Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Quote for the day: "We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give." Winston Churchill

Only 41.3 miles, but it's a start. We dipped the tire at Huntington Beach after driving from Turlock and I was on my way up the Santa Anna River Trail to Corona. I had a tailwind and the ride was enjoyable after some hectic final preparation. Tomorrow we head for the desert. I want to especially thank the men and staff of Teen Challenge who held a very special prayer service on Monday afternoon for Cindy and me. Also my best friend, Randy Fiorini, was able to participate through a speaker phone. It was so special and Cindy and I were very moved by it all. Randy read some verses from Isaiah 41 that especially blessed me. He has supported me in every way possible way in this project. Thanks Randy!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Quote for the day: "A man wrapped up in himself makes a very small bundle." Benjamin Franklin

Today (Sunday) Cindy & I are traveling back from Louisiana as we were visiting family. We drove a 25 mile section of the route from Woodland to Tangipahoa in eastern Louisiana. It was getting dark and kind of hard to find the route, but I think I'll be OK on the bike. The heat is severe with 95+ degrees and high humidity. It gets light a little later (5:30 am) and it warms up quick. Monday I have work and Tuesday we are on our way. Time to "saddle up".

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Quote for the day: "Sacrifice. Work. Self-discipline. I teach these things and my boys don't forget them when they leave." Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant

I had a nice ride today totalling 151 miles at an average of 17.0 mph while riding. That's probably my best overall performance in the preparation. Temperatures got to 100 in our area according to weather reports, but it didn't feel that hot to me. I did cramp at a couple of rest stops, but was able to continue without problems. That will be the last long ride before the trip begins next Tuesday. Both my brothers in North Florida report 100 degree Florida heat which is a whole different ball game.

Playing Southeastern Conference college football in the South in the early fall could be a challenge in the heat. My senior year at Mississippi State we were able to beat powerhouses Georgia and LSU. We were also able to have a big win over our arch rival, Ole Miss and we gave Florida all they wanted for 3 quarters before wilting in the "Swamp" in Gainesville. But we could do nothing with the team 75 miles to the east in Tuscaloosa, Alabama coached by a man named "Bear" Bryant. His presence on the field had to be worth a 2 touchdown advantage. They had some of their best years in the early 70's and we never got close the 3 years I played them. My sophomore year I faced consensus All-American Guard John "Hog" Hannah. He was very gracious after the easy win for Alabama having been quoted saying I beat him a couple of times out there. He went on to be an outstanding pro with the New England Patriots. I believe he is in the NFL Pro-Football Hall of Fame. He was one of the first 300 pound linemen that could really move.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Quote for the day: "I saw the angel in the marble and I carved until I set him free." Michelangelo

Today I got official word that this event would be sponsored by PowerBar. That's great news! Special thanks to my friend, Steve for putting me in contact with the area representative, Michelle, and for Michelle's quick and effective work in making this happen. We are very fortunate to be accepted this late in the process and I'm looking forward to benefiting and telling others about the great products from PowerBar. I am told that the electrolyte mix they have is second to none and we all know how good those PowerBars are!

We are over the $10,000 mark in pledges and contributions for the Coast to Coast ride. There is still time to pledge or contribute to helping San Joaquin Valley Teen Challenge. As a board member it is so gratifying and encouraging to see people contribute to working with people who recognize their struggle and are willing to work with the staff and take the steps to have victory over addiction. Teen Challenge receives no government funding and most of the students have no means to pay tuition. No student who qualifies for our program is ever turned away for lack of funds. It costs us over $2000 per student each month to keep the program going. We currently have about 45 students. This non-denominational faith based program is effective and we need your help.

I put in a more recent picture of me in my new uniform.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Quote for the day: "It is the cause and not the death that makes the martyr." Napoleon Bonaparte

Did a 3 hour early ride at sunup today and made over 50 miles. I had work and errands later on. We got the PowerBar logo on the blog. I'm hoping they will be able to get me some supplies, etc. Teen Challenge had their annual golf tournament today, but I wasn't able to go. I hope they had a good turnout. I showed up at Faith Home Ranch at Teen Challenge tonight and got some of the students to help me as I performed artificial insemination on one of our cows, Anna Belle. It was quite an education for some of those men from inner city areas that have not been exposed to agriculture.

If any body out there has a set of carbon aero bars they could loan me for the trip (about a month), let me know. I pulled out an old metal set I forgot I had and they really helped this morning when I hit some headwinds. They are pretty heavy though. I will be leaving on June 30 (that's next Tuesday). Tomorrow I'll meet with Roger Williams at TC Ranch and we'll update each other on the pledges and contributions.

We're going with some "Theme" music this time.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Quote for the day: "Better to fight for something than to live for nothing." General George S. Patton

One last Fathers Day story. There were 4 boys in my family raised together in the late 50's and early 60's. No hi-tech toys back then. But we had a hi-tech Dad who was a skilled engineer and craftsman. He designed and made for his boys a self propelled cart with a small engine: "The Pee Wee Tractor". We had the best Dad in town.

Special thanks to my daughter-in-law Shannon and my son Micah for their assistance in helping Cindy and me get the map on the blog. It is at the bottom. I will explain it later. I am also working with a representative from PowerBar who may be a sponsor.

I was able to make 142 miles on Saturday and be finished by 3 pm. That would be a great day on the trip. I would like to string several days in a row like that across the country. I took today(Sunday) off. Cindy took me for an early dinner at "Cool Hand Lukes". Good stuff; baby back ribs!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Quote for the day: "Obedience to lawful authority is the foundation of manly character" Robert E. Lee

We're going to have some Fathers Day music. I'm bringing back the "Small Town Southern Man" in honor and memory of my late Dad, Hurst Webb. He demonstrated many of the traits and more in the song (he had 4 boys instead of girls). Another Alan Jackson song that might bring back good memories is "Daddy Let Me Drive". What a picture in a song. Last we have Harry Chapin's "Cat's in the Cradle and the Silver Spoon". I put this one in for the younger dads. Pay attention to this song because time just flies by!

I was able to cycle 141 miles on Thursday. It was a full day up to Oakdale then on up in the foothills toward Copperopolis and back through Farmington, Ripon on down through Grayson, Patterson and back to Turlock. It's getting warmer.

Have a great Fathers Day all you dads out there!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Quote for the day: "Those who live by the sword will die by the sword" Jesus Christ

Well, I changed the picture again. I am about to run out of football pictures. This one is for 2 good friends of mine who happen to be Raider fans. David Wright, President of the Teen Challenge and Faith Home Boards and Frank Silva of New Life Christian Center who along with his wife, Chris, head up the 2nd Saturday ministry at New Life. Guys, I did get Carl Garrett down on this play. Don't I look mean!?

Well, less than 2 weeks and I'll be on the road across the USA. I've been working my veterinary job and have not been on the bike for a few days. I look forward to a good, long ride on Thursday. I am so looking forward to getting the ride started.

Today I met with the Modesto East Rotary. They were a smaller Rotary, but very interested and supportive of the ride. We have some great service clubs in our area. I get to speak at the Early Morning Friday Kiwanis this week also.

We hope to get the map up soon.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Quote for the day: "You can observe a lot just by watching." Yogi Berra, New York Yankees.

I wanted to change the music some so I asked Cindy to pick some music that she would like to put on the blog. So these are the songs that reflect her heart right now as we get ready for this journey. She has a big part in helping make this trip happen. I am so blessed to have someone who always thinks of me first.

I went to the very top of Del Puerto Canyon Road at the Santa Clara County line today. That last 4-5 miles was a 'killer" (straight up). I definitely hit the anaerobic stage that I try to avoid as my heart rate got up into the high 170's for a long period as I got toward the top. The ride back down was "marvelous". I need to do that climb another time or 2 before I leave.

Friday night at Northside Assembly of God Church in Turlock was the Teen Challenge Graduation for 2009. 16 men were recognized for completing the program. 3 others were recognized for advanced training completed in the Teen Challenge programs. Each one of these graduates was asked to share the length of their addiction and the most important thing they learned in the program to help them. It was amazing to hear these men share! We got to witness the fruit and it is something special. The 30 or so other men in the program that were in attendance received much encouragement from the graduates as they look forward to completing the program, graduating, and having a changed life. The years of addiction overcome by this class were more than 200 with one student having victory after 40 years of addiction! The graduation was well attended by friends and family of the students; board members and staff; and friends and supporters of Teen Challenge.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Quote for the day: "The worst thing about new books is that they keep us from reading the old ones." John Wooden, UCLA basketball coach

Today I did 123 miles. It was a good variety of riding and would represent a good, hard, day that I might face. I left home about 5:45 AM and went to Oakdale, Jamestown, LaGrange, and back by Turlock Lake to Hickman then out Montpelier Road to Delhi and back home. I faced some hills and some wind. We'll see how I feel tomorrow. I have a full days work to do.

Teen Challenge got its start from Rev. David Wilkerson a minister from Pennsylvania, coming to New York City ministering to the gangs in the late 1950's. A movie was made about the development of Teen Challenge: "The Cross and the Switchblade" that starred Pat Boone and Eric Estrada. The ministry took off from there with involvement from the Brooklyn Tabernacle in New York and then to other metropolitan areas. Teen Challenge International headquarters are located in Springfield, MO.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Quote of the Day: "Fatigue Makes Cowards of Us All" Vince Lombardi

I hope that I am as prepared as I can be to make this ride. I know I need to do the basics, fluids, heart rate monitoring, etc. I need to be alert, but stay lose and enjoy the ride. I met a man at Turlock Rotary today who had done 2 cross country rides at a more leisurely pace than I am attempting and he suggested that I make sure to talk to the people I meet along the way. I'll try to do that. There was a great group at Rotary that really encouraged me as I shared some about my football career and then about the trip. It is always a joy for me to share about Teen Challenge.

A couple of things to share about the music. I added "Ride Like the Wind" by Christopher Cross. This was suggested by a friend, thanks ( I do take requests). Also, an error that I have regarding the William Tell Overture is that we have the incorrect composer listed. My brother, Lee, informs me that Rossini is the correct composer, not Mozart. I guess the "Playlist people" let this slip as did I. Thanks Lee, let's give credit where it is due.

I'm getting anxious. I'd better go "Ride like the wind"

Monday, June 8, 2009

Quote for the day: "Excuses are for losers; Commitment is for winners." Monte Clark, Head Coach SF 49ers, Training camp 1976

I get tired of having to do all the "stuff" we have to do to live. It sure must have been nice for Adam in the Garden. He and Eve didn't know they had it so good. At times I feel like I am in the garden, but at other times it seems more like hell. I would like to take my Bible and Cindy and just go up in the mountains for a few days. Maybe we'll do that after this trip. The training for the "ride" is going ok. I only cycled only 56 miles between work that we did today. I feel pretty good physically. We had a great response at church Sunday with people filling pledge cards out and asking questions and mostly encouraging me. We have several "big time" bikers that race and compete. They were mostly the quiet type, but you could tell their passion for cycling very soon in the conversation. What a good way to connect.

I have a new football picture up. This one is from a game in the mid-70's against the Vikings on a Monday night in San Francisco. The guy I am chasing is Fran Tarkenton. He was one of the most elusive quarterbacks that I played against. Some said he had "eyes in the back of his head". He did not, however, have eyes in the side of his head as I was able to get my hands on him and bring him down.

Tuesday I speak at Turlock Rotary on behalf of Teen Challenge. I have several friends that are members and that Rotary has been very supportive of Teen Challenge. It should be a good time.

Friday, June 5, 2009

I've Been Busy

Quote of the day: "Excellence that feels it has to be has proclaimed, by the mere fact of its proclamation admits the doubt of its existence." CleoMae Dungy (Tony Dungy's mom)

Sorry it's been several days since I've posted. It has been a busy week for our work plus I've gotten in some good rides. Also, this week I got an appointment with a local chiropractor that goes to my church and we have become friends, but I needed his professional help and it is already benefiting me. Up until his help, I could ride hard for about 25 miles and be fine, but after that I would get a sharp pain in my left lower back and have to fight through it. Dr. Dave Atkinson was able to find the source and treat it and today I did a century ride with no pain at all. Thanks Dr. Dave. Thanks God for using Dr. Dave! Today's ride took me back up to Diablo Grande golf course. I encountered my first rattlesnake on the road this season, probably a 4 year old by looking at his rattles. He was about 3 feet long. He probably was on the road for warmth as the day was cool. I gave him all the road he wanted (and some more). The century (100) mile ride was the fastest I have done to date. Conditions were excellent after the rain showers early in the morning.

Roger Williams informed me we have 49 pledges or contributions so far with $7125.00 pledged and $1895.00 of that already received. I am overwhelmed and encouraged. I thought of those often during my ride today and I'm sure it gave me extra energy. Cindy and I will be at a table after each service this coming Sunday and next Sunday at New Life Christian Center (our home church) in Turlock to give information about the ride to those interested. Pastor Dave Larson, who is a biker himself, has been very supportive in this effort. We are thankful.

I added a "quote for the day". We'll see how long I can keep that going. Today's quote is from the mother of the great football coach (and my former teammate) Tony Dungy. Think about the quote from the mother of a man who demonstrates "Quiet Strength"