Why am I doing this?

credits to Justin Bond of Star Talent Events for the audio.

Thanks for stopping in! This summer, I'll be biking 2500 miles from San Francisco to Gibson City, IL to raise $4000 for the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition and the Ford County Youth Soccer Club. My route map.

There are so many reasons. As a youngster growing up in central Illinois, playing soccer, as rare as it was for the area, was an activity that really shaped me into the person I am today. Not only combining the importance of fitness and teamwork, but also leadership and discipline. I have always wanted to have the opportunity to give back to this organization (FCYSC), and I feel that this is my chance.

Living just outside of Gibson City causes every child to be an avid cyclist to survive that stretch of Route 9 to make it into town. As I've progressed into my current career as an urban planner, I realize how much of an impact cycling can make in certain parts of the United States, in reducing our dependence on vehicles, increasing our health, among other benefits. Atlanta is the place that re-energized my spirit for transportation planning and I hope to be able to return some gratitude to the ABC, a cause that I still feel has an uphill battle in that town.

If you have questions, please feel free to contact me at supawanich@gmail.com

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Utah has it in for me...

So after yesterday, I thought my Utah karma balance may have shifted back to zero. But, I was wrong. So this morning, I woke up super-special early, just to get out before the winds picked up. (the forecast predicted winds of 30-40 due north by noon with gusts up to 50. For bikers going south, that's not such a good forecast. So this morning I had my first pre-dawn ride, leaving at 5:50 MST before a 6:15 sunrise. It was pretty great riding in the countryside under moonlight with the sounds of those huge insect-like irrigation sprayers all around me. The winds were still against me, but at a manageable 10 mph or so.

Today would be a special day as it would be the first time I'd crossed the path of a place where I had been before during my previous life as a Georgia resident. But Utah wasn't going to let me do that anytime fast. After around 9:30am, the winds picked up significantly, and at one point, I really thought time had stopped as the winds were howling around 20-30mph, and I was still 6 miles out from Cedar City.

I took some video, but after reviewing, I realize it doesn't really do the wind justice (I should have realized this, as yes, wind is invisible...) and in retrospect, it just makes me look like a big wimp. However, there was one mental highlight as I was pedalling fruitlessly into the gale, three huge tumbleweeds blew by me.... kinda like this video... note... this isn't really my video... but it gives the same effect. Just for visuals... just imagine around 0:13 some guy on a bike goes crawling by from right to left on the screen. That would be me.

So tomorrow is the biggest climb day of the ENTIRE trip! I'm excited. Climbing I can do.... dust storms and headwinds .... not exactly my favorite. However, the elevation profile is a bit daunting...
yikes... 4,500 feet. sounds lovely eh? more to report tomorrow.

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