Monday, April 9, 2012

Motion Monday — A (Cyclist's) Cinderella Story

Bonnie's the one in the middle in the righthand photo.
BRAVING THE RAIN Bonnie Flansburg is no stranger to a tough ride. The Bishop-Wisecarver accounts receivable clerk has been an avid road bicyclist for nearly two decades. But our ears perked up when we heard that she rode against especially strong headwinds in a relentless downpour one recent weekend for an event she does every year, the all-ladies Cinderella ride. We had to give her a proper public shout-out for her tenacity!

Bonnie, who's been with BWC for five years this coming April 23, has competed in the 60-plus-mile race for the past 16 years — minus one when her daughter had a baby shower. But the 2012 race, put on by Bay Area bike group the Valley Spokesmen, proved the toughest yet because of the harsh elements, she said.

"There was cold wind and rain just pelting down the entire time," she said. "But if you look at who's in the ride, you'll notice there are a lot of women from all walks of life, a lot of them older than me who had finished. It's just having the fortitude to know you're going to make it to the finish line — that's what it's all about."

TOUGHER DAYS BEHIND HER Challenging as it was, the Cinderella ride wasn't Bonnie's hardest day on a bike, she said. That would've been 10 years ago, on day two of a ride from Dublin, Calif., to Yosemite, about 200 miles over three days. 

"It took so much to keep going," she said. "But I worked through it and it got a little easier."

Her longest ride? The Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa. Dubbed RAGBRAI for short, it's a week long ride across 468 miles of Midwest roads. And Bonnie finished it last year.

IN IT FOR THE LONG HAUL Bonnie said she doesn't plan to quit anytime soon. She got into riding after seeing her friends cruise a course that took them over some steep California hills several years ago. At the time it seemed she'd never be able to keep up with them. But today, Bonnie and her group, the Delta Pedalers, ride those same hills — no longer insurmountable. 

"Biking is my meditation, my therapy," she told us. "I definitely don't plan to stop anytime soon."

BIKE TO WORK While we're on the topic of Bonnie's athletic hobby, national Bike to Work Day comes up on May 10, a Thursday. And as we penned this blog today, we actually got a packet in the mail about it. Coincidence? For more info on the cause, go to their website at www.sfbike.org.


MOTION MONDAY CHALLENGE And now, since it's our weekly #MotionMonday post, here's the challenge: Re-read the article for key words, then try to find them in [ today's crossword puzzle ] If you need an answer key, email us at jenniferw@bwc.com. Good luck and have fun!

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