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Cyclists going long

There’s a good chance that a team of four cyclists from Cary-based Bandwidth.com will live up to their slogan of “5 and Change” and finish Race Across America (a k a RAAM) sometime today. There’s a similarly good chance that by day’s end Carrboro endurance mountain bike racer Matthew Lee will continue to lead this year’s Tour Divide. For those of you not familiar with the world of insanely-long bike…

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Cycling: It’s not all about the workout

On Memorial Day, I was on a two-hour ride into the Wake County countryside. At the light on Green Hope High School Road and NC 55, a retro-ish looking Trek tandem pulled up next to me, dad in the pilot’s seat, son behind him in the stoker’s seat. “My son’s autistic,” the dad began. “This is a great way for us to get out and explore together.” Their rides, he…

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Durham’s Solite Park: a Gateway to inner city mountain biking

Problem: Most mountain bike trails are located away from residential areas, making them difficult for carless kids to get to. Solution: Build mountain bike trails closer to where kids live so they can ride to the trailhead. Granted, that would seem to fall into the “No ‘duh” category. But because mountain bike trails take up some territory, making urban trails happen isn’t as easy as it sounds. Postage stamp-size urban…

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A Monday cyclism

I’m a more obsessed than usual today with cycling. I’ll explain why in a moment. First, an observation or three from the cycling realm. * * * Being honest about your shortcomings is an admirable trait in anyone, let alone a pro athlete. Humility among our elite athletes is a rare commodity. Sure, an air of confidence is good, but too often athletes become taken more with PR than performance,…

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Short hikes on a long road

Marcy and I weren’t looking for a marathon hike (we’d done that a couple weeks earlier, to mixed reviews) and that made the Blue Ridge Parkway a perfect destination. This linear National Park that links the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia with the Great Smoky Mountains National Park straddling the North Carolina/Tennessee line, is best known for the 469-mile two-lane road that takes motorists through some of the Southern Appalachians…

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Toolkit pries open the discussion on childhood obesity

For the last 20 years or so, childhood obesity has been, almost literally, the 800-pound gorilla in the room. The room in question, unfortunately, has been the pediatrician’s examining room. Despite the fact childhood obesity has reached almost epidemic proportions in the past quarter century — the percentage of obese kids in the U.S. grew from 6.5 percent in 1980 to 17 percent in 2006, one in three kids born…

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Climbing the walls of our backyard playground

A couple weeks ago I mentioned a report from the Center on Everyday Lives of Families at UCLA that found, among other things, that middle class American families have spacious backyards that they rarely use. This got me reminiscing about those halcyon days of my youth on South Boston Court when we did everything from play the World Series and Super Bowl (which hadn’t been invented yet) to tight rope…

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Clean house, get buff

The latest news from the research world … We weren’t thrilled by this study from Indiana University that found that people with neat houses tend to be more physically active. Nearly 1,000 residents of St. Louis between the ages of 49 and 65 had their health evaluated as well as the tidiness of the interior and exterior of their homes. Finding: Those folks who kept up the inside of their…

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Ride the Divide insights from Matthew Lee

Following Thursday’s screening of “Ride the Divide” in Carrboro, endurance mountain bike racer Matthew Lee answered questions about the race. Some quick highlights: The Cannondale bike he rode for 2,700 miles (200,000 total feet of climbing) weighed just 35 pounds. “Just,” because the Ride the Divide is a self-supported race — Lee had to carry everything he would need on the race. Lee won the 2008 RTD, the focus of…

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“Ride the Divide” — a 2,700-mile off-road odyssey

There’s one key difference between “Race Across the Sky,” last year’s documentary on the Leadville 100, an epic mountain bike race two miles above sea level, and the just-released “Ride the Divide,” which chronicles a lesser-known, 2,700-mile race that follows the Continental Divide from Banff, Alberta, Canada, south to the Mexican border. I’ll get to that difference in a sec. “Ride the Divide” follows the 2008 race of the same…

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