Pennsylvania: Origin of the LADY PACK

So we are currently on Day 4 of our ride, which means I have a lot of catching up to do!

Day 1: Riding out of NYC was so much fun. We left from Central Park and even had FOX news record a short segment about the I4K. Some highlights of NYC are the following: walking past the diner in Seinfeld, visiting Ground Zero, seeing the Statue of Liberty, and walking around in Times Square and SoHo. We ended our ride in Hillsborough, NJ and stayed at the Thakkars’ home. They made us a great dinner (including an I4K cake!), let us shower at their home, and even gave us breakfast. The ride to Hillsboro was kind of difficult at the end because my group just wanted to get there and get out of the heat. P.S. – I felt pretty bad ass riding through NYC.

Day 2: We took off from Hillsborough and headed to Philadelphia. This ride seemed pretty long but I had a lot of fun. I definitely learned that it’s worth buying some Gatorade whenever I can and just drinking it all right then and there. Our last 20 miles were on a FLAT bike trail… something we were all looking forward to because Illinois roads did not prepare us for hills or mountains. Before we got on the trail, we experienced tube demons. A few miles into the trail, there was a spider incident. Then once the trail ended, we arrived right in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The stairs in front of the museum were the same stairs that are in Rocky. So me, Ana, Jeff, and Tracey ran up the stairs air punching and Jill recorded a sweet video of us. We got to our stayover and I took my first hose shower, right outside of a church. Never thought I would have done that but I am okay with it. It was funny to watch people walking by and see the confusion in their faces. At the end of the day, I enjoyed my very first Philly cheese steak sandwich.

Day 3: We left Philadelphia bright and early to get to Lancaster. This day was tough because the hills were intense and we got lost a few times, about 7 miles out of our way. Even though this day was rough with tons of hills, it was SO much fun. We had our lunch stop at an Amish farm and the family there gave us some homemade strawberry ice cream. It was probably the best ice cream I’ve ever had in my entire life. Then they let us pet their animals, which included 2 horses and 1 springer spaniel. We also got to pick fresh strawberries from their garden. Day 3 will forever be special because this was the day that we named our riding group “The Lady Pack.” The Lady Pack is made of myself, Ana, Bridget, Diana, Jillian, Lauren, and Tracey. We stick together and kick butt. Jeff is an honorary member of the Lady Pack and I hope that he will come visit us once in a while when the super fast groups are just going too fast. Day 3 is also the day I got my first flat. It took me, Bridget, Jillian, and Jeff to change it. Ana fell asleep on the side of the road even though semi trucks were speeding past her and Diana fell asleep sitting on the guardrail. Tracey just relaxed and offered moral support. Even though we had to use a hand pump to fill my new tube with air, Jeff got it pumped up to the right PSI which is pretty awesome and VERY hard. Going up on some of the hills was pretty discouraging, but we still did it and me and Bridget survived not vomiting. Jeff is the man because he brings me up when I am feeling down and he will even ride up the hills, then ride back down them to support those who are struggling. That kind of support makes things easier and I appreciate it so much. Our stayover in Lancaster was like a hotel because we got to shower!

Day 4: Jill “Moshered” me, which means that I had to plan a short team activity for all of us to do before we left on our journey to Gettysburg. So I made everyone gather around in a circle and do some power stretching. Then everyone had to give the person to the right a compliment and a hug. It was a lot of fun, got us laughing and happy, and made the beginning of my ride easier. We also did a huge group circle hug. I think we should always start our mornings with hugs. Unfortunately, on the way to Gettysburg, the Lady Pack was separated. I rode with Bridget and Jillian and we kept a great pace. We ended up being in second place until a fast group (Conor, Eamon, Steve, Greg, and Nate) passed us while we were on a water break. They were loaded up on energy shots and Jillian and I enjoyed their hyperness. Once we arrived in Gettysburg, the Lady Pack was reunited and joined by Disha and Megan for a nice lunch at a local pub. The food and service was great and worth every penny. Later in the evening, we stopped to get some ice cream and got to meet Jeff’s parents and their dog Charlie. I think Charlie is the official I4K9 because he is cute and because we love dogs, but not the cocker spaniel that tried to bite mine, Bridget, and Jillian’s legs off today. I still need to pass the Mosher on and I know exactly who I am going to give it to. I just need to be sneaky about it.

Props to everyone on the I4K team helping me change my name back to Gabrielle. I am going to try my hardest to help Jill change her name back to Jillian.

Quotes to remember: “Demons” (Bridget), “I’m gonna I4K_________________” (Ana), “Jillian likes jiggly legs” (me), “Key Lime Pie?!” (Ana), “I wish America was on a downhill slope from NYC to San Francisco” (Lauren), “I don’t know where I can go to shove my hand down my shorts” (Jillian), “WHAT?!” (Tracey), “If my dog had a Facebook, I’d add him.” (Me), To Sean: “We know.” (Diana)


The Lady Pack also needs to push harder so we can catch up with the other riders. Maybe after the mountains. Maybe.

Comments (4)
  • bhapner bhapner says:

    lady pack represent!

  • Jillian's Mom says:

    Hi Gabrielle! Haven’t met you yet, but hope to when you get to Chicago. Everyone involved in i4K sounds so wonderful. Thanks for the very informative post! By the way, if you hadn’t listed (Jillian) after that quote, I wouldn’t have had any trouble guessing who said it lol. She’s one crazy girl. The Lady Pack sounds like the best – you will catch those guys – I know it! I want you all to know that I’m thinking of all of you there and this unbelievable challenge you have taken on in the name of beating cancer. I lost my mom to leukemia when I was 13 and it makes me very proud of all of you to know that you are working so hard so others will not have to go through that type of experience. Go Lady Pack!

  • Hi Gabrielle!
    THE LADY PACK ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!
    Thank you for such a informative post. I am having a hard time putting into words just how proud and unbelievably excited I am for you and the I4K group. The memories made on this trip will last a life time. I am glad that you have found some other crazy gals (and guys!) that you can experience all these moments with.
    I can not wait to see you in Chicago. I am so proud of all of you. I know each an every one of you are reminded with each rotation of your pedal of why and who you are riding for. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
    Keep riding Lady Pack and go Illini 4000!

  • Hey Gabrielle,

    Any sightings of Lorraine?

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