Monthly Archives: March 2014

Practice ride 2.0: Ventura to Leo Carrillo, Down the PCH

Practice ride 2.0. That’s what we’re calling this ride, a 60 mile round trip from Ventura to Leo Carrillo State Beach, with an overnight camp. We picked a beautiful weekend to do this trip! The weather was lovely; sun was out (we got sunburns! Apparently no one told us it turned from winter to summer overnight.); wind was out (we got stuck in a couple pretty gnarly headwinds).

Chelsea, fighting a gnarly head wind coming across the Oxnard plain, but making it look easy.
Don’t forget to drink plenty of fluids! A much needed head wind, er, water break.
California coastline, just south of Point Mugu. (Can you believe it’s still snowing in the Midwest??) (Sorry Michigan!)

We arrived at Leo Carrillo State Beach in a little over three hours of riding, which is a little slow for us, but we battled a big head wind part of the way and stopped in for lunch at the famous Neptune’s Net restaurant.

Dustin, Dan and John at the entrance to Leo Carrillo campground. (And Dustin checking his phone to see if he’s getting the Cycling App “clout” he deserves!)
Chelsea at the entrance to the campground.

Once we arrived at camp we set up our tents, assessed our sunburns (with the cool ocean breeze it was hard to tell how bad the sun was cooking us until it was too late), and took an extremely cold and quick (but free!) shower. After exploring the campground and nearby beach, we ate some dinner and settled our aching bodies down for the night. Morning would come soon and with it the ride back up the coast towards home… and with it just a little more soreness and a lot more tiredness than the journey down.

Camp sweet camp … for the night. Leo Carrillo State park.

Stay tuned! We have another practice ride coming up in a few weeks. This next one will be a a three-day challenge from Ventura to Carpinteria then on up to Gaviota State Park (and then back again, of course, since we don’t plan to move to Santa Barabara at this point).

 

In the meantime, chat us up in the comments below!

An Ode To Keeping It Simple

I’ve been thinking about this blog about as long as I’ve been thinking about our cross-country cycle trip, but, while I’ve made significant steps towards actualizing the latter, the former (this blog…) has largely been a stagnant idea in the back of my mind until right….. about now.

See, I work in online marketing. I write in a blog for a living. I get paid to create editorial calendars. I live in WordPress. People pay an hourly rate to talk to me about blogging.

You’d think all of those qualifying factors would make starting this blog all the easier, but, instead, I’ve found all that knowledge to be a real barrier to entry. Instead of just making a blog, I want to make THE PERFECT WEBSITE. (I WANT ALL THE THINGZ.)

Hyperbole and a Half gal typing

Which has resulting in a lot of time thinking, more time over-thinking, and zero time actually writing in the blog.

Well, today standing in a laundry mat, I am deciding to forget all that.

All of that thinking has been making this blog no fun before it even starts.

It’s funny, really. I guess It’s just like anything else; like having kids, or changing jobs, or riding your bike cross country. If you’re not careful you can end up spinning your wheels forever trying to get everything just perfect before jumping in, when in reality, all of that overthinking is just causing you to miss the forest for the trees.

So why am I wasting your time writing a blog post about my own blog feet dragging experience?

I am writing this post for two reasons:

1) Mostly for myself, to kick start this M-effer blog. To get the ball moving. To cannonball into the deep end. To commit! To take the Facebook engineering route and make a “done is better than perfect” resolution.

I think a large part of what’s kept me from starting this blog is a feeling that I need to start from the beginning; like the first posts need to naturally be an explanation of why we’re taking this trip, where we plan to go; how we got here and all of that. Like the blog should read like a book with a natural beginning. Sounds nice, but, the idea of cataloging all of that has me feeling exhausted and overwhelmed so, instead, I am to keep it simple by kicking it off with this ice breaker post and then letting this beast evolve on its own – with its own personality and its own style and its own organization (or lack of organization!) — from here on out.

In general you can expect this blog to be filled with gear reviews/feedback (we’ve be trying out all kinds of gear in preparation of our trip); coverage of our adventures day-to-day both on our trip, and as we train; other random cycling-related business; and probably many more random posts like this as we come across beautiful things that are worth talking about. We might also write in here periodically about permaculture, natural building (cob/straw bale) and other things that are of interest to us, and the life we’re working to build one day at a time.

2) Because I feel like there’s a life lesson that is directly applicable to our bike ride tied up in all this blog feet-dragging. The lesson? Don’t overthink the things you want to do or you may end up with nothing.

KISS-rectangle

I’ve been trying to over-think the crap out of this blog, when, really, I just need to keep it simple. I need to pull up in a laundry mat and just do it (in the least Nike way possible).

The same goes for this cross-country bike trip. If I want to ride my bike across the country I need to ride my bike; not get caught up in whether I have the right shoes or if I’m fit enough. I need to stop spinning (my brain wheels), and start spinning (my bike wheels).

Wit that — if this blog is a giant metaphor for the huge 5,000+ mile bike ride I am about to undertake in 2.5 months, think of this stream of consciousness post like my first 3-mile bike ride on my Craig’slist bike. We’ve all got to start somewhere, and every journey starts with one single step – not with thousands of hours trying to plan your launch so perfectly that you never end up leaving the house.

Today’s Resolution
Today I resolve to live a life with less planning and more doing.

And with that – off to the races! Thanks for reading this far. Hope you stick around for the ride!

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