Archive for the ‘Cycling’ Category

November? Feels like May!

Sunday, November 13th, 2016

Today’s ride was the usual out to Winters. It was glorious out! It is hard to believe that this is November – it feels more like May.

I love my Colnago!

I love my Colnago!

I love my sunscreen!

… and my sunscreen …

I love this view!

… and how could you not love this view?

I hope you’re out and about enjoying some of this lovely weather. I’m looking forward to a group ride tomorrow. I hope I can keep up … if not, I’m familiar with the roads, so … at least I won’t be lost!

Autumn Days

Saturday, November 12th, 2016

It is an absolutely stunning weekend here!

Absolutely stunning day for a ride. Don't you agree?

Oooh, look at those Autumn colors. Reminds me of home.

That was yesterday. Now time to get out there and ride today!

Weekends Are For Cycling!

Monday, November 7th, 2016

This was a wonderful weekend for cycling. Saturday’s weather was perfect – not too warm, not too cold, not too windy. I rode with a friend from Vacaville out towards Lake Berryessa and up Cardiac Hill.

Saturday's ride ... Cardiac Hill-bound. It's been too long.

Saturday’s ride … Cardiac Hill-bound. It’s been too long.

We saw some beautiful countryside and I enjoyed having company on the ride. I got just over 70 miles total for the day, with a little bit of much needed climbing.

I headed out for a shorter, solo ride this morning.

A lovely *pop* of color!

The overcast sky made for nice lighting to catch this *pop* of color.

Today’s ride was a bit more mellow – just about 30 miles of gentle rollers on Pleasants Valley Road. It was a lovely ride except for a (thankfully) brief encounter with an inexcusably rude group of guys in a large SUV. That was a bit alarming … I’ve been cycling solo out here for years and this was one of the very few times I have experienced something like this.

We've had a little rain recently and it's nice to see some green for a change.

We’ve had a little rain recently and it’s nice to see some green for a change.

All  in all, it was a beautiful Autumn day for a ride. I’m so thankful to have this bike …

I love my Colnago!

I love my Colnago!

Here’s wishing you a wonderful week! I hope you have the chance to get outside and get a few miles in!

Love Me Some Oats!

Sunday, November 6th, 2016

The perfect pre-ride breakfast for a cool, cloudy morning.

Steel-cut oats with non-fat Greek yogurt, pomegranate, walnuts, and just a touch of pure maple syrup.

Steel-cut oats with non-fat Greek yogurt, pomegranate, walnuts, and just a touch of pure maple syrup.

Oats are a powerhouse of complex carbohydrates, have a low glycemic index, and will give you long-lasting energy for your ride. They’re gluten-free and easy to digest. Enjoy!

A Little Rain … A Little Party …

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016

Sunday we had quite the little storm. I grabbed a quick ride in the morning and then came home to cook for a housewarming party (finally!)

Sunday morning, October 30th, near Pena Adobe Park.

Sunday morning, October 30th, near Pena Adobe Park.

A few friends came over on Sunday for a housewarming party. We had a fabulous meal.

Lynda brought some yummy mushroom brie and crackers.

Lynda brought some yummy mushroom brie and crackers.

Herbed Chevre and Smoked Gouda.

Herbed Chevre and Smoked Gouda.

The Herbed Chevre is a quick and relatively inexpensive way to “dress up” a plain Chevre. Simply take your favorite plain Chevre cheese, let it come to room temperature. Mix in some chopped fresh herbs (dried will do in a pinch), a couple of splashes of good extra virgin olive oil, and mix until smooth.

Stuffed Mushrooms

Stuffed Crimini Mushrooms

The Stuffed Mushrooms are quick and easy, too. Here’s the recipe. I modified the filling a little bit – the filling was simply light cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, and a few grinds of Trader Joe’s South African Smoke Seasoning Blend (paprika flakes, sea salt, garlic, basil).

One friend brought a beautiful Corn & Shrimp Chowder, which I heard was fabulous. It had bell peppers in it, so I couldn’t eat it. What’s funny is that the soup that I made had peas in it, so he couldn’t eat my chicken soup!

Marsh's Corn & Shrimp Chowder

Marsh’s Corn & Shrimp Chowder

Chicken & Vegetable Soup

Chicken & Vegetable Soup

Another friend made Pork Tenderloins with a Bourbon-Maple-Molasses glaze that was fantastic.

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Rick’s Pork Tenderloin with Bourbon-Maple-Molasses glaze.

Of course there was salad …

Mixed Greens with Fresh Fuyu Persimmons, Pomegranate, Feta Cheese, and a light and refreshing Citrus Vinaigrette.

Mixed Greens with Fresh Fuyu Persimmons, Pomegranate, Feta Cheese, and a light and refreshing Citrus Vinaigrette.

… and what is a party without dessert?

Tartlets: Fresh Lemon Curd and Caramel, Macadamia & Chocolate Tartlets.

Tartlets: Fresh Lemon Curd and Caramel, Macadamia & Chocolate.

The Lemon Curd recipe can be found here. I used pre-made tartlet shells … a little “semi-homemade” time-saving trick. I also cheated a bit with the caramel. I used Trader Joe’s Flue de Sel Caramel Sauce. This is my go-to caramel sauce.

Here’s wishing you a wonderful day. If you get the chance, would you please ride a few miles for me today? I’ve got to run to work now.

Foxy’s Fall Century 2016

Sunday, October 16th, 2016

For the last 10 days I have been checking the weather forecast regularly and have gone back and forth between wanting to ride and wanting to bail on today’s Foxy’s Fall Century. The forecasts changed a bit daily – rain, no rain, but wind was a certainty each time I checked the Weather Channel’s site.

By the end of the workday yesterday I had convinced my self that riding today would be a bad idea, but I checked the weather forecast again when I got home and decided that I would reevaluate in the morning if I would ride or not. As of last night, the forecast was no rain until late afternoon and fairly reasonable winds until about 2:00, when they were projected to be 20+ mph. I began to think that if I started early enough that I could finish the ride before these 20+ mph winds started. So, I packed up all of my gear and went to bed with the promise that I would make my final decision in the morning.

I am so glad that I rode today.

What's a ride without a fabulous selfy?

What’s a ride without a fabulous selfy?

For a couple of weeks I’ve been trying to get friends to do the ride, but no one wanted to. I have not been cycling nearly enough this past year, so I wasn’t feeling particularly eager (or confident) to do this ride solo today. But I really needed to do the ride, so I was quite happy when another solo rider pulled up alongside about 10 or 15 miles into the ride and we got to chatting and finished the course together. I was very appreciative for the nice company.

After the ride, the lunch was good – lasagna, salad, gluten-free bread, desserts (ice cream sandwiches, macaroons, gluten-free chocolate cake).

Foxy's Fall Century - Lunch

Foxy’s Fall Century – Lunch

By the time I got home, I was a little hungry again …

Golden Milk - healthy and soothing.

My new go-to recovery drink is Golden Milk.

The weather held out throughout the ride. I did not get rained on this year and the wind didn’t get that bad. Actually, the winds were for the most part pretty favorable today.

I know I said this last year, but … next year … the full century is the goal.

That Was A Convenient Breeze!

Saturday, September 24th, 2016

A quick check of the weather forecast early morning showed 2-4 mph winds until about noon, when it was supposed to increase to 10 mph. Although I started out pretty early, I didn’t get as early a start as I had hoped. My goal was to get out and back before the wind kicked up too much.

Why do I still rely on the weather forecasts? Sigh … it started getting breezy earlier than anticipated and I had a bit of a side/headwind coming into Winters. While I was refueling, I chatted with a couple of other cyclists who were surprised by the earlier-than-expected breeze. Alas, the wind is an excellent training tool.

As I headed back out I realized that my ride home was going to have a lovely tailwind of a breeze. That was really nice for a change!

Super Protein Smoothie

1/4 cup frozen blueberries
1/4 cup frozen cherries
1/4 cup frozen green grapes
1/4 cup frozen mango chunks
1 scoop whey protein powder
2 tablespoons egg white powder
1 cup ice water (or more, if desired)

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Makes enough for two.

Super Protein Smoothie

Super Protein Smoothie

Yes, training has started for the 2017 Napa Valley Tour de Cure! Also, Davis Bike Club’s Foxy’s Fall Century is coming up in a few weeks. I’ve got some work to do to get ready. I’ve been off my bike too much this past year.

Happy cycling!

Weekend Rides … Finally.

Monday, September 19th, 2016

Saturday –  Vacaville to Lake Solano and back.

Sunday – Vacaville, Winters, Vacaville.

No big climbing, certainly no speed records, but a few miles. It’s nice to be back in the saddle again.

No pictures, just riding.

Monday – back to work.

That Was Hot, Hot, Hot!

Tuesday, August 16th, 2016

Sunday’s ride … We started our ride on the American River Parkway and rode up to Folsom, then up to Auburn and back to Sacramento. We got a late start (bad idea when the forecast is for 100+ degree heat). Normally the heat doesn’t get to me too much, but by the end of this ride I was pretty much whipped. Almost 70 miles total, which doesn’t seem like that much on paper, so to speak, but … slogging up that hill to Auburn in the brutal sun … yeah. Whipped. Let’s just say I got a little cranky (no pun intended!) by the time I got to the top of the hill.

The perfect mid-ride, 100+ degree weather snack.

The perfect mid-ride, 100+ degree weather snack. I was back to my cheery self in no time!

I drank about 10 bottles of water on this ride. It was hot, hot, hot! Thank goodness for insulated water bottles.

Still smiling, but even my sunscreen was melting!

Even my sunscreen was melting.

Have a great day – here’s hoping you get a nice ride in today!

It’s Zucchini Time Again!

Friday, July 15th, 2016

So many zucchini … so many possibilities.

Zoodles ... there's a special gadget that will turn your zucchini (or summer squash) into "zoodles" ... a low carb and delicious alternative to pasta.

Zoodles … there’s a special gadget that will turn your zucchini (or summer squash) into “zoodles” … a low carb and delicious alternative to pasta.

My first recipe with these was a Shrimp Scampi with Zoodles …

Garlicky, fresh, light and healthy!

Garlicky, fresh, light and healthy!

To make this, simply prepare your favorite scampi recipe and when the shrimp are about 3/4 of the way cooked, remove them from the pan and set aside (cover to keep warm). Add the zoodles to the pan, adding a splash of wine or lemon juice if needed, turn the heat to high and stir fry for a bit. You don’t want to overcook these, so remember to work quickly. Reduce the heat to medium, return the shrimp to the pan, give a good toss to distribute the ingredients evenly, then cover to warm through. You do not want to overcook this or the shrimp will become tough and the zoodles mushy.

And, of course, there’s always the classic Stuffed Zucchini!

Stuffed Zucchini

Stuffed Zucchini

This recipe will have to follow later … I’ve got to get to work!