They Are My Cycling Heros


If I were to ask who your cycling heros were, how would you respond?  I’m sure some might bring up Lance Armstrong, or one of the other great cycling legends.  Others would likely mention their Dad or another family member.  No matter who your cycling heros are, what’s most important is that you look up to someone who has inspired you and helped you Enjoy Your Ride.

Today I wanted to talk about a family who I consider cycling heros for something more than what they’ve done on a bike.  Today’s post goes out to “Family on Bikes” and the other cycling families who have (or currently are) exploring the world by bike…..and doing things so unconventional, that it makes me smile.

As a guy who is definitely not living a “typical” life, I find myself second guessing myself at times and wondering if I’m doing the right thing for my family.  Most of the time I’m totally convinced that this path we are on is the right thing and is the best journey for us to be on.  But in those fleeting moments of darkness when I find myself unsure….it’s nice to look to people like Family on Bikes and know that everything is going to be alright.

My introduction to the world of family bike adventures first came when I found out about the Family on Bikes a couple years ago.  I was immediately impressed by what they were doing and over time got to know more and more about them and their amazing story.  Nancy, John, Daryl, and Davy spent almost 3 years cycling as a family from Alaska to Argentina….raising, teaching, and developing their two young boys as they pedalled along this epic journey.  A total unconventional method of raising pre-teen boys, and receiving a whole lot of backlash along the way.  They received a lot of comments telling them how crazy they were for what they were doing….no doubt because what they were doing was not considered “normal”.

But to those on a different path…those of us with a gypsy soul and sprit of adventure….they are heros.

I consider the members of Family on Bikes personal heros of mine because of their decision to break from the typical mould found here in North America, and to take part in a magnificent journey.  Now that they are back from their adventure, their direction and way of life continues to impress me.  My family and I have also chosen to live a non-traditional life.  We’ve heard the scepticism and “are you sure’s” coming from family and friends, and it sure is nice to find confirmation in people like Family on Bikes to know that we are doing the right thing.  Nancy already knows that I’m a huge fan…and I want the rest of her family to know that they’ve provided our family with inspiration and motivation. Thank You.

It’s not about the bike. It’s about getting out into the world, about meeting the people, seeing the cultures, tasting the food, being vulnerable, and feeling the wind on our cheeks. We travel on bikes not because of the bikes themselves, but because of the opportunities the bikes afford – the ability to get off the beaten path and see things you can’t see any other way.

On the bikes, we are one with Mother Nature – just another link in the food chain. Mother Nature has a way of humbling us and putting us in our place – which is a good thing.

– Nancy Sathre-Vogel (Family on Bikes)

Another cycling family has just set off on their journey.  The Pedal Powered Family took off from Hamilton, Ontario on Saturday and will be cycling with their two young kids on a year-long, 20,000km bicycle tour.  So what motivates a family to get out and do something that is so totally untraditional? Here is what Reuben from Pedal Powered Family has to say:

As most parents do, we want to spend time with our children. Days, months and even years can slip away without noticing it while living the so-called ‘normal’ life. Later you wonder where the time went and why you never took advantage of the moments you may have had.  We’re choosing to travel by bike because it is simple and affordable, it allows us to spend more time outdoors, to stay fit, and to move at a speed that allows us time to actually process where we are going and what we are experiencing. We also enjoy the challenge of bicycle travel and look forward to the learning opportunities that will present themselves while undertaking this adventure as a family. Our kids are young. The moment for us is now.

So what about you?  Who are your cycling heros? Why do you consider them a hero?  If you are a cycling family like Family on Bikes and Pedal Powered Family, let us know about it.  What you are doing is truly inspirational to me and has really helped get me through some dark thoughts.

Enjoy Your Ride

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Sugar Alternatives for Energy and Hydration

Question: I am using the homebrew sugar formulations (sometimes added to green tea).  I am also trying to wean myself off 1/2 dose adrenalean “lip tonic delivery system” (biorhythm brand- caffeine, hoodia g, synephrine, yohimbe) capsule for energy.

My question is other than juice, can you suggest modifications in lieu of table sugar for energy and hydration.


Both raw/organic honey or agave can work great in the homebrew (substitute in the same quantities for the sugar, or to taste), but you do have to shake well in order to make sure they don’t settle out.  Have you tried either of these?  Also, make sure to use at least the minimum amount of salt recommended in the homebrew as the temps rise, you need the sodium replacement if you’re sweating.

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