My Mission, My Goal

Well since this is my first blog for this adventure I guess it is best to introduce myself and explain what I plan to do and why I am doing it.My name is Frank and I am a 45 year old, husband of 27 years, proud father of 3 sons and 2 wonderful grandsons. I am an avid outdoorsman and love to ride my bicycle and paddle my kayak.I have been a kayak enthusiast since the late 1980s when I began kayaking in the Florida Keys. I am a self taught artist and somewhat of a writer.In my 45 years of life, I have lost a cousin to lung cancer. Her mother, my aunt, is a survivor of lung cancer as is my father-in-law. I have a very dear friend who has been dealing with cancer off and on for many years and know that in the years to come there will be others in my life who will be stricken with the horrible disease. I am sure at one point in time all of us will be directly affected by cancer, and many of us, like myself can't do much about it. This is where my little adventure comes into play.My wife and I have always been hard working individuals but have never made enough to do much more than keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. We are in no way financially capable of helping others, though we wish we could. But there is something I can do. I have always loved to ride a bicycle and been able to do so for long periods of time, and kayaking is now as much a part of me as eating and sleeping. For some reason the good lord blessed me with the ability to do both of these well and I don't believe it was just for my own personal fun. I can help out.I can fight for others.On Saturday, August 13, 2011 I will stand on the west coast of Michigan with my foot in Lake Michigan. I will then get on my bicycle and ride it just over 100 miles to the town of Grayling Michigan. Once I arrive in Grayling I will leave my bicycle and get into my kayak on the Ausable River. I will paddle my kayak from Grayling, 120 miles to the town of Oscoda, where I will step out of my kayak on the East coast of Michigan into Lake Huron. I will do this in the course of one weekend. Starting on Saturday, August 13, 2011 and finishing sometime on Sunday, August 14, 2011.I will soon have a website with all the information pertaining to sponsors,donations, and volunteering.My wife and son will be my major volunteers but there will be several more needed throughout the weekend to help with following me, getting me food and liqiud, bike or kayak maintainance, the possible emergency, or just encouragement. This is going to be a major task.I can do it but there is a lot of work ahead.Just to give you and idea of how much work I have cut out for me. Picture this. I had surgery just 8 weeks ago to repair a broken ankle. My cast has only been off for about 2 weeks. There is now permanently a metal plate and 7 screws in my ankle. I have not been on my bike since last fall and I put on a lot of extra weight being laid up.I am currently at 232 pounds, which is definitely to much for a guy of only 5feet 7inches, so the physical preperation is going to be quite rigorous. I did get back in the kayak last weekend and should be getting the all clear from the foot doctor next week to get back on the bike.Work outs officially begin tonight.I will regularly post here for those of you interested in keeping up with my progress.I hope everyone will at least take an interest in the fight against cancer and help in any way possible.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Great Start

Wow, what a way to start the day. Woke up at 5:30am. Took a minute to stretch and shake the cobwebs out of my head and then hit the workout. 45 minutes with 60 second breaks in between every 3 reps of 9 different exercises followed by 3 scrambled eggs and a banana for breakfast then to work by 8:15am. I swear, I can almost feel the protein from those eggs rushing to every muscle in my body. It is a great feeling.
My legs are a bit sore from Sundays workout as are my shoulders from all the extra paddling in the kayak, but I guess that means they are working overtime. I am sure it won't be long and all the soreness will be gone and things will just get easier. I am actually looking forward to when the time comes that I have to increase my workout incline on the Total Gym to reap the rewards that I am getting now with it almost flat. One of these days I am actually going to be able to look straight down while standing and see my toes. That will be a wonderful sight but until then I will just pace myself.
The last thing I want to do is over do it right from the start. I have 320 days to go, which really gives me plenty of time to get into shape. My biggest concern is the paddle from Grayling to Oscoda. I know the 100 mile bike ride is doable as I did the Black Bear last year after haveing only trained for about 5 months. Sure it took me 9 hours but I made it. I know I can make it from Grayling to Oscoda in the kayak, but to complete the entire trip in less then 2 days will mean my kayak portion will have to be done in less than 40 hours. I am confident that I can do it, as I have been an avid kayaker for 20 years and have no problem paddleing myself and others around for 7 or 8 hours at a time. I think it is just going to be a matter of the proper endurance training and eating, and the right body fuels prior to and during the event.
My goal is to complete the entire Pedal and Paddle to Fight Cancer in 36 hours or less and raise at least $1000 to donate while doing it.
Please stay tuned for more updates and pass the word.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Getting Going

I put in several hours yesterday in the kayak. I actually had a passenger in my front seat for a couple hours so the workout/training was a little tougher but more entertaining as I had someone to share it with. Always passes the time a little better when there is something to keep the mind entertained, and believe me, the friend that was with me is entertaining. He is one of my oldest friends, 30+ year friendship, and has always been one to make me laugh. Along with us was another friend of both of ours who we have known just as long. He was in his own kayak and just followed us along. It was a great surprise to see these two whitetailed deer swimming across a little opening in the middle of a huge cattail swamp where we were paddling. There is one just slipping into the cattails at the left of the photo and of course the other is right in the middle of the picture. The one that is to the left of the photo was actually a spikehorn buck but I was not quick enough with the camera to catch his head in the image. Oh well, still a nice surprise.

When I returned home from the kayaking I relaxed with my wonderful wife for a few hours then jumped on the Total Gym for a brisk 30 minute cardio workout. Man do I feel great today.
Looking forward to getting home from work today and jumping into the kayak again.
This Thursday is my final doctor visit for the broken ankle. I have my fingers crossed that I will get the full go ahead to jump on the bike also. I know there is still 321 days to go, but if you looked at the photo of me in the first post you can see that I have quite a bit of work to do to get myself into shape.
I have confidence.
I will succeed.
I will help someone.
Please pass the word and send as many people as possible to my facebook (Pedal and Paddle to Fight Cancer), my blog ( or my website

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Work Outs Officially Started

Well I broke out total gym yesterday morning before work. Thought I would just jump in there and give it a quick 40 minute refresher to start reminding my body of what lies ahead. Felt great. Nothing to strenuous. Made for a great day at work yesterday. Now my shoulders and arm are somewhat sore. Not too bad so I guess I did not over do it.
This evening I will be jumping into the kayak as soon as I get home from work, paddle for a couple hours then on to the total gym again.
This sad photo is a pic of me right now. The terrible results of what a lazy, unmotivated winter and spring, and then a broke ankle can do to a guy. A short guy at 232 pounds will never make it. Neck is gone, just seem to go from my head to my shoulders with nothing in between. Waistline is hiding there somewher under that gut. Arms are soft and floppy. A walk up 2 flights of steps would probably kill me.

Look out fat, I am out to get you. Just 323 days to go.