This Week’s Gallivantin’: Winding Down Summer

Instead of lazily lingering as they did when I was growing up, the ‘dog days of summer’ are just racing right on by! July is history, we are already a week into August and it’s time for another Weekly Wrap with Holly, Tricia and guest hostess Heather at 3 Black Cat Co.

If you are new to my blog and not familiar with the Weekly Wrap, let me just say that you have stumbled into a great group of women who link up each week for the sole purpose of encouraging, motivating and keeping one another accountable on our fitness journeys. Please join us!

While the week, for the most part, was uneventful, I’m pleased with the quality of my workouts. I’m not sure what to attribute it to, but I’m thrilled to report that over the past month, I’ve lost 6 pounds! Is is the fact that I’m not dealing with those insatiable ‘rungries’ in the absence of any significant running miles? Is it the variety of workouts keeping my body guessing and the furnace burning? Or could it be the replenishment of hormones my body had been lacking? I don’t know, but whatever it is ….I’m thrilled to be able to button some of my shorts and slacks without having to suck in my gut to the point of oxygen deprivation. #simplegoals Continue reading

Bikes, Booze and BodyPump

Whew! Is it Sunday already with August just around the corner? The weeks really do seem to fly by don’t they? You’d think with all of these lazy ‘easy-livin’ summer days, that they wouldn’t seem to pass so quickly. But alas, they are moving at lightening speed and it’s time for another edition of the Weekly Wrap. Let’s get this party started!

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Cycling 101: Five Must-Haves for every Cyclist

Ask any cyclist what their “must-have” gear would be and you’ll likely get a wide array of answers based on the individuals style, needs and type of riding they are most interested in. For example, if you ask Major Hubs what is the one cycling “must-have” he just can’t live without, you’ll most likely get a mischievous grin as he tells you ….a kickstand! This is a long running joke between us as I tell him that “real” road bikes don’t have kickstands and he laughs every time I have to prop mine up against something while airing up the tires or when we stop for a rest during long rides. Inevitably, mine will fall at some point and he loves to say “now who has a ‘real bike’?” as his is standing perfectly poised on its kickstand. However, whether you want a kickstand or not, if you’re new to cycling, there are a few things that every cyclist should consider buying.Cycling (1).png

1. Helmet

Well, this is a no-brainer ….unless of course, you want to be a “no-brainer” and have your brain splattered all over the pavement. I’m always amazed at how many people still ride, even casually, without a helmet. Just because you’re riding on a ‘rails to trails’ type of path doesn’t mean a helmet isn’t necessary. Any debris along the path or critter darting out in front of you can cause a bike wreck. Please people, protect your head anytime you are riding!

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Besides protecting my noggin, my Giro helmet also accommodates my ponytail! Win, Win!

2. Sunglasses

These are an absolute necessity when cycling. In addition to giving you that uber cool and badass look, they protect your eyes from the suns damaging UV rays, tear inducing winds and kamikaze bugs! They can range in price from $20 up to several hundred. Find what works for you and just be sure they have a good nose grip to prevent them from sliding down your nose when you get sweaty. My personal favorites are these from Ironman …they don’t slip and are comfortable behind the ears.download

3. Gloves

Okay, so these may not really be a necessity ..but for me they are. Not only do they absorb the shock from the road, they also provide an extra layer of protection from some nasty road rash in the event of a crash. You can choose from different levels of padding depending on your preference. I, personally, prefer just enough padding to absorb the bumps of the roads while still allowing me to have a good ‘feel’ for the handlebars.847223

4. Padded Shorts

Trust me on this one …if you’re planning on riding longer than an hour, you need cycling shorts! They come in many different lengths, rises and degrees of padding to suit everyone’s needs. The padding in cycling shorts is called a Chamois and it not only provides a cushioned barrier between your nether region and the saddle of your bike, but it also provides added support for your tail bones and aids in chafing prevention. Triathlon shorts have a much thinner chamois which allows for ease of running off the bike and women’s specific cycling shorts have a chamois that is designed specifically for a woman’s anatomy. However, it’s important to note that none of them will do their job if you are not willing to go commando. That’s right…. cycling shorts = sans underwear. Seriously, just do it!

5. Safety Lights

According to the CDC, there were an estimated 1,000 deaths of cyclists due to accidents involving motor vehicles and over 400,000 injuries reported. With a growing number of cyclists taking to the roads each year, it’s even more important to take every possible precaution to be visible at all times. There are many different options available on the market today to make yourself and your bike more visible to motor vehicles. LED lights are the most effective and affordable and generally very easy to install. I recently purchased these Lumintrail High Intensity LED safety lights with quick release and waterproof batteries on my bike ….and let me tell you, they are BRIGHT!

 

According to Runner’s World, cycling is one of the best methods of cross-training for runners and a great choice for those looking for a low impact activity with maximum calorie burn. Now that you know all the health benefits of cycling, the cycling gear that really isn’t necessary for beginners and my ‘must-haves’ for getting started …what are you waiting for? Come on …..pump up those tires, lube that old rusty chain, strap on that helmet and go for a spin around the block, down the road or through the park. Be careful though, you just may get addicted to ‘life behind bars’!

Carpe Cycling!

Finding “Fabulous” at Fifty, one mile at a time!

 

On the Road to 100 Miles

It was another hot and humid July week here in the South with temps reaching well into 90’s every day. I know it’s hot everywhere but geez …..it doesn’t even drop into the upper 70’s until after the sun sets. However, thanks to Lexi (my road bike), despite the relentless oppressive heat, I’m still managing to enjoy some outdoor workouts. 20170719_164850 Continue reading

This Week’s Gallivantin’: Celebrate all Celebrations!

It was yet another hot and humid week in Mississippi with a few much-needed rain showers. No complaints. I didn’t get all of my push ups in this week and only ran 3 miles, but I did get in two strength training sessions and 45 miles cycling. I’m contemplating heading up to north Mississippi in a couple of weeks to participate in the Bikes, Blues and Bayous bike ride. They have 46 mile and 62 (metric century) options. I’d like to do at least the 46 miler just to get my ‘feet wet’ in large group riding. They are estimating a little over 1,000 participants….quite a difference from the little 6 person Saturday morning group rides I’ve participated in the past. In the meantime, let’s see how my week looked….. Continue reading

Cycling For Your Health

cycling.pngNext to running, cycling is my favorite way to stay active. There is just something so liberating about hopping on a bike, taking in the sights and sounds of the great outdoors, leaning in to the curves of the road and flying down hills with the wind (and a few bugs) in your face! I don’t think I’ve ever gone for a ride that, at some point, my mind didn’t wander back to childhood memories of all of us neighborhood kids riding around on our bikes all day exploring and maybe even getting into a little trouble from time to time. If you’re as old as I am, you would most likely have had a bike with a ‘banana seat’, streamers hanging from your handlebar grips and a basket on the front ….and you would have been one of the ‘cool kids’!

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You could ride two people on those seats!

Now that I have you reminiscing, I’ll also tell you that aside from the liberating feeling and the wind and bugs in your face, there are quite a few health benefits to cycling as well. If you are new to the whole fitness scene, trying to lose weight or an injured runner, cycling may be the perfect way to get the body moving again. Continue reading

Coffee, Confessions and Recapping …I missed it all!

If we were having coffee, I’d confess to you that for some inadequate reason I could not seem to find the time this past weekend to participate in Marcia’s Runfessions link or Deborah and Coco’s Ultimate Coffee Date and it’s killing me! I feel like I’ve missed out on some pretty important stuff happening in the lives of my fellow bloggers and no doubt I’ve missed some juicy tidbits of runfessions as well! But, not to worry, I will be catching up on my reading this week as I can’t wait to hear what all I’ve missed. In the meantime, let’s look at what my week of workouts looked like.

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