Wednesday, November 28, 2012

NDJR/20 Liters: Day 6

DAY 6 - Why Ride Fixed.

Outside of the first day of commuting and a few bonus miles last, I have been riding solely on my fixed gear bike, Red.

Now, unlike some who will try to persuade you into thinking that by riding fixed I am more in-tune with my bike, that it is a more 'pure' way to ride or some other bloated belief that riding a track bike is the only proper way to cycle.

So... why do I ride fixed?

Honesty, the reasons vary. My choice to ride fixed at this point of year is simply that my legs are required to keep moving. It's cold often when confronted with a brisk winter wind, I am guilty of often coasting in those moments.

Am I more aware of the environment I am in when riding fixed? Certainly. Riding without a hand brake I must constantly be aware of my surroundings and my position on the bike in order to control the bike properly.

But right now. I want to do everything I can to stay warm.

And you'd do the same, you do make choices to stay fed, to stay warm, to provide.  No matter where we are, people around the globe make these choices. Some of us are privileged that we have multiple options among many choices - what if you didn't?

What if the choice to drink dirty water to live was your only choice, even if it mean that was actually going to take your life in a different manner down the road? What if you had the ability to clean that water so that you might live - isn't that a choice someone should have?


Totals to date:

Miles today: 10.6 miles 
Overall miles: 39.2 miles

Sponsor a mile. Even a dollar can help change a life. Donate here.

Monday, November 26, 2012

NDJR/20 Liters: Day 5

DAY 5 - Back at it.

Today was cold. 31 degrees to be certain, at least that's what a sign said as I passed it on my way to class.

Fortunately the normal headwind I encounter riding in wasn't present this morning, so you'll have to wait for some beard icicle photos as winter makes it's way into West Michigan. I did get to bust out my first piece of my winter riding gear today. My trusty Salsa Lobster gloves - ok, more like ninja turtle hands but you get the idea.  These have been with me for at least 7+ years, although they don't have windproof front keep my hands nice and toasty. Though I should note that unlike most riders, my hands typically get warmer as I ride.

If you are new to No Drive, you might be wondering what I might wear when I ride and commute.  On longer rides and tours I will Superman suit up but really no one needs to see that and often seeing riders in 'So-pro' spandex doesn't help promote cycling to the world around.  Over the years, I have found a few companies that have made clothing that not only is cycling appropriate but also allows those around you in the office or at school not think you're about to race Usain Bolt in a 100 meter dash - namely Levi, Chrome, and DZR.

As winter begins to really take shape, I'll try my best to give a better idea of how I go about continuing to ride - not only with what I wear but with how I outfit my bikes.

Again you can follow all of this on my Twitter and sponsor a mile by  donating here.

Totals to date:
Miles today: 4.8 miles

Overall miles: 28.6 miles

This Cyber Monday, give the gift of water by clicking here.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

NDJR/20 Liters: Bonus Miles


You might have been wondering my absence from updating on my progress with my 20 liters challenge. I neglected to mention that this week, I have Thanksgiving break from school. Meaning obviously I wouldn't be commuting everyday but that this has been factored into my mileage.

Today, I decided to head into one of the local coffee shops to get a little writing done; also it would allow me to do some fine tuning on my touring bike which I hope to use for the trip to Mars in December to cap off the fundraising.

My Voyageur in many ways has been cursed ever since I finished 'restoring' it. Soon after getting it together and installing a fender set on the bike, I was riding home when the rear derailleur was thrown into the wheel on a climb - leaving it in pieces. Since then the new derailleur has been loose along with threads on the hanger being close to stripped making shifting a struggle and trusting putting any force on pedals. After some tinkering, I believe that I had it all dialed.

Links shouldn't bend.

On my trip back from writing, I was crossing the busiest road on the commute and suddenly the slight clicks I was hearing earlier but ignored made sense as the my chain proceeded to break. Fortunately, without any issues I kept the bike upright and was able to coast into a parking lot to discover the mess.

A beautiful day for a ride... and a walk
After walking home and getting the bike in the stand, I was able to discover that the hanger is pretty much toast and the chain was salvageable. Fortunately, I was able to find a potential replacement part for it and hopefully I'll be able to get every thing together or move to plan B for a bike to use in December.


Totals so far:
Miles today: 3.4 miles
Overall miles: 23.8 miles

Thank you for reading and supporting No Drive and 20 Liters. I'd love to have you join with me in bringing clean water to those in need.


140mi = $140 = 10 yrs of clean water for 7 people or 1 family $1 sponsors a mile, do so by clicking here.

Monday, November 19, 2012


Exciting news!

In the latest issue of Bicycle Times NDJR contributor Alxndr Jones had some of his work used for the Letters from the Editor section. Alxndr is a great friend of mine and has been behind the continual updating of my own personal website, maybe one day he'll spruce this page up.

Check it out or better tell Bicycle Times you want more of it in their publication and better get support Alxndr by getting one of his prints!

Friday, November 16, 2012

NDJR/20 Liters: Day 4

DAY 4 - Blind spots.

As cyclists, the more we ride the more we learn when and where we are seen and more importantly when we are not.  Over the years, my mantra has always been when commuting to ride like you aren't seen.

In the summer it is easy to assume when we are not seen. In the winter visibility goes even further down with snow and the elements coming into play.  The transition from fall to winter with frost and losing daylight due to the time change seems to be when cycling can be even more dangerous.

In these mornings, some are running behind and many have yet to find their windshield scraper, leaving windows often not fully cleared off.

When commuting today I had an irregular number of close calls with vehicles turning onto the road.  After the first encounter I noticed that this car had only scrapped enough of their windshield to see forward not out the side.  Yes, frustration grew as I had the privilege of yelling at other cars with similar self-made blind spots as they came far too close for comfort.

Fortunately, I made it safely.

Of course this led me to reflect on my own blind spots -
Which of those am I aware of?
Which might I have created or reinforced?

And most importantly what might be the next right step in working on these?

Totals so far:
Miles today: 4.8 miles
Overall miles: 20.4 miles

140mi = $140 = 10 yrs of clean water for 7 people or 1 family
$1 sponsors a mile, do so by clicking here.

only love.

Great music. With bikes in the video... and as I wrote on a friends Facebook wall that posted this:
... but I'll take it and may or may not serenade my bikes with it while I ride.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

NDJR/20 Liters: Day 3

DAY 3 -

One word - cold.

As I left, frost was on the leaves and though it was daylight out cars had their lights on around 7:30a.

A good reminder that as cyclists, though we might feel that we are seen - if cars have lights on so should we.

Totals so far:

Miles today: 4.8 miles
Overall miles: 15.6 miles

Did you know that $20 can give one person clean drinking water for 10 years?

140mi = $140 = 10 yrs of clean water for 7 people or 1 family
$1 sponsors a mile, do so by clicking here.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

NDJR/20 Liters: Day 2

DAY 2 -

Today while riding as I got frustrated with a car that wasn't giving me much room on the road, I was reminded...

I love riding my bike.
I love working on bikes.
It's a hobby.
It's a choice.

I have the privilege of having ability to choose to ride (one of my 6 bikes) or drive my own car on any given day.

How many others don't have a choice?

When I was home from commuting I quickly grabbed a glass and drank some water, then had a coffee. Not even having a second thought that the water I was drinking would harm me.

For many in the world, 1 in 8 to be precise - water has the ability to give them life - also has the ability to kill them.  But they have no choice, they take the risk.

This unsettles me and challenges me.

Miles today: 6 miles
Overall miles: 10.8 miles

140mi = $140 = 10 yrs of clean water for 7 people or 1 family
$1 sponsors a mile, do so by clicking here.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

NDJR/20 Liters: Day 1

DAY 1.

Today began the following weeks of commuting for 20 Liters and what better way than starting out with an easy cruise to class on my cruiser -  a sunny day for a ride, with a chill that shook me from my afternoon slump once on the road.

The image above shows you my typical route to school and back, roughly 4.8 miles - which is slightly longer than the 3.7 miles individuals walk to get water each day (Source: CMU). According to the World Health Organization, 20 liters of water from a source 1km or 0.62 miles is deemed the minimum requirement per person per day. Meaning, most are traveling further to unclean water sources simply to survive.

Kind of puts things in perspective.

How can you join with me?

Remember my goal is to raise $140 for 140 miles for 10 years of clean water for 7 people or 1 family.

- Go to my 20 Liters Page.
- Donate.

A few suggestions on how:
- Forgo your morning latte and sponsor a Monday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday of riding 4.8 miles or $4.80
- Take the money you'd use for a movie or going out to eat and sponsor my commute on Tuesday 9.6 miles or $9.60
- Donate per total miles

Riding for Water

There are roughly 6 billion people in the world.
1 billion of them do not have access to clean drinking water.
20% of the world, consumes 86% of it's resources.
There are 2.2 billion kids in the world
of those 2.2 billion kids half of them, a billion of them, live in poverty. 
I don't know your worldview,
I don't know your perspective,
your background,
or your religion
but that is not right.
[taken from Rob Bell's 20 Liters Vimeo]

In the spirit of No Drive, I will be joining with students and volunteers I work with at Anthem at Mars to raise funding for the organization 20 Liters to help provide clean water for those living in Rwanda by commuting by bike for the next 4 weeks.

From today until December 9th, I will be commuting regardless of weather via bicycle to and from school (roughly a 4.8 mile round trip) along with commuting once from Holland, Michigan to Grandville, Michigan on a Sunday evening (tentatively December 9th) for Anthem programing.

As luck would have it, my proposed mileage totals nearly 140 miles and my goal is to raise $140.00 which will provide clean drinking water for 10 years to 7 people or 1 family in Rwanda.  To put it simply:

140 miles = $140.00 = Clean drinking water for 7 people or 1 family

For more information or to donate please visit my page on 20 Liters. I also will be updating here and via my Twitter (@adamlorenz and #ndjr20liters) on milage and stories during the upcoming weeks.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

For my birthday? Yes, please.

Was over on Bike Jerks during class today and saw what he had just recently been given, a vintage Schwinn derailleur demonstration display.

The immediate thought was...

'Yep, must have.'

Seeing that tomorrow is my birthday, if you have yet find some thing for me. There you go, I'll even provide you with a link to getting one.

It's a steal of a deal. Not really.

And it's art.