Day 1 Baltimore --> DC --> Alexandria- Rode about 60 miles to Alexandria, VA but spent a few miles going around D.C. Saw the monuments and the Vietnam Memorial and stuff I normally see just because I live locally.
My UMD triathlon teammate Kevin was our alumni rider and led us the whole way there.
We ran into a guy in DC who knew kinda who we were and handed us our first sticker of the journey.
First day fun day. Stayed at a church in Alexandria with some great food and a nice place to sleep at night. We came to realize what the 4K nightly routine would be of floor and a blanket and a sink to bathe in.
Day 2:To Warrenton, VALeaving Alexandria was rough but once we got out of the traffic of the overpass highways and such we had a great scenic route. I realized along the ride where we were and we started hitting the mountainous areas around Skyline. When we hit Warrenton I actually realized we were in an area I had been before with the Maryland Triathlon team. In the town there was a fantastic bike shop and they really came through when 2 wheels on our bikes became completely trash and bent completely (one due to human error on keeping the bike rack on the van) Stayed in a Church again in Warrenton, great cold room to sleep in and a kitchen. We hit up an aquatic center for showers which was the first shower in 2 days of riding. Guys reading at home you don't appreciate a shower until you ride nasty for 2 days in scorching sun and sweat and grime from the bike grease.
Day 3: To Charlottesville, VAThe toughest day so far in the journey about 71 miles of riding and LOTS of climbing. 3000 feet elevation gain. People were hurting and but people were fighting. I'm so proud of my team. I honestly had a few doubts but everyone fought through and overcame the hills. I was used to the skyline scenic area and hills and knew what we were in for but some didn't. Once again proud of my 30 other teammates. We ended up riding about 85 miles in my small group of 4 because we got off track and lost. I taught the small group how to cycle in a pace line and work some speed to catch up. It was fun and I do enjoy being the cycling mentor when it comes to learning the sport and learning what helps, like drafting a 6'6" big dude.
Day 4: Service at Emily Couric Clinical Cancer CenterWe made it on the news! We spent 5 hours in a cancer hospital delivering treatment bags and small hospitality gifts to patients and also doing some behind the scenes volunteer work with the cancer pamphlets and booklets and things.
The 4K team is really starting to bond and get a little weird. We are becoming a family rather quickly. Everyone gets along with everyone which is great. We are all here for a great cause and all are just in general good people.
Bike MechanicSo far good on being the bike mechanic. 2 Wheels have broken and been thrown out. The bike shop in Warrenton gave us 2 "garbage" wheels they had lying in the garage and I was able to true them for about 3-4 hours one night and get them working for the 2 ladies to ride the next day. So far they are holding up well. Been fixing minor problems with all the bikes. We have found out the wheels may not hold up well so we are taking extra care of those. I'm being real adamant every day about telling me what needs to be fixed and showing people how to clean and do their own minor stuff so I don't have to do it all. When we stopped into Bike Stop in Warrenton to have them look at wheels that were bent beyond my expertise they took a quick look at my bike and the stem so I can ride in proper position. It was really great to hear that my bike was "not bad" as the mechanic had his hands full with the others in the group :)))
There have definitely been some late nights and I've lost some blogging time because of it but I have not forgotten about my family, friends, and loved ones at home.