Bikes Fight Poverty #cycling

whyrideAs most of you know, my sweet mother in law lost her life to cancer, which is why I’ve always supported cancer research and treatment through the proceeds of my Lynn Rush books.

I’ll continue that tradition, but this year, I’m also adding poverty to the list.

And, it’s not my books doing the earning…it’s my bike!

Yep, my husband and I are biking to Mexico to raise money. We’re joining 1Mission and 207 miles and will be biking 100 miles per day to fight poverty.

We get to help raise money not only for a HOUSE for a family who needs one, but valuable life skills training to know how to manage and keep that house we’re building for them. That’s KEY in how we got involved in this.

Building a house for someone who needs one—great—but what happens after? If there isn’t some ownership and skills training associated with the house…they’ll just end up where they were again.

Check out the video from last year’s amazing ride:

(Or click here to see the video on Vimeo)

I hope you’ll consider supporting us and this wonderful cause.

CLICK HERE to view our fundraising page. Please spread the word, every little bit helps!!

Thanks, my friends!



The last day…

Boy, I was pretty worried about this last day. We were scheduled to do 84.8 miles from Marshalltown to Cedar Rapids, but let me tell you something. I was going on about four hours of sleep.

See, the night before, while we were tenting in Marshalltown, a mega storm hit. We had to abandon our tents to seek shelter due to a tornado watch. Talk about scary.

And that was after a wonderful day walking around Marshalltown, hitting the Purple Cherry. It was a really cool yogurt shop.

But, despite the storms, few hours of sleep, we made it. Of course, a tail wind of about 15 MPH didn’t hurt!! LOL.

It was a nice break from the previous days head winds.

So, we rolled into Cedar Rapids relatively unscathed. 🙂



Charlie’s dad was there, waiting, so we packed up the car and took off back to Sioux Center.

But not before I snapped a shot of my odometer.

Check it out!

407 miles!

And that 407 miles was done in FIVE days. I never thought I could have done that, but like I mentioned in an earlier post, you just never know what our capable of when pushed. And this bike ride did just that. Thanks to my sweet hubby for carrying me through. He is so strong. My rock.

And thanks to everyone who contributed to the Arizona Pain Train. We raised over $3,000 for cancer on this bike ride!  You guys ROCK.

Time to think…

Being on my bike for so many hours each day gave me a lot of time to think.  My mind wandered to new stories waiting to be written. To stories already published and those coming out in the next twelve months….Ultimately, all my thoughts landed on two words: THANK YOU!  To be published is a gift. An exciting, scary, and rewarding adventure–one I’m grateful to be on!

Day two of biking took us from Cherokee to Lake View. It was a 62-mile day with 2,173 feet of climb.

Most people view Iowa as flat…it sooo isn’t.

You’d be surprised to see all the rolling hills. It makes for beautiful sights, but sure takes it out on the legs pumping up those hills.

I sure was hoping there was a lake to jump in at the end of the ride. The hot, humid air was relentless.

Much to my relief, there was a lake! And….we pretty much jumped right in! It was great.

We had a blast in Lake View…but what had me worried was the 104-mile ride for the next day! **YIKES**

Beyond Words

I returned home from Ragbrai on Saturday evening, and I’ve been trying to find a word to describe the entire experience.

I mean, I’m a writer, lover of words, but I couldn’t really come up with a good one. Sure, amazing, tiring, scary, unforgettable came to mind. Those are all fine and dandy.

But how do you put to words riding 407 miles in five days. I did the math…yes, I needed a calculator…81.4 miles per day.

I can’t even say that without shaking my head in disbelief.

So, I figured I’d take a little bit at a time and chat about the ride this week.

Arriving in Sioux Center was pretty emotional. It was my first time returning after my mother-in-law, Lynn’s, funeral. Lynn had such a significant impact on me and my writing, it stung a little. She would have LOVED this Ragbrai event.

But, her name was on my bike. There are a few names on there as you can see. Mary, Lynn, and Bob lost their battle with cancer over the past 12 months. That’s three deaths in twelve months. My heart breaks for the loved ones of those who have passed. It’s such a painful experience to watch one you love die from cancer. Sandy and Penny are fighting through chemo and radiation. And my dear friend, Josh, recently suffered a traumatic brain injury after being involved in a bike crash.

So, this ride was for you all!

The pain I suffered on that hilly 104-mile day was nothing compared to what you guys face. When I wanted to quit, I thought of you. Especially Penny. She was scheduled to be on this ride, not me. And when she was diagnosed, she transferred her registration to me. So, she’ll be getting that Ragbrai jersey and patch for sure!

We had a great welcome to Sioux Center and had a great time at the expo and pasta feed. The energy was high in anticipation of an early morning start. Day one was 54.4 miles from Sioux Center to Cherokee with 1,675 feet of climb.

Tomorrow…..62 miles and 2.173 feet of climb!  🙂