First and foremost, I want to take this opportunity to thank all my donors both friends, family, and the anonymous who have reached into their hearts (and wallets) to make this ride across America possible for me. I apologize in advance for not posting sooner, but alas adopting a new puppy and preparing for I4K after the school semester ended had be running around like a chicken with my head cut off. Fortunately, we’ve had our first rest day of the trip after about 325 miles in 5 days and my first impression is just wow. Not just wow in the sense of mileage we’ve already covered, but also the realization that we still have 3900+ miles to go and I’m excited for the 500, 1k, etc mile milestones. Let’s just say this rest day could not have come soon enough. And there’s barely any rest. Everyone went to bed last night with the plan to sleep in till noon and relax. However, that was not the case at all. I heard the first person wake up around 7:30 and over 90% of the team was awake by 9. It was kind of humorous. My body, and more specifically legs were so used to getting up and attacking the cascade of hills and obstacles that they were confused. Luckily, a trip to the laundromat was organized and we ended up riding there so my legs did get a workout. So much for taking the day easy but at least we have clean clothes. Although I’m not sure how much clean clothes help when showers become few and far in between.

I just wanted to give everyone reading an impression of what goes through my head while we ride. As I first approached I4K I firmly believed it was a test in strength, strength and muscle. I was completely wrong. I4K is a test in patience. Strength is worthless when you’re climbing up a huge hill and the sun is beating down on you, literally burning you alive. For being used to go relatively fast the most humbling experience is climbing up that hill at 6 miles and hour and just continually pumping your legs. You get exhausted to the point where your body has to compensate for your legs and recruit even more muscles to stay upright. When I get out of my saddle to stand up and pedal I use my biceps and triceps just to be able to push my legs down. And adrenaline? Its great. It keeps you focused and alert so you don’t topple down into the sheer drops that flank you on both sides. The loneliest feeling is climbing alone though. Luckily, we’re already such a close knit team that we don’t leave people behind. We may attack the hill with different skill sets and plans, but we’re already together at the top ready to tackle the next challenge. And frankly, its fun to get angry. I remember our first day of hills on Tuesday when I was having a rough time. Greg came up to me to help me along and keep me company. I asked him if he knew that I would never give up during the ride and he agreed. He said he knew I would just get angry enough to beat anything and its true. Plus as long as you’re projecting the anger on the road, I see to harm in it. Ultimately, climbing hills is a very rewarding experience because at the top you can look back in awe and realize that what you just accomplished is tangible.


That’s all for now. I think I’ll try to sneak in a nap before we get a great dinner graciously provided by Greg’s aunt.



Comments (2)
  • annmarie cross says:

    THANKS FOR SHARING. We all know oyu’ll never give up, and we’re all here rooting you on…

    tory’s mom

  • Mark Scudder says:

    Keep at it Aash. You knew it was going to be a matter of mind over body ;). Know you guys have a fan back here in Chambana that is trying to match you mile for mile. Well, except you guys are going up mountains… That said, ride safe, and keep cheering each other on.

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