Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Hi guys! I had a long, glorious weekend. How about you?

It started off with using Capital Bikeshare to get to the DC Armory for a DC Roller Girls bout.

Thankfully, the weather warmed up enough that it was a pleasant ride. I did get turned around a bit when I docked the bike at 5th & K to restart the clock, but I figured it out. Thank goodness for GPS, right? I was in a really bad mood when I began the ride (don't ask), but by the time I reach the Armory, I was happy as a clam :) The Derby game was awesome, as always. If you've never been, you *have* to go.

Afterwards, my friends and I decided to head out to dinner, which was nearly thwarted thanks to some silly football game on :( Still we managed to squeeze in eventually.

The next day, I used Capital Bikeshare to ride down to brunch. I haven't been out to brunch in forever, and I lived it up! Eggs Benedict all the way, baby!

Somehow, brunch turned into an all day extravaganza....oops. We closed the place out at last call....

Monday & today were errand days. I had a couple of X-Mas Target gift cards to use up, so I used Capital Bikeshare to ride over and use them up. It was just as the sleet/ice stuff started to fall from the sky. I'm glad I got the ride in when I did, because CaBi ended up shutting down the system (rightfully so--it was a mess out there!). Then today I needed to get some other things done, and CaBi was perfect.

I managed to get all the things I wanted to do, as well as all things I needed to do, done--thanks to Capital Bikeshare.

Tomorrow, its back to the usual grind.

It's supposed to be a bit warmer, thank goodness. As much as I say I love cold weather (I do!), I do get tired of below-freezing weather. I will admit that last week was really getting me down. I was just plain tired of shivering all day. I was sick of my fingers & toes freezing. But the 40 degree weather on Saturday gave me hope. I *love* winter, but its just about this time of the year that it starts to take a toll. The holidays, along with the glitter, music, fun & spirit, are over. Now the only thing to look forward to is Valentine's Day, and even then you still have another month of cold, winter, slog to look forward to...

So when its above freezing, I feel much better. Unfortunately, the warm weather is not expected to last the rest of this week.

Spring is coming. Spring is coming. Spring is coming....

Speaking of, is anyone else registering for the Vasa Ride? I'm going to go ahead and register, I'm just not sure which bike to bring. I'd like to bring Betty, but if its super hilly, I might bring a bike with more gears.

Let me know what you look forward to!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A very snowy day 11...

I will admit, I was very skeptical about any snow showing up here. I must confess that I am not a snow-lover. At least not here in DC. I used to *love* snow--the more the better. But that was when I had snow-days from school & work. I didn't have to worry about shoveling, driving or going anywhere. I could settle in, drink hot cocoa & play video games until my eyeballs bled.

Now that I have to show up, no matter what, it kinda sucks. I still have nightmares from last year's "Snowmageddon". Even though I only live 1.5 miles from my workplace, it became a huge hassle (& hazard) for me to get to/from work. Folks that lived further out could hitch a ride with the National Guard; but because I lived within the District, I had to find my own way--and that meant walking for the most part. Do you remember how crappy the sidewalks & roads were? Yeah. What was normally a pleasant 25 minute walk became an exhausting 90 minute slog. I really could have used a pair of snow-shoes, and I'm not kidding.

So when I heard the forecasters reducing their snow accumulation totals over the course of today, I was glad. An inch is fine with me! No more!

My A.M. commute was fine. Cold, with tiny little biting flakes--none of them big enough to stick around, but annoying enough to sting my face as I rode. I had no issues with getting a CaBi bike today.

While at work, the sleet started. The only thing worse than snow is sleet. Getting damp or wet while spending a prolonged amount of time in freezing weather = bad! So I stayed inside until it passed. But then the sleet turned into big fluffy flakes. Big, *pretty*, fluffy flakes. And it started to stick around. And you know what? I couldn't resist. It was so quiet & pretty out, that I would hate to miss out on it. So I hopped on  my work bike and rode around for an hour & a half enjoying the falling snow. Then I realized I was absolutely covered in the stuff, and I probably should head back inside before I was mistaken for a snowman. The new tires on my work bike were perfect in the snow. I had no problems getting around at all.

It was still snowing when it was time to head home. I was determined to get another CaBi ride in (if only for the double points it would earn me due to the snow). The CaBi handled quite well in the snow and I arrived home without incident. DDOT did an excellent job of salting the roadways so they were all fairly clear, and I didn't slip & slide at all.

Now, if only this snow would disappear by the time I go into work tomorrow afternoon. I've had my fill, thanks.

A few photos...

Outside the metro station.

The work bike.

I need to remember to bring some plastic bags with me to protect my butt from the snow!

Can you tell which bike I used?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Winter Weather Warrior: Day 10

Another short ride today.

I got to my "home" station, and there were 3 bikes available. I tried my key in the first bike, and the little red light flashed angrily at me. No bike for you!

I tried the second bike, same thing.

Would the third bike be the charm?


Maybe they were all put down for repair? Maybe CaBi panicked about the winter weather advisory for tomorrow evening and pre-emptively shut down the system? Maybe I broke my key?

A quick call to a customer service rep (yay for 24 hour service), and the issue was quickly identified and resolved. At the time I signed up with CaBi, I used a card that had since been canceled. Oops! Once I updated my billing information, everything went smoothly. My key worked immediately and I rode to a nearby station, docked, took out another bike and rode back home.

It was a pleasant late night ride. Hardly any traffic (vehicular or pedestrian). Quiet & cold, just the way I like it. If I wasn't trying to go to bed at a reasonable hour, I would have gone downtown to the monuments for awhile.

I might dread leaving my warm, comfy living room to head out into the cold winter air for a bike ride, but I am always glad once I do it. If it weren't for this contest, I probably wouldn't have bothered today.

Tomorrow its back to my regular commute. Interesting to see what will happen with the alleged snow that's supposed to show up tomorrow afternoon....

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Winter Weather Warrior: Day 9

Hi guys! Nothing too exciting today. I had a ton of chores/errands to do, so I didn't have a whole lot of time to do something "fun".

I did use CaBi to handle a few of my errands though. It was cold out there!

Tomorrow will be more fun, I promise.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Winter Weather Warrior: Week 1, Done!

Yesterday's CaBi ride was uneventful. Just my normal a.m. commute to work. I was meeting some friends at a bar after work, so I used CaBi to get there too.

I took a taxi cab home, of course.

And that marked the end of a week of Capital Bikeshare rides! Not bad, if I do say so myself.

This week began with a bang. Today was WABA's Resolution to Ride Safely bike ride. Despite feeling a little groggy from last night's imbibing, I dragged myself out of bed on this cold (and snowy) morning to meet with the other riders at 18th & Columbia. I grabbed a bike from the 16th & Harvard station and rode it the starting area. I could have grabbed one from the 18th & Columbia station, but I felt like riding rather than walking.

After a short little talk on what riding "responsibly" means, we were off! The ride was a nice, pleasant roll around downtown with highlights including the White House (obligatory photo op), the Pennsylvania Ave bike lanes, and the 15th St. cycletrack (with only one idiot driver parked right in the middle of the cycletrack). It was a pretty brisk morning, so we kept it moving. The thought of a nice hot cup of hot chocolate kept me motivated ;) I used the same bike throughout the ride, even though there were stations along the way that I could have stopped at to dock the bike and "reset" the clock to avoid additional fees. I don't like having to constantly stop during an organized ride and I didn't mind paying the fee. There was another rider also using CaBi, and he did stop at the stations along the way.

After the ride, I left the bike at the 18th & Columbia station and walked home (I had some time to kill before I had to head out to work--and use CaBi again to commute there).

The other rider that was using CaBi for the ride gave me a great idea for my days off. He says he uses CaBi as a sort of impromptu "bike tour" of DC via the bikeshare stations. He simply looks for the closest station, docks, checks the map for the next closest station, bikes there, docks, checks the map, etc.... He said its a great way to see DC from a new perspective and to see the parts of DC that maybe you haven't before. What a great idea!

And now, I'm off to work.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Winter Weather Warrior: Day 6

Hello folks! Thank you to Capital Bikeshare for the shout-out on Facebook today!

Today was a brilliant day for a Capital Bikeshare ride. I had jury duty today, and after 6 hours of sitting still I couldn't wait to hop on a bike! I don't do well with being cooped up inside for too long.

Luckily, there was a station only 3 blocks from the Courthouse. It was a beautiful, sunny afternoon, the temperature was just right, and I had the entire rest of the day off for once!

I decided to take the Pennsylvania Avenue bike lanes to the the 15th St. cycletrack to go home. Of course, I had to make my usual stop at the White House for a photo op!

I slowly rolled through Lafayette Square and hopped onto the cycletrack at Vermont Ave. The cycletrack was finally clear!

Not a single parked car in the entire cycletrack. Perfect.

I had a very pleasant ride northbound to my home station and made it there in just about 39 minutes. Not bad for a pleasant roll.

39 minutes--yep, that's over the 30 minute "free ride" limit, but I'm ok with that. There were stations along my route that I could have docked at in order to reset the clock, but it's only $1.50. Compared to cab fare or even metro fare (what with the waiting, broken escalators, roving packs of angry teenagers, broken trains & bag searches), its a bargain! I don't mind paying the fee at all.

While I was stopped at a light on the cycletrack, a motorist even asked me about Capital Bikeshare. Maybe I converted him-who knows?

Onto day 7!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Winter Weather Warrior: Day 4 & 5

Hi guys! Blogger is acting up so I'm posting this from my iPhone. Of course this would happen AFTER I downloaded all my pictures onto my computer. :-/

This will be just a quick update, sans photos :(

I am still getting used to leaving a little bit early in order to allow myself enough time to walk to & from the bikeshare stations without being late for work. So far so good! The only thing that worries me is that there has only been one bike available at my nearest station when I'm on my way to work. Yikes! I will be a very grumpy girl on a bike if there aren't any bikes available ;)

So far I've only used Capital Bikeshare for my a.m. commute. But that's just because I have been lazy in the p.m.

The weather has been very cooperative so far, although it almost got down to freezing tonight brrr!!!

Tomorrow I have jury duty. I know there is a Capital Bikeshare station near the court house. However I may catch a ride with a co-worker headed in the same direction tomorrow to avoid the morning rush. I will definitely be using it on the way back up tho.

And thats all for now.

I hope blogger gets it's crap together soon!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, January 3, 2011

Capital Bikeshare Day 3: Ride to Nowhere in Particular

I'm feeling a tad better now, but still pretty wiped out.

I only got half of my workout done today, and the knowledge that I still needed to get a capital bikeshare ride done for today was looming in my mind.

I couldn't think of a good destination, so I finally decided to just go ahead, get a bike and just ride for a bit with no particular destination in mind.

The weather was pretty chilly, but it felt good after my last few days of being in a fever. Once I warmed up a bit on the bike, I wanted to keep riding and riding. Maybe downtown, maybe to the Mall, maybe over to Georgetown....

Alas, the boy texted me that he was starving and would like dinner ASAP. Duty calls!

So, after a short ride around Columbia Heights, I returned the bike to the docking station and headed home.

Riding nowhere in particular reminded me of being a kid; of days when I rode my just for the sake of riding my bike.

I look forward to more "pointless" trips like this in the future.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Capital Bikeshare Contest Days 1 & 2

Day 1:

New Year's Day was a miserable one for me. I spent all of New Year's Day Eve in absolute misery at work. I had a fever, chills & muscle cramps & aches.  I was so miserable that I left Betty at work and caught a ride home from a friend. The very idea of biking was impossible. When I woke up New Year's Day, I felt slightly better but still pretty fried. I went to work to see if I improved at all. Nope. After handling one assignment, I realized that I was going to be absolutely no good to anyone, so I asked my boss if I could skip out early. I felt terrible for doing so because it was a holiday, but I could barely stand for more than 10 minutes at a time. Thankfully, they let me go.

I almost debated asking for a ride home. I knew that this would crush my hopes for at least a perfect attendance award for the Winter Weather Warrior contest before it even really began, but I was feeling terrible.  However, it was really warm out, and the fresh air might do me some good. It would be just a short ride, after all.

Capital Bikeshare won out. I wasn't going to give up before I even began. I walked to the closest station, unlocked a bike and rode very slowly towards the closest station to home. I managed to get there just as a Capital Bikeshare van was restocking the station. Neat. I locked the bike at the station and walked towards home, feeling no worse for the wear than when I started. Day 1 done!

Day 2:

I felt slightly more human today and decided to use Capital Bikeshare to retrieve poor Betty from work and bring her home. I walked to the station, unlocked a bike, rode for a bit and dropped the bike off at the closest station to work. Then I walked the rest of the way and got poor Betty out of the garage and rode her home. Day 2 done!

Looking forward to day 3!

Happy 2011!

Hi folks! Happy New Year!

I had planned on writing a resolutions post for New Year's Eve, but I came down with some horrible bug and wasn't able to do much except whimper in bed. I've been completely out of it the last two days, and am only now starting to feel human again. You know you're sick when you're already fast asleep on New Year's Eve by 11:30pm. :(

Resolutions. I like them. I know many other bloggers out there hate the very idea of "Resolutions". I've even read some dubious definitions of resolutions out there. (P.S. Resolution does not = "wishful thinking".  The Founding Fathers were not simply "wishfully thinking" their ideals, they were RESOLUTE in them).

Resolution. Re-Solution. A new solution to an old problem?

We all have the same problems year after year. Lose weight, save money, quit (bad habit), etc etc etc. Then we don't make any actual substantial changes to achieve those things. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results, right? Well, maybe it's time for a Re-Solution. Start doing something *differently*, rather than doing (or not doing) what you've always done in the past. Also, a resolution is *not* a goal. It's how you *reach* that goal. You might have a goal to lose 30lbs. Your resolution might be to be more physically active or to quit drinking soda.

Last year, I quit smoking. This took a tremendous amount of effort on my part. Dozens, even hundreds, of attempts only to fail and go right back to smoking. It wasn't until I stopped doing what I had always done, and tried something different that it finally clicked. Basically, I got to the point where I finally realized that allowing myself to smoke for any reason was going to lead directly to failure. That is, I had to STOP smoking in order to quit smoking. I know this sounds like common sense, but to an addict its revolutionary. Once I learned that I simply had to never smoke the next cigarette, quitting became insanely easy. Now I don't even worry about it. My goal was to quit smoking. My resolution was to never pick up the next cigarette.

So, what will it be this year?

I have a few goals/resolutions in mind.

1. Goal 1: Lose 30lbs. When I quit smoking, I unfortunately gained something back, ha!

  • Resolution: Be more active by biking at least 50 miles/week at work and running 10 miles/week.
  • Resolution: Re-join Weight Watchers to track my food.
2. Goal: Get outside more

  • Resolution: One non-work/non-commute bike ride per week to something fun (bars don't count!).
  • Resolution: One workout a week should be done outdoors.
3. Goal: Save $XXXX (Keeping the exact amount private)

  • Resolution: Put aside $XXX per month in savings.
I have three more goals/resolutions but those are private.

I may or may not update my progress on this blog. Don't worry, I don't want this blog turning into a weight-loss centered blog either! But I may mention it here or there. I promise to warn you in advance.

Do you guys have any goals/resolutions? How was your New Years?