Learning how to ride a bike (again)

Here we are again, I remember the weeks when I blogged every week, posted a lot on social and was all over the place. That is certainly not true now, I am focused, grounded, focused on being healthy, enjoying more daily & doing the right things for my family. Okay.. so what is up w/ the bike ? and why again..

Let’s dive in. A few months (like 3-4) back I picked up a bicycle as I had felt great walking a few miles a day and the Peloton felt great, but I needed to get outside as well, thus the balance of on the road vs. in the house. I went to the local bike shop, found a used bike, my thought process was to get a used bike to see if I enjoyed it enough to go a little bigger (aka expensive) and got out on the road or should i say the side walk. I started with a small 1/4 mile lap and then continued my quest to do a little bit more. It took a few months to build up the endurance, strength, mind power to really feel if I liked it . .. and.. I not just like it but I enjoy/crave it.

However, with everything there are challenges and I have had a few of them. Let me discuss the key challenges and what I learned to imply why I’m saying learning how to ride a bike (again)..

  1. Sidewalks are great if you are with your kids riding and going at a slow pace, but as soon as you either (a) go fast (b) you are alone (c) can handle the road.. then you need to get on the road. I have learned through positive encouragement (actually it was negative.. but LOL) that the side walk is for walking and after a few folks jumped out of their skin & flipped out I have graduated to the road unless I have a youngster with me. I am enjoying riding on the road and it is faster than the sidewalk.
  2. Gear matters! After a few +10 mile rides I lost feeling in a few parts of my lower body (use your imagination), and I don’t think that is a good thing.. After talking with a few folks on the book of face and talking with my work colleague I upgraded to riding shorts. Shorts are a huge improvement, it’s good to have feeling and be able to handle longer rides. Now let’s talk about the shirt, I have not received my riding shirt yet, it is on it’s way to me and I can’t wait to use. Next, extra tube, repair kit, bicycle pump.. sounds like good stuff to have right? (I’ll come back to this).. two water bottle holders (necessary) and the bike lights were just put on this week and fun improvement for dusk riding. Oh and how could I forget.. for the first 2 months I was wearing a skateboard helmet and I would over heat at certain points and was not sure why. Well on a trip to Tahoe I picked up a bicycle helmet and what an improvement, air flow, no over heating and just more comfortable overall. Net Net: Gear Matters.. (Thank You Braley).
  3. Changing a bike tire, seems like a good skill to have and I’m glad I was taught as a kid how to do that. Today I went out on a road ride, it was awesome until I hit mile 5 and a 3/4 inch screw went into my rear tire and it was sporty to say the least. I got off the side of the road and went up on a side walk in the shade and pulled out all tools/tube and gear that I just put on my bike 3 days ago (no kidding 3 days ago). I had a new tube and since I had not changed the tube on this bike I decided to use my new tube, I did the repair and two different folks stopped and asked if I needed help. I think that was very kind of folks to stop and ask if I was okay. I changed the tire & got back on the road and realized I didn’t give enough PSI in the tire so inflate more and then get back out there.. I know am going to buy two more tubes and keep both on the bike just in case..
  4. water is fundamental. This week I installed my second water bottle holder and I am very happy I did. Any ride over a few miles requires two bottles just in case, today I only packed a large bottle & I had to ration at the end of the ride, two water bottles are now mandatory.
  5. Food/fuel for the body.. Eat before you ride.. eat healthy & then eat when you get back.. that is all.

After all these learning’s I am excited for my next milestone, to hit 20 miles on the bike. This week I hit 50+ miles in the week overall and today was 15 miles, so it’s just a matter of finding the right bike trail and getting all my bike essentials ready.

Not sure if I’ll change hillyreport to capture bike riding as well, but who knows… I miss the ocean, miss the beach and miss paddling out with a killer swell.. but for now, let’s bike, SUP and get even stronger!

God bless.

Hilly

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Loosing your way & coming back home.

Over the last year it’s been a real challenge, I’ve felt like I lost my way, lost the vision of where I wanted to go, what I wanted to be happy.   I found myself in a place that I was not happy and doing nothing about fixing it.  I was just coping with everything vs. tackling the challenges ahead of me and pushing forward.   I had challenges with my heart (again), got injured (ribs) and failed at another relationship (missed expectations).   All of this pushed me down pretty hard, the pain was brutal (rib pain is no joke – trust me), my heart actually faired really well during this entire process.   I learned a lot about muscle structure, referral pain & how important my core is.   I spent countless apts at the dr, chiro, acupuncture, PT and what really has made the biggest improvement is my relationship with God & my mom.   My mom and I made our bond the best it’s been in my life, we talked daily, she had already gone through all of my challenges, she knew what to take, how the pain can mess with your brain (anxiety) and how to tackle it.   She provided encouragement, unconditional love and  another vantage point to what was happening.  She helped me push harder on getting healthy, eating better & focus on God.   During this time I prayed a few times a day if not more, my dad was a great coach for this and we bonded over a morning podcast called “the first fifteen” focused on a daily devotional with both scripture & meditation on the words.  I have found great peace and renewed love for God during these times.   My mom provided “our daily bread” which is a daily read on scripture & good reflection.  She ordered me my subscription and I read that during breakfast daily.    Some days these readings don’t resonate a lot and some days they hit the core of something I’m wrestling with.  

Now to shift back to physical, I took 3 months off of all exercise and just stopped eating, lost a ton of weight, but also lost a lot of muscle and strength.   Over the last 4 months I have been working fiercely to get back to mega-health, from daily bike rides, daily walks, physical therapy, stretching & lifting.    While the soreness continues the pain is almost gone (thank you God) and now I feel like I’m resolving a lot of physical neglect for the last 20 years.   I have been going like 100MPH for so many years my body has finally said, “it’s time to rebuild your body from the core out”.   I am very thankful of acupuncture for all the healing, the meditation and the reflection on what is important.    I highly encourage this if you have not done this.      I am now ready to hit the water again (SUP & kayak) and I think my pace will be different, more relaxing and less cluttery in the who, what, how, when…   but I am returning and I will be stronger than ever and I will keep my peace in check.  

As I reflect on this time I am thankful for all that happened and the process I’m going through.. Without it I would have not found my way back home to God, I would not have spent so much time with my mom on this and connected with her so deeply.      I miss you Mom, I know you are in heaven with Jesus now and looking over me as I continue this path forward..   

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

10 Lake SUP Challenge

I was out in Clementine a few weeks back when I met a fellow SUP’er that was talking about hitting 4 lakes in one day and how much fun/challenging that was.  I spent a few days thinking about it, talking with friends & pulled out the California Map looking at how I could do the same.   However after much investigation I figured out a way to make 7 lakes happen in one day.  It would require me to be at the first lake @ sunrise to ensure I could achieve my schedule, so I started to put together a schedule with travel time between each lake, including my assumptions to make a lake “completed” on the list.    Here are my raw notes I took @ Moonraker on my way up to Kings beach the day prior.  Also I just finished my SUP gear blog – http://hillyreport.com/sup-gear-list/   Check it out.

Assumptions:

  • 10 mins to pack up/down – get in water / out
  • lunch need 1 hour to R&R
  • new water bottle at each lake (stay hydrated period)
  • 30 min minimum per lake
  • 3-5 pics per each place (Proof of Paddle – POP)
  • Minimum gear on the board
  • quick release straps to keep the in/out time fast

Now here’s the schedule I put together.

# Location Time Distance to next stop
1 King Beach @6:00AM 27 mins
2 Donner Cove/Lake @7:00AM 12 mins
3 Lake Van Norden @8:00AM 35 mins
4 Lake Valley Reservoir @9:10AM 25 mins
5 Lake Spaulding @10:10AM 59 mins
6 Scotts Flat @11:30AM 27 mins
7 Rollins Lake – Green Horn Campground @1:00PM 60 mins
8 Clementine – Lowers @3:00PM 43 mins
9 Folsom Lake – Rattle Snake Bar @4:30PM 20 mins
10 Lake Natoma @5:30PM DONE>>>>>>>

I took a goal to crush 7 lakes in one day and that obviously didn’t happen, I did 10!!!    I did have one lake that was only “7 mins”, but that was because I was getting eaten alive by mosquitoes, so on my next challenge i’m packing off spray as well in my kit.

Here’s my POP of the lakes & some great scenery.   I met a few folks throughout the day and that made it even better than the crushing goal.     At each lake I took some video with me talking about the experience, how it went, etc..   NOTE: there are a few bad words in this video.

 

 

So.. what’s next..    2 things..

  1. 50 corridor SUP challenge – # TBD
  2. 11 Lake challenge in Tahoe area w/ the fellow SUP’er that I met.

 

Make big goals, achieve them and then make the next goal.

HILLY

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

SUP Gear List

I was recently asked about pulling together a gear list, therefore after going through a few versions of the list I believe this is the best as of today.    Please send me ideas on what else to add.

Purpose:  SUP Gear List for a few sessions

  • Board / Paddle / Leash
  • Deck bag – “dry bag w/ backpack straps”  (backpack straps are key here for getting into good spots & carrying it on your back)
  • Phone & Key holder (cases – pelican or equivalent)
  • Life jacket or belt jacket (PFD)
  • Locking roof rack straps (to lock board overnight or during a meal)
  • Bluetooth speaker / waterproof – preferably something light
  • Screwdriver – to tighten fin if it loosens up
  • Anchor ( optional ) if you are going to park it in the water & swim or snorkel around
  • Belt for Water bottle – ex:  camelback belt – ease of access to water and you can keep paddling.
  • Straps to carry board for those long walk ins or if you have to park back from a long ramp
  • Water bottles

I’m sure i will come back to this and add more, however for starters here it is..  Next time I’m out I’ll take a picture of my gear w/ their respective brand names.

 

ENJOY the WATER.

HILLY

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

How to not bounce your kayak off the ground

Hi peeps.  Hope all is well.   Let’s just jump right into it.  I had the opportunity to pick up a two seat sit on top kayak this weekend, which was perfect timing as my youngest has asked to get one so he can paddle less (i’m pretty sure) and it would be great going with new to kayaking folks so they can enjoy it vs. trying to do all the work.  Net Net: WIN.

So let’s talk about picking it up, putting it on the truck for the first time & then the fun had after all that.    First, I went to see it and was stoked it was exactly as shown and great condition, barely used and had most of the parts.  I was thinking that I’ve loaded 3 person kayaks, 1 person kayaks with no problem so this should be a walk in the park.   I was so wrong, my friend & I tried to get it on the truck, first was in the truck bed. Nope, way to long and stuck out to far.   Next, let’s go on the roof so we tried an approach that I’ll call the “finger jammer” as my friend smashed up her fingers during the load in.  but we did get it on the racks and the weight on this bad dawg was twice my 3 person kayaks (probably not, but sure felt like it).   So I headed home and as I was driving my brain was thinking through every method that I could do..   here’s what I came up with first.

  • mount a pully in the bed of the truck, use rope to help pull it up on the roof so it will guide the boat on top.
  • find wheeled racks that will allow me to roll it on top.  (that sounds fun).

so, when i got home I decided to check out the Tube of You (YouTube) and see if there are others out there that have had this very challenge.   I was not alone the videos were endless and I watched enough to know which strategy I would employ.   I thought thru the steps, I game planned out the unload & reloading steps.   but.. it was raining & crappy outside so I left it on the truck & planned a kayak day for today (Memorial day).

I got to the lake ramp and decided to try out the strategy for unloading.   It worked out really good, I felt like a “boss” as it was smooth, kayak came down, loaded it up, dropped the truck & hit the water.   The paddling was awesome, lake was empty, water was cold, clouds were everywhere, but it was peaceful and very good for relaxing.  I was enjoying the water until I got back to the dock and said “oh sh&&” i guess it’s time to plan out strategy – load on the truck.   I remembered back to the video on what he did.. so here’s the video & then let me add a few items..

 

  1.  Put the strap on the truck racks, my racks are a tad different so the sliding it on was not as expected
  2. kayak placement next to the truck was equally important
  3. BONUS;  this was not on the video, but feel like it should be added.  If you have a wheeled kayak at the back then you need something to stop it from rolling, like a sandal, yah let’s try that #fail, okay a towel #worked, but now the towel got dirty, wash time.    so..   summary – need something to brace it from rolling.
  4. load the tip onto the strap, pull up the back and slide it on the front, then lift over onto the back of the truck.  You think that i’m done at this point. nope.
  5. In order to lock it down I needed to flip it over to make it a better fit on the racks.  This is where it gets fun, I got into the truck bed, I flipped the kayak over, however the type of strong plastic kayak picked up the bounce of getting flipped over and as you would imagine a kicked in door spins around, the kayak flipped about 3-4 times in the air & met the ground with a THUD.   (the kayak was not hurt, injured or broken).   I had a nice size audience watching the show, so I had to laugh..  get out of the truck and round 2 of load-in, more practice sounds fun.
  6. so..  kayak back on (round 2), I flipped it over gently and a better way of slowly going and then being on the coming down side to let it on the racks.   tightened it all up & hit the road..

Now i’m ready to go with a guest and not look like a DA.   Thank you Youtube, thank you for practicing and trying it before I do a major trip.

Why am I stoked?  I can bring a guest easier, I can also do a multi night camping trip with it as has a 500lb capacity and I can put a ton of gear in the front, so it’s go time for kayak camp trip.     Oh & I’m going to do some mod’s to the kayak to add a few straps and hooks to hold gear differently, along with putting in new seats.  It’s going to be an epic kayak in no time.

Happy Memorial Day.

 

HILLY

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Time to rant on about some IPA, airport selections, IPAs defintion & sixty nine days off social media!

Hello, good-day, and yes I’m still rocking it.    So much time since I posted last, but sometimes you need time to just live, to take days to have fun, struggle, be sad, be happy, laugh hard, cry a bit, be HUMAN!  so.   let’s talk about a few things.

Let’s start on IPA, India Pale Ale, yes it’s a thing, yes you should google it and quickly you’ll see how it was created, why it was created and more importantly why is it important right now.  S0, it’s been a good 1.5 decades since IPA kicked the tires here, so why do folks still not understand what an IPA is?  why?   I ask. what IPA’s do you have? I get a “we have a few pale ale’s..   blah blah blah”. stop listening, those are pale ales, not IPA.   So I started to re-ask, but after a few cities I decided to stop asking the question.   so what do I do know?  – tell yah min a minute..

So.. what about the airports? .. what do you mean?  Well, travel has been fun, quick hops, long hops, going where needed. I’ve realized you get what you get, their is never a good airport with new beer.   so.. now I just think, what’s the best I can get to tolerate it..  LOL> jk.   here are some cool places in the airport I have visited..  boston, houston.    that is all.  🙂    so.. next time I fly, my expectations are in check.

Let us know move onto IPA + airport + definition = good times.    Knowing that IPA is still not known & appreciated, you need to plan better for your “better” trips.  🙂

Okay so.. 69 days..   I decided one day, 69 days ago to stop being on social to give a 100 day break, my current report is I have learned a lot, have a lot of stories, some to laugh, some to smile and some to say, yup.. live is funny like that.  so .   I’m rocking to 100..   then we shall see.

enjoy the journey, less is more…….

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

100 days for social detox

As I was driving yesterday my youngest asked if he could play a new song from AJR called 100 bad days.  I thought of course, I really enjoy AJR and the fact he wants to share with me is awesome as well.   he queue’s it up, plays it and it really had me thinking.   What had me think is that we have so much social in our lifes that it can be easy to focus too much on that vs. just being present, in the now, doing things you want to do and just enjoying them for what they are worth vs. having to share, having to see what everybody else is doing, etc..    Having time to go explore builds great stories, great memories and it’s all yours, you don’t have to share it all.   I found myself lately in the habit of waking up – checking IG, FB, email, etc..  and realized that’s not good for me right now. I need to wake up, think about my day, stretch, be at peace and not having any other influences on my day (at least at the start of the day..:) )

So.. what better way to do it, then just take a 100 day social detox break.  I’m not sure i’ll last 100 days, however if i can go until 5/20 i’ll have made my goal.   I know I’ll still blog both for me & my work blog, I will still have to be on twitter for work (but manageable), however for all the other apps, they are deactivated, removed from my phone and not going to be a part of my routine.   Let’s see what amazing stories i’ll have over the 100 days of just doing.

what also tipped me on this one?  well, it’s been an interesting time of relationships for me and I know that I would like to date at some point, but right now I’m still figuring out more about what I really want, where I want to go in the future and who do I really want to be around to grow me and I can equally be a solid partner.    My only desire is to find 2-3 good travel partners that can be part of my fun journeys and explore new parts of the globe together.   I’m not sure how to find those partners, but i’m going to try.

So..   let’s see what amazing stories I can create over the next 100 days.

HILLY

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Slowing down to go faster

Over the last few weeks over the holidays I have been in a constant rush to go faster, whether it’s to complete out a holiday trip, the removal of christmas, to the accelerate thru new year celebration, with each I have been in a rush.   On the work front I have been in a hot pursuit to go faster, don’t stop, don’t slow down, don’t..    but yet I have jammed up my brain, I have left fun on the table, I have not enjoyed the journey..   Today I was thinking about the last two weeks and why I don’t feel refreshed at all.  Well it’s clear to me now, I have not allowed myself to slow down, I have not listened to my own advise of Less is More.    I recently took down most of the lego christmas full table setup. I didn’t take final pictures, I didn’t do a fun zombie attack that we normally love to.. it was all about getting it done and yet I missed the point of doing it all.

Today as I was flipping through my journal I realized that answers to my questions at work were already captured, already written down in my prior moments of silence where I took notes of what my brain was thinking, yet over the last two weeks I couldn’t get to it, I couldn’t stop & see that the answers were there all along.    Sometimes I just say WTH Josh, why are you not slowing down to go faster.  Why are you not spending more time doing a single task and enjoying every moment.   Lately I have been washing my dishes by hand and only doing that, no movie on, no interuptions, just being present washing, drying putting them back away in their places.  It has been therapeutic.  Yes it was part of my mindfulness training and yet when stress hits you hard I need to revisit my notes, think about my training.   Tonight I had the opportunity to have dinner with my daughter, she is bada&& (just saying).  we were present, we laughed, we ate, we enjoyed the time together.   There were no lectures, there was no stress, it was exactly what life should be like.    I did miss my dads call (he’s facetiming now) and for that I will give him a call tomorrow, but I will do the same with him, I will drop everything and be present for that moment, listen to his tales of the new work ventures, hear about hawaii and soak in the moments.

Tonight as I reflect on a few friends that I have lost out of my circle of trust I am not sad, but believe it is for the best.   I will not go fast into figuring out why, but I will slow down, embrace what it has become and I will learn, I will not debate myself, I will not degrade myself.. Instead I will smile and know that God is present.   Yes I dont’ talk much on religion, but I do believe in God and I know he is present.

So..  let me finish with a thought..    What more could I achieve if I truly slowed down to go faster?

Much love to you all on your journey and if you ever need anything, you know how to track me down..

HILLY

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Resilience is in my DNA

re·sil·ience [noun]
  • the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.
  • the ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape; elasticity.
Why start with that? why right out of the gate would you give the definition hilly?  Well, resilience is part of my DNA.   Through all challenges, the resilience to keep going, keep fighting, keep making a difference is who I am.    When the cards are stacked against you, you figure out how to reshuffle them.    BTW, I am doing great, this is just a reminder for those days when they are not going well.
I think that is all for this post..   Stay Resilient my friends..
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Let’s plan some RV tripping & SUP travels

As we get to the 6 month from summer marker, it’s time to dust off the CC and get the planning book out for a  few awesome experiences.   I try every year to set a list of things I want to do, so here’s my starting list for 2019.

  • Hit 5 new lakes to SUP & RV/Tent camp
  • RV trip to Texas & then go north until it’s time to come back
  • Zip line w/ the kids
  • Surf Malibu, Huntington & Doho.
  • Harley Trip w/ my dad

I think that is a fine starting list   I’m looking forward to so many great experiences next year and I am thankful for family, my kids, my friends, my health.

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment