2011 100 Miles of Nowhere

May 5th, 2011

100 Miles of Nowhere

The Fat Cyclist is once again putting on the 100 Miles of Nowhere to raise money for LiveStrong. He announced yesterday that he had convinced Johan Bruyneel to ride it too. Official entry had closed but he has opened entry again until 6:00 PM EDT today (Thursday May 5th). This time though the money will go to World Bicycle Relief.

The 100 Miles of Nowhere literally means riding a bike 100 miles no where. Fatty though wants to include everyone so it’s OK to ride less than 100 miles, ride around the block instead of on a trainer or run around your back yard for a few hours. The official ride day is Saturday, June 4 but you can also pick a day. You can find all the details on how to register and ride rules here.

I’d also say if you don’t want the t-shirt and number plate or miss the registration cut-off, just donate directly to LiveStrong, World Bicycle Relief or a charity of your choosing. However you do it you’ll be in good company since over 500 people signed up the first day registrations was initially open. Just accept the challenge of going no where.

Although I rode 100 miles in my garage on my Computrainer in 2009, I plan on riding outside this year somewhere near downtown Colorado Springs. I’ve been too busy this year and haven’t done a ride over 30 miles but I’ll try to make it 100 miles. If you’re in the area, come join me for all or part of the ride.

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$50 for Outdoors Costs Nothing with REI & Facebook

December 21st, 2010

REI and Facebook Deals

REI is giving away $100k to outdoor non-profits. They have a list of groups they’re donating to. Our local group is Trails and Open Space Coalition.

Customers determine how much each group gets. For every person that checks in to a REI store that has a local non-profit it is supporting, that outdoor group gets $50 (originally i was $1. The updated info is here). Only one check-in is counted for each person. If your local REI store is on the list and you have a smart phone, go make sure they get their share of the money.

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Giving Back Through Bikes

December 2nd, 2010

A great idea never goes out of style. That’s why I’m partnering with World Bicycle Relief for the third year in a row.

The Chicago-based organization provides bicycles and bike technology and resources for people in countries impacted by poverty or natural disasters. Last year, WBR launched The Bicycles for Educational Empowerment Program, with the goal of providing 50,000 bikes to help Zambian children get to school. More than 7,000 bikes have been distributed in that program alone, and have drastically improved school attendance. The group also expanded operations in Zimbabwe and Kenya last year, and has sold more than 3,000 bikes to groups such as Care International.

This year, World Bicycle Relief is focusing on the power of a bicycle in the hands of a girl. The Bicycles for Educational Empowerment Program (BEEP) has partnered with the Zambian Ministry of Education to provide 5,000 bikes to 5,000 schools across that country. Seventy percent of the bikes will go to girls.

These are basic bikes and cost just $134. You can help purchase bikes by visiting UltraRob.com and clicking through to buy cycling and outdoor gear. From now through Dec. 25, I’m donating 10 percent of my site earnings to World Bicycle Relief. My donations over the last 2 years have helped purchase 23 bikes and I’m hoping to do even better this year.

And here’s the best part: Like the last 2 years, an anonymous WBR donor is matching this year’s donations, doubling the number of bikes to be given out.

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Kids on Bikes Fundraiser Rides and Fun This Weekend

September 21st, 2010

Kids on Bikes

Kids on Bikes is a great local organization that helps kids earn a bike. Paige Carmichael, Chris Carmichael’s wife, started Kids on Bikes to help provide solutions to rising childhood obesity rates and highlight the benefits of physical activity for children. Paige believes every child deserves to experience the joy, freedom, and confidence of owning a bike. My kids enjoyed the kids race that had at the 24 Hours of Colorado Springs last weekend.

Kids on Bikes is hosting their first annual fundraising ride this Saturday at the Air Force Academy. There will be three ride options (4 mile family, 16 mile, and 24 mile routes) on the Santa Fe Trail. After the rides, there will be a picnic and Kids Zone. The Kids Zone will have: bike decorating station, bounce house, face painting, balloon animals, carnival games, the Chick-Fil-A Cow, bubbles, snow cone machine, and more!

All proceeds from the ride will help Kids on Bikes to bring joy one bike at a time to children in the Pikes Peak Region. Pledges collected will help sponsor fifth grade students in low-income school districts to earn bikes by reaching academic, behavior, and character development goals in their ABC’s Program.

The 2 longer ride options cost $25 dollars per person plus require $25 minimum in pledges. The 4 mile family ride is $50 for the entire family. No pledges are required for the family ride but pledges can be collected to be eligible for prizes. Online registration ends Thursday evening but there will also be registration at the Air Force Academy on Saturday morning.

Pledge Prizes:

$25 KOB cycling socks ~ $50 KOB baseball hat ~ $75 KOB t-shirt ~ $100 KOB signature cycling jersey ~ over $100 enters you into drawings for fabulous prizes including a new bike and Lance Armstrong signed jersey

Check the Kids on Bikes site for more information.

Luncheon with Linda Armstrong Kelly

In addition to this weekend’s rides, Kids on Bikes is having a luncheon with Linda Armstrong Kelly, Lance Armstrongs mom, next Tuesday, September 28th. Linda will serve as the keynote speaker for the luncheon and local cycling legend Chris Carmichael will also be in attendance as a special guest to introduce Linda. Linda will be discussing the tools she gave Lance, to succeed and the opportunity his bike provided.

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Gift Ideas for Mountain Bikers

December 16th, 2009

Still looking for Christmas gifts for the mountain biker in your life? If you procrastinate buying Christmas gifts like I do, time is running out. Here are a dozen gift ideas for mountain bikers.

You can get gifts in time for Christmas with standard shipping from most stores if you order today and some are guaranteeing like Huck n Roll and Performance Bike guarantee delivery if ordered early enough tomorrow. In past years many online stores have run specials on 2 and 3 day shipping for those that don’t order in time for standard shipping.

Crank Bros Multi 19 Tool

This multi-tool has everything you need for on the road or trail bike repairs. Not only does it have the standard hex wrenches and screwdrivers, it also has spoke wrenches and a chain tool. The chain tool doesn’t work as good as my stand alone ones but it’s saved me from walking many miles.

Garmin Edge 705

The Garmin Edge 705 is the ultimate cycling computer. It is a newer version of the Garmin Edge 305. They both have GPS and heart rate monitor and can be bought with an optional cadence sensor. The 705 adds a color screen and maps. With the topo maps you can get turn by turn directions even off road although it does try getting you back to the road. Read my Edge 705 review for more details about it.

Mountain Bikers Training Bible

Joe Friel’s The Mountain Bikers Training Bible is one of the best training guides out there. He explains periodization which is the basis of most training plans. He steps you through setting up a training plan for different goals. He has also written Cyclist’s Training Bible and The Triathlete’s Training Bible

RoadID

Safety is important when you’re out mountain biking. We always hope that nothing bad will happen and most likely it won’t. Still it’s good to have some ID on you if you’re injured and can’t talk. I’ve been using the wrist Road ID for a very long and don’t even notice I have it on. They also have ones that go on your ankle or shoe.

Mountain Bike Helmet

Another safety essential is a helmet. I used the Giro Pneumo for several years.

Hammer Gel

Your favorite cyclist needs something to fuel their rides. Hammer Gel is a great way and by buying it in a jug and using a flask, it’s good for the environment too.

CamelBak Rogue Hydration Pack

The Camelbak Rogue is the hydration pack I use the most. Actually I have two of them I like it so much so I can do a quick swap during long mountain bike races. It has enough storage space to carry a jacket, tubes, and my Crank Brothers multi-tool but doesn’t seem bulky. The 70 ounce bladder is big enough on most rides to get me to where I can refill. When I need to carry more gear and water, I use the Camelbak Blowfish.

Microflate

Using CO2 cartridges for flats during rides may not be the best for the environment but they sure make it easy to fix a flat. I only get a handful of flats even when I’m doing mega miles so it’s not that bad. There are CO2 inflators that are allow to control the pressure but I love the size and simpleness of the Microflate.

Floor Pump

A good floor pump is a must for any cyclist. You can’t go wrong with a pump from Park Tools. Some pumps have a single head that is supposed to work for both Presta and Shraedar valves. I’ve had a couple and weren’t happy with either one. I’d stick to a pump that has a dual head if you want both. I always use Presta valves on my bikes but my kid’s bikes have Shraedar

Pearl Izumi ThermaFleece Knee Warmers

I have a couple pairs of Pearl Izumi ThermaFleece Knee Warmers. They’re the perfect things for cool mornings or evenings. Some people prefer leg warmers. I like the Pearl Izumi ThermaFleece ones because the light fleece on the inside really makes a difference in staying warm

Pearl Izumi ThermaFleece Arm Warmers

The companions to knee or leg warmers are arm warmers.

Seat Pack

A seat pack is nice for carrying a multi-tool, spare tube and tire levers.

If none of the gear above is a good fit for your gift buying, check out the Cycling and Outdoor Gift Card Guide. Also, below are links to some more gift guides for even more gift ideas.

When you click through and buy these or other items this Christmas Season, you’ll be helping those less fortunate.

UltraRob

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Giving Back This Christmas Season

November 23rd, 2009

World Bicycle Relief

It has been a good year here on UltraRob.com and I like giving back. I partnered with World Bicycle Relief last year and I’m doing it again this holiday season. From now until Christmas Day, I’ll be giving back through World Bicycle Relief.

Man Hauling Charcoal on BikeWorld Bicycle Relief was formed in 2005, with the goal of providing bikes for transportation to people in poverty-stricken areas and those impacted in natural disasters. This summer, the Chicago-based group launched the Bicycles for Education Empowerment Program that will provide children in rural Zambia with 50,000 bicycles over the next three years.

An anonymous donor is matching dollar for dollar donations to World Bicycle Relief through the end of the year. Since these are basic but sturdy bikes used to improve people’s lives instead of fancy, light race bikes, they aren’t expensive. Including the donation matching, I was able to give enough for 11 bikes last year.

Like last holiday season, I’m donating 10% of site earnings to World Bicycle Relief. When you use UltraRob.com to find cycling and outdoor gear for those you love, you’ll be helping give someone a better life. With over 250,000 product listings from 70+ stores, the best way to find what you’re looking for is to use the search box at the top of the pages.

Need gift ideas? Read 7 Cycling and Outdoor Gift Ideas and a Dozen More Gift Ideas for Cyclists. Those posts are from last year but most of the items are still available. Also gift cards make great gifts and many stores have email gift cards that can be sent at the last minute.

UltraRob

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Giving Bikes to Poverty and Disaster Areas

December 18th, 2008

Caregiver Using a Bike Provided by World Bicycle Relief

Here’s an update on the World Bicycle Relief donation that I’m doing. If you weren’t aware of it, you can read the post where I announced it and the press release I did. There’s also info on it in the World Bicycle Relief’s December newsletter.

Donations make even more of a difference through the end of the year because an angel donor is matching dollar for dollar up to $750,000. Since these are basic bikes used to improve people’s lives instead of fancy, light race bikes, they only cost $134 each.

The last few weeks have been unbelievable on UltraRob.com with people buying cycling and outdoor gear for Christmas. Right now I’m close to donating 9 bikes with the match. There’s still a week left so it would be very cool to donated at least 10 bikes.

There’s still time to get gear for Christmas gifts from most stores using expedited shipping. Many stores are offering shipping discounts. For example, Backcountry.com is offering 2 day shipping for $9.99. I’m not sure how long they’ll be doing it.

Need gift ideas? Read 7 Cycling and Outdoor Gift Ideas and a Dozen More Gift Ideas for Cyclists. Also gift cards make great gifts and many stores have email gift cards that can be sent at the last minute.

My donation includes Christmas Day. If you don’t get something you were really wanting, you can come to UltraRob.com that evening to find it and still help out less fortunate people around the world.

World Bicycle Relief started a campaign yesterday with a goal of getting enough donations for 100 bikes by noon on Friday. With the match, it’ll make 200 bikes.

Don’t plan on buying any gear? Just head over to World Bicycle Relief and make a donation. $1, $5, $10, every little bit helps.

Martha Van Inwegen from ActionWipes is also going to donate 10% to World Bicycle Relief. I’ve used ActionWipes and they are great for outdoor adventures when you can’t shower. They are wipes from grown ups. They also have other products that are easy on you and on the environment.

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Earnings Being Donated to Fat Cyclist Fund

May 19th, 2008

Lance Armstrong

Update: Susan passed away on August 5th, 2009

Update: During the month of June 2008, earnings are being donated to the Lance Armstrong Foundation.

As I wrote last week, today and tomorrow, May 19th and 20th, I’m donating the earnings from the cycling and outdoor gear search (actually all of this site) to Susan’s WIN fund.

For those that don’t know the story, the Fat Cyclist’s wife, Susan, has been battling breast cancer for a long time. It seemed she was doing fairly well but recently she started having some problems. Test revealed the cancer has spread to her brain Her doctor said she has tumors spread through her brain like dandelion seeds. The doctor has given them very little hope.

There are over 180,000 product listings from over 50 online stores in the cycling and outdoor gear search. I get a small commission if you buy something after you click through from this site. No matter whether you’re into cycling, hiking, water sports, skiing or some other outdoor activity, there’s gear for you. If you’re looking for bargains I’ve just added 2 new pages. There’s a page with the current top cycling and outdoor gear deals and another one with just the cycling gear deals.

Fat Cyclist JerseyIf you don’t have any gear you need to buy, you can still help out. You can donate directly to the PayPay account (no longer active) that has been set up for the family. Also the new Fat Cyclist jerseys go on sale today at noon central time. The proceeds from these jerseys will help the family.

Fatty is still thinking of other people even with everything going on. He’s putting together a raffle to raise $10,000 for the Lance Armstrong Foundation. You can read how to enter the raffle part way down this post.

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How I’m Going to Help the Fat Cyclist and Family

May 12th, 2008

Update: Susan passed away on August 5th, 2009

On Thursday I wrote about Susan, the Fat Cyclist’s wife, and her cancer. I also wrote about the PayPal account (no longer active) that Kenny has set up to help the family. When I was out riding on Friday, I came up with a plan to help them.

I get payed a small commission when someone buys gear from the cycling and outdoor gear search and other pages of this site. NEXT Monday and Tuesday, May 19th and 20th, I will donate all commissions to Susan’s WIN Fund. Doing it next week will give some time for the word to get out.

If you have some money to donate, go do it now. If you have some gear you’re planning to buy, wait until next week. There are over 180,000 product listings from over 50 online stores in the cycling and outdoor gear search. They include cycling only stores and stores that carry gear for skiing, hiking, and camping.

You can also help out by posting about this on your blog or favorite forum.

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Help Susan Win

May 8th, 2008

Fat Cyclist Pink Jersey
Lance Armstrong with WIN Susan Sign

Update: Susan passed away on August 5th, 2009

One of the best known cycling bloggers is the Fat Cyclist whose real is Elden Nelson. Not only does he write an awesome blog, he’s also finished the Leadville 100 more times than just about anyone else.

His wife, Susan, has battling cancer for the last few years and yet they’ve kept a positive attitude. Last week they went to the doctor because she had lost the ability to focus on anything at all, even for a moment, and her coordination was gone. Although severe depression is common after chemo, they did an MRI to make sure nothing else was going on. The doctor called by the time they made it home. Sadly as the doctor put it, she has tumors spread through her brain like dandelion seeds. The doctor has given them very little hope.

They had a talk on the way home from the doctor about what they had to do in the next couple months that Susan is expected to live. Fatty said, “Those of you who have had this kind of talk know what I mean. And those of you who haven’t had this talk think you know what I mean, but don’t.”

This morning Kenny left a comment on the Fat Cyclist blog on an account he has set up to help the Nelsons (No longer open). Also the new 2008 Fat Cyclist jerseys from Twin Six will be available soon and will be used to support Susan.

Dear Readers of Fatcyclist.com,

This last week has been truly tragic learning of the down turn of Suzan’s illness. As I read these comments left by all you good people, the over all theme is the same. “What can we do for Elden, Susan and their kids?” I decided it was time to stop wondering and time to start doing. I set up a bank account in Elden’s name at a local bank here in Utah. It is linked to pay pal. The PayPal account is winsusannelson@gmail.com (No longer open). If you don’t have a pay pal account you can also donate by going to my business’s website http://www.kennysphoto.com and clicking on the link in the middle of the page, where you can donate with the credit card of your choice. Please know that all funds collected will go directly to this bank account and after a two month period will be given to Elden, Susan and Family. Elden is unaware of this account, until now, of course. I’m not sure how he will react to this comment, but if he removes it, I’m going to continue to put it back on his blog and I invite you as fatcyclist readers to also put this on your own respective blogs. I truly believe that we bless our own lives, when we help others, so I hope that Elden will allow us to help him through this very trying time in his life. He truly has touched each one of us, through his writing and his friendship.
      Respectfully yours,
      Kenny

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