My Parkway Thru-Ride: It’s Not About the Bike

first_imgI was reading It’s Not About the Bike by Lance Armstrong – a rather fascinating story about the cancer survivor and the seven-consecutive-time winner of the prestigious Tour de France. It had been a pleasant read until I read about Lance’s training on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Suddenly my mind went ZOOM. Here it was! Here was the glamorous and awe-striking description of one of the most magnificent places for road bicyclists on this planet – the Blue Ridge Parkway. This was it for me. After reading Lance’s description of the beautiful roads and scenery, I was immediately sold to the idea of cycling the Blue Ridge Parkway. End to end. All 469 miles. I wanted to become an end-to-ender on my beloved leg-driven two-wheeler. “I’m going to tackle the 469 miles of winding, up-and-down, scenic road through the Southern Appalachian mountains,” I ‘informed’ my wife, Sophia who smiled seeing the joy in my eyes.The only question remaining was: when?Setting a date for September 2011 was the first major step to bringing me closer to my desire. The effect of having a clear date is astonishing: it got me going and the stars and the universe immediately seemed to start conspiring in my favor. Things magically started falling into place. The first major shift for me that occurred was that I started to ride my bike and train my body regularly. Whenever possible, I’d include hills and mountains in my training loops. It was an average of three times a week that neighbors and mailmen found me pushing the pedals. The motivation to do that all came from declaring the date of my trip.More coincidences manifested. I started to talk to people about the adventure I had envisioned in my mind. In no time at all, my wife Sophia offered to take on the role of what later turned out to be the backbone and ‘MVP’ – most valuable player – of the trip. She’d drive the support vehicle, photograph and videotape the ride, and cheer the cyclists on the hearty uphills of the Blue Ridge Parkway. A short while later, my cycling buddy Phillip from Hamburg, Germany, subscribed to the idea of this challenging outing as well. On the very first phone conversation with him when I mentioned the trip to the Blue Ridge, he spontaneously and excitedly agreed to join in. “Great”, I thought. “I wouldn’t be alone while sitting in and out of the saddle during the upcoming 469 miles”. I can tell you, it was such a great push for my motivation when someone fully bought into my idea and trusted my plan.If you’re interested in pedaling the Blue Ridge Parkway, check out our guide.By June, my training was on course, I had a support vehicle driver and a cycling buddy to join me. Then, we decided that this 10 day ride would be a great way to raise funds for the neighboring Eliada Homes for Children in Asheville. Cycling the Blue Ridge Parkway for a Cause was now born. When this decision was made, even more people came to help. Our heartfelt big THANK YOU goes not only to the financial sponsors Angie Ensslin, management coach Führungspraxis as well as Dr. Sheela Sheth, but also to the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation. With a few weeks of preparation to go, I contacted them via e-mail informing them about our plan. You may find interesting to know that the Foundation issues certificates to all people who become ‘end-to-enders’ – be it as motorists, cyclists or otherwise. To my happy surprise, the kind women running the Foundation replied very excitedly in response to our plan of Cycling the Blue Ridge Parkway for a Cause. Just a couple of days later, we were stocked with beautiful Share the Journey T-Shirts, Kids in Parks pencils and other little items that create happiness when shared with kids and adults. The spontaneous reaching out of the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation still fills my heart with plenty of joy.To really get this project working well, again my wife Sophia came to rescue. With the help of her guided Visualization Meditations that she offers at her Center for Meditation and Healing, Reflection Pond in Asheville, I developed a clear vision that I was able to turn into an ever-inspiring collage. This outward expression of my inner desire was no great piece of art admittedly, yet it was vital to keep and expand the vision in my mind. It helped me stay focused and excited about all the non-cycling activities that came with this undertaking. For, honestly, I do prefer spinning the cranks of my bike over planning the stages, creating to-do-lists and working the list down or writing press releases.By the way, if you feel so inclined, we do still accept and greatly appreciate your contribution to help us help the children of Eliada. To donate, contact us under [email protected] or visit us online on and click the yellow button that says “donate” in the right-hand side column of the page. Unless otherwise instructed, we split all donations 50-50 between covering our own costs and passing on to Eliada Homes for Children of Asheville Helping Children Succeed. As of now (beginning of October 2011) we are grateful to have raised 315 dollars for Eliada. 1 2last_img read more

Inside the Blue Angels 2014 Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach Practice

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York After rapid-fire debriefing his crew, Captain Dusty Cook smiled while reminding “Fat Albert Airlines” passengers they may experience turbulence and then took off into stormy skies above Republic Airport in East Farmingdale.Minutes into the flight, the plane pitched, turning two crew members upside down, with their feet facing the ceiling as they clung to the nearest stationary object to keep from hurtling through the cabin. Above the roar of the engines, passengers heard the crew talking over the intercom with the cadence of racetrack announcers. Some strapped in their seats grew uneasy as the plane started rolling.“If you get airsick, it’s not a big deal, we’re gonna give you airsick bags,” Cook had warned. “It is not a point of pride if you don’t use it. It’s actually pretty cool because you get to take a picture when we’re all done.”Of course, this wasn’t a commercial jetliner, like one flown by Jet Blue. Quite the opposite. The U.S. Navy Blue Angels were back in town taking local journalists along on practice runs for the 11th annual 2014 Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach—10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Sunday May 24-25.Fat Albert, named for Bill Cosby’s 1970s cartoon, is a four-engine turboprop Lockheed C-130 Hercules, the tactical workhorse traveling the nation backing up the elite squadron of F/A-18 Hornets that woo crowds with their signature diamond-formation trickery.Fans filled the airport to get a sneak peak of these stars of the show a day early, unsurprisingly for an Island rich in aviation history—Charles Lindbergh’s first non-stop trans-Atlantic flight from Roosevelt Field, local Grumman workers building the Apollo Lunar Module that landed the first men on the moon, among many other records.Aside from the Blue Angels, the line-up includes fellow military demonstration units such as two parachute teams—the Army Golden Knights Parachute Team and the Navy Leap Frogs, which promote the SEALs—as well as the MV-22 Osprey, a so-called “tiltrotor” aircraft that takes off vertically like a helicopter and swivels its engines horizontally to fly long-range like a standard prop plane. Civilian pilots also perform, including the GIECO Skytypers, the Red Bull Air Force and John Klatt Airshows’ new partnership with Screamin’ Sasquatch Jet Waco Aerobatic Team, plus many more.Another reporter for the Press had previously joined Klatt, among the nation’s top stunt-plane acrobats, for a more one-on-one fly-along as a preview of a prior air-show. The barf bag came in hand that day, but on the far-less-loopy day this reporter took flight, just one New York City TV news personality lost their breakfast—although it could have been more if the weather didn’t cut practice short.If only the skies would clear up Saturday like they’re forecast to do on Sunday, maybe attendance will break the high of 400,000 spectators. Now boarding!last_img read more

Binghamton Mirabito service van stolen

first_imgMirabito released a statement with more information about the vehicle: On Friday, March 27, a service van was stolen in Binghamton, NY. This 2017 Chevrolet Express van has a Mirabito Convenience Store logo on it and a license plate number of 36082MK.  As a safety reminder, Mirabito service technicians will never show up to a dwelling without an appointment and will always confirm the appointment prior to arrival. They will always be in uniform.If you see this van, please contact the local authorities immediately. Attention Customers and Community Members:center_img BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — A Mirabito service van was stolen in the Binghamton area on Friday.last_img read more

Council receives complaint over ‘offensive’ campervan slogan in Timaru

first_imgStuff 21 March 2016Outrage over “highly offensive” slogans printed on the back of Wicked Campers campervans has reached Timaru.The slogans have courted controversy in recent years over their perceived references to sexual violence and drug use.The Timaru District Council confirmed on Monday that it had received a complaint about a slogan, spotted on the back of a campervan parked in Timaru in early March, that was deemed “abhorrent” and “offensive” by a Timaru resident.Family First national director Bob McCoskrie said the organisation had written to the Timaru District Council following the complaint.The slogan read ‘A wet dream is just a hand job from God’.In the complaint, which was emailed to Family First, the woman says the slogan was “blatantly abhorrent” to Christians and Muslims alike.“I am a committed Christian and am very upset,” her email says.“I almost went and bought a can of spray paint but then common sense reminds me that I’d be breaking the law.”McCoskrie then emailed the Timaru District Council to make a formal complaint about the “highly offensive” signage.“We would argue that the council has control over the design and content of signage around Timaru, including on vehicles such as Wicked Campers,” he says in the email.Council chief executive Peter Nixon confirmed the council had received one complaint.“We are investigating how other councils are dealing with the matter as sign-writing on vehicles is not a “sign” in a bylaw or consent way.“As the problem, and solution, is a NZ-wide matter it may well be that the Government will need to address the concern.”READ MORE: read more

Messi to miss three weeks after fracturing right arm

first_imgBarcelona, Spain | AFP | Lionel Messi is expected to be out for three weeks after fracturing his right arm during Barcelona’s win over Sevilla on Saturday.Messi will now miss Barca’s Champions League game at home to Inter Milan on Wednesday, as well as the season’s first Clasico four days later against Real Madrid.A Barcelona club statement read: “Tests carried out on Leo Messi have confirmed that he has a fracture of the radial bone in his right arm. He will be out for approximately three weeks.”It means Messi is also set to sit out a La Liga trip to Rayo Vallecano on November 3 and the Champions League return match against Inter Milan in Italy on November 6.He could return for the league game at home to Real Betis on November 11.“It is clear it is a blow,” Barca coach Ernesto Valverde said. “We know what he gives us and we know what he does to the opposition.“We have to prepare ourselves, it is clear we are going to notice the loss of Messi but we have players that can cover.” Messi scored before going off in the 26th minute of Barca’s 4-2 win over Sevilla at the Camp Nou, which sent them back to the top of La Liga.He fell to the ground following a tussle with Sevilla’s Franco Vazquez and, as his right hand tried to cushion the landing, his elbow appeared to buckle.Philippe Coutinho had opened the scoring and Luis Suarez’s penalty made sure of victory before a three-goal flurry in the final 11 minutes.Pablo Sarabia and Luis Muriel twice reduced the deficit to two for Sevilla, either side of a sweeping volley from Ivan Rakitic. [INJURY NEWS] Leo #Messi fractures arm in 4-2 over Sevilla. More details ?— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) October 21, 2018Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Keane accuses Man Utd players of ‘getting away with murder’

first_img“And then for some of them to down tools, shame on some of those players.“I’m not Mourinho’s biggest fan, don’t get me wrong but I just can’t tolerate footballers who just hide behind their agents, their pals in the media. It’s a bit of a joke, really.”Keane won seven Premier League titles, four FA Cups and the Champions League at United and believes any player unrest during his time in the dressing room would have been quelled.“The modern player, they’re not just weak players, they’re very weak human beings,” he said. “You can’t say a word to them.”He added: “It wouldn’t have happened in our dressing room just because of the fact we had good characters and good leaders. We wouldn’t have tolerated lads not putting a shift in.”Share on: WhatsApp London, United Kingdom | AFP | Former Manchester United captain Roy Keane has accused the current crop of players at Old Trafford of getting away “with murder” and of throwing Jose Mourinho “under the bus”.The Irishman’s broadside comes just days after Mourinho was sacked as United manager, having presided over their worst-ever start to a Premier League season.Former United player Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was this week named caretaker manager until the end of the season.Mourinho had reportedly fallen out with several of his first-team stars towards the end of his two-and-a-half-year tenure at the helm of United and Keane feels the behaviour of the players may be at least partly to blame.Speaking to BBC Radio 5 live, Keane said: “I do think the players obviously get away with murder. Just the way they hide behind the manager….They have thrown him under the bus.”“People said Mourinho has been falling out with players. Well, you would fall out with players, that’s the name of the game when players turn up overweight or players aren’t training properly and not producing.last_img read more

How Angolan team ejected KCCA FC in CAF Champions League

first_imgAfter 58 minutes a poor clearance by the visiting side gave defender Mustafa Kizza chance to shot the ball into the net. Later KCCA had some missed chances through Okello and Mutyaba as the Angolan side threw all men at the back.It was a heart break for the KCCA FC fans at the end of the game, while the few Angolan fans who traveled with the team celebrated qualifying for the CAF Champions League group stage. KCCA FC will now drop to the second Tier CAF Confederations Cup where they will play one round and if they win over two legs qualify for the group stage.“We did not play well today and am not happy that the boys did not execute,” said KCCA FC’s coach Mike Hillary Mutebi after the game.On Saturday, Uganda’s representatives in the CAF Confederations Cup Proline FC face Rwanda’s AS Kigali in the return leg. The first leg played in Kigali two weeks ago ended 1-1.*****URNShare on: WhatsApp The Angolans gave KCCA little room to maneuver. PHOTO VIA @KCCAFCKampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Uganda Premier League champions KCCA FC have failed to progress to the group stage of the lucrative CAF Champions League.KCCA FC settled for a 1-1 draw against Atletico Petroleos De Luanda in the return leg of the second round played at the Star Times Stadium.The draw means the Angolan League Champions qualify on an away goal’s rule since the first leg ended goalless.From the star of the game KCCA FC pushed players upfront, but conceded from a penalty after 37 minutes. KCCA FC’s advancing goalkeeper Charles Lukwago brought down Isaac Mensah in the box and the referee pointed to the spot.Skipper Ricardo Job Estevao Estevao made no mistake converting from the spot. KCCa FC’s Allan Okello soon had his shot parried back into play by the Angolan goalkeeper Elber Jorge Mota Fail Delgado.In the second half KCCA FC returned with hunger to get a goal as Muzamiru Mutyaba, Mike Mutayba and Okello dictated the pace of the game.last_img read more

Pirates’ 4-1 loss to Reds gives title to Cards

first_imgPittsburgh Pirates catcher Chris Stewart is hit in the wrist by a bat dropped by Cincinnati Reds’ Johnny Cueto as Cueto followed through ona swing in the eighth inning of a baseball game, Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014, in Cincinnati. Stewart was taken out of the game. Cueto drove in the go-ahead run on the swing. Cincinnati won 4-1. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)CINCINNATI (AP) – The Pirates couldn’t stop Cincinnati’s Johnny Cueto, who drove in the go-ahead run and got his 20th victory on Sunday, a 4-1 win that gave the NL Central title to the St. Louis Cardinals and forced Pittsburgh to settle for a wild card.Pittsburgh needed to beat the Reds and have the Cardinals lose later in the day at Arizona to pull even for first place and set up a one-game tiebreaker Monday. Instead, Cueto (20-9) settled the division race with eight impressive innings.The Pirates will head home to play the Giants at PNC Park on Wednesday, with the winner facing the Nationals. Pittsburgh also hosted the wild card game last year and beat the Reds before losing to the Cardinals.Manager Clint Hurdle indicated that Edinson Volquez likely will start the playoff game.Jason Bourgeois opened the eighth with a triple off Tony Wilson (10-2). One out later, Cueto came to bat, worked the count full and singled through a drawn-in infield for a 2-1 lead, pumping his fist as he reached first base.Kristopher Negron added a two-run homer off Justin Wilson.Cueto gave up six hits in eight innings, including Neil Walker’s homer, as he became the first Reds pitcher to win 20 games since Danny Jackson in 1988. He’s the first Reds right-hander to win 20 since 1965, when Sammy Ellis and Jim Maloney did it.Aroldis Chapman pitched the ninth for his 36th save in 38 chances.The Pirates went all-out to try to win the game, starting Gerrit Cole – their best September pitcher – instead of saving him for the playoffs. Cole did his part, giving up one run and six hits in seven innings and matching his career high with 12 strikeouts.After talking with team leaders, Hurdle decided to stay with his starting pitching alignment for the playoffs. That meant stick with Cole, who had won his last four starts.The right-hander had a tough first inning, giving up back-to-back singles by Negron and Brandon Phillips. Todd Frazier’s groundout made it 1-0.Cole went on a streak of retiring 19 of 20 batters, extending his run of impressive September pitching. Cole is 8-1 in 11 career starts during the month.The Reds played themselves out of contention by going 25-42 after the All-Star break, matching the club record for second-half futility. The 1933 team also had 25 wins after the All-Star game, the fewest in a non-strike season.Pittsburgh’s Josh Harrison went 0 for 4, ending his career-high 15-game hitting streak and hurting his chances for the NL batting title. He started the day at .318, a point behind Justin Morneau, but slipped to .315.TRAINER’S ROOMPirates: Catcher Jeff Russell missed a second consecutive game with a sore left hamstring. Backup catcher Chris Stewart left after Cueto’s bat hit his glove hand as he followed through on his single in the eighth.Reds: Center fielder Billy Hamilton sat out a fourth straight game with concussion symptoms. He set a club rookie record with 56 stolen bases.ON DECKPirates: Pittsburgh is 51-30 at PNC Park, tied with the Cardinals for best home record in the NL.___Follow Joe Kay on Twitter: read more

How to make an Arsenal fan angry in 60 seconds

first_imgIf you’re an Arsenal fan, this video probably isn’t for you.But, if you’re feeling daring, test your resolve and see how long you can last as we subject you to sixty seconds of embarrassing defeats, shocking signings and painful memories.If this was too much to bear, check out the same treatment for both Manchester United and Arsenal!For more of the best sports entertainment on YouTube, subscribe to talkSPORT here!last_img

Sun shines on Letterkenny as crowd turn out in high numbers for Parkrun – Pic Special

first_imgA large number of runners took part in this week’s Letterkenny Parkrun. 89 people took part in the morning run on Saturday.First home on Saturday Phillip O’Hare with Cian Friel second and Aaron Nepgen in third. The organisers would like to place on record their thanks to their volunteers and have encouraged more people to come forward.This week’s volunteers were: Aaron Nepgen, Anne Carr, Cathal Roarty, Conor McGlinchey, Helen Salmon, Jackie Ireland, Joanne Kearney, Liam Wiseman, Linda Cronin, Margaret O’Donnell, Pat McCarthy, Robert O’Brien, Seamus Murphy, Stephanie Tait, Theresa Wiseman(Photos: Letterkenny Parkrun Facebook)  Sun shines on Letterkenny as crowd turn out in high numbers for Parkrun – Pic Special was last modified: July 28th, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more