Ride for Veterans

Cycling and anything that keeps the wheels turning. Marine veteran remembering the time I served as well as looking to help others.

Cyclist crossed 6 states to propose to his girlfriend, stabbed to death by a homeless man.

Cyclist killed by Florida man on his way to propose to his girlfriend.

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Kevin Adorno, seen in the above picture with his girlfriend, was killed by a homeless man after stopping at a McDonalds for a quick snack. He was cycling from Maryland to Florida to propose his girlfriend, Elyse seen in the picture.

The killer.

Homeless man stabs cyclist Florida

 

Rene Herrera Cruz 59 years old, seen in the picture above told police that he watched Adorno walk around talking on his cell phone and believed that he was instructing people to kill him. He then proceeded to stab him in the chest and arm causing him to collapse near a bathroom. Adrorno’s girlfriend reported hearing the phone drop on the ground before hearing sirens.

Homeless-Man-Stabbing cyclist Florida

 

As you can see from this picture, the trip was to consisted of 1191 miles. Out of all the hazards one could come across when making a cycling trip like this Adorno met his fate by wanting a quick snack. It’s still unclear what was mentally wrong with Cruz, or why he thought Adorno was instructing others to kill him. It’s a tragic event and my heart goes out to his family and friends.

Florida already has a poor reputation when it comes to cycling/pedestrian accidents. Like the news of the past, this will be categorized with the stigma surrounding the idea that crazy people are found in Florida. We had the zombie eating a person problem, countless court cases that made national news and infuriated many with the results. I already know that carrying a weapon while cycling is illegal in many states, maybe it shouldn’t be. Perhaps on long trips like this protecting oneself is not a bad idea.

What do you think of this tragic event? Comment below or voice your opinion on my twitter. @LegsBPedaling

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Getting some tail, and using my fingers.

Catching the tail wind on a brief ride tonight.

There’s nothing better than riding in the same direction as the wind. Doesn’t happen too often here in Orlando either due to luck, or the great stints of weather I end up riding in. When it does though I fully appreciate the added boost. The soundtrack to tonight’s ride brought to you by DJ Swan. Good buddy of mine and always has a great mix to pedal to. You can check out some of his tracks here.

It wasn’t a very long ride tonight, I wanted to do it more for speed and intensity to check on something my body has been doing. Too many migraines this week to ignore. I’m thinking there is a connection with my blood pressure. That or I have just been around too many other people that have been pissing me off. Both are plausible.

What the hell is the matter with people?

The-Big-Lebowski-WTF-GifThe end of July has always been a fuzzy time for me in the past. This year it’s just been filled with an abundance of inner issues. Combine that with the mini interactions I have with people, you know the ones that make one want to run head first into a brick wall.

A quick example of one of those mini interactions occurred tonight. I like to call these type of people too stupid to let their brain catch up to their own dumb. I’ll try to put that in plain English or something that makes sense. Ever watch someone do something you know is going to be wrong and at the same time you can see it on their face that they know it as well? Well in these instances these people are being stupid at such great speeds that it’s damn near impossible for them to stop the current actions.

This type of driver deserves a brick through the window.

 

Not too sure why drivers pull this maneuver, but they do constantly. Speeding past a cyclist only to slam on their brakes and cut in front of them to make a right turn. I’m thankful that I have quick enough reflexes to stop myself from slamming into the side of vehicles that do this. Wouldn’t it be much easier to wait 0.5 seconds for the cyclist to pass the road you wish to turn down?

The special person that cut me off tonight received a double dose of my erect fingers. Letting them know just how appreciative I was of their driving skills.

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Now how many of you perverts read the title of this post and assumed I was talking about a girl? For shame!

Running red lights without wearing a helmet.

Settling into a new home.

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Sorry that my posts have been few and far between lately. I recently moved to a new location within Orlando and have been working on getting everything situated. Can’t wait to get out on the bike once everything settles and explore past my previous boundaries.

Not divulging my location, but I get the pleasure now of seeing all kinds of skilled drivers around Conroy and Kirkman road. The erratic driving of tourists and pissed off Floridians is outstanding. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the the thought process of those who speed up to 50mph just to pass a car and then slam on their brakes to sit in backed up traffic. Was that one extra spot worth putting yourselves and others at risk? frabz-STUPID-DRIVERS--STUPID-DRIVERS-EVERY-WHERE-154d1f

My riding skills will definitely be put to the test while maneuvering through this part of Orlando. Even walking a couple of miles crossing the roads in this area is like playing Frogger. My first stroll out and I witnessed three separate car accidents within a half hour. Even with all the visible hazards I still watch people putting their lives at risk, especially those on bicycles.

Stupid cyclist.

Not sure the reason, but many of the people that ride bikes throughout downtown Orlando decide not to wear helmets. This is a huge pet peeve of mine. I witnessed one such person on the way home from work one morning. This guy on a bike pulled out into traffic without checking his surroundings. Weaving all over the road and running a red light at a busy intersection. It’s pretty sad when someone like myself who loves cycling has to silently curse about a fellow rider.

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My new location is much closer to work so my primary rides won’t be just commuting back and forth to work anymore. I’ll have the chance to ride as a hobby and take pleasure in exploring my area. I’m very paranoid about getting hit by a vehicle in this area, but I believe with time I’ll get used to it and figure out ways to get to safer roads. Cannot wait for those 40-50+ mile rides in my future. Which I need to be doing more of, because unless I get back on the hamster wheel or curb my high intake of calories I’m going to balloon up and become a couch commander.

Excited about the road ahead.

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My life always takes twists and turns as I’ve said in my ‘about me’ section. I have a path I’m on and like many trips it’s a little foggy. I know of destinations I’ll come across and goals that come to fruition. Each day bringing me closer to what I desire in life. Just like any new ride the road will be lined with speed bumps, road blocks and unexpected pot holes. As long as I stay focused and determined I believe I can accomplish whatever I actually set my mind to. Tomorrow will be my first real ride in my new neighborhood. Hopefully I’ll make a few new cyclist friends or have some new stories to share. Stay safe out there and keep pedaling!

 

Florida has a hit and run problem.

Even the police officers are doing it.


Recently I’ve been seeing a lot in the news about ‘Hit and Run’ incidents. More specifically between vehicles and either pedestrians or cyclists. One of the drivers was even a member of law enforcement. Driving away could mean the difference of life and death for those involved. I understand that in some instances the pedestrians or cyclists were being unsafe. However consider the same situations involving your loved ones. Would you want someone to drive away leaving them on the side of the road? How would you feel about a person after finding out they were the ones that kept driving?

When I tried googling “cyclists killed” or “Pedestrians killed” I was shown results that already included the state or Florida. Titles such as Florida bike deaths lead the nation, or Florida is the deadliest state for walkers and cyclists. Starting to see the problem? For those who are quick to say that it’s the tourists that are causing the problems I can promise it’s not. After almost a year on the streets here It is rare that someone from another state causes me any issues.

Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act

Recently in Tallahassee action has taken place to impose stricter punishments for those involved in these accidents. A driver by the name of Michele Traverso Struck and killed a cyclist, Aaron Cohen. An article in the Tampa Bay Times gives a brief description of the new bill.

SB 102, called the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act, creates a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of four years for a driver convicted of leaving the scene of a fatal crash. The bill also imposes a minimum driver’s license revocation period of at least three years and driver education requirements for people who leave the scene of a crash.

I find this to be an outstanding step in the right direction, but its not enough to just impose fines and strict penalties. I feel the bill should be amended to include a mandatory set of classes that each offender is required to attend in order to get their license reinstated. Clearly the pedestrian and cyclist laws are not being adequately taught to drivers throughout Florida and they need to be.

A new bill introduced.

Over two years ago in Tallahassee a cyclist was struck by a vehicle and subsequently left to die on the side of the road. The driver received a sentence of two years in prison as a result. Mickey Witte, lobbyists and fellow cyclists helped to pass this bill.

A community with a common understanding that this problem needs to be corrected. Aaron Cohen left behind a widow and two children. He also left behind the reminder that roadways aren’t safe.

Drivers in and around the Orlando area.20140514-020353.jpg

I commute back and forth to work 5-6 times a week and this story could have easily been about you or I. I’ve witnessed it several times, the drivers that pay little or no attention to their surroundings. Recently I’ve began keeping track of them here.(Wall of shameful drivers)  You could be on the list…

I know the solution to these accidents can’t be eradicated overnight. I know of a bike route that’s going to stretch across the entire state of Florida that is still in the planning stage. I really hope it comes into fruition soon!

Other states have already put into place new roadways that provide for a safer shared roadway. This is a costly procedure and I don’t expect that it will be completed through most states right away. You can’t put a price on someone’s life however. With the growing cycling community throughout the United States we need to adapt and fit the needs of everyone.

Time to clear up a few misconceptions about cyclists.

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Many times I have heard the honks of vehicles or the words, “GET ON THE SIDEWALK” shouted at me. People I’ve talked to have tried to tell me that bicycles on the road is illegal and the roads are meant for cars. WRONG, in fact roads were originally created for bicycles. Read up on the facts. Each state law is different in today’s world and motorists and cyclists would benefit from reading them.

Florida law concerning bicycles: (These are some of them, the rest can be viewed here.)

(1) Every person propelling a vehicle by human power has all of the rights and all of the duties applicable to the driver of any other vehicle under this chapter, except as to special regulations in this chapter, and except as to provisions of this chapter which by their nature can have no application.
(4) No person riding upon any bicycle, coaster, roller skates, sled, or toy vehicle may attach the same or himself or herself to any vehicle upon a roadway. This subsection does not prohibit attaching a bicycle trailer or bicycle semitrailer to a bicycle if that trailer or semitrailer is commercially available and has been designed for such attachment.
(5)(a) Any person operating a bicycle upon a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing shall ride in the lane marked for bicycle use or, if no lane is marked for bicycle use, as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway…
6) Persons riding bicycles upon a roadway may not ride more than two abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles. Persons riding two abreast may not impede traffic when traveling at less than the normal speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing and shall ride within a single lane.
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One of the major differences between vehicles and bicycles is that they are not allowed on highways or interstates. Basically if the speed limit is higher than 55 MPH bicycles are prohibited from entering. Which there are signs all throughout Florida has signs designated to let pedestrians and cyclists know.

Unless those with the power to implement more bike lanes or educate the population on a large scale does so, drivers will need to accept the fact that cyclists and pedestrians will from time to time be on the roads. The cowardice act of hitting someone then leaving them on the side of the road is disgraceful. I agree with this new bill because 2 years in prison is not enough. In my opinion it should be weighted the same as vehicular manslaughter.

Everyone out there stay safe! Drivers and cyclists alike. We don’t need to put ourselves in a situation that requires notifying the next of kin.

What kind of bike should I buy? (Or put the fun between your legs!)

A little help figuring out which bike to get.

history-highwheelerWhether you’re looking to get into shape or would just like to get outside and have fun a bike appreciable for anyone. I’m always getting asked by people which bike they should buy. That’s a hard one to answer not knowing the intended purpose of the purchase for each person. Hopefully some of this will help to clear up some confusion and put you out on the roads!

Road bikes.

Its a snake!

Its a snake!

This type of bike is suitable for roads and paved trails. They typically are built with aerodynamics in mind and have thinner tires to decrease road resistance. The handlebars on most road bikes are covered in a tape for shock absorption , even though fingers sometimes end up being tingly anyway. There curvature of the handlebars allow the rider to crouch down in order to be more aerodynamic, commonly referred to as the drops.

Road bikes are designed for high speed and long distances. Customarily they are used for racing, charity rides and group rides within your local community.  They are very lightweight approximately 20 lbs or less. The price range for these bikes range from a couple hundred dollars to thousands. The one I’m riding cost $1,600; the one I want to be riding is on sale for $4,995. The price of these bikes has a lot to do with the weight, design and building material used in the frame of the bike.

 

Mountain Bikes.

Mountain bikes are normally used for trails and going off road. They are a very versatile bicycle being used on and off a paved surface. With a rugged design mountain bikes can withstand the stress of uneven terrain and still be used in an urban environment. The handlebars are straight across allowing the rider to sit upright and maneuver the bike.  The tires are wider for better traction and therefore weigh more than road bike tires. Most modern mountain bikes will have front suspension forks, the two bars connecting the tire to the frame. The suspension forks takes the stress of the terrain off the body of the rider, providing for a smooth as I guess it can be ride.

I used to ride mountain bikes when I was a teenager, but for me its all about going faster and Florida doesn’t have too many hills. 😉 The prices are similar to road bicycles. The higher the price the greater the difference on the bike. That doesn’t mean that the right bike for you should be the most expensive one you can afford. I have seen some bikes that are extremely expensive but aren’t comfortable to ride. Make sure before you purchase one that it meshes well with your body and riding style.

 

Hybrid bikes.

These bikes are great for anyone looking to commute back and forth to work. They combine the sturdy design and comfort of a mountain bike with the aerodynamic design and thin tires of a road bike. Cargo racks and bags can be added to any type of bike, but are typically found on hybrid bikes to aide in carrying your stuff. I have one on my bike above the rear tire in place of wearing a back pack. Depending how far you’ll be riding this could truly make the difference in comfort. I like mine because it carries my bike lock, spare tire and tube, sandals and whatever else I need for the day.

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MAKE SURE THE BIKE FITS YOU!

One of the most important things to check out before buying the bike is the size. Getting a bike that is either too large or too small will affect your ride and has the potential of causing injury to your body. Most bike shops are trained in bike fitting and can assist in letting you know what your size is.

 

For any more questions leave them in the comments below. It does not matter which type of bike you choose, just get off your couch and put the fun between your legs!