As many of you are aware, Athalonz Founder and CEO Tim Markison is riding his bicycle across the United Sates, from San Diego, CA to Jacksonville, FL, to raise funds and awareness to combat child abuse. Learn more about his >3,000 mike ride here.
Day 4: October 2, 2021 (Blythe CA to Salome AZ)
This was a good day of riding. I felt strong, we skipped the I-10 section, and extended the ride. We went to Wickenburg. Well, about 10 miles short of Wickenburg. US 60 from I-10 to Wickenburg was a nice gentle climb. As the day progressed, the head winds picked up, but not too bad.
Encountered a group of 10 doing the same ride as me: San Diego to St. Augustine (which is about 20 miles south of Jacksonville). On day one, also encountered a single ride, who was also doing the same ride.
Day 5: October 3, 2021 (Salome AZ to Peoria AZ)
Today was my 60th birthday. I don’t like my birthday. It makes me think too much about my childhood. This day was no different. In fact, it was worse because I started the ride at 5 AM in the dark on a stretch of road with no one on it; I saw maybe 10 cars in an hour of riding. So, way too much time to think about my childhood.
I spent my childhood feeling empty, sad, and defeated; I wanted to curl up into a ball and die. Sleep was my only relief. On the ride, I tapped into those feelings. So, by the time I met up with Logan at the RV, I was feeling empty, sad, and defeated. All I wanted to do was to sleep and quit the ride.
Then I started to rationalize why I should quit the ride. An old guy riding his bike across the country is not news as evidenced by not having any press coverage when I passed through Mesa on Day 6. What might be newsworthy is my story. Yet, I have not really told my story; I written some blogs about something.
I started thinking that my time would be better spent writing a book about my life instead of riding a bike.
I have a personal not to make any big decisions when I’m emotional and I was certainly emotional at this time.
I shared all of this with Logan. He was great. He helped get me get back on the bike and we rode to Peoria.
More time to think. I started to see how to but my book together. For years, dozens of people have told me I should write my story and I’ve started and stopped at least five times. This was adding to my argument to stop the ride.
Day 6: October 4, 2021 (Peoria AZ to Mesa AZ)
We started at 6 AM. The first part of the ride was on a bike path. It was pretty nice not to have to worry about cars. Although, the bike path was not well marked (at least for me) and I got turned around a few times.
Today, we had the Mayor of Mesa, a coach from the A’s and three pitchers from the A’s met me at Athalonz office at 11 AM. We also had two motorcycle police officers there that gave me a short police escort. I have to admit that was pretty cool.
We took some nice photos with the mayor and the baseball players. We videoed the police escort. So, some good content for the ride.
After that, I met with my team and told them I had decided to stop the ride and focus on writing my story. They were all against it. In short, they convinced me to think about it some more and to continue on.
Later in the day, I had a long talk with my daughter Patty. She helped me greatly and convinced to continue with the ride, but with a new focus. I’ve spent too much energy on the external (press coverage, helping stop abuse, etc.) and not enough on the internal (my story, which is healing for me).
So, I have renewed enthusiasm for the ride and with a new perspective. I’ll ride 4-5 hours per day and write 2-4 hours per day. I’m sticking to the schedule that’s online, but with a new focus, a new strategy, and renewed energy.
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Today was a good bit of climbing. A little over 2,000 feet of elevation gain. Not as much as day 1 or day 2, but not trivial. I am really enjoying traveling through the small towns. The people have been friendly, the service has been good, and the food has been excellent.