A New Kind of Challenge: Best Buddies Hearst Castle

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It’s no secret that I am very connected to my beach cruiser.


(all my favorite things in one picture 😉 )

It’s also no secret that I like races. I’ve participated in my fair share over the past year and a half, since my first 5k in April 2013.



So it’s interesting that all of my races up until this point have only been running races (OK, so the Color Run was mostly walking…and trying to drink wine out of a plastic bag…maybe not my finest fitness moment 😉 ).

I have made the decision that for my training for my next half marathon, I will most likely only be running twice a week and using Ultimate Frisbee once a week as my “speed training”. As for my other workouts, I am going to continue strength training but am also looking into other group classes at my gym for cross training.

A few of my coworkers swear by TEAMride, a wildly popular indoor cycling studio here in Sacramento — AKA spin class. My gym has spin classes as well, and I’m most likely going to start trying them out, because…

I have signed up to participate in the Best Buddies Challenge — Hearst Castle!

Screen shot 2014-07-06 at 3.44.27 PM

On September 6th (about a month and a half before the Nike Women’s Half Marathon), I will be completing a 30 mile bike ride down the California coast to benefit Best Buddies International.

The Best Buddies Challenge supports Best Buddies International (www.bestbuddies.org), a global volunteer movement that creates opportunities for one-to-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Of course this isn’t an actual race, per se, as the goal is just to finish, have fun, and raise money for the great organization. But it’s called a challenge for a reason…I’m expecting it to be a physical challenge for sure, especially since my cycling experience is limited to riding my cruiser around downtown 🙂

I’m also excited to be participating this year as a member of Team Maria:

Led by award-winning journalist and best-selling author, Maria Shriver, Team Maria rides to raise awareness and support for Best Buddies International, an organization founded by her brother, Anthony Shriver.

Every year, Team Maria raises hundreds of thousands of dollars for the ride (almost $5 million since the team was founded!), and team members participate on different levels — anywhere from the 100 mile race down to the 15 miler. As they always do, Team Maria has set a lofty fundraising goal this year: $250,000!

I’m honored to participate as part of this team and am really excited to combine my love of a physical challenge with the great feeling of knowing I’m making a difference in the lives of those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

If you are able, I would be extremely grateful for any donation you can make to me and Team Maria. Click here to see my donation page and learn more about the event.

Aaaand if you’re not able, I am also accepting cycling tips, do’s and don’ts, and general advice about what I’m getting myself into 😉

Thank you and have a great rest of the week!

Have you ever participated in a bike ride or run where the primary goal was raising money for a cause?

Any tips for a spin class/road bike newbie?

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