Cycling in a Toque

Cycling in a Toque

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

BIKES BC: Rolling into 2015....hopefully!

"To infinity & beyond"
Help us fund our
CrowdFunding Campaign
The last few months have been pretty quiet here at BIKESBC as is usual with our in-class visits and video episodes wrapping up before March Spring Break but with the new academic year only a few months away we are starting to plan our 2014-2015 program now.

Last year I decided to focus my time on the Sea-to-Sky cooridor, as opposed to the entire Pacific Northwest, as in addition to working with five different schools I personally invested in our guest speaker video series by funding the filming of five episodes and recruited the help of a local filming and editing professional.

In December, an impromptu fundraiser at the Whistler locals' favourite pizza shop, Creekbread, brought the community together and we raised enough funds to cover my initial investment and publish two of the five video episodes. These episodes were enjoyed by students at Myrtle Philip & Spring Creek Elementary in Whistler, BC and Adams Road, Surrey Central and Pitt Meadows Elementary in the greater Vancouver area.

Now we would like to complete the project with your help in the long term goal of attracting local business community support and growing the BIKESBC inspirational guest speaker video project into a sustainable and powerful tool that connects students with professionals in the community who are pursing their passions and achieving their dream goals, be it athletic, academic or artistic.

We've launched a crowdfunding campaign to help us get to 2015 with five new episodes as well as publish our three unedited videos from the 2013-2014 season. And don't forget to come down to the kids races during BC Superweek as well as visit with us while watching the 2014 Global Relay Gastown Grand Prix on July 9th. All the top professionals from North America are making the trip up to our wonderful city so come on down, it'll be an inspiring evening.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Fishing for health

I remember the day vividly. The high afternoon sun glistened off water-soaked river rocks, my eyes squinting under a faded blue and overly-curved baseball cap. With my fishing rod in one hand and my other out for balance, I carefully tip-toed my way over foot-sized stones to the middle of the small river, Birkenhead Lake beckoning just 40 feet downstream. Content with my position, I faced the lake and cast my hook and bobber into the bubbling torrent, determined to return to the treeline only with a fish in hand. Being the last day of our three day trip and having no luck during our pre-dawn canoe trip the day before, I was anxious to experience the feeling of a fish on the line, the rush of the battle.

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Tuesday, 28 January 2014

BIKES Episode #2: Anna Helmer @ Helmer Organics

On location @ Winter Farmer's Market
Well sports fan, here we have it! Episode #2 of the BIKES Project 2014. Today we visit with Anna Helmer of the Pemberton Valley's top organic potato farm, Helmer Organics.

As a long time cycling advocate, cycling trekker and founder of the Slow Food Cycle, Anna has incorporated cycling into her lifestyle for many years. As a highlight at the Vancouver Winter Market and Whistler Summer Sunday Market, her potatoes have also racked up quite a reputation. Today we talk with Anna about what a day on the farm entails and why she finds satisfaction in her passion.
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Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Why cycling makes you happy like ANIMAL!

For many people, cycling has nothing to do with competition. We've all heard stories of those who use the bicycle for transportation, transformation or truly inspirational endevours, the possibilities are seemingly endless. What has been your favourite experience while riding a bicycle? Was it that first few metres of unbound potential experienced after the training wheels fell off? Or perhaps that first ride in a new and beautiful city, lost and and little hungry but in the moment and loving it? Maybe it was that group ride that you met or got to know your significant other? The experiences that cycling can create are vast and limitless, so don't be afraid to write down some of your favs. Never know when you might hit you head!

Be safe out there. 

Today we learn about cycling pockets, commuting to work, leaving work to pursue one's passion and adventures on the bicycle. Enjoy!
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Sunday, 19 January 2014

Sulphur Mountain

We've been having some technical difficulties in producing our 2nd episode but it looks like we are getting back on track and should have it up by next week. In the mean time, I've answered another student question asking for a behind the scenes look at how I film these episodes. Unfortunately I didn't get the lighting right in this one either (new location) but there are some nice views of Sulphur Mountain, just north of Ventura, California.

Thanks for tuning in.

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Saturday, 18 January 2014

What is track cycling? Who are the fastest girls on the planet right now?

Cycling Canada: Read Article
So the Canadian Women's Team Pursuit team just won the gold medal at the 3rd World Cup event of the season in Guadalajara, Mexico. Why is this important? Because they have continued to build upon their London Olympic bronze medal success and have now five riders ready to compete at the top level of the sport, a very important element to the long term success in this four rider event.

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Wednesday, 15 January 2014

California Week 2 = Boost the veggies

It is week 2 here in California and it is hot! The jet stream, still hanging out in the east, is making for some strong easterly winds from the desert, pushing temperatures close to 30'C. Sunscreen and waterstops have increased greatly; fortunately I was able to pick up some watermelons so my morning and post-ride refreshments are helping me stay hydrated.

When I don't have access to watermelon, I make sure to include a lot of water to my nutrition, either by drinking 1 litre of water before any meal, especially before cooked meals, and drink upwards of 2 bottles an hour on the bike. A good baseline to know you are hydrated is to have to go to the bathroom every 2 hours. Hydrate and smash it!
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Monday, 13 January 2014


Plants don't run away
What is this blog turning into? I remember in 2010 when it started as a way to share the inside world of cycling...race tactics, race dynamics, travel stories and training tips. However over time it has shifted to share insights from long days on the bike, living cheap and pursuing a nutrition lifestyle that is sustainable and optimal.

Since I am vehemently opposed to supplements or even caffeine, I look to absorb the calories and nutrients I need from sources that are most efficient. I stress my body enough with pedal pushing or appeasing the cycling equipment buyers on my dismal ebay account (toque buy'n sell), why further confuse my endocrine system with poor food choices? So dear readers, if you enjoyed Dr. Neal Barnard's insight on a plant-based diet last week, here is a collection of short 1 minute videos discussing how after growing up on a cattle farm, he discovered a health solution that didn't involve animals.

A wise coach once said..."after finding the smooth path through the jungle, often times one misses the tangled chaos of the underbrush. But the smooth path is still twisty, undulating and it's destination that not enough adventure for the young mind?"

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Friday, 10 January 2014

Baby Chewbacca, Collard Greens and Orange Groves

It's the attack of the Baby Sasquatchs!
This week I arrived in Ventura, California for my "Team Rancho Vista" training camp. The autumn months, spent in Pitt Meadows and Whistler, were good to me although fundraising for the BIKES project didn't go as well as I hoped. Either way, there will be some more stuff trickling out of that project over the coming days and I will continue to write and share important training and nutritional information with you here at the Cyclinginatoque website.

So thank you for reading and be sure to send me questions or comments about what you would like to see here at Cyclinginatoque. More of the lifestyle vignettes? More nutritional information sources? Little videos from the road?

Until next time here is Dr. Neal Barnard, author of "Reversing Diabetes" with a plant-based lifestyle.
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Thursday, 9 January 2014

What is cyclocross?

After visiting with students at George Greenaway Elementary in early December, they were very excited to learn more about cyclocross. What is cyclocross? Why does it matter to the BIKES project?

Well cyclocross is the fastest growing sector of cycling in North America and serves as the best way to include all members of the family during a weekend outing. Essentially an excuse to ride around a park and jump over stuff, it is #1...super fun! #2...all ages can participate throughout the day as there are many age and skill categories and is the easiest way to make our BIKESBC spring time, elementary school parking lot bike safety rodeos more awesome and taking our skills onto the grass!

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