Posted by: rustymccain | July 10, 2011

Houston, We Have a Problem!

We are in Houston, MO and the problem is….IT IS HOT!!

Before I start about our day, I want to say to congrats to all my buds who competed in the Chattanooga Waterfront Triathlon. I know it was a well-run race. Any race that Team Magic runs is well done. They are the best. And, I want to thank my friends at ACME for their presence and promotion of the sport. I know it was hot in Chattanooga, so I hope everyone was safe and had a good day.

I'm having fun. Really

Speaking of hot, it is like the middle of summer here! We woke up to a very warm, muggy morning again. We are facing an interesting phenomena. We had a rest day yesterday. Our spirits are good. Our energy level is good. We don’t have those dreaded “I’s”, Illness or Injury. The problem we are running into is that our legs are just jello. We have come to believe that it is simply the cumulative fatigue of riding for 5 straight weeks. I don’t know that there is anything we can do to make it any better. The good news is that we are growing more confident each day that we are going to be able to finish this quest. We are certainly not growing over-confident. We respect the distance we have left and know a lot of things can happen. But, we feel pretty good about things overall.

Ozark Country in Missouri

Today was a perfect example of why we think we can finish. We started just a little after 7:30. At 7:45 I had a flat. My back tire was pretty well-worn and had a rock imbedded in it, so we changed the tire. And we pinched a tube, so had to change it again. (Think, Three Stooges minus Mo) So, by the time we had finished it was more like 8:15 and getting hotter fast. We were riding into an area that didn’t have many stops. Our first opportunity to fuel up was at about mile 27. We needed that as we were in a really hilly area. We had planned on fueling again in about 23 miles from there but found the store was closed, so we had to finish the trip of 65 miles with what liquid we had in temps approaching or above 100 degrees and a blazing sun. So, we slowed our pace a bit, took a couple of breaks, and cruised into the town of Houston.

Rich, Rusty and Mike

We are not setting any speed records, but we are meeting whatever greets us with the idea that we started, we will finish. It might not be pretty, but we will finish. It gives us confidence to know that, though our legs are jello, we will keep turning them over until we reach our goal.

And we had three bonuses on the day. One, the countryside is very beautiful, looking more and more like middle Tennessee. We also met two new groups of friends. Rich and Mike were two Californians, brothers who were riding to the west coast. They were really nice guys who exuded positivity. They were a boost for us. The other group was three young men, Matt, Andrew and Patrick, who just graduated from high school. They were really impressive. While most kids their age would be doing a lot of stuff to celebrate graduation, some of it not very good…. they are riding their bicycles across the country together. I applaud their ambition, determination and their commitment to a healthy lifestyle. Those three guys are going to be successful!

Matt, Andrew, Patrick and Ray

We are now about halfway across Missouri and looking forward to Friday night when we see all the home folks. I will try to post details about the weekend rides tomorrow. It is almost 6:00 now…. time for bed!


  1. Houston to Jello LegsTwo. We have a suggestion for jello legs. Take a 15 minute ice bath every day after you ride. And if the girls are going to meet you anytime soon, have them bring you the stick massager and use it! I am sure this will help.

  2. Hey Rusty!

    Cary and I are cheering for you and keeping tabs on your progress!! Keep pedalin’! And thanks for blogging and letting us be a part of your great adventure!

    p.s. When you get back home Cary and I will treat you to all the cheese fries from Melrose that you want.

    Take care!

  3. Rusty, with this post you just earned a new nickname – JELLO. Seriously, you two are simply amazing with your endurance and determination – just think of what you’ve accomplished-over 2500 miles across country on bicycles (at your age-haha)! I love reading your posts. As usual your witty humor comes through. Both of you just ‘Keep-on-keeping on’ and stay safe.

    BTW: Don’t expect it to be any cooler the rest of your ride. This week the highs will be in the upper 90’s with feel-like temps over 100. Heat warnings have been posted. (sorry)

  4. Rusty- if you’re legs are feeling like jello, I know someone in Nashville that gives great leg massages …. I just can’t think of his name … he used to be my neighbor. Oh well, it’ll come to me 🙂 Stay strong! Hopefully by this time tomorrow, I’ll be able to tell you about the new addition!

  5. Keep drinking lots of water…Very important. Looks like you have hot weather to the finish. Please stay healthy. Rita

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