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Update.

Lots of things have started to happen as we are staring down our Big Adventure, so I figured I share and update here for those of you following along.

Training
I've officially moved over to 6 days of riding a week. I do a mix of trainer rides to target specific goals and rides outside. Up mountains. My coach takes exactly ZERO shit, which I need and am grateful for.

Trailer
We took our maiden voyage (sans Noah) up Lookout Mountain last Friday. For reference, Lookout is a 4.3 mile climb at an average grade of 6% with 1,700 feet of climbing. Remember that one time when I said I didn't climb? I do now.


The following day I tried to add a measly 10 pounds to the trailer at an attempt to do a different route. I'm not sure if it was my body that felt beat down, my bike not having enough gears or just being exhausted or some combo of all of those, but it DID NOT GO WELL. I gave up, turned around and was pissed at myself. I got up the next day, put that trailer (appropriately nicknamed "Bitch") and took her up Lookout again. It was still tough, but I was happy I got back out and tried again. What a difference a day makes.

Bike
I love my bike. She's my favorite and thank goodness because we are getting a lot of time together. I'm working with my shop boys (and have had some great suggestions on Facebook!) to figure out the correct gearing ratio that will allow me to pull close to 100 pounds up our mountain passes.


Sponsorships
These are proving to be harder to gain than I thought. Because I can't really promise companies anything as a return on their investments in this venture, I'm not gaining much traction. The first step was getting my bike shop, Big Ring Cycles on board to provide me a mechanic and some marketing help. They are on board and doing a lot for us! I'm so thankful!

$10,000 is a lot to raise...I'd be lying if I said I'm not a little nervous.

Planning
We have flights to book, accommodations to figure out, an event plan on how to make sure both Noah and I are taken care of, vehicles to find for transport of my support crew....the list is long and sometimes daunting, but we're working on it. 

Marketing
We've created a Facebook Page and ask anyone interested to follow along with us in our journey not only during our adventure itself, but in the prepping stages. This journey, much like all of them, isn't just about August 28-31. It is so much more! 

We are also starting to use the hashtag #noahsighting. It's making it easier for people to follow us and is making it fun...I can't wait for my first Noah sighting this August when he and Naomi arrive!

Help
I need it. If you have a company that would like to sponsor us via cash donations or in kind donations, let me know! If you have resources that may help us, let me know! If you can spare a few bucks, donate here: https://kyle-pease-foundation-inc.networkforgood.com/projects/50559-helen-gardner-s-fundraiser  If you aren't sure how you can help, let me know! If you have any questions about this process, let me know!

And....if you don't necessarily have the resources to do those things, then please share our fundraising page! Seriously. EVERY thing helps. It takes a village and we can't get this done without your help.

T Minus 81 Days!

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