Friday, October 31, 2008

Friday Night Ride

Oh Man! This weather is so nice. Temps up in the 60's. As a native Minnesotan, I know that means we should be very afraid.
Appropriately for Halloween, I took the evil one out around Cedar, Calhoun and Lake Harriet. 14/14.5

Not Bike Related Scary Picture Warning

Grandpa and Grandson

Like Grandpa Like Grandson

It's Not Hair It's Fur Grrrrrrr!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Higher Temps, Higher Miles, Higher Speed

71 degrees and feeling fine! Did my Bloomington hill ride, and a few extra miles, just 'cause it was so nice out. Lots of smiling faces out there today. 36/17.5

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Another Turkey Sighting

Saw three wild turkeys along Minnehaha Parkway again tonight. Just like the last time I saw them they were right by Nicollet Ave bridge. I hope they're careful, it's getting close to Thanksgiving. 33/16.5

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

33 Again

Nice ride...nothing serious, with temps in the upper 40's, just my usual recovery route. 33/17.0

Monday, October 27, 2008

Took the day off the bike, just not feeling very good.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

That Was A Long Shower

Got up expecting it to be cloudy, windy and snowing, but it was sunny! I couldn't see a cloud. Yes! The weather guy got it wrong. No! The weather guy got it right. By the time I was on the bike the clouds had moved in. About half way to Wayzata the sleet started, with a mixture of rain and snow to keep it interesting. Actually the ride out to Wayzata was pretty good. The wind was tough, but we weren't really trying to beat it, so we just took what we could get. We were working so we stayed warm. The snow was a little rough on the face, but really it wasn't bad.
The ride home was different. Because we had the wind at our backs, we weren't working as hard and we didn't stay as warm, but the real issue for me was the rain. We got wet and at 40 degrees it got pretty unpleasant. Shoes got soaked through as did the gloves, so the hands and feet were pretty cold. A nice long shower and a little tomato soup, once home, melted all the cold away. It's unlikely I will get off the couch, or far from the warm glow of the TV for the remainder of the day.
Rode with fellow addicts, Amy and Chris. For the second day in a row Amy logged in more miles than me. I think I'm getting intimidated. 31/16.3

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Clouds to Sun

Pretty gloomy at the start of the ride. Just Amy and I headed west undaunted by the clouds and wind. By the time we got to Excelsior the Sun had erased the grey to reveal a royal blue sky. Apparently the wind was in on it too, increasing it's intensity to insure that there wasn't a cloud to be found, and satisfying it's fetish for a spic and span sky. Trees out of habit hopelessly held leaves that were soon flying free flopping aimlessly through an intense and naked sky. A few of the hold outs still had leaves with pale yellows and transparent oranges, but their days, if not hours, were numbered by the relentless wind. Rivers once crowded by trees overburdened with leaves and life, now seemed lonely as the stark paths they sojourned were revealed.
Our objective was to make it to Watertown where the wind would no longer be our master, but our servant, aiding our adventure by adding speed and power to our backs and legs. The ease and delight of an almost effortless flight was a deserved reward.
Wonderful conversation with deep breathes of real air, warming sun on our backs, and wheels singing insures that the adventure will be revisited. 78/18.5

Friday, October 24, 2008

Friday Evening Ride

Took the evil one out this evening, and rode around Calhoun and Cedar Lake, for a little less than an hour, while I was waiting for my made-from-scratch bread to complete the second rise.
Still and cool kept the ride pleasant and welcomed.

Fall's Foliage Fades On Cedar Lake Trail

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A Little Variety

It was nice to be out again, after being inside yesterday. I'd gotten a little chilled earlier in the day, so I was intent on being warm during my ride. I actually was a little worried about over-doing the layer count, but came home feeling just right, even with the hooded jersey on. I got a little adventurous tonight despite doing the same 33 miles that I've been doing lately. I did them in the opposite direction. I know, I'm a wild man. 33/16.6
Many are entranced by an economic worldview in which endless growth is not only possible, but also desirable. This ignores or denies the fundamental ecological reality that the Earth is an essentially closed system with limits to growth. Much of our activity seems ecologically destructive, and we disagree about what should be done to fix the problems we have created. Many of us think our own plan of action is the solution, but it seems possible that excessive human activity-in and of itself-is the basic problem.
The Earth needs to heal, and we cannot make it happen; frequently our efforts only deepen the wounds. But if we can relax our demand for material goods and reduce our rate of reproduction, the Earth might be able to heal herself. Perhaps we can find fulfillment in nonmaterial terms and learn what we seek we have always had.
Our culture is so focused on progress that we frequently don't experience our own lives just as they are here and now. But the world will always be exactly as it is in each moment. It's astonishing how much time and energy we expend in trying to deny this simple fact.
This doesn't imply passivity. Our visions and ideals are also part of this moment. Everything changes, no matter how slowly, and we can act to alleviate suffering. Yet if plans for the future are not balanced with acceptance and joy in this moment, just as it is, our lives go unlived. The challenge is to work with our lives as they are rather than imagine that things are different. If we can learn to soften our aversions and desires, our lives might become less frantic and more spacious.
One fundamental difficulty is that we do not directly perceive ourselves to be biological beings in a living world. The nonhuman world has become a sort of inanimate backdrop to our human affairs. Theoretically, we know we depend on the physical and biological systems of Earth, but experientially we are alienated from those systems. We treat the Earth as a stranger we should protect for pragmatic or ethical reasons, but until we individually begin to actually experience nonhuman creatures as family and the Earth as our home, we are unlikely to relax our demands for comfort and security or make the changes necessary for our survival, joy, and sense of belonging.
The felt experience of belonging to the ecosphere is psychologically and spiritually healing and may have profound implications for changing our destructive patterns of behavior.
-Robert Kull

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

No Coasting

Ironic! Today was the first day I could be on a bike that moves since my crash. So to celebrate I'm inside on the elliptical, after spending the last five weeks outside on bikes that move. Just too wet and cold. Wet I can handle and cold I've got no problem with, but combine the two and I start looking for excuses. Two hours and no coasting down hills, that's a bit of a work out. The scenery cassettes worth mentioning.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


A cool SE wind made tonight's ride a bit more of a workout. I was wearing more clothes than I have since April. 33/16.5

Monday, October 20, 2008

A Ton Of Sun

It's almost gotten trite, but it was another glorious day to ride. 33/16.7

Sunday, October 19, 2008


Lynne and I took our cross bikes out on the LRT trail to Victoria. Some of what we saw...

We stopped and harrassed Ron and Laurie, got some hot chocolate, and both admitted we didn't want to stop riding. Scenery, great company, seeing friends, sharing conversation, blue skies, warm temps and a tail wind home....nothing is better. 50/15.1

Saturday, October 18, 2008

From Solitude

It's always nice to ride with friends, and it looked like that would happen today, but it turned out to be a solo ride.
I don't have a very stressful life, but there is something about a 4+ hour ride in rural surroundings, that is vital to my mental and physical well being. Everything during my ride today was welcoming, reassuring, calming and explanatory. Maybe it's the chance to search the landscape and see where I come from, maybe it's the simplicity, the lack of city clutter, the ability to see as far as is possible. Answers, or clarification comes from somewhere during these rides. The exploration has wonderful rewards.
There are always great conversations when riding with friends. Today I had many enlightening conversations, with trees, farms, barns, sky, clouds, wind and rivers. 80/18.4

Friday, October 17, 2008

Beer Run

Rode to a happy hour, which turned into three, with the team. It's always good to see everybody. Maybe four miles round trip.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Been doing pretty much the same route every weekday since my crash. It's flat, mostly on trails or dedicated bike lanes, and just simple to ride. I'm worried I might get a little bored with it, because I'm doing it so often. I'm feeling great, but just not into bike route variety I guess. 33/16.9

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Nose and Apples

To be able to eat apples I've had to cut them up. Today was the first day since the crash that I could take a bite out of one. The pain of chewing something hard or crisp went away about a week ago. Apples have been particularly hard to eat because of my front top teeth. They got knocked around pretty good, and as soon as the swelling went down, they were loose. I had to be pretty careful biting the apple today, but I got the job done, without a knife, and without losing any teeth.
Nose blowing has also improved significantly in the last week. No pain, although still a little tender, it's nice to be able to launch a snot rocket, if I want to, but I'd never really do that.

Very nice ride tonight. It just felt right to be on my bike. You know 50's a little cool.


My oldest grand kid learned to tie his shoes today. Apparently he got it in 3 tries...quick like his grandpa.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I Am A Roadie

I loved being on my Orbea tonight. Most of my ride was spent wondering how I could ride a road bike all year long. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate my Axis and my Cannondale MTB, but they just aren't what I love. 33/16.7

Monday, October 13, 2008

A Cold Wet One

I started my ride while it was still raining, so I took my full fendered Axis out. The loop I did out to Hopkins, brings me back to my place, before I head east on the greenway. I was cold right away, and wasn't warming up, so as I looped back I stopped at my place and put on a warmer jacket, and a skull cap, which made a world of difference. Pretty wussy, I know, but it kept me out on the bike. Lots of wet leaves on the trail, so I played it safe and kept things slow, at least that's the excuse I'm using. 30/14.7

Sunday, October 12, 2008

A Day of Worship

No prayer, blessing, or service has ever stirred my soul as much as what I saw during my ride today.
Long Lake
Long Lake
Baker Reserve
Baker Reserve
Lake Minnetonka
Life is simply beautiful. Mine has been de-cluttered over the last two days. What's important? Not most of what we think.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Longest Since The Crash

Took off on the Gateway Trail and headed for Stillwater. The colors were fantastic, but a little beyond peak. At Stillwater I turned north and rode to Warner Reserve and then Marine on St. Croix. This is beautiful scenery any time of year, but the addition of fall colors to the landscape was awe inspiring. Navigated slowly out of the valley up Nason Hill and once again enjoyed sweeping landscapes full of color. I rode to White Bear Lake, Vadnais Lake and Lake Oswasso.

I stopped often and wasn't pushing it at all, and found I wanted to keep on riding when I pulled up to my place, but knew better. 90/17.8

Warner Reserve
Warner Reserve
Nason Hill
Vadnais Lake

Friday, October 10, 2008

Re: Your Head

Just did a short loop around Isles and Calhoun tonight. It sure has been a beautiful Fall.
I got a letter from my insurance company today, that started as follows:

Re: Your Head

Dear Mr. Russell

They went on and asked me a few questions about what caused my crash. I guess it was hard for them to believe that flowers were really to blame.

I got a kick out of the "Re: Your Head" part.


Thursday, October 9, 2008

A No Hill Hill Ride

Did my Bloomington hill ride, but avoided most of the hills. There are some fantastic colors out there. Fall's been very nice this year.

Nine Mile Creek
Minnesota River

One of these days I might start riding to train, but for now, I'm still recovering. That's my story and I'm sticking with it. 33/17.1

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Beautifully Slow

Saw Gordy on the greenway, and Jeff from the team at Nokomis.
I wanted to move slow and stop a lot today. 34/15.6

Ford Bridge Over The Mississippi
Minnehaha FallsFort Snelling State Park
Fort Snelling State Park

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Wet And Cool

Trails of leaves, and rain that washed the colors of those still on the trees made for a beautiful ride. The red Sumac , yellow Aspen, orange Maple and the green hold outs were delightfully overwhelming. Male and female Cardinals went almost unnoticed being drowned out by all the other colors. Canadian Geese were only visible in black and white, as rain drops collected on their backs, and fell unhindered to the ground. CX 22/14.9

Monday, October 6, 2008

Good Food Good Recovery?

I felt surprisingly good today. Usually my Monday recovery ride is tough, but not must have been the porterhouse, garlic mashed potatoes, and the tall Sam Adams that I had for dinner last night...oh and I think there were cheesey fries.
Oh yeah there was a chocolate tower thing too. 33/16.7

Sunday, October 5, 2008

LRT Trail To Excelsior

If yesterday was crisp, today was soggy.
It was raining when I woke up so I checked out the radar, and it looked like the rain might let up in an hour or so. I waited.
The rain did stop, but everything was still wet, so I decided to take out the Axis of Evil, and reacquaint myself with the trail to Excelsior.

Along The Trail

Lake Minnetonka

I stopped at Dunn Bros to grab some hot chocolate, and then went home, for a total of 28 miles. That really didn't work for me, although the ride was beautiful, I wanted some more miles. When I got home the roads were relatively dry, so I donned the road shoes, and took out the Orbea for another 17 miles.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


Days don't get much more beautiful than today. It started out crisp. Six of us rode along the Mississippi River to Woodbury and then headed east to Afton. Stopped for coffee and muffins, and just before rigor mortis set in we climbed back on our bikes and started the journey home, which lasted for maybe 3 minutes, as we had to stop and fix my flat. I've had very bad luck with flats this year.
There was really no complaining though. We found a safe and sunny spot to change the flat, and were quickly, once again, on our way.
A cool 50 degree temperature seemed delightful as the sun, my full length tights, and long-sleeved jersey kept the old body pretty cozy. We were moving at a heat generating pace that helped out as well.
Not a cloud in the sky, just a bit of a wind, that became our ally out of Afton, and people that I enjoy riding with, just made for the perfect day.
It was heard several times while riding today, "this is nice".
It feels so good to be on my bike and riding strong again. 81/18.7

Friday, October 3, 2008

Friday Night Get Away

Sumac on the greenway by my place.

Cedar Lake
Cedar Lake
Leaf and Sumac by Cedar Lake

I needed this tonight. 13/??

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Felt Good

Just a perfect early fall ride...temps in the low 60's, minimal wind and not a cloud in the sky.
I'm still recovering so I'm still doing my recovery route, but after tonight, I think I'll be willing to venture out on some of the other old stand-by routes. 33/18.0

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Rode with a couple of friends up into Theodore Wirth. We started in downtown at the Stone Arch Bridge, and rode into a pretty brisk NW wind. A little nippy out there today...53 degrees when I got home. I know on the other side of winter 53 is going to be hot, but today, before the blood has thickened, it was cold. It was great to ride with these guys. 41/16.9