Crazy, Wild, Infectious Positivity: Dennis Caco

Crazy, Wild, Infectious Positivity: Dennis Caco

My husband, James, and I had just moved to sunny San Diego to spend a winter.  San Diego has always had my heart, for many reasons.  Of course, one of the biggest being that there was no winter, therefore, no off season for the cyclist.  For a cyclist from the part of Canada that we were from, this would be a dream come true.

It was Thanksgiving, and we were still newbies in town.  James was away for the weekend, thus, I was on my own.  I decided to show up for the Turkey Day ride known as the 5 faces of Soledad.  Mt. Soledad is a mountain in the heart of San Diego, well known to cyclists.  I have heard that there are 12 ways to summit, 5 of which would be covered the morning of Turkey Day.  We would be climbing about 1100 metres over a mere 40 km.

There I was, just a girl with a bike, surrounded by cyclists, none of which I knew.  I simply hung around quietly until it was time to climb.  Off we went.  As we started our first ascent, fellow riders chatted away.  I was on my own, and I focused on getting into a cycling flow.

smiling

It didn’t take long for Dennis to cheerfully say hello and start chatting with me.  Next thing I knew, Dennis and his fellow riding buddies were climbing along side me.  They were strong, fit, fast racers.  They were also considerate, open and always looking out for their fellow cyclist.

From the moment I met Dennis, his energy was infectious.  He is literally a ball of wild, crazy positivity.  It seeps out of his pores.  It infuses everyone around him.  He simply makes you believe that you can do whatever it is you are doing.

At the end of the five climbs, Dennis insisted that I join in for a group picture with him and his riding buddies. Continue reading “Crazy, Wild, Infectious Positivity: Dennis Caco”

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Grit and Determination – Marc Enter

Grit and Determination – Marc Enter

As the cyclists whipped by at crazy speeds, we stood on the sidelines eagerly searching the pack each time they sped by.  Our eyes were peeled for our fellow cyclist and friend.  Each time we saw him speeding by with complete determination, we cheered excitedly.  This was the criterium (crit) portion of a three day road race.  Crits are truly crazy events.  Racers whip around many laps of a closed circuit.  The speeds are crazy, and the proximity of the riders insane.  The corners are tight – very tight.
Speeding by
As Marc passed by again, we continued to cheer with excitement.  Then – boom!!  He went down.  He slid at in incredible speed across the pavement, the flesh of his leg ripping open with every bit of contact.  He hit the side hard and his body crumpled into its final resting position.  I felt terror bolt through my entire being.  It had happened so fast. It was absolutely horrifying to watch.

Continue reading “Grit and Determination – Marc Enter”

A Guide on my Journey: Chris Rurka

{Welcome to my feature series on those who have inspired me on my journey.  If you missed the Dark Horse, be sure to take look.  Today’s post is about someone who became a guide on my journey and helped me to open my mind and embark on what I had once thought was impossible.}

wheel poseAs I looked at each of my palms, firmly planted into the earth, I felt elated.  My legs felt strong, my mind was clear, and my being was present and relaxed.  As I felt comfortable and at ease in an execution of full wheel pose, I felt elated.  It has been quite a journey, and it took me a long time to get here.  Yoga has become a fundamental part of my life journey.

Thanks to an amazing and inspiring guide, Chris Rurka, I have been fortunate enough to have experienced the inward journey that truly begins when you are able to be fully present and open.  For someone focused on continuously pushing forward, this was no easy feat.  It was quite some time into my yoga journey that I really started to understand why I was doing it.  As sporadic as my practice has been over the years, I have been gravitating to Chris’ class for many years.  Any time I saw his name on the schedule, I was drawn to class.

Continue reading “A Guide on my Journey: Chris Rurka”

Who is the Dark Horse

{Welcome to my feature series on those who have inspired me on my journey.  If you missed last week’s post Racing with the Dark Horse, be sure to check it out.}

QuoteWhen I first met the Dark Horse, he led me through a ride that had me digging deep to reach speeds that I didn’t know I could ride at.  He was one of the most courteous, professional and talented riders I had ever met.  He supported me and pushed me to reach further and ride harder.

There is so much more to the Dark Horse. Continue reading “Who is the Dark Horse”

Racing with the Dark Horse

Racing with the Dark Horse

Out we set. Clad in our sleek lycra. Slick wheels cutting the crisp morning air. We were a pack of crazies on a mission to ride.

The pace was at warm up level. But I had ridden with these guys before, and I knew what could happen. I was alert, and I was sure to keep on that last wheel. No dropping this babe so early on.

A few moments in, I noticed a rider behind me. I asked him if he was with this group. Yes, he replied. I asked him if he rode often. He shrugged and casually replied…oh, sometimes. I noticed him dropping back a bit, and tried to keep him in sight. But I had my own concerns of keeping with the pack.

part 1 pic 2

Continue reading “Racing with the Dark Horse”