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VCB eNews, Vol 11, #42 - Meet Our Challengers - Part 2


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Velo Cape Breton is the Island wide voice of cyclists, working for better cycling in our great Island. We have made significant progress since our formation in 2004.  Visit our website that will introduce you to some of our activities.   If you have any questions, suggestions, or want to contribute to this eNewsletter,  please contact us at (902) 562-8137 or


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In this Edition

-  Editorial: Meet Our Challengers, Part 2

-  Rides Captain Corner, Shelley Johnson

-  Bike Buy and Sell

-  About That Funny



“A good traveler has no fized plans and is not intent on arriving.”

– Lao Tzu





Last week, I introduced our two annual cycling challenges, the 52 Week Bike Challenge and the SummerFit Challenge. They aren’t challenges so much of physical endurance or performance, but of commitment. Today I went to see my doctor for a follow-up to an injury I suffered falling off my bicycle in March. He showed me the x-ray of my damaged elbow – I enjoyed this examination of my physical inner self and was relieved to find my bone density is good. The doctor said simply, “That’s because you exercise. My biggest challenge is getting people to exercise”. Long ago, almost subconsciously, I made a commitment to exercise regularly. I feel better when I am active every day. I was an energetic child who enjoyed being outside and was fortunate to be allowed lots of opportunities to engage in active play, either in organized sports, or more often, totally disorganized running around or cycling or riding horseback with my friends and have all my bodily parts, including the elbow I was admiring earlier today.


For some people, taking up the challenge to cycle more is a bit of fun with a wonderful benefit to their present and future health. Several of our challengers are regular cycling commuters or competitive athletes who just want an added incentive to do something they already do, or the opportunity to easily keep a record for their kilometerage (nobody officially keeps records, but a template is provided for individual use if so desired). But for some of our participants, making the commitment is a big deal. It’s a public declaration of intent and the results will be known, even if only to the Coordinator. You can fail, and somebody will know about it. Don’t let that stop you. Not everybody had the opportunities and inspiration to be active that I had, so that being active became a habit. Everybody has different habits, a different childhood, a different inner self to puzzle over at the doctor’s office. If you make a fitness commitment, take on a challenge and you fail . . . at least you did it. There are a lot of motivational and “positive thinking” quotes out there, to assuage your ego when you fall short of your goals. I don’t go for many of them. Lately, I feel more in tune with the mantras of entrepreneurship and research, things like “fail faster, fail better, fail forward”. Don’t stick to what doesn’t work, don’t wallow in the setback, learn from your mistakes. Pretty good life advice. My favourite is a simple one, maybe even an “ancient Chinese secret”. When you have fallen off your ride schedule and all seems for nought, remember: “Fall down seven times; get up eight”. That’s your challenge.




by: Shelley Johnson, Rides Captain



These gals can RIDE!


Thank you to everyone who came out to the Women on Wheels: Pedaling Around the Mira Fun Ride and Social.  Your participation in this ride made it a great success and it sure was FUN!


As Ride Leader, I headed out past the group of WoW cyclists mostly to get ahead so I could record the trip by taking a few photos.  I like to take these pictures because I think they detail a bit about what these rides are like.  Truthfully, I hope that you will like what you see and read about, and think about joining us.  We’d love to have you.  This truly is a case of the more the merrier.


Now I have to tell you that the Trout Brook Road has been repaved and it is in fact a very smooth and delightful ride by bicycle.  I had originally intended to ride the loop on the Trout Brook Road and around on Hillside Road.  Unfortunately, road construction prevented us from making the loop and we decided to go to Marion Bridge and turn around and come back.  Still a nice ride nonetheless.


Behind me I could hear the friendly chatter of the women’s voices carried forward on gentle breezes.  It was a beautiful day.  You know, it is very pleasurable listening to people enjoying themselves.  So we rode as the sun shone down on us in the wind down of summer.  


As we rode into Marion Bridge and as anyone knows it is not a big place, but it had all the traffic of 5:00 o’clock rush hour on a Monday.  There was a wedding taking place and we had inadvertently become, in passing, a part of their day.  A young lady in a pretty black dress snapped a picture of Cheryl and I as we rode by.  We all met up at the church on the corner of Hillside Road.  Women on Wheels rides are very social and this one was no exception. “How’s your summer been?”, “Have you been keeping up with running?”  “How many relatives have come to visit and where have you travelled to?” and so on.  There was no lack of conversations to concentrate on.


On the ride back to Albert Bridge I had taken time to observe the beauty of the area.  The verdant grass, after a few days of rain, in contrast with the yellow golden rod and purple loosestrife was outstanding!  There were horses grazing contentedly in a field on top of a hill.  Cottages and houses dotted the shoreline of the Mira River, and every so often I noted a boat moored in the calm waters.  It was a gorgeous day.  “One for the books”, as they say.


So many things make the Mira a special place to ride your bike, even more special when you are part of a touring group.  I guarantee you that if you ride this route you will definitely Go WoW”!!!! 


Now here is one more note about Women on Wheels:


Dark and dramatic skies greeted riders for the Women on Wheels “show and go” ride held on Tuesday, August 19th.  Thankfully, no rain.  Despite the ominous clouds it was a lovely ride.  We had fun!  I would advise, now the days are getting shorter, if you are joining us for a spin around Pt. Edward that you carry on your bike a white front light and a red rear light for safety reasons.  These lights are relatively cheap to buy and can be purchased at places like Walmart, Framework, or SportChek etc.  There’s still lots of riding to be had on Tuesday nights, but it always helps to make yourself as visible as possible to traffic, especially at dusk. Hope to see you this coming Tuesday for another great WoW ride. 6:15 for a 6:30 pm start at Noelle’s Country Market, Keltic Drive.



Here’s what’s up and coming:





Join Ride Leader Paul MacDougall for a real challenge of both your cycling and hiking abilities in one of the most spectacular places on the Cabot Trail!  Bike Smokey Mountain and then stop for lunch, then hike Franey Mountain.  








A 3 day fundraiser bicycle ride around the Cabot Trail to raise awareness of sexual abuse and to help further the education of abuse survivors.

Contact Kent Cadegan: 





Once again we are on the Northside and as always you are invited to join us for a loop though North Sydney, Sydney Mines and Bras d’Or.  The Ambassadors are “in the’hood” to promote cycling in various areas over the summer months.  We encourage you to join us. 

Where: Waterfront Parking lot behind the Royal Bank.

Time: 1:15 pm for a 1:30 pm start

Distance: 30K





Ladies!  This is your last chance for a Women on Wheels ride season ender.  Sad to say goodbye as far as the regular bike rides go.  Here’s the skinny on our last official ride till 2015.  

MEET:  Englishtown Ferry 

TIME:  10:00 am for a 10:15 am start.  * note this is a slight time change from the schedule.

DESTINATION:  Ride to the Clucking Hen in Indian Brook.  Great food and lots of fun!  Check out the glass blowing across the street and some of the artisan shops along the way.


NOT MANDATORY BUT COULD BE FUN:  Let’s see how creative you are by donning a piece of tartan (yours or other clan . . . who is gonna know?  Okay, maybe some aficionados will).  Attach it to yourself or your bike.  Could be fun!








Cyclists can either leave from the park entrance at 9:00 am or from Corney Brook at 9:30.  This will be an opportunity to see if you have improved your strength and cardio over the summer.

Contact: Michel Aucoin 224-0069 or email


Safe cycling out there.  The days are getting shorter.  Remember to be visible and use front and rear lights.  Have a great week and stay active.


Shelley Johnson

Rides Captain and Cycling Ambassador







North American handmade bicycle show:


Useful information for travelling with your bike! 


A different kind of link:


The bike redux:







For Sale: Kid’s Bike, Norco ZX80, nearly new. 20” wheels.  Originally purchased new at Frameworks for $120+taxes.  Asking $75.  Barely ridden. Can be seen here:

Contact the editor.





A guy shows up late for work. His boss yells at him, “You should have been here at 8:30!”

The guy replies, “Why? What happened at 8:30?”


My uncle works for a company that makes bicycle wheels. He’s the Spokesman.


I’ve finally accomplished my dream of winning the same number of Tours de France as Lance Armstrong: 0.


Even on land, alligators are faster than human beings. Which means when competing against them in a triathlon, you have to be very fast on your bike.


Since retiring from cycling, Chris Hoy has decided to take up sailing. And changing his name to Chris Ahoy.





Regular articles, including Loose Chain Links:

Word document or compatible, 12 pt Times New Roman. Please have submissions for the current edition submitted by the Monday prior.


Ads for Bike Buy & Sell: Word document or compatible, 12 pt, Times New Roman, submitted by the Monday prior. Ads will run for 3 weeks. Please inform the editor if the item is sold before that term is up. If the item doesn’t sell, you may re-submit your ad.  


Photos: high resolution (photos taken with a phone are usually too low, but there may be exceptions); please name all the people in the photo, and give the event, date, and location.







Shelley Porter,  

Editor, Velo Cape Breton eNewsletter

VCB Cycling Ambassador.

August 28th, 2014



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