Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Rain and Wind and Weather, Hell-Bent For Leather

Today is officially the 2nd day of training for the Illinois MS150!

(Don't even ask why I didn't post on the 1st day of Training....Slumlord + No Electricity = Unhappy Jen with No Coffee or Blogmaking ability!)

Current Forecast from 36°F (feels like 25°F) Light Rain/Snow Mix and Windy. Winds 21-31mph.

Yep, there really is nothing quite like riding a bike in the strange season the Midwest calls "Spring". For those not in the know, I have been doing this particular ride to benefit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Greater Illinois Chapter for the past 2 years as a rider and Assistant Captain of one the teams with a longer legacy.

In this my 3rd year, I find myself the Captain of team "Training Wheels Not Required"---a fun bunch of rapscallions that rode or volunteered with me last year.

The "Rapscallions Anonymous Club" from the 2006 Ride

It is a little sad that part of the causation behind the formation of this new team and the placement of me at the helm was due to severe management issues and ridiculous amounts bureaucracy on the previous team we had been members of---25¢ words aside, it just wasn't fun anymore; I came to feel that even though I was part of the leadership of the former team that my advice and opinions were not respected. After the 300th or so phone/email battle with the "management" over every little crumpet from tents to team building goodies it was just not worth ruining my health and personal satisfaction in the ride over. To put it even simpler: I took my toys and went home.

So far, our little experiment seems to be working though. Despite the uncooperative weather we've managed to 1. Name ourselves 2. Get a fabulous corporation to sponsor our jerseys (Thank you Allerton Hotel Chicago!) 3. Design and receive the jerseys a full 3 weeks before training (Uber-Thanks, Alexis @ Pactimo!) 4. Start DVD core-training to ward off injury and make us speedy! 5. Have a short and productive 1st team meeting 6. Snag a volunteer (G-dawg, you rock!) and 7. Book hotel rooms!

Not too shabby eh?

Probably the only weakness, (especially on my part) is fundraising. It has definitely taken a back seat to my upcoming move and seemingly always job craziness. And, I find myself at the drawing board as to creative ideas to start getting funds as my previous outlet of co-hosting and writing for a local Pub Quiz has not only been eliminated, but the funds I had started to earn for this year's campaign were embezzled by the quiz host and put in his own MS account to win some prize. While I am grateful that the money will end up going for the greater good, it has taught be a valuable lesson about trust and friendship--and when these combine with money how a greedy and megalomaniacal nature can be brought to light quickly.

But, enough of the past!

I would welcome all well-wishes for a successful 175mile ride (100 of which I will be doing on my 33rd birthday!) and, if any of my loyal readers would like to contribute financially to this worthy cause, you can DONATE HERE

Any little bit would be appreciated, Rome wasn't up in a day and even your $10 will go to help some really amazing people fight their battle and do what most of us take for, walk, see, even open a can of soup. They are developing some amazing drug-therapies for this devastating illness and there look to be major advances in the next decade coming, maybe even a cure.

Thank you for listening to me rant and plead on a random chilly Tuesday morning, but the bike is calling so I must go. And by bike, I mean the one sitting on my indoor trainer stand...even I don't ride when it's snowing!


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