Try to guess what I ate for breakfast each day this weekend. Man, do I love pancakes.
Today’s Personal Project
Start my push to weigh fewer than two hundred pounds by year’s end.
Today’s Daily Challenge
Do a mini-meditation: Find a quiet spot, close your eyes, and focus on your breath for five minutes.
Meditation can give you a sense of calm when you’re feeling overwhelmed by demands at work, dealing with stressful situations at home, or juggling a long to-do list. Just taking a few moments to yourself and focusing on something as simple as your breathing can put you in a more relaxed frame of mind. Neuroscientists have even seen the brain waves change in people who are meditating – there is less activity in the stress-prone parts of the brain and more activity in the calmer areas!
I need to do this. I’m really high-strung right now and could use some meditation in my life.
Pancake breakfast Number One occurred Friday morning as I took off for Brevard, North Carolina. After stopping at QT for cash and gas I stopped into The Original Pancake House for breakfast. I consumed the better part of four pancakes with whipped cream and peach slices (I gave myself credit for three pancakes eaten because I didn’t come close to finishing the fourth.) It was a great day to start the morning.
With the exception of seeing a handful of people get pulled over by the police the drive from Atlanta to Brevard was fairly uneventful. I stopped at the Nike outlet up on I-85 looking for cycling tights (Did you know that Nike makes no cycling clothes, nor does any of the other sporting good brands which have retail presence in that “outlet” mall?) and walked out of the store with some running tights (which I didn’t even wear since the weather wasn’t as cold as I feared it would be). I also stopped at two different grocery stores in northern South Carolina for essentials (read “beer, water, ice, snacks”) and failed to pick up coffee.
I was the first to arrive at the Black Forest Family Campground (somebody needs a website update!) and waited around for the rest of the campers — ITP-Readers Lisa and Randy with their two sons, and ITP-Readers Laura and Bob with their son — to arrive. There was a near-complete lack of cell phone service there but the place has wifi, thus I was able to communicate the lack of pizza ordering we expected to be available for Friday night to Lisa via Skype and they picked up some pizzas for the group’s consumption. It was a much-welcome sight as I’d eaten nothing more than a snack bar since breakfast.
After trying mightily we (read “I” because I’ll be assigning fault) finally got a fire started and the group relaxed as much as three sub-seven-year-old boys would allow us. After putting the boys to bed the adults sat around the campfire and recounted our wilder, hashing, days. The night came to an end shortly after we were “shhh”ed after “Quiet Time” began. I guess we were having too much fun. 😉
Pancake breakfast Number Two occurred at the home of Bob’s mother. Bob and I woke fairly early and took off on a chilly and challenging (at least for me) roughly forty-two mile ride from the campground to his mother’s house and back.
At her house we were served eggs, pancakes, and bacon (no entirely-vegetarian weekend for me because I couldn’t resist the lure of bacon.)
The ride was long (read “slow”, at least the uphill parts), and while it was not nearly as long as ITP-Reader Barb’s adventure this weekend the climb up to Caesar’s Head State Park was challenge enough for me. I believe that I used up one of my nine lives early on the initial descent as I took a bad line going around a very sharp turn and was on the wrong side of the road as a van approached. Luckily for me I was able to pull it around and the van was able to slow down, and another serious bike-car altercation was avoided. Needless to say I was “Paulie Pump The Brakes” and made sure to hold my line as I made the rest of the descent.
In addition to my failure my technology also let me down. A lack of cell service made the MapMyRide app useless, and the battery in my Garmin Forerunner 305 gave up about sixteen miles into the ride.
Oh, and I suffered another flat. DANGEN! Shortly before my watch battery died we were riding along SC11 and I heard a rhythmic sound. Clink. Clink. Clink… I didn’t know whether the noise was coming from my bike or Bob’s (who did yeoman’s work leading the way the entire ride — I just didn’t have the juice to lead.) so I started to slow down. As I slow the repetition of the noise also slowed. Conclusion, I was fucked at the drive-thru again! Soon the noise went away and soon after that I felt the literal sinking feeling of a back tire flatting. On the side of the South Carolina road Bob and I performed a NASCAR-style pit stop and changed out my tube after I found the piece of metal which was responsible for causing the noise and puncturing the tire and tube. I wonder, I’m riding 700×23 tires, should I be riding wider rubber?
The ride made me appreciate (read “envy”) the skill of professional riders. I suffered mightily on a six-mile Cat 1 climb, stopping briefly at the end of each mile to recover; the pros can do that climb multiple times, wake up, and do it all over again.
Bob and I (I know that’s correct!) returned to the campground about fifteen minutes too late at least according to the note left on the Jackmobile (more on “him” tomorrow) which told us that the rest of the gang headed out for a hike to Hooker’s waterfall. So Bob and I did what came naturally to us, we sat down and had a few beers while we waited for the hikers to return.
The entire troop headed into town to eat dinner at a local Mexican restaurant called Tres Cabelleros. I was ready to switch from beer to have a margarita, and to return to eating vegetarian meals, by eating a large order of vegetarian fajitas since I “earned” it. The food was delicious, but we found out the hard way that the restaurant is situated in a dry county.
ITP Flickr Pic
I took no photos.
That area of the world is actually quite picturesque (during the “Golden Hours”).
Shame on me.
Pancake breakfast Number 3 was the pancake breakfast sold at the campground. After breakfast the gang let the kids run themselves tired and then we went back an packed up camp.
After camp was packed up we all went our separate ways again. I wound up stopping at a Chinese buffet (I have a problem) somewhere near Seneca, South Carolina (in my defense it was 1:00pm and this was one of the first restaurant that I saw along SC11 since I hopped on it near Caeser’s Head). The journey ended shortly after 4:00pm. After unpacking the car (but unfortunately not also putting everything into its proper storage place) I sat my butt on the couch and watched the Falcons game.
The Part Not About Pancakes
Overall the weekend was a smashing success, without any literal smashing. The weather was perfect, no rain, warm in the daytime, cool-but-not-cold at night, and cool enough to warrant a campfire. It was great to see good friends again, sit around, and catch up.
Many thanks to Bob for being patient along the ride and helping me with the flat. I won’t go as far to say that I couldn’t have done the ride without him (I am very stubborn, you know) but his support and willingness to stop along the steep ascent helped immeasurably.
It was good to “get away” (as much as having wifi access allows). I thought of work sparingly and will be diving headlong back into the project today.
And How Was Your Weekend?
Barb, from Bob’s Facebook feed I heard you made it to Anniston (and a wedding? ;)). How was the second half of your ride?
Anyone hear anything from the Hartwell campout? There’s usually some drama up there…
What else went on? Any Music Midtown attendees?
Stats & Goals
Current Mood – Nervous, hoping that something will work out. Also, feeling a little sniffly this morning probably due to being ill-prepared for cooler nights.
Current Music – listening to last week’s “Systematic” podcast
Website Of The Day – On my ride Saturday morning I sported my Schaefer Beer jersey. I was unaware that Schaefer is now a Pabst Brewing beer since Pabst bought Stroh’s (who bought Schaefer).
Mode Of Transportation To Work – my car
Exercise (b)Log – Saturday = cycling, ~42 miles
Morning Weigh-In – 204.8 pounds. Looks as if I overcompensated for my calorie burn on Saturday.
Foot Mileage – ~70.2 miles
Wheel Mileage – ~92.0 miles
Pushups – 0
Situps – 0
Stairs – 0 flights
Days Of Bed-Making – 1 (!)
Vegetarian Meals – 36
Carnivorous Meals – 26
Pancakes Eaten – 12
Marta Rides To Work – 0
Bike Rides To Work – 0
– Wear “nice” clothes to work at least twice a week, if for no other reason than to have people wonder why I am dressing up. New!
– Eat no fewer than forty-five vegetarian meals
– Take at least one load of stuff from my house to Goodwill
– Take unused electronics to recycling center
– Post at least ten new photos during the month
– Lose at least two pounds (net weight loss)
– Finish two books (audio or otherwise, comic books do not qualify)
– Not to get sick for the entire month
– Exercise for thirty minutes no fewer than twenty days
– Ride no fewer than 100 miles
– Walk (or run) no fewer than 100 miles
– Do no fewer than 750 sit-ups
– Do no fewer than 300 push-ups
– Read a non-techincal book
2012 Goals [will be a little less fluid than last year]
– Get my weight under 200 pounds, or at least whittle myself back down to where wearing a 36″ pant size is comfortable
– Completely read ten books, audio books permissible
– Run Sharpened Stone as a real business
– Save $500 for the sole purpose of donating to charitable organizations of my choice
– Attend at least one professional photography workshop
– Ride in no fewer than five 50 mile or 50K bike rides
– Run in no fewer than one one 10K
– Submit at least one application under the name “Sharpened Stone” to Apple’s iOS store
– Restore the ITP Estate to a condition where it can be put up for sale at any time
– Buy a new iPhone (iPhone 5?),
a new iPad (iPad 3?), and MacBook Air [look, not all goals have to be altruistic]
– Continue backing up all data, including the off-site storage
– Become a proficient and profitable programmer in Objective-C
– Do not create a solution for something which is not a problem
– Eat smaller portions
– Start, and continue, to make my own bread using my bread machine as well as using the technique outlined in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking
– Read and discard magazines during the month in which they arrive (even digitally)
– See more live concerts than I did in 2011
– Eat more pancakes
– Drive/Fly somewhere for a real vacation
Books I’ve Read/Heard In 2012
- Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me — Mindy Kahling
- Flotsametrics and the Floating World: How One Man’s Obsession with Runaway Sneakers and Rubber Ducks Revolutionized Ocean Science — Curtis Ebbesmeyer
- God, No! — Penn Jillette
- The Elephant to Hollywood — Michael Caine
- Here Comes Trouble — Michael Moore
- How We Decide — Jonah Lehrer
- Steve Jobs — Walter Isaacson
- Death of a Salesman (Penguin Plays) — Arthur Miller
- Fahrenheit 451 — Ray Bradbury
Great to see you and the Beebe clan over the weekend. The kids had a great time and are worn out, i call that a successful weekend.
Kudos on your flat fixing experience, I have ridden with a few people that a flat tire is a 20 minute stop. It should only take 5 or 10. And trust me, those stops climbing up Caesers head were not all for you 😉 that damn hill just wouldn’t quit. the 40MPH descent back to camp was fun though.
Congratulations on a tough ride Paulie and Bob. I told Debbie I thought you had taken MTB’s but I guess not.
I got on the road Saturday morning at 8 for a quick 25 and met Debbie down at the County Line Cafe in Luthersville (where the password on the wireless is meatloaf- no joke). We listened to Car Talk, expecting it to be the final live installment but it seems not to have been. I believe there may have been some false advertising…
Saturday evening I cooked for 150 of my closest friends on the Games committee- a larger than normal gathering which is hopefully indicative of the Games themselves.
Sunday, Debbie’s folks and brother came over and we dropped what was left of the Bradford pear. Not without raising the “pucker factor” as I was pulling with the tractor and started spinning the wheels at the “moment of truth”. I had pulled all I coud and I think just waited on a helpful gust of wind to finish the job- which thankfully came.
Barb, an outstanding job this weekend. I’m jealous.
Paulie- this is your first flat in how long? And it sounds like you hit something sgnificant, so a wider tire would still be just as flat.
I haven’t flatted recently because I haven’t ridden much recently, though I’ve had about five flats in the last year. I even changed out the rear tire after flatting on the GA400 ride, but the small chunk of metal over which I rode defeated the newer tire.
I expected Bob to clear the path of debris, but that selfish Sonnabitch just seemed to miss everything.
I had 700×25 on the old bike, still got flats…but many the tiny tires on the new bike scare me.
It was a great weekend. I met up with Sarah and Sal Saturday to join them on part of the journey to Alabama. The only hitch in my ride was I forgot to grab my water bottles…oh well, it was only 42 miles and not hot at all. There were enough working fountains on my ride that I was okay.
Sunday was trail running at Sweetwater Creek, 12 miles, I think my friend is ready for MMM. We will see if she is still my friend after we finish.
Right now I’m sitting in the waiting room at the Ford dealership, having the Ecapes transmission checked out. I’m at almost 30K, time for the tranmission flush (or whatever it is called)…but my last oil check the mechanic thought the fluid smelled a little burnt. Anyway, I’m sitting in the ‘quite’ waiting room with some redneck that wont stop yammering into his phone…well at least he’s waiting for someone to come and get him.
I have to admit, I’m more of a waffle than pancake gal, pancakes just never seem to be as satisfying as I think they will be but waffles never let me down.
Camping sounded fun, we might have to join you for the next outing.
Would you go back to that campground?
Well – since I’ve never had a real desire to do a century, this weekend was interesting. Since we started 10 miles into the SCT, we only did 90 on Saturday, but really, the actual trail is only 95 (if any of you are wondering). since we had 5 miles into Anniston to our hotel.
and – Steve Brady was WRONG, it wasn’t all flat, it was quite hilly (in comparison to the rest of the trail) from Rockmart to Cedartown.
It was fun, we stopped alot – taught Sal & Sarah & Ray how to ride with beer stops, the funk truck did it job well keeping the beer cold. Allan is the Sherpa to end all Sherpas, that bob trailer had to have weighed 30-40 lbs after Sal & Sarah added their stuff in Cedartown. That is where Ray started. Trashy Mtn sucked he said, as did the hills to get into Anniston. I don’t think he will want to carry everyone’s stuff again. Sarah pulled the bob on Sunday for about 15 miles, until she had a flat. It was a good one, slash on the sidewall that needed the dollar bill trick, so Allan decided she shouldn’t keep pulling, just in case.
Allan’s mom & dad said they wanted to come meet us with a “feed zone” on Sunday. First we had decided on Rockmart, but then moved it up to Cedartown, as we were moving slower that we thought we were going to be……. shockng, huh? We decided to call it a day there, only 48 miles, but we had dinner plans & I just tired of the bike saddle, if you know what I mean. YOU really need to spend time in the saddle to prepare for this ride.
Anyway- we may do it again, may not, its checked off the list of things to do….. the right group might convince me to do it again, it was fun.
Good on ya, Barb!
I’d go back to that campground, especially now that I know the surrounding area is in a dry county (read “I can prepare better” ;)).
I think the cost of the (smallish) camping space was $27/night but each site had water and electricity, and we were very close to the wifi router. The bathrooms were kept clean and they had hot water with INCREDIBLY refreshing water pressure in the showers. Also, the people running the place seemed friendly and they had a little convenience store and sold wood in addition to having pancake breakfasts ($6 with three pancakes, sausage patties, fruit, and coffee) on Saturday and Sundays.
Whoa!!! The campground cooked breakfast?? Wow… that sounds like a return trip for sure.
And Barb, I only assumed the trail wasn’t hilly as it was supposed to be old railway right of way- I’ve never seen a train climb a hill (much). I’m sure it was a good break for your “saddle”.
A good time was had by all this weekend. Thanks again to Paulie and the Knolls for driving up to NC for the weekend. The campground is a lot of fun. In addition to the amenities Paulie mentioned, they also have a pool that is open until around Labor Day, a playground for the kids and a large open field with volleyball and badminton nets, tetherball and that game where you toss a ball in the top and receive points based on which hole the ball exits from. We couldn’t have asked for better weather or better company!
See you in a month for LEAF, Paulie.
Steve – I just have to joke about it not being flat – because I found out that the section between Rockmart & Cedartown is not on the Railroad right of way. They for some reason couldn’t get the rights, so they had to come up with their own route. It is very different than the rest of the trail, part of it is right next to hwy 278.
Oh, and I forgot to metion a headwind all the way to & thru Alabama, but was it still there for a tailwind on Sunday, of course not, dead air……..
how can Brevard be in a dry county, has something changed? We bought beer there many times when camping at Davidson River.
I’m guessing, Barb, that where The Comet couldn’t get the RoW was probably still an active line. Good call, I’d say.
I noticed the wind picked up yesterday afternoon- right about the time we were cutting down that tree!!
Maybe we didn’t get all the way into Brevard to eat at Tres Cabelleros? All I know is that the man informed us that there was no place that sold alcohol nearby.