Kelly the Culinarian: Win it Wednesday: Venus de Miles Entry and Tips

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Win it Wednesday: Venus de Miles Entry and Tips

Ya'll know I love cycling. It's a great way to see the world differently and cover lots of miles without completing trashing your body. And I love any sport where you're not only able, but encouraged, to eat while partaking in it. Those cycling jerseys were designed to hold snacks, and for that, I love them.

Last year, I participated in the inaugural Venus de Miles Illinois Ride. This was my first foray into the world of long(er)-distance cycling and it was a wonderful experience. I trained for this ride and had a great time, so much so that I started working with the organization to bring other bloggers on board to spread the word. I've talked it up so much that several of my new-to-biking buddies will be joining in on the action. Here are a few of my Venus-specific tips to help you make the most of your day (and a giveaway so you can join my July 28)!

1. Wear sunscreen. I can't emphasize this enough.

2. Wear a small backpack or leave one of your water bottle cages empty. There was so much swag at this race that I had nowhere to store. I wish I had an available bottle cage so I could have picked up a sports bottle and filled it with the bars, gummies and goodies at the aid station to snack on later.
One of the aid stations
3. Come hungry. The food at this event is phenomenal. How many rides have you been at that include catered aid stations? I distinctly remember the standard PB&J sandwiches, along with cookies, two-bite brownies, fruit and all sorts of amazing treats. I hear that this year will include even more food, if that's even possible.

4. Block off your day. MacKenna and I were probably the last people to leave the post-race party. We had an awesome time getting facials and manicures, sampling custom cocktails, eating a gourmet lunch and chatting with our fellow riders. I wouldn't want to feel rushed. On that topic ...

Spinning-created margaritas at the party
5. Don't worry about your time, pace or performance. This is not the event to worry about qualifying for the Tour de France. It's about having a good time, not getting a good time. See the sites and stop at the aid stations. Take pictures, have a chat with a fellow rider and soak up the experience.

6. Wear a costume or team-coordinated outfit. This race is all about celebrating and having fun. Also, I find the more distinctive your apparel, the more likely you'll get in the marketing materials for the next year. Bonus!

More post-ride partying
7. Hydrate in the days before. The pace might be leisurely, but it's still a long time to be out on the road. Plan accordingly and prepare your body.

8. Be safe. Helmets are required for this ride and should be for every ride you do. I've taken some nasty spills over the years and am lucky to have my wits about me thanks to my helmet. Leave the music at home and pick up the emergency contact information when you check in.

9. Learn more about the charity this ride benefits. Greenhouse Scholars is an excellent program helping kids go to school. This ride is more than just a fun day spent with your girlfriends - it's an event that provides a lifetime of opportunity.

Want to join me July 28 for a 25- or 60-mile ride through Illinois? Here's your chance! Rafflecopter will randomly select a winner next Wednesday, who I will contact via e-mail and recognize on this page.

To enter, start by commenting on this blog: What do you like the most about cycling?

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Amanda said...

I love biking because it feels so freeing and it's not as hard on my bad joints (knees, etc).

Judy said...

I can do it while I am injured and unable to run!!

Judy said...

I can do it while I am injured and unable to run!!!

Lynn said...

I love biking!!! I can see lots of new things because I can cover MANY more miles!!!!!!

The Brit With A Blog said...

Im entering, even though I win Jack!!!

1. I cant run but I can bike
2. Im not as back of the pack as I am with running :)
3. I can bike one handed and still eat
4. I can squeal weeeeeeeeeeee when we go down hill
5. I can complain when we go uphill
6. Ive made us awesome outfits this year!
7. I have to justify my new bike purchase
8. I have to go further than last years ride
9. I have to beat Janowski in because she beat me in at the Indy Marathon (whatever)
10. I really want 100k on my garmin!!!! :)

Unknown said...

Yay! I can't wait!!!

Unknown said...

What I like most about cycling is that can get a good workout in by doing something other than running.

Lauren said...

I like that I can cover much more ground than when I run.

Anonymous said...

I love biking because it doesn't bother my knees as much!

Losing Lindy said...

I am entering but only if I win I can give my prize to The Brit With a Blog, I think she deserves it.

Zenaida Arroyo said...

I can bike a mile in about 5 minutes while it takes me twice as long to run it!! Plus, it gives me a good workout too!!

Zenaida Arroyo said...
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Zenaida Arroyo said...
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Unknown said...

I better empty out my fuel box so I have some room for all this swag!

Unknown said...

I would love to win this entry!! My favorite thing about biking is getting to see so much more than running since you cover ground so much faster! Thanks for all the great tips!

Danielle said...

This sounds like such a fun ride!
I like biking because it's something I can do in warmer weather and not feel like I'm melting/dying (the same cannot be said for running).

Danielle said...

This sounds like such a fun ride!!

I like biking because it's something I can do in hot weather without feeling like I'm melting. (the same cannot be said for running!)

Shannyn said...

I love biking (just started!) as a way to cross train from my marathon training... it just feels so relaxing! I just got my first tri bike and am in LOVE, I need to cycle more!


Jill Y said...

I would love to win this as I just started biking. I don't have a fancy road bike, but I have a bike I love that I can ride far! =)

JessPoghMoHon said...

I started spinning indoors last fall and was instantly addicted! I spent much of the winter months researching cycling and bikes, and when the warmer months finally came, I couldn't drive fast enough to the bike shop to get my first road bike!! I've never felt more adventure, happiness, success, and good health all at once than when I'm riding the roads!!