way more than my usual hunger thus far in my re-set for the new year. But I thought of WATERMELLEN's advice from www.fatloser.com and Siebold's tip to welcome hunger as a sign that one's efforts are paying off and weight is being lost. <BR> <BR> I have an ancient, automatic response to hunger which says: FEED ME! <BR> <BR> I had to pick up some freggies and canned goods at the grocery store whi... Fri, 10 Jan 2014 23:36:46 EST CX Bounce Back! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5583377 Well yesterday's allergy symptoms oddly let up enough for me to get a super night of sleep and woke up with hardly any symptoms other than an occasional runny nose. Whew! Glad that didn't hang on...I don't *do* sick very well, lol! <BR> <BR> Spent a couple hours getting my feet 'neath me again with cx skiing. Still so awkward...! always fighting my crappy balance...course that works my shoulders a lot, they're feeling the after-effects of all that heavy sticking with the poles to keep myself... Sun, 5 Jan 2014 19:01:48 EST Fighting to Kick the Habit http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5582370 I came across a surprising editorial in the New York Times by Mike Tyson during my 'net wanderings today. Although he focused on his recovery from alcohol / street drugs, I, on the other hand, honed right in to how closely his insights & experiences parallel my own junk (i.e. sugary, starchy) food addiction. <BR> <BR> Here is a link to his essay: <BR> <BR> Fighting to Kick the Habit <BR> ... Sat, 4 Jan 2014 21:38:09 EST Joining In The New Year Re-Set http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5580065 I usually do my utmost NOT to join in with the crowd as I've always disliked the I'm-doing-it-cuz-everyone-is-doing-it mentality. <BR> <BR> As a result I've never been a fan of New Year's Resolutions. <BR> <BR> Well, this year will be an exception as I have backslid too much during the "dark months" and it is time to declare *ENOUGH!* <BR> <BR> Some of the thoughts / factors influencing me are: <BR> <BR> ---Reaching the upper end of tolerance for tight clothes. Thank goodness I gave away... Thu, 2 Jan 2014 21:57:27 EST Car Maintenance Success! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5574143 What? Me work on my car? Not on your life...I'm woefully all-thumbs with most things mechanical as my wallet well-knows! <BR> <BR> But: the one thing I enjoy about taking my car to have work done is that the shop is just a few blocks from the upper end of one of my favorite and most-well-traveled local park with it's trail. I "almost" decided to attempt to cx ski, but figured with temps heading for mid-40s the snow would be too skimpy...and it was: I kidded with a fellow who was there doing ... Sat, 28 Dec 2013 22:07:48 EST New Holiday Tradition! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5572619 I think I've started a new holiday tradition! What a super way to spend my Christmas! <BR> <BR> Community celebrates Christmas at Bandera family dinner: <BR> <BR> (hope this link works) <BR> <BR> <link>www.pressconnects.com/apps/pbcs.dll/<BR>article?AID=2013312260004&nclick_check=1 </link> <BR> <BR> I was one of the zillions of volunteers hustling to put together the meals that were delivered to the homebound. Pouring gallons of soup or gravy from bubbling cauldrons into smaller bucke... Thu, 26 Dec 2013 22:41:29 EST Hummus My Way http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5561930 Another member was curious about my home-made hummus which I posted about yesterday in my status. <BR> <BR> Well, I got sorta yacky in my response and figured why not share with others? :-) <BR> <BR> I found this recipe in SparkRecipes: <BR> <BR> <link>recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detai<BR>l.asp?recipe=103857 </link> <BR> <BR> I liked the simplicity of it and the fact that it was a recipe that didn't require tahini as many of them do. Tahini can be hard to find and pricey. AND since... Wed, 11 Dec 2013 08:30:52 EST Contra Dance: Time for Some REAL Swinging! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5541548 I keep waiting for a pocket of time to do this blog justice, however things are hopping such that I KNOW if I don't share it now my weekend is gonna just run away with itself and who knows WHEN I'll catch up with all of you! :-) <BR> <BR> First of all a follow up to my "workout weirdness": turns out my son has noticed the same thing happens to him when allergies kick up working out quiets them down. He said that pumping up our bodies during a workout just over-rides the allergies while our h... Fri, 15 Nov 2013 00:22:27 EST Workout Weirdness http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5532758 Lately I've been plagued by a lengthy bout of nasty allergies which have my eyes and nose running with periodic sneezing fits. I've been knocking off box after box of tissues...ugh! <BR> <BR> Yesterday was particularly nasty. But I remembered something from times past when this has occurred: becoming physically active seems to quiet down the symptoms. So I tested this theory by heading out for our power walk together with a co-worker yesterday. <BR> <BR> Sure enough, nary a sneeze or drip! ... Tue, 5 Nov 2013 09:29:41 EST Fading Tiger Paws http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5532465 This summer cycling season, after being cut loose by my cardiologist in June and taken off of Coumadin, was capped by two of the most special cycling accomplishments: 1) Cycling 'round the 1,000 Islands area of New York and Ontario with 15 of my bike club members and 2) Cycling 'round Cape Cod on my week-long self-supported tour with several other very special cyclists. <BR> <BR> One of the things I do when I ride is, whenever possible, I wear my Keen Sandals: <BR> <BR> <link>www.keenfoo... Mon, 4 Nov 2013 23:09:47 EST Somewhere In The Hills... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5506457 Another wonderful weekend spent with fellow bike club members! Yesterday we had our bi-annual roadside clean up which our many hands wrapped up lickety-split and followed up with a quickie 20 mile ride to Whitney Point. It was more overcast yesterday and overnight it rained fairly hard...which accomplished exactly what I had hoped: a rain-free Sunday for more cycling! <BR> <BR> As it still looked and felt like it might possibly rain when I set out from my house at 9:30 a.m. I had this song o... Sun, 6 Oct 2013 22:53:26 EST Death Valley! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5498987 Strike up the music, Cassandra Wilson with an upbeat ode to life, which is SO FINE on this gorgeous autumn day! The colors are coming so FAST all of a sudden! <BR> <BR> "A Little Warm Death"... <link>www.youtube.com/watch?v=hh_r6NwqIvs </link> <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/4/9/l49092066.jpg"> <BR> <BR> I should have known that with his quiet smile, our ride leader would have at least one challenge during this ride. He didn't disappoint! There is a REASON the ... Sun, 29 Sep 2013 00:46:01 EST 3 Day Soup / Bike Helmet Mowing: Time Management! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5498155 It's been quite the shock to the system adjusting to "the real world" since returning from Cape Cod. Having eaten mostly cut up fruits & veggies and store-bought sandwiches on my travels I was yearning for something home-made but had so little time at the end of each day it took me three days to make some soup: <BR> <BR> Day One: toss some dried black beans into a bowl of water to soak until <BR> <BR> Day Two: boil up the beans with lots of onion and garlic, put in fridge until <BR> <BR> D... Fri, 27 Sep 2013 22:30:41 EST SeasCape Journey http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5494445 My journey on two wheels last week was one of the greatest challenges and experiences I've had so far. Everything just came together so perfectly. I had never thought seriously about jumping into a self-supported cycling tour, although the idea has appealed to me. I love the idea of being able to attain such a level of independence and stepping away from "the grid" and all that it entails. But did I really have it in me to DO THIS? <BR> <BR> The opportunity was shared by a member of one of ... Tue, 24 Sep 2013 01:42:10 EST Why Blog? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5482120 Here are some interesting thoughts I came across about writing which unbeknownst to me until I read them, echo what I think writing, aka blogging, does for me: <BR> <BR> <link>thoughtcatalog.com/2012/everyone-sho<BR>uld-write/ </link> <BR> <BR> "Everyone should write because writing makes us decide what we believe — and so it makes us decide who we are. Life is mysterious, and unstable. Writing forces us to draw lines. It’s humbling because we will never hit the mark perfectly. But we m... Tue, 10 Sep 2013 22:34:20 EST Prep Ride http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5479972 I loaded up my bike with tent, sleeping bag and dual panniers (all graciously loaned to me from TEAMAGIS, our bike club's president!) for a ride to the Colorscape festival in Norwich yesterday. Met up with a few bike club members in Greene, one of whom is fellow SP member STRIVERONE who has decided to join our ranks and is now a member of the Southern Tier Bicycle Club...woo hoo! <BR> <BR> He and I are fairly well matched on the bike as well, pretty complementary pace. I was fretting about t... Sun, 8 Sep 2013 22:06:16 EST Words Will Have To Do http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5476275 <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/2/0/l2009744389.jpg"> <BR> <BR> Since returning from my weekend in paradise I have been incredibly busy and just as incredibly dumbfounded as to how to articulate how special and wonderful this weekend was. Words are all I have, however and they will have to do. <BR> <BR> Three essential ingredients for this weekend: 1) beautiful, like-minded, like-spirited, people with LOTS of heart! 2) equally gorgeous outdoors and 3) my heightened self-aware... Thu, 5 Sep 2013 00:02:36 EST Notes From the Lighthouse http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5472051 Just a quickie update: terrific day of cycling, over 70 miles throughout the Thousand Islands! Ferry over to Wolfe Island and again over to Kingston. Rode to Gananoque and down through Wellesley Island. Walking our bikes over the bridges taking in the breathtaking view! <BR> <BR> Then a speedy zap up the NY side through Clayton, Cape Vincent and back to the Tibbetts Point lighthouse where we're staying. <BR> <BR> After we knew the way, a straight shot down the NY side I broke away from our ... Sat, 31 Aug 2013 21:41:49 EST Northward Ho! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5470368 Short & sweet...too busy packing for many words...just psyched over all the new territory I'll be covering with 14-15 others from our bike club as we head up to the 1,000 Islands territory of Northern Upstate New York and Ontario Canada. <BR> <BR> I've mapped some of the possible rides which we may take: <BR> <BR> Point Salubrious & Pillar Point Tour <BR> <BR> <link>ridewithgps.com/routes/3223390 </link> <BR> <BR> <BR> Long Point Tour <BR> <BR> <link>ridewithgps.com/routes/3223345... Thu, 29 Aug 2013 22:39:26 EST Why I Love To Ride Long Distances... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5466606 Just came across this wonderful piece from NPR / The Oatmeal: <BR> <BR> 'Why This Compulsion To Run Long Distances?' A Runner's Beautiful Confession <BR> <BR> <link>www.npr.org/blogs/krulwich/2013/08/2<BR>0/213869143/why-this-compulsion-to-run<BR>-long-distances-a-runners-beautiful-co<BR>nfession </link> <BR> <BR> Now although I am NOT a runner, I could relate to SO MUCH of what he shared so creatively, but from a cycling point of view! <BR> <BR> When I ride: <BR> <BR> "Demons are fo... Mon, 26 Aug 2013 09:51:37 EST Canta Quartet! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5466157 I am still filled to overflowing with all that this weekend had to offer...! I SO wish I could bottle it for those times of need. <BR> <BR> Between yesterday (47 miles) and today (59.5 miles) I just could not stop those wheels from rolling and rolling and soaking up as much, more and more of the perfect weather, perfect company, perfect EVERYTHING! <BR> <BR> Today especially...! I started off by heading down to Binghamton for the Chris Thater 5K race, <link>www.bcstopdwi.com/bcstopdwi/tha... Sun, 25 Aug 2013 21:39:44 EST Church of the Holy Spokes http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5458576 Okay, I'm going to edit the title of this blog as I had this inspiration (while cycling of course) but I DO want to preface the title change by saying this is with absolutely ALL respect for ALL faiths and denominations...I just felt that this sums up one of my strongest methods for connecting with a higher power as you'll see later in this blog if you haven't already read it. <BR> <BR> Yes, yes, today was another great ride...but you know, they aren't ALL super rides. Last weekend, for inst... Sun, 18 Aug 2013 02:12:35 EST Dawn Is A Feeling... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5455879 I am SO loving my cycling commutes...especially in the morning! Chilly today, high 40s...still fighting to keep my shorts as I hate cycling with pants, but have switched to long-sleeved t-shirts. It isn't long before my Kattelville Hill has warmed me up and I've got my inner radio going as I never *really* listen to music while riding...I leave that to the Future Darwin Award Winners...lol! <BR> <BR> I'm able to tune out worries or minutia of the day and just soak up the ride and savor the p... Thu, 15 Aug 2013 08:54:48 EST County Loop and Big Rides Planned! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5452199 Perfect weather for riding today and thoroughly enjoyed looping through Broome County in the Southern Tier of upstate New York today. The only thing that could have improved the 50 mile ride would have been some company. <BR> <BR> Whether tunneling through the tall corn fields, taking in the sight of a regal blue heron beside a pond like glass reflecting the abundant blue skies and fluffy clouds or being caught up short with the beauty of wildflowers of every hue juxtapositioned more specta... Sun, 11 Aug 2013 22:05:25 EST