Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Thoughts of biking to work so far...

So it finally happened. I am living the dream. I work at a place that is close enough to bike to work, and I do. Living in Southern California, it is extremely hard to live close enough to work. When I was in public accounting I practically lived in my car. My last job was less than 20 miles from my house and I was so excited. I thought that maybe I could bike to work there but unfortunately it was uphill the entire way and no showers were available. Also, I had to wear business formal everyday. Grr…. But I knew that one day I would make my goal come true and be able to bike to work.

My work now is a little less than 5 miles away with very few hills. Also, I get to wear jeans to work. Woohoo! While this change in my life is for the better, I am afraid like every other person out there who commutes via bicycle, I still have a few kinks to work out.

Some things I have noticed, need advice on, or need to change are as follows:

1. I pedal fast. I love going fast. Going fast makes me sweat. Showing up to work sweaty sucks. I need to slow down and take my time.

2. Part of my commute is over dirt and gravel. While I can just wash my bike and the dirt is gone, unfortunately my clothing is getting a little dusty during my ride to and from work. I need to figure out how to change this. Maybe bike in workout clothes and change at work?

3. I have a hybrid bike right now and am using hybrid road tires. While I love this bike and also use it with mountain bike tires, I am afraid it is not the best for commuting. I really want a road bike and to start training for a century ride, but I am also thinking I need a legitimate commuter bike with wheel/mud guards, a place for a pannier and a basket. Perhaps a cup and iPhone holder as well? I need something that will work on road and trail so a road bike is not the best option. What to do?

4. Speaking of panniers, I have no way to carry all of my crap as it is. I have a little tote bag that I am making into a makeshift backpack but that is really cumbersome and also, I don’t want to carry a backpack as it makes my back sweaty. I think I really need a bike that has utility and can carry my stuff. Also, I need to establish exactly what I am going to take to and from work.

5. So of course being in Southern California means that if you want to go to lunch you have a 98.4% chance of having to drive there (yes, I made that percentage up). While I pack lunch most days, people keep asking me to go out to lunch or are taking me out to get to know me more. I love going out to lunch with people. When we do I hate that I do not have a car with me to offer to drive. While no one has seemed to notice this yet, everyone knows it is curious to at least offer given the price of gas. I am thinking that I might just have designated days of biking and a designated day that I drive so that I can offer to drive when my car is there.

Anyway, these were just some thoughts I had…while riding my bike! I am open to questions, comments, recommendations, etc. And one day you too can live the dream and bike to work! (You know whom I am taking to.)

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Think About It Thursday

"Some people come into your life as blessings. Others come into your life as lessons." ~Mother Teresa

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

June Goals

Better late than never.  I actually just wrote down my goals for June this morning.  I realized I never posted my May goals, but here I am now with June.

1. Finish Bike 1,000 Challenge
I am trying to record my food and exercise on the LoseIt app and also decided to join a bunch of bike challenges on there.  One such challenge for June us to bike 1,000 minutes.  I did this (and more) in May and am confident I can do this in June as well.

2. Read "Around the World on Two Wheels: Annie Londonderry's Extraordinary Ride"
This book is written by Peter Zheutlin and is about this little known story of the first woman to travel around the world on a bicycle.  There is so much more to this story and I am hoping to do a blog post on the book once I have finished reading it.

3. Try one new main course from the Hemsley + Himself cookbook
I have been eating Paleo/Whole30/Autoimmune Paleo for a few months now and this cookbook has amazing tasting recipes that are healthy and look fantastic.  Did I mention they taste quite delicious as well?  I have made their version of Vietnamese Pho at least twice a week for the past couple of months.  The recipe is seriously addicting.  I wanted to expand my current meals I am making and try something new to help me stay inspired and motivated.  There is nothing worse than getting into a food rut.

4. Write letters to friends
This is something I started doing more last year and am trying to make it a habit.  I love getting letters in the mail.  It takes more time and thought to send them and makes me feel truly loved.  I wanted to share that with the people in my life as well.  Also, there is something about sitting down and writing that truly makes your deep thoughts come to light.  Give it a try, you might like it.

5. Spa Day
I think this speaks for itself.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Bicycle

I have been looking to upgrade my current set of wheels and have been looking high and low for inspiration.  I happened to be looking at pictures I took last year in Italy and came across this beauty.  It was sitting outside a cafe in Bordighera, Italy as I walked down the street and I had to take a few quick snaps of the bike.

Enjoy the bike art!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Brewery Art Walk in LA

A few months ago I learned of this really cool art walk in LA that happens twice a year.  The gist of the walk is that there is an artist colony that took over an old brewery and twice a year there is an event in which the public can come and walk around the artist lofts and admire and maybe even purchase some original artwork. (Check out The Brewery Art Walk)

As you might remember, one of my goals for 2015 was to attend more arts and culture events and I am glad to say that another one can be checked off the list.

I met my friends Kyle and Lisa up in LA for the event and had a great time exploring the lofts and interpreting the artwork.

Parking was quite interesting... there were a lot of people there but I managed to score a spot in the lot that UPS was generously allowing visitors to park in.

I canvased the layout while waiting for Lisa and Kyle and spotted the beer station and fun restaurant nestled in the center of the  "campus" of artist lofts.  All that to say, I was doing the Whole 30 detox so I was not able to partake in the food and libations, next time for sure!  Also, apparently the location is very close to where Pocky sticks are manufactured and there were hundreds of boxes around with people munching on them.  The landscaping was water-wise with succulents, cactus, and sparse landscaping.  It said, "yes we love plants but we also know California is in a major drought."  I loved it!

The vibe was relaxed and interested.  People who were there seemed to genuinely want to see that art and were not just there to pass the afternoon, although I am sure that would be fun too.  (There are not too many photos of inside the studios as a lot of places ask not to take pictures.)

My first stop was to a gallery that boasted abstract oil canvas pieces (my favorite).  I was able to talk with the artist herself about the meaning and inspiration behind a few of her pieces, but after I had made my own interpretation first.  After all, art is how you interpret it, not what other people tell you to think.

If you are ever in the area, you should check this place out.  I am definitely going to the next event as well.  Check out their website HERE for details.

I bought these three cards and am going to frame them.