Tag Archive for southern tier

In San Diego

We left on Saturday morning and, two days of car travel later, we are in San Diego. The travel by car was loooong. Day one was the toughest. It felt like we would never get out of Texas. We made it to Las Cruces in New Mexico, ate a fast food dinner and were asleep once our bodies hit the beds.

Day two began with us re-figuring out how to pack the car. It took us an hour, but when all was said and done we think we actually found a better way to pack. More room for us, Ladybird and our stuff. We figure we will get faster at packing the car….or at least that’s the hope.

day 2 collageFor some reason day two traveling felt faster. Not sure if hitting Arizona so quickly after getting started gave us a sense of faster movement. Did we mention getting out of Texas took a really long time? One of the cool things about this leg of the trip was the drastic changes in terrain. From desert to lush farmlands to sand dunes to mountains to ocean. It really was a feast for the eyes.

Driving I-10 is not an exact duplicate of the route I will rise during the tour. However, it does give me a sense of the terrain I will encounter. I have never paid more attention to road shoulders as I did over the last two days. Some roads had fabulous wide shoulders relatively free from debris. Others were rough, gravelly situations full of debris. I am curious how my skinny tires will handle those particular roads.

When we got to the mountains in California before we hit San Diego, I finally got a chance to feel what those elevations have up until now only been lines on a map. Oh boy, what a way to start a tour. I’m not sure if I’m more wary of the going up or going down the mountains. Going down there were times when we would hit 75-80mph without me hitting the gas. I know the weight of the fully loaded car is drastically different than the weight of my and my bike, but it certainly gives me pause.

Roger and SusanToday is rest day. And by rest, I mean we will not be sitting in the car. In reality, I have much to do in order to be ready for Tuesday mornings official start of the bike tour. Bonus today was finally meeting Roger and Susan who are also riding the Southern Tier. We have been corresponding online over the last few months after connecting via the Crazy Guy On A Bike site.

As for the team, Jonathan, Jordan and Ladybird have been a wonderful support. Jonathan taught me more about RPM’s and manually shifting my car than I have known my entire life. If it wasn’t for his thorough and detailed instruction I do not think our entire load would have made it up and down and up and down from sea level to 4,100 feet. I was able to experience his patient and thorough teaching and educational style first hand. Now I know why he was a customer and client favorite in his career. `

Reflecting the day before the Health Fitness Beauty Quest Bike Tour StartsAt the end of the day, Jonathan took me to Mission Bay Park to give my Trek 1.2 bike around for a final test ride. It felt great to get back in the saddle even if it was just for 10-15 minutes. As I looked out across the water, I finally felt like I was in California. I could feel this was truly the beginning of an epic adventure.

 

Southern Tier Maps Have Arrived!

Southern Tier Maps

The 7 maps that make up the Adventure Cycling Association’s Southern Tier

There are so many pieces that all must come together for the bike tour. Even though I have been planning this for months, sometimes it feels like there is so much to do with so little time. Then something happens that makes me realize that everything is coming together exactly the way is should. I opened my mailbox and inside a non-descript postal package were the 7 maps from the Adventure Cycling Association. These maps are the guide for 3065 miles of cycling through mountains, deserts, swamp and coastland.

Seeing these maps really brings home the fact that in about 3 weeks I will be dipping my bike tire into the Pacific Ocean and starting on my journey.  It’s coming soon and even though a part of me wishes I had more time to prep, most of me knows that it will be exactly as it should be and that will be just fine.

Preparations Are Underway

The Planning: Self-supported vs Team Supported

From the time the idea for the Health Fitness Beauty Quest Cross-Country Bike Tour was hatched, I knew it would take serious preparation in order to take the dream and turn it into a reality.  Beyond training there was the logistics of pulling together a two-month event. From making the decision to travel solo on a self-supported tour to joining an existing group of riders or riding with a support team vehicle.

Initially, my plan was to take two months off to ride self-supported with a group of 2-3 cyclists.  However, the deeper I dug into everything that could be captured on the tour, (audio/video interviews, live audio/video diaries) the more I realized that cycling with a support team was the only way to tell the story fully. With a support team I could share the two month experience with the followers of the Health Fitness Beauty Quest in a way that was not possible on a solo trek. So, my new plan became riding cross-country to celebrate the everyday athlete and bike tourism all while maintaining my business.  Having a support team allows me to do all that and do it well.

Support Team and Partners

Jordan and Jonathan, Support Team and Videographers

Jordan and Jonathan, Support Team and Videographers

I am also pleased to announce that my two sons offered to become the vehicle support team. Jonathan and Jordan have been my biggest champions and frequently join me for what we call “family adventures.” They will not only drive the support vehicle but will also be the video production crew. They have both worked Social Media Lounge video interviews events with me through the years. They are well versed in both livestreaming and recorded video. The only difference now will be that the Social Media Lounge is 8 states across the entire southern portion of the United States.

The more I talked about the tour the more folks I had who were interested in becoming partners of the tour. These partners offer both sponsorship and in-kind donations. Both of which will go a long way towards make the bike tour successful. I have been blessed to have some fantastic folks jump in to sponsor the tour. There will be detailed information in a more in-depth future post.

You’re Doing What?!

Is the reaction most folks have when they learn of the bike tour. The tag that I have on my social media profile starts with “Living the Dream!” To me living the dream is a way of thinking, living, being. It isn’t something you wait to do when you retire or when you hit the lotto. It is in the now. The now for me means being able to do something I’ve dreamed of all while running my business and sharing the experience with my sons. We can all do this. I hope to be an inspiration to folks who have been waiting for the someday in their lives. “Someday, I will….” That someday could be now or next week or even next year. Whatever it is that you’ve always wanted to do, just go out and make it a reality.

Sharing The Story

One of the things I enjoy is sharing the story. Going deeper into a subject and learning by asking questions.  What this usually means is that I can frequently be found interviewing people with my phone in hand recording each and every word. It’s fun and my clients and interviewees appreciated the multimedia dynamic. After all, who can tell a story better than the person who is living it?

This is where the idea for adding a multimedia element to the tour came into play. As I travel through California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida I will stop to interview everyday athletes and learn more about what small towns and big cities are doing to promote bike tourism along the Southern Tier.

You may be wondering, “When will you have time to ride and conduct interviews?” My plan is to ride a very manageable 40-60 miles per day. Which averages to about 4-6 hours a day with rest days every 5-6 days. This leaves plenty of time for recouping during ride days with days off to conduct interviews.

Where You Step In

sponsor bike tour imageWant to be a part of the journey? There are all manner of things we have on a tour list. Some of them are crucial and others would make the tour easier to ride and capture.

If you feel inspired to join us or become one of our partners to ensure we have everything we need to make the tour a rousing success then click on over to our here to learn more. Either way we hope that you will continue to cheer me on and be accountability partners as we  embark on the latest adventure of the Health Fitness Beauty Quest.