Monday, September 28, 2009

More Than a Ride Continues

Now at!

On March 14, 2009, I started the blog “More Than a Ride”, Tammy came up with the name and it has been a perfect name. I had no clue when I decided to sign up for a LIVESTRONG Challenge raising money for the Lance Armstrong Foundation and start this blog that my life was going to change so much.

You see, I had just found out in January that my Dad had stage three esophageal cancer. I was trying to figure out life and understand illness and death. I think I was doing a pretty good job, but found out later that I was struggling more than I thought. Though I did realize I needed to do something to help myself and still be able to help my family when needed. So forcing myself out on a bike to train for a 45 mile bike ride and fundraiser was a journey I started and wanted to share it with you. Primarily, because I know I am not the first person to experience a loved one with cancer, sadly I will not be the last.

So, here we are six months later. I completed my first LIVESTRONG Challenge and raised a total of $1,195 for the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Please note: I did not do it alone! However, when I crossed the finish line I heard a little voice whisper in my ear, (it was probably one of the “cancer angels” I have gliding along with me) “Rhonda, your life will never be the same”. I have to agree, because I soon realized how amazing it is to do something that you do not think that you could do. Even though I had ridden more than 45 miles before that day, those 45 miles were the toughest I have ridden to date. It lived up to the name of LIVESTRONG Challenge and served the purpose to push me to my limit, to bring me to tears of fear and tears of joy.

Now I am ready for the next journey and I would love for you to experience something as amazing as I did. I hope you can join me April 24, 2010, for 13.1 miles!

In fact, I am challenging you! (standing with a Victorian white glove in hand)

Come to Roanoke, VA and join me for 13.1 miles in the Blue Ridge Parkway Marathon (, it is considered one of the toughest on the east coast. No, I am not crazy, but the experience will be one of the most rewarding you have ever had. IF YOU SO CHOOSE not to join me for 13.1 miles, remember you can walk and have 7 hours to finish, you have a few other options. Remember, I will nag!

If you choose not to walk, run or run/walk 13.1 miles with me, I ask you to donate at least $13.10 to FOUR different non-profits fighting cancer (of your choice) in honor of three people in your life, plus $13.10 to the Lance Armstrong Foundation (, making it 13. You have until April 24, 2010 to complete.

There is also another choice we call it the stimulus option. If you choose not to join me for an unforgettable 13.1 miles, I ask that you VOLUNTEER at 13 area fundraising events (they do not have to be cancer related), such as 5Ks, half and full marathons, and so on.

You see, “More Than a Ride”, is more than about the ride, it is about “changing the world one revolution at a time”. Whether you choose to turn your pedals, sneakers or hours volunteering, it is amazingly rewarding to do all of the above and making a difference in the world around us. I hope you choose the one you think you have no possibility in achieving, because I know you will cross whatever finish line you set!

Come on along and join the journey!

We are changing the world one revolution at a time!

PS: LIVESTRONG Challenge 2010 is out there too, so stay tuned for that journey! It is going to be a great year!

changing up a bit

This is awesome and exciting. I will continue for a few more blog posts to post here on this blog site. However, I will be switching to This is cool because originally I had no clue where the blog would take me. Nor did I know where the LIVESTRONG Challenge would take me. Over the past several months I have learned truly that this journey has been "More Than a Ride"!

It has been:
More than expected.
More than amazing.
More tears than thought.
More than a blessing!
I can keep going too!

I hope that you join me in the next journey of "More Than A Ride". It is a little different. Feel free to ask if you want to continue to get updates and having trouble getting connected. As I said, I'll give you a few more posts here to give you some time, I know we have busy lives.
SOOOOOoooo, go to and click on the little box or link thingy RSS. Select how you want to receive notifications and follow the directions from there. Let me know if you have problems and I'll try my best to talk you through. :o)

Tomorrow will have an amazing exciting announcement!

Come on along and join the fun!

Friday, September 25, 2009


"Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can."
~Arthur Ashe

So I have been running. I have to say I have a new hurt in my legs, I did not think possible and my knees, well they may never be happy with me again. However, I am up to running for a minute and a half solid for a mile and a half. That is big, since I have not run since I was in high school and then it was mostly up and down the basketball courts. One would think that with all of the cycling I have been doing that my legs would be strong and have the strength needed to run without the soreness. WRONG!

Like I said, my knees hurt, I hobble now every now and then and standing out of a chair takes me a few minutes. I do not mind though and here is why. You see, I started this blog back before spring hit, as a way to tell my journey through completion of a LIVESTRONG Challenge and sharing in my experiences with cancer. Though not a survivor or someone with cancer myself, I have had a lot of experience around cancer with many friends and family. I remind myself when it gets tough that I have had friends to have difficulty getting up to go to the bathroom to get sick off their chemo or even to help feed their children. I have had friends unable to hug their children. So I may hobble from time to time, but it has to do with working to help end cancer.

I am not a good runner, I recognize that I run with friends that leave me behind as the bop off along the greenway. One friend just joined and thought I had a limp. No, I said, it is my funny little stride with my achy-not use to running knees. I walk for a minute and a half and walk for one and repeat for the set destination that day. I remind myself repeatedly, that sometimes it is not about me or the end, it is about the journey. The LIVESTRONG Challenge journey changed my life and gave me a new set of eyes. I see now more than before the different ways we get out and go do. We may not do it the same as someone else or as well as someone else, but we are doing it.

I hope you join me on this next journey! On Tuesday you will see the next phase of "More Than A Ride". I will still be working toward ending cancer and you are going to enjoy where we are going. I am goig to invite you out of the blog! In the mean time, visit to find a couple of 5K races to participate in and register. Set a goal to get you out and moving, find friends and talk to your physician about your new athletic goals. One I have joined as a walker, but will instead cheer for the participants is "The Drumstick Dash" ( which is Thanksgiving morning here in Roanoke, VA and has become a tradition in our family. It is a lot of fun! This money also goes to another great cause that I believe in, because we never know when we may need to knock on their door for services.

It is important to do what we can, to make a difference in this world.

Changing the world one revolution (of sneakers now) at a time!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

rainy day reading

Here in Roanoke, VA it is a drizzly day. Not a day you want to go outside and ride or run, though you could if you are die-hard. There is always a gym option, but sometimes it is good to embrace a day and relax.

Here are some books I have read or reading that were informative, entertaining or inspirational. Not every book is good for everyone. For example Tammy loved one book, but I was not all about it. So browse and find what you like.

Ok, so there are a lot of magazines and blogs. The mags I read most frequently that are athlete oriented (Martha doesn't fit here) are Bicycling, Runners World, Triathlete and Blue Ridge Outdoors (A local free rag). Then there is is a great local blog and resource for stuff to do in the area.

These books are fabulous and inspirational, especially if you or someone you love has ever had or has cancer:
It's Not About The Bike & Every Second Counts
Both by Lance Armstrong
They are both very moving and inspirational!

Ladies only! Sorry guys, but I'm a girl and we have some unique needs and well anything you can do I can do better...
Every Woman's Guide to Cycling, By Selene Yeager
She breaks down cycling for woman. Looks t bikes the differences in male and female built frames and more. She also helps with those little things like the special needs for a woman's hydration, special saddles and clothes to help you still have style and grace. Plus, tidbits to help even the serious cyclist. You can find her regularly in Bycicling magazine.

Us chubbies!
Heft On Wheels, by Mike Magnuson
He shows that even a bar, hopping, smoking kinda person can change their life and experience the previously unthinkable.

Plan your next ride:
Rails To Trails! we have the MD, DE, VA & WV edition, look for one for your area. Our first big rides were completed on a Rails-to-trails with multiple laps on the Huckleberry.

Then for some sarcastic entertainment:
The NonCyclist Guide to a Century ... by Dawn Dais
Tammy enjoyed her whit and humor. I got lost with it and didn't finish it. However I know we all like a different things.

Now for running books. Yes I am running.

Marathoning for Mortals; The Courage to Start: A Guide to Running for Your Life; & No Need for Speed: A Beginner's Guide
All 3 by John "The Penguin" Bingham
I'm a penguin! Penguins are the runners in the back of the pack that are kinda not fast but love being out there just the same. He says it is ok to run/walk, there is no shame in that. I have to agree! I enjoy his humor and honesty, witout feeling discouraged.

The Nonrunner's Marathon Guide for Women, by Dawn Dais
It has a great training guide for running or run/walking a half marathon and one also fr a marathon. Once again, I could notmakeit through, but Tammy enjoyed it.

Ultramarathonman, by Dean Karnasaz
Amazing! He makes you feel like going out for a run! Though I don't recommend how he went out for his first run. Very good!

Hope these help you find inspiration when you need it. Next week you will find out why you may need inspiration and you are going to love every minute of it. Cause as I always say, "Without the journey, we will never go anywhere"!

Enjoying the journey!

These are just a few, mostly the ones we felt worthy of purchasing.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

road id

Let me tell you a story about a hike, a 17 year old, a bike and an ER.

Last night I met up with a group of friends that meet every Wednesday evening to hike around a local mountain. Mill Mountain is a nice hike with some challenges. It is so wonderful to have a group of friends to share all sorts of adventures with. Well ten minutes into the walk up the old road to our trail head, we see a seemingly calm young man sitting on the wall. We looked over closer and noticed a good amount of road rash and blood, so we hopped on over.

We get over and he could not see us clearly, he was seeing in pinks and greys. He looked really hot and really pale and a lot in shock. One of us dumped water on his head as we tried to contact a parental unit (it was a bad time of day to find people we learned) and address some of his immediate concerns. We got him to lay on the ground in case he passed out and so he could maybe get some oxygen to his head. Another cyclist (who also happened to be a police officer) was riding by up the road and stopped. He called EMS, while we were trying to find anyone he could talk to on another phone.

Let me tell you, for the type of accident he had at 17, he was quite calm and brave. I would'a been all sorts of upset!

So EMS got there and he was loaded up into the rescue vehicle and we loaded up his bike into our car. I followed him as the others walked on. Well at 17, I do not know I would have wanted to have been left alone in an ER, after all that had just happened. So I stayed in the ER, as we talked about all sorts of stuff, while we waited on his Mother. He was not feeling well, felt a little light headed and I did not want him to start thinking and get more scared than he was.

Long story short, he has a broken wrist and getting a pin put in it on Friday (tomorrow), hurts a lot and got pretty shaken up I am sure. His Dad picked up his bike from me today and I was glad to find out he did not have a concussion, though he was hurting pretty bad.

I did not think I would ever need identification or emergency contacts on me, whether running, walking, hiking or biking. You see I have always thought this way, I do not really go that fast in descents when I am on my bike, I wear a helmet and use caution if the terrain or weather calls for a little something extra. Plus, I am fortunate to often have friends to ride with. Even if I was by myself I always felt I would be ok, if there was an accident. I also figured that with a helmet on and working toward maintaining a low speed I would be able to give the phone numbers and names of people to call. Last night I found out that is incorrect! Our new friend could not remember any numbers and was so panicked or in shock that he could barely register who to call.

So this has inspired me to get something I have talked about a lot, but have lacked follow through. Purchasing a Road ID!
What is this you ask?
It is this really great idea! It is a bracelet, anklet, necklace, shoe attachment, you pick it, with your personal information on it. Name, hometown, emergency contacts and even space for a personal motto.
Where do you find this great idea?
Here is what I am getting, though the "dog tags are cool too":

I hope you take time to build your own Road ID sooner rather than later! Make it easier for people who find you to contact your loved ones!

Quick and happy healing my friend and look forward to riding with you when you are all better!

Not going into an ER as Jane Doe,

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

get out & ride!

Yes, the 2009 Philly LIVESTRONG Challenge is over, but the riding has not stopped. Plus I have started to work on my running and working toward the half marathon in Roanoke, VA (home turf!) in April of 2010. So not as much riding as before. More coming soon on that. I took some time off from the blog, to set the focus for the next events. Stay tuned!

SO HERE WE GO! You need a bike!
I know you're itching to get out and feel the wind blow across your face, feel the wind rushing by as you cruise down the street. It is something I look forward to as soon as I get off my bike.

Go to and get your really cool "Campus Cruiser" Bike and we'll even let you call it a "Greenway Cruser". :o) $25 of each of the Komen Cruisers sold will be donated to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. A one-speed is $299 and a 3-speed is $499 and you get some good karma points for your bonus contribution.

Ride-onward friends!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

learn more about childhood cancer
Take a moment to learn more about childhood cancer and some of the warning signs. Many childhood cancers are hard to diagnose. This is very informative and interesting.

Learn more


September is Child Cancer Awareness

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month! With 36 children and teens diagnosed daily, we need to change the odds. Support the Lance Armstrong Foundation to help with research and to offer support to those diagnosed,

And watch this video, a young child took it upon herself to start making a difference after her diagnosis.

Peace and joy!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

get ready

Get ready, there is a challenge coming your way real soon!
What do you have to give?

"Whatever your 100% looks like, give it!"