Monday, January 18, 2021

January 18: Upcoming running/walking/bicycling events

Upcoming events

It's been a chilly weekend once again, and we may not be done with the colder weather yet. Last week's BikeWalkLee blog has good advice for those taking to the streets during these chills. In case you missed it, it is here.

Below is what’s scheduled for organized running and biking events locally… but confirm with the organizers and be flexible in case conditions change and large-group activities are limited. Of course, wear a mask and act appropriate to your age, condition and concerns. Be safe out there. 

RUNNING

Fort Myers Track Club (ftmyerstrackclub.com):

  • Kiwanis Fort Myers Metro-McGregor BUG Chase Virtual 5K, Dec. 24-Jan. 23 (virtual)
  • Strides for Education 5K, Feb. 6, 2021 (in-person and virtual)

GC Runners (gcrunner.org):

  • Run for the Paws 5K, Saturday, Jan. 30 (in-person and virtual)

Elite Events (runeliteevents.com):

  • Venice Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021
  • City of Palms Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021
  • Paradise Coast Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, March 27, 2021

Other runs:

  • Publix Run to the Arts 5K run/walk – in person on Feb. 7, 2021, or virtual Jan. 30-Feb. 7
  • Running Into 2021 Like…. virtual 5K/4 Mile/10K/1 Mile fun run, through Jan. 31, Supporting Pace Center for Girls. runsignup.com

CYCLING

The Caloosa Riders are offering member rides, but some are open to non-members (and it wouldn’t hurt you to join the club); check their ride calendar (caloosariders.org) for a description of the distance and speed, and to see if the ride is open to all.

SW Florida Critical Mass is offering their usual slate of family-friendly rides, although the NE Lee ride seems to be lacking a leader and thus is not on the calendar. The options are below, and you can check out their line-up online (http://www.meetup.com/Biking-SWFL/events/) for details and times.

  • SW Florida Critical Mass ride, first Friday of the month. A family-friendly slow night ride through Fort Myers. Front and rear bike lights required. Helmet and lights required, meet in the parking lot at 2180 West First Street, Fort Myers. 
  • Sanibel Critical Mass night ride, second Tuesday of the month. Gathers at Jerry’s Shopping Center, 1700 Periwinkle Way, on Sanibel. Lights required, helmets recommended.
  • Cape Coral Critical Mass ride, fourth Friday of the month. Gather at the Southwest Florida Military Museum parking lot at 4820 Leonard Street for a family-friendly night ride through the Cape; helmets and lights required.
  • Saturday Morning Slow Roll, fourth Saturday of the month. Meet-up at 2160 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers. Recommended for inexperienced/young riders. Distance is 6 miles, includes group ride instruction.
If racing is not your thing but you’d like to support their return nonetheless, consider volunteering to help out at the few in-person offerings ahead. With Covid concerns still corralling some of the club’s usual volunteers, a few new helping hand would certainly be welcomed. 

For the very latest, go to Fort Myers Track Club (ftmyerstrackclub.com), Gulf Coast Runners (gcrunner.org), Caloosa Riders (caloosariders.org), and South West Florida Critical Mass (meetup.com/Biking-SWFL). 






Thursday, January 14, 2021

BikeWalkLee: Keep warm, and keep riding

BikeWalkLee Column ‘Go Coastal’
The News-Press, January 14, 2021
by Ken Gooderham

Today, I want to address how to stay warm so you can keep riding when the temperatures drop.

I will pause here to allow our friends from the north to snort derisively at the idea of it being cold in Southwest Florida. You know who you are… the people in shorts and a T-shirt while the “natives” (real or adopted) walk by in multiple layers of heat-grabbing attire.

Let’s continue. Since our area has been cursed (or blessed, depending on your perspective) with multiple days of temps struggling to stay in the 60s and nights of the thermometer plunging toward 40°, the thin-blooded among us who still go outside for a ride or a run have gone to their cold-weather regimens to keep moving.

I’ll speak more specifically to staying warm on your bike, since running (for most, at least) is a far easier exercise to generate heat than cycling. In fact, once you get moving, cooler temps are an incentive to run… if for no other reason than if you stop, you get cold fast.

Cycling presents more of a challenge because it tends to generate less internal heat while it assuredly generates more external wind. Not many of us can run at 10 mph, while most cyclists can often hit twice that speed on the road. More speed = more wind = more chill.

An example: An air temperature of 50°F with a 20 mph wind feels like 44°F. Riding into that wind at 10 mph drops the real-feel two more degrees. Do the same thing at 40°F and the real-feel temperature is 28°F.

So, while cyclists in Southwest Florida don’t face the cold-weather challenges found in more northern climes, it can still be a little chilly on our bike paths after a cold front sweeps through. Some tips:

  • Layer, layer, layer: You want to protect your core from losing heat, both for protection and to keep the body from sacrificing circulation to the extremities to keep the organs toasty. You also want to wick sweat away from your skin so you don’t trap it and cool yourself down unintentionally. Use wicking materials closest to your skin (to draw moisture off), add a warmer layer if necessary (but one you can remove if needed), and have something as your top layer that will block wind (but that’s also removable or vented to let moisture escape).

    The same thing works below the waist, of course. If you use bike shorts, top them with regular shorts or pants (not too baggy that they will get caught in the chain) to protect your knees and trap heat.

    There are a multitude of specialty cycling attire options if you’re a dedicated cyclist, but even the more casual rider probably has something in the closet that will work. Think about a technical T-shirt (synthetic and wicking) as your base layer, perhaps something with a longer sleeve (but also wicking) next, topped with a windbreaker or other resistant jacket (and go bright, of course, to boost visibility).

    Aside from keeping you warm, layering also allows you to adjust as your body (and, hopefully, the day) heats up.
  • Cover your head and hands (and maybe feet): While protecting the core is crucial, don’t ignore your head (a major point of heat loss), hands (for both comfort and dexterity) and feet (your source of propulsion). There are hats or beanies designed to fit under helmets that make a huge difference on a cold day, as well as full-fingered bike gloves (or mittens) that will allow you to shift and steer in comfort. Foot-wise, thicker socks (or extra layers) should suffice unless it gets very cold or rainy (which changes the dynamics dramatically)
  • Minimize bare skin: Seems obvious, but still bears repeating. Even a single layer will help capture warmth when compared to nothing at all on your arms, hands and legs
  • Start off cool, warm up fast: If your attire has you toasty before you get on the bike, it’s probably too much. Take off a layer (or be able to remove and stow it during your ride) to compensate for your body generate heat as you begin to bike. Also look at different combinations for different conditions… rain protection, for example (since being cold and wet is no fun), or options on those partly cloudy days where you heat up in the sunny stretches only to cool off in the shade.
  • Plan your ride with the wind, not against it: Just like you might adjust your ride during the summer to avoid overheating, plan on the same on a blustery and chilly day. Avoid riding into the wind as much as possible (such as planning an east-west route when winds are howling from the north) or splitting up your ride into a headwind either by route or by wind breaks. Go later in the day when the temperatures have risen if that possible, and definitely avoid an outing (or keep close to home) if rain is sweeping through the area – not only for the “cold and wet” reason above, but because rain makes riding more challenging due to slippery surfaces, hidden hazards and reduced visibility.

While it nice to be able to ride when it’s cold, it’s critical to always ride when it’s safe.

EVENTS

Here’s the latest in organized running and biking events locally… but confirm with the organizers and be flexible in case conditions change and large-group activities are limited. Of course, wear a mask and act appropriate to your age, condition and medical concerns.

FORT MYERS TRACK CLUB (ftmyerstrackclub.com):

  • Kiwanis Fort Myers Metro-McGregor BUG Chase Virtual 5K, Dec. 24-Jan. 23 (virtual)
  • Strides for Education 5K, Feb. 6, 2021 (in-person and virtual)

GC RUNNERS (gcrunner.org):

  • Naples Daily News Half Marathon, Saturday, Jan. 17 (in-person & virtual) 
  • Run for the Paws 5K, Saturday, Jan. 30 (in-person and virtual)

ELITE EVENTS (runeliteevents.com):

  • Venice Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021
  • City of Palms Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021
  • Paradise Coast Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, March 27, 2021

OTHER RUNS

  • Publix Run to the Arts 5K run/walk – in person on Feb. 7, 2021, or virtual Jan. 30-Feb. 7 runsignup.com or runtothearts.com
  • Running Into 2021 Like…. virtual 5K/4 Mile/10K/1 Mile fun run, through Jan. 31, Supporting Pace Center for Girls. runsignup.com

CYCLING

The Caloosa Riders are offering member rides, but some are open to non-members (and it wouldn’t hurt you to join the club); check their ride calendar (caloosariders.org) for a description of the distance and speed, and to see if the ride is open to all.

SW Florida Critical Mass is offering their usual slate of family-friendly rides, although the NE Lee ride seems to be lacking a leader and thus is not on the calendar. The options are below, and you can check out their line-up online (www.meetup.com/Biking-SWFL/events/) for details and times.

  • SW Florida Critical Mass ride, first Friday of the month. A family-friendly slow night ride through Fort Myers. Front and rear bike lights required. Helmet and lights required, meet in the parking lot at 2180 West First Street, Fort Myers.
  • Sanibel Critical Mass night ride, second Tuesday of the month. Gathers at Jerry’s Shopping Center, 1700 Periwinkle Way, on Sanibel. Lights required, helmets recommended.
  • NE Lee Critical Mass ride, third Friday of the month. Gather in the Winn Dixie parking lot on Palm Beach Blvd. about five miles east of the Interstate; gather at 7 p.m. and roll at 7:30 p.m. for a slow ride through Fort Myers Shores.
  • Cape Coral Critical Mass ride, fourth Friday of the month. Gather at the Southwest Florida Military Museum parking lot at 4820 Leonard Street for a family-friendly night ride through the Cape; helmets and lights required.
  • Saturday Morning Slow Roll, fourth Saturday of the month. Meet-up at 2160 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers. Recommended for inexperienced/young riders. Distance is 6 miles, includes group ride instruction.

If racing is not your thing but you’d like to support their return nonetheless, consider volunteering to help out at the few in-person offerings ahead. With Covid concerns still confining some of the usual volunteers, a few new helping hand would certainly be welcomed.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR RIDE:

Have a favorite route you like to bike, or a unique walk you’d like to share with others? Tell us about it at info@bikewalklee.org, and maybe we can feature it in an upcoming column.

# # #

Ken Gooderham writes this on behalf of BikeWalkLee, a community coalition raising public awareness and advocating for complete streets in Lee County — streets that are designed, built, operated and maintained for safe and convenient travel for all users: pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists, and transit riders of all ages and abilities. Information, statistics and background online at www.BikeWalkLee.org.
 
 



Monday, January 11, 2021

January 11: Upcoming running/walking/bicycling events

Upcoming events

Below is what’s scheduled for organized running and biking events locally… but confirm with the organizers and be flexible in case conditions change and large-group activities are limited. Of course, wear a mask and act appropriate to your age, condition and concerns. Be safe out there. 

RUNNING

Fort Myers Track Club (ftmyerstrackclub.com):

  • Kiwanis Fort Myers Metro-McGregor BUG Chase Virtual 5K, Dec. 24-Jan. 23 (virtual)
  • Strides for Education 5K, Feb. 6, 2021 (in-person and virtual)

GC Runners (gcrunner.org):

  • Naples Daily News Half Marathon, Saturday, Jan. 17 (in-person & virtual) 

Elite Events (runeliteevents.com):

  • Venice Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021
  • City of Palms Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021
  • Paradise Coast Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, March 27, 2021

Other runs:

  • Publix Run to the Arts 5K run/walk – in person on Feb. 7, 2021, or virtual Jan. 30-Feb. 7

CYCLING

The Caloosa Riders are offering member rides, but some are open to non-members (and it wouldn’t hurt you to join the club); check their ride calendar (caloosariders.org) for a description of the distance and speed, and to see if the ride is open to all.

SW Florida Critical Mass is offering their usual slate of family-friendly rides, although the NE Lee ride seems to be lacking a leader and thus is not on the calendar. The options are below, and you can check out their line-up online (http://www.meetup.com/Biking-SWFL/events/) for details and times.

  • SW Florida Critical Mass ride, first Friday of the month. A family-friendly slow night ride through Fort Myers. Front and rear bike lights required. Helmet and lights required, meet in the parking lot at 2180 West First Street, Fort Myers. 
  • Sanibel Critical Mass night ride, second Tuesday of the month. Gathers at Jerry’s Shopping Center, 1700 Periwinkle Way, on Sanibel. Lights required, helmets recommended.
  • Cape Coral Critical Mass ride, fourth Friday of the month. Gather at the Southwest Florida Military Museum parking lot at 4820 Leonard Street for a family-friendly night ride through the Cape; helmets and lights required.
  • Saturday Morning Slow Roll, fourth Saturday of the month. Meet-up at 2160 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers. Recommended for inexperienced/young riders. Distance is 6 miles, includes group ride instruction.
If racing is not your thing but you’d like to support their return nonetheless, consider volunteering to help out at the few in-person offerings ahead. With Covid concerns still corralling some of the club’s usual volunteers, a few new helping hand would certainly be welcomed. 

For the very latest, go to Fort Myers Track Club (ftmyerstrackclub.com), Gulf Coast Runners (gcrunner.org), Caloosa Riders (caloosariders.org), and South West Florida Critical Mass (meetup.com/Biking-SWFL). 





Monday, January 4, 2021

January 4: Upcoming running/walking/bicycling events

Upcoming events

Happy New Year! Below is what’s scheduled for organized running and biking events locally… but confirm with the organizers and be flexible in case conditions change and large-group activities are limited. Of course, wear a mask and act appropriate to your age, condition and concerns. Be safe out there. 

RUNNING

Fort Myers Track Club (ftmyerstrackclub.com):

  • Kiwanis Fort Myers Metro-McGregor BUG Chase Virtual 5K, Dec. 24-Jan. 23 (virtual)
  • Strides for Education 5K, Feb. 6, 2021 (in-person and virtual)

GC Runners (gcrunner.org):

  • Naples Daily News Half Marathon, Saturday, Jan. 17 (in-person & virtual) 

Elite Events (runeliteevents.com):

  • Venice Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021
  • City of Palms Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021
  • Paradise Coast Half Marathon and 5K, Saturday, March 27, 2021

Other runs:

  • Publix Run to the Arts 5K run/walk – in person on Feb. 7, 2021, or virtual Jan. 30-Feb. 7

CYCLING

The Caloosa Riders are offering member rides, but some are open to non-members (and it wouldn’t hurt you to join the club); check their ride calendar (caloosariders.org) for a description of the distance and speed, and to see if the ride is open to all.

SW Florida Critical Mass is offering their usual slate of family-friendly rides, although the NE Lee ride seems to be lacking a leader and thus is not on the calendar. The options are below, and you can check out their line-up online (http://www.meetup.com/Biking-SWFL/events/) for details and times.

  • SW Florida Critical Mass ride, first Friday of the month. A family-friendly slow night ride through Fort Myers. Front and rear bike lights required. Helmet and lights required, meet in the parking lot at 2180 West First Street, Fort Myers. 
  • Sanibel Critical Mass night ride, second Tuesday of the month. Gathers at Jerry’s Shopping Center, 1700 Periwinkle Way, on Sanibel. Lights required, helmets recommended.
  • Cape Coral Critical Mass ride, fourth Friday of the month. Gather at the Southwest Florida Military Museum parking lot at 4820 Leonard Street for a family-friendly night ride through the Cape; helmets and lights required.
  • Saturday Morning Slow Roll, fourth Saturday of the month. Meet-up at 2160 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers. Recommended for inexperienced/young riders. Distance is 6 miles, includes group ride instruction.
If racing is not your thing but you’d like to support their return nonetheless, consider volunteering to help out at the few in-person offerings ahead. With Covid concerns still corralling some of the club’s usual volunteers, a few new helping hand would certainly be welcomed. 

For the very latest, go to Fort Myers Track Club (ftmyerstrackclub.com), Gulf Coast Runners (gcrunner.org), Caloosa Riders (caloosariders.org), and South West Florida Critical Mass (meetup.com/Biking-SWFL).