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VeloDCity: a Washington Area Bicycling Group Message Board › VeloDCity Newsletter - Jan/Feb 2013

VeloDCity Newsletter - Jan/Feb 2013

Group Organizer
Washington, DC
Melkum Addis Ameut! Happy New Year! Happy Inauguration!! Praise the Groundhog!! May Spirits of Super Bowls past, present and future be with you.

Long time, no hear. I hope this message finds everyone doing well. First, I would first like to thank each and everyone of you for the spectacular, successful, exciting and awesome 2012. It’s because of you that this little group of ours(VeloDCity of course) is what it is. I greatly appreciate your interest and participation and I look forward to seeing you all sometime in 2013. Please accept my sincerest apologies for the lack of newsletters. Between the holiday seasons and non-biking stuff - many things have been distracting my attention from group matters. I’m happy to report that there are many many activities that are on the calendar and the proverbial drawing board that includes a Basic Skills Class, a social happy hour and for the ardent brave souls willing to brave the unpredictable elements ...some rides. However first things, first.

2012 VeloDCity Jersey Order
For those of you who are anxiously awaiting your very own coolest looking jersey. It won’t be long. A very large package has arrived on the doorstep and it’s red(actually brown on the outside). Individual jersey orders are being processed and I hope to get them to everybody before the end of the week. If you have not already, please get in touch with me to confirm your delivery information. Many thanks for your patience and please accept my sincerest apologies for the delay and the lack of communications on the matter.

Cycling Goals for 2013.
What are your personal goals for 2013? Complete your first century event? Break the 30mph barrier? Travel on a dream cycle vacation to France? Italy? Virginia? Now is the time to start the saving, planning and even more important the training for such goals. Fortunately, we here at VeloDCity central are here aid in your personal preparations from the ideal planning portion to scheduled training rides. Please monitor the website and more specifically the calendar for the details.

Don’t Be a Fair Weather Cyclists
If your true goal is to improve your riding ability on any level then you must make some effort to ride now. The weather conditions could potentially be in the mild 40’s to a very miserable cold 20’s however the benefits outweigh any natural trepidation that may have for staying indoors. How? Why? 1) The many group rides that are scheduled now will be slower in pace than the average spring/summer rides for the express purpose of base building for the imminent return of spring. 2) Intimidated by some of the ride descriptions: hilly, rolling, etc? There’s no cure over the intimidation blues than actually doing the ride. Combined with the slower pace and distance: you could be a more competent and confident rider when warmer weather arrives.

Event and Ride Schedule:
Triadelphia Trek
Saturday, February 9th at 9:30am
The ‘Salvation Circuit’ makes it’s official 2013 debut on the group calendar. This is the perfect ride that offers a little something for everybody especially those folks who may be intimidated by the average group ride, so please check it out. RESERVATIONS OPEN, LIMITED SPACE AVAILABLE.

Climbing Training Event #1 - Arlington Hills - 30 miles - 2,800 ft
Sunday, February 17, 2013 at 9:30am
Want to improve your climbing prowess on a bike? Then join the group’s #1 climbing ace, Matt for the first of several training rides to improve your climbing somewhere along the secret training grounds of Arlington. CURRENTLY FULL.

Ride to Galesville
Saturday, February 23rd at 9:30am
Another VeloDCity favorite makes it 2013 debut: ‘The not too hard, not too soft’ - Ride to Galesvile. This is another highly recommended out and back ride that includes lunch on the bay. If you have been thinking about participating in group for a while, this is good one to start with. Space will be limited due to arrangements that must be made with the restaurant. RESERVATIONS OPEN 2/13/2013

VeloDCity Happy Hour
Tuesday, February 26th at 6:30pm
Do you know what your some of your fellow cyclists look like in regular clothes? Do you know anything beyond what brand bike or cycling equipment that he or she uses on the weekend? Answer ‘Yes’, you’re an awesome individual. Answer ‘No’ or ‘Maybe’, you’re still great and this event has been scheduled just for you. RESERVATIONS OPEN.

Ride on Indian Head
Saturday, March 2nd at 10:00am
Last year, despite my controversial ‘omelet flat’ description of this Southern Maryland classic, everybody enjoyed themselves. The event includes multiple distance options and is perfect for those folks who are starting to awake from their cycling hibernation. RESERVATIONS OPENS 2/20/2013
Climbing Training Event #2 - Alexandria Hills - 36 miles - 2,300 ft

Sunday, March 10, 2013 at 9:30am
The second of Matt’s training ride that emphasize the art of climbing. This time, on the mighty hills of Alexandria. Please click the link above for more information and reserve a spot. RESERVATIONS OPENS 3/02/2013

2013 VASA Ride
Sunday, March 17th at 7:00am­
The good folks of WABA(Washington Area Bicycling Association) celebrate the annual Swedish event: the Vasaloppet. The biking event provides three distances to suite all riding skills. More information and more importantly, the pronunciation can be found at the links above. REGISTRATION IS OPEN.

Climbing Training Event #3 - North Loudoun Hills - 60 miles - 4,000 ft
Saturday, March 23, 2013 at 9:30am
The miles and elevation continues to climb up in the third session of Matt’s popular climbing sessions. This time, the roads of Loudoun, VA provide the entertainment for your legs and machine. REGISTRATION OPENS 3/02/2013

Total 200: Double Century Bike Ride
Saturday, July 6, 2013 at 5:00am
Two hundred ... Whether it is kilometers or miles, it's still a big deal. Join your fellow group members for the first major cycling event of the 2013 season. What are you waiting for? Make your reservations now and start your training for cycling glory. REGISTRATION IS OPEN.

Final Thoughts - Event RSVP’s Limits,
In closing, I need to address some recent questions concerning the limits on group events. 1) Why? The limits on group participation is established to ensure an enjoyable ride experience for all. Have you ever been on extremely large group ride and still ended up riding solo? Kind of defeats the purpose participating in a group ride in the first place. 2) How is it determined? The ride leader/event organizer determines that number. Some factors are practical such as limited restaurants spots however it boils down to the ride leader’s comfort range. Think about that for a moment. The ride leader duties involve research, planning, marking attendance, ensure rider’s safety, sweep(looking after folks in back of the group), aiding members with bike mechanicals and any physical issues such as dehydration/bonking, etc, etc. In other words, leading is an intensive full-time job in itself which ride leaders often sacrifice their rides for the benefit others. In that regards, we (and especially me) are very fortunate have great folks such Stephen , Matt and Colin who have stepped up - do a great job and certainly makes my work as an organizer easier. While I greatly understand and appreciate the frustration of being on the waiting list. Please understand, I certainly want to see as many people on a group ride but not at the expense of a poor ride experience. In closing, I hope this is not interpreted as complaining because I and the many other ride leaders everywhere would not being this if we didn’t enjoy the company and challenges involved. Thanks again for the participation and interest in the this little group of ours and I look forward to riding with everyone sometime soon.

Germantown, MD
Post #: 357
I'd like to echo Gregg's comments about RSVP limits:

Indeed, the ideal is to keep the group together as coherently as possible. Given this, too wide a range of abilities and equipment choices over a large group inevitably leads to having riders strung out over a lot of road. While those who go ahead are presumed to know the route, the ride leader generally feels responsible to make sure that those at the back are still on route, and don't get lost. RSVP limits, and 'equipment restrictions' are ways to keep this manageable for the ride leader. Indeed, RSVP limits are the corollary to 'No Drop' that makes it practical.

Currently we have 4 more or less regular leaders: Gregg, Matt, Colin and myself. It has always been my hope that more members will volunteer to lead rides in their own comfort range. When we have more leaders, we can have a much richer ride calendar. With a group membership that is around the 1,500 mark, it shouldn't be too much to expect 10 or 20 ride leaders. That kind of volunteerism is after all the very spirit of Meetup.
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