Tag Archives: Ride for Mike

Starting to get pumped

15 Days – $03,150

Pledge to the 2012 Ride for Mike

Ahhhhhhh, I finally got on the bike again yesterday. I was surprised with the power that I had, but power isn’t going to get me there in a couple of weeks. I’m going to need some endurance!

Mike McCaskill stopped by to see me. We talked about the ride and I gave him some questions I want him to answer in a special post to LowCadence.com. I’m hoping to have it published early next week.

I love talking with Mike because he is one of those people who motivates you with his enthusiasm. It isn’t a boisterous display. It is a confidence and fire in the eye. His most exuberant display is when he says, “I am PUMPED!”

Tower Extension Paris Mountain

Up above the pressures and problems

I stopped by Sunshine Cycle Shop on my way out because I needed to get a couple of nutrition bars. My stomach was giving me that hungry feeling and I hadn’t even started riding. The stop helped determine the direction my ride would head.

The direction would lead me to the base of Paris Mountain. I figured I might as well get some climbing in. To make the most of it, I turned onto Audubon Road. Here is where you will find some of the steepest grades as you climb back to Altamont Road.

“Don’t push it,” I told myself. “You just aren’t in shape for this!” At the same time, I didn’t want to meander up the road. The pedals just went around in a constant meter and nearing the top I slowed to the finish. It wasn’t until I got home and uploaded my data to Strava that I learned I had climbed the section only 2 seconds slower than my PR!

Then it was on to the top. I wanted to go up the Tower Spur or Tower Extension — whatever you call the little road that takes you to the top of Paris Mountain where all the radio towers are. What a beautiful view of the city and surrounding area — except for the radio towers.

Once again I came home to find that I had put a decent little time (relatively speaking) on that short climb. I was only 5 seconds off of a time when I actually tried to go fast. Again, I wasn’t even thinking of it then. I was just out riding.

I came off the mountain and pointed my bike toward Travelers Rest. The plan at that point was to get on the Swamp Rabbit Trail and measure it from its farthest point in TR to its stopping point in Greenville. This would help me with the plans for the Ride for Mike.

On the way, I made a detour up what is called on Strava, The Spinning Wheel. I admit at this point I was feeling loose and it crossed my mind to give the KOM a try. I started off at a good pace and was feeling good until the road kicked up after about a half a mile.

Whoa, horse! The muscles weren’t liking that. They started reminding me that they weren’t used to this sort of thing! I backed off and gave up on the KOM. I didn’t sit up. I just eased up a little, but kept pressure on the pedals.

Once again I got home to discover that I had climbed the segment only 4 seconds off my PR. So, I know the power is there for these short sustained climbs. I’ve just got to get out on the mountain some more so that I can get used to the longer slog.

I also accomplished my goal of getting the measurements for the Swamp Rabbit Trail. I created a segment marking the trail and came up with a distance of 14.5 miles. That is good. It means that with the distance we are covering in TR to get started we will spend 30 of our 100 miles on the SRT. That means only 70 miles on more rolling terrain.

We also now have $3150 in pledges. The bamboo bicycle auction is up to $2750. AND we still have 15 days to go!

As Mike would say, “I’m pumped!”

Competing against the competitive me

16 Days – $03,050

Pledge to the 2012 Ride for Mike

It is 16 days until the Ride for Mike. It is 23 days until the Gran Fondo Hincapie. I know that the Ride for Mike is going to be tough, but I know I could go out today and ride 100 miles at a reasonable pace. Riding the 80 miles along the roads on which George trained is another matter!

Skyuka Mountain

Skyuka Mountain viewed from I-26

It isn’t the course itself that I fear. Not even the climb mentioned in hushed tones,  Skyuka Mountain, is overly daunting. It is a road I have not ridden. It is a road I have heard others talk about riding.

What they talk of is a blast! If you like to climb, this is a road you are going to want to ascend. What I also hear them talk of are grades that make you want to get off your bicycle. What comes to mind for me are some of the grades going up Sassafras Mountain or Green River Cove.

Go ahead and throw in two other climbs I have ridden: Howard Gap and Green River Cove and this is going to TOUGH. We’re talking miles of accumulated climbing at 8%. Go climb Paris Mountain 5 or 6 times to get an idea.

Now, that in and of itself is not something that causes me to shutter. I know I can ride just about anything given enough time. If I could start out and pace myself I don’t doubt I could make the 80 miles.

My problem is that when I get in that group of riders that leave out on Saturday morning the 27th at 8 AM, I’m going to want to stay with the group of riders. The idea of holding my own pace will go out the window.

A Fondo is a timed event. It doesn’t mean you HAVE to compete, but there is a clock involved. Where there is a clock involved… well… The bottom line is someone is going to want to get to the top first. Now, that person wouldn’t be me, but that one person will cause everyone else to want to finish there with him.

Me, I’ll just want to finish at a respectable position within the back half of those folks. The problem becomes that in the shape I am in, if I try that, I will blow up completely! I’m afraid this is an instance where I am going to have to put my pride aside for my greater good!

Maybe the greatest competition for me that day is against myself to keep from being competitive!

We will do this

17 Days – $02,900

Pledge to the 2012 Ride for Mike

Wow, only seventeen more days before the 2012 Ride for Mike. We’ve got a lot of things to do before we start that first pedal stroke… and plenty of money to raise. While it is true that we still need to raise funds, there are lots of encouraging signs of future success for I Do It For.

Place your bid today!

Click the above photo to place your bid in the WebbWorks bamboo bike auction.

Granted, fund raising is going to be the hardest ongoing function of the foundation. Somebody has to pay for these tools and promotional materials being provided for I Do It For Foundation users. However, one thing I have learned is that success breeds success. If we can get up and going and people start seeing the foundation’s mission being carried out, the funding will follow.

The start of this endeavor has been very much a lonely burden. I’ve had the idea and have been at times overwhelmed by the magnitude of what lies ahead. The temptation has been there to turn and run the other way!

However, that is starting to change. More and more people are catching the vision of what I Do It For can be. Better than that, the foundation now has its founding board. Mike McCaskill, who is becoming my older brother ever encourager, has agreed to serve along with David Mruz, who has been a good friend and healer, will be bringing valuable organizational insight. I am the third founding member.

The plan is to get the foundation incorporated and the charitable status started with this board. The next step beyond that will be for more board members to be added with me stepping down to become the foundation’s first director.

Another encouraging sign is that I am getting communications from unexpected sources asking questions about the plans. That along with the responses I received to yesterday’s blog post (and the biased responses of my friends) has me excitedly scared about the future. More and more I am convinced the dream may actually become a reality.

Still, the money thing weighs heavy. It will take a bare minimum of $5000 to take care of the administrative issues of founding and applying for 501c3 status. “How’s that,” you ask, “I see things on line where you can apply for 501c3 status for as low as $500.” Yes, but you get what you pay for.

I don’t want I Do It For to be a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants and throw-something-together endeavor. It needs to be reputable and put together with lasting relationships. The law office helping us file is experienced in charitable tax law and gives us more than just paperwork.

Other expenses taken out of the $5000 are the incorporation fees, getting a bank account and seeding it. There are some other smaller incidental things. If we cover all of these things with funds raised from the ride, we won’t even have started on the most foundational part — the web tools.

I don’t want IDoItFor.org to be like RideforMike.com is now! Basically, both sites are currently things I’ve put together piecemeal on top of my WordPress LowCadence.com account. Besides the amateur design the back end is a mashed up mess! The I Do It For Foundation needs a professional touch. That too takes money.

So, I must close once again making an appeal for your generosity. Will you help us at least get over the initial hurdle of getting the foundation off the ground? I realize that it isn’t as easy to give to a start-up that can only offer you the vision of what can be and can’t offer you any tax benefit. However, that only makes your gift more meaningful to me.

Pledge to the 2012 Ride for Mike

We will do this!

Bamboo bicycle charity auction

The bamboo bicycle charity auction is now open until noon, October 19. We have a starting bid right out of the gate at $2500. The current bid amount will be placed here. This post will be easily accessible from RideforMike.com. You can also bookmark this post for easy access later.

Current highest bid: $3000


The 2012 Ride for Mike WebbWorks bamboo bicycle charity auction is now closed. Thank you to all who participated! We were able to raise $3000 from the auction and over $30,000 to help kick start the I Do It For Foundation.

Warmup for George with a little Mike

20 Days – $02,700


There is a little ride being held in Greenville the week after the Ride for Mike. Some fellow named George Hincapie is putting on a Gran Fondo on October 27. You have three options for distances to cover.

We’ll be having our Ride for Mike on October 20. You’re invited to come out and do a warmup ride as we cover 100 miles. “100 miles?” you ask. “How is that a warmup for George’s 80 mile Gran Fondo?”

Well, the Ride for Mike is as flat of a course as I could put together in the Greenville area. Also, the plan is not to average much more than 15 mph. So, if you are looking to get your first century, this might be the ride for you. If you want an easy ride to get some miles in your legs before George’s ride, you might want to tag along with us.

Seriously, whether you do the Ride for Mike or not, consider giving George a big “Thank you!” by participating in the ride. Hincapie has been a great ambassador for the United States in the sport of cycling. He is a wonderful representative for us Greenville residents. You can sign up for the ride here: Gran Fondo Hincapie.

There is no cost to ride the Ride for Mike (but we won’t have nice jerseys or nearly the ride support). You can sign at RideforMike.com.  Of course, we are raising funds to start the I Do It For Foundation. You can give toward the fund even if you do not ride.

The day will come when the Ride for Mike will be a Gran Fondo. Just like George started as a pro nearly two decades ago, it takes time to reach the place where he is now. Still, he had to start somewhere. For us, that time is now.

Another way to make the most of National Coffee Day

21 Days – $02,700


It’s National Coffee Day! Here are a couple of coupons to help you enjoy it. You can also help the Ride for Mike by getting your pound of Low Cadence coffee today. I’m sipping some right now and it is gooooooood!

Click to enlarge and print. Image will expire.

Krispy Kreme and McDonalds are giving away 12 ounce cups on September 29 without the need of a coupon. Einstein Bros. Bagels has a BOGO on their pumpkin lattes. Of course, it is also a good day to show some love to your local coffee shops.

Show some love toward the I Do It For Foundation by giving a gift to the Ride for Mike today. When you do, be sure to check the box that you would like a pound of Low Cadence coffee. As a matter of fact, the fifth person to give today will not only get his or her pound of coffee, but I’ll throw in a second pound.

It is exciting to see things start really coming together not only for the Ride for Mike, but for the I Do It For Foundation as well. The gracious giving of those who are supporting us is what makes this happen. Sure the money helps, but the encouragement of seeing people tangibly involved in the project means more than you know.

Now, go get some coffee!

Going board hunting

22 Days – $02,200


Yesterday I actually rode my bicycle! More specifically, I rode my fixed gear. The Giant was in the shop due to a bad shifter. Turns out I need to get a new one. The good news is that SRAM is sending me a free replacement.

I was also able to make an update to the I Do It For Foundation website. There is now an option when you make a pledge for the 2012 Ride for Mike to give your donation in recognition of an individual or cause. Those names will be listed on IDoItFor.org.

Today I am meeting with someone I hope will agree to be on the board of the foundation. The paperwork is ready to be sent in to make the foundation official, but it requires a board. The choice of the members of that board are a very important part of the successful future of the I Do It For Foundation. Here is hoping he says, “Yes!”

If he comes on board today, I will have the necessary members of the board. However, we plan to expand the board once we get the minimum amount of members to incorporate. Perhaps you would like to be a part of those helping to set the vision for the foundation and giving direction on practical applications of the mission. If so, contact me and let me know what you believe you would bring to the board. The initial members will be determining who to add in the weeks to come.

Of course, we are always looking for your financial support to help get the foundation started. It is easy to get started… just press the pledge button and take the first step. Now, you can also let us know who you “ride for.”

I Do It For dot Org

23 Days – $02,200


The I Do It For Foundation page has been updated. The site will be the place where a person wishing to create his or her own “Ride for Mike” can go to access tools and promote the endeavor. Building the tools will be a primary objective following the incorporation of the foundation.


Of course, this will take funding to make it possible. Right now we are not even at the point where we can cover the expenses of the incorporation and application for charitable status. Will you consider giving to the 2012 Ride for Mike? Your gift will help create tools that will expand the opportunities for others to meet the needs of their friends and family. In a real sense, your gift will be multiplied each time the I Do It For Foundation is used to help support a person in need.

Check out the updated page here.

Happy birthday to the Beautiful Redhead!

24 Days – $02,200


Today is a busy day. Lots of non-bicycle related stuff going today. More importantly, today is the Beautiful Redhead’s birthday!

For those of you who are regular readers of Low Cadence, you know who she is. She is my bride. She is the woman who shows me she loves me by letting me ride my bike and when I have these crazy ideas of riding hundreds of miles across country, she follows me at a 20 mph average for hours on end.

It’s true love, folks! I am a very blessed man. Oh, and did I mention that she is a beautiful redhead?

We’re giving here a break from all that seat time this year since we will only be covering 100 miles. However, I’m sure she is going to be right in there with me getting all the logistics worked out and basically allowing me to think about riding the bicycle when the day comes.

Thank you, Annette. Happy Birthday! I love you.

I can see you on bamboo

25 Days – $01,700


Yesterday we had another $500 come in for the Ride for Mike. This brings our total so far to $1,700. We’re pretty close to moving past the $2000 line. Who will be the person to make it happen?

Here is a little something that might motivate you to participate. We will be starting an auction on October 1st for a bamboo bicycle. Follow Low Cadence here, on Facebook or Twitter to be notified when the auction opens. It will continue until October 19 at noon.

Bamboo bike from WebbWorks

Here is how it will work, we will be putting up for auction the option for a custom or pre-built bamboo bicycle from WebbWorks with SRAM Force components. While the build photo show a road bike frame, you will have the option to choose among other options.

Once the auction ends, the winner will have the choice of having the frame custom built to their specifications or to go with a standard size frame. Of course, the choice makes a difference on how long it will take to get your bicycle.

These bikes are the real deal. You can read a review (and watch a video) I did of the bicycle back in 2009 when I first experienced the ride. The workmanship and finish of the bicycles has only improved from those times. This bicycle is a useful, solid ride, but beyond that it is just downright cool!