Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) Between the ages of 30 and 50, eight times as many women as men develop this crippling form of arthritis. Although we don't know why it develops, researchers suspect that victims have a genetic predisposition.

Unlike Osteo Arthritis, RA symptoms are more pronounced in the morning -- the joints and muscles tend to stiffen up overnight as you sleep. RA patients may develop swelling in the joints; and this may lead to deformities and, ultimately, total immobility. RA patients may also develop such related symptoms as fever, fatigue, and loss of appetite.

Drug treatment of RA begins with the same types of medications used for OA: aspirin, Celebrex, NSAIDs, and, occasionally, steroids. If these drugs fail to control joint inflammation, other, more potent medications are prescribed. Although we don't know why, an antimalarial drug called hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil) is known to reduce RA inflammation. While the drug seems to work well, it has potentially serious side effects that can cause vision problems, so careful monitoring by your physician and eye doctor is important. Gold salts, injected on a weekly or biweekly basis, or taken orally once or twice a day can reduce joint inflammation, but, again, serious side effects make them impractical for many patients. Another drug -- penicillamine (Depen or Cuprimine) -- works much like gold salts in reducing symptoms and retarding disease in severe cases of RA, and may cause fewer side effects.

Researchers today are exploring the role that immunosuppressive drugs can play in the treatment of RA. Azathioprine (Imuran) and cyclosporine (Neoral) are approved for use in RA cases. Methotrexate (Rheumatrex) is now frequently prescribed as well. These drugs are extremely potent and are usually reserved for very serious cases where all else has failed. However, two newer drugs that also work through the immune system may help a larger group of patients. One, called leflunomide (Arava), not only relieves the symptoms of RA but also staves off the joint damage that accompanies the disease. The other, a genetically engineered drug called etanercept (Enbrel), works on just one element of the immune system, the naturally occurring protein called tumor necrosis factor (TNF). By blocking the inflammatory effects of TNF, Enbrel provides significant relief to a majority of patients with moderate to severe RA.

Like other forms of arthritis, RA should be treated by both medication and physical therapy, which can help restore some of the lost joint function. Surgical procedures such as hip and knee replacements have enabled many patients to return to a more fully functional lifestyle.

Thank you Vicki Potter who donated in honor of her Mom - Mary Ann Bader

Thank you Lilly Perez who donated in honor of her Mom - Elida Vargas

Make a donation in honor of someone you know who may have one of the many forms of arthritis.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Millionaire Warriors

Congratulations to Donna and Laurel for conquering their fears! An accomplishment to be very proud of.

Thank you to Glen Strauss - Director of Investments at Wachovia Securities. He can definitely help you to become a millionaire.

Countdown week 21 report: Total ride time 7 hours:16 min, 96.5 miles, Avg speed 13.6 MPH. A 29% increase in riding time from last week.
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Millionaire Minds

We spent the entire weekend in an intensive Millionaire Mind course. It was 14 hours a day for three days. Ryan and Laurel take in the lecture using their subconscious minds.

Managed to ride Saturday morning before the class. I must have still been asleep because I fell twice. Those clipless pedals can be tricky.

Thank you Dr Suki Stone and Frances Morris for their donations-You have Millionaire Minds!
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Friday, April 21, 2006

Splits Interval Training

Did three 15-20 minute invervals of 85% maximum HR. Rode 21.5 miles.
A very big Thank You to Eilene and Charlie Fay for their generous donations Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Angels blow a 5 run lead, Dodgers blow a 2 run lead. As pitcher J.C Romero said: "Losing [stinks]." I wonder what he actually said?

First blown save by K-rod this year.

Went to the Dodger game with Steve Schmidt. Maybe I'll convert him to go with the Blue Crew. Dodger dogs, garlic fries, the wave-beat the Rally Monkey anytime!

Many thanks to Erica for her very generous donation to the Arthritis Foundation. She is supporting her grandma and aunts.

Did a long distance ride yesterday: 2 hours, 26.8 miles, average HR 124 which is 69% of HR max.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Another Great Day

Did a Recovery Ride for 1 hour, keeping my heart rate < 70% max HR. A perfect day for an EZ ride.
Mr. Chocolate Bunny is already missing part of his left ear.
Alamitos Bay Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 17, 2006

Math Quiz

Mr. Chocolate Bunny is 12 inches tall and weighs 2.5 pounds. He lives dangerously with Michael Nakata. How long does Mr. Chocolate Bunny have to live? Donate to my ride and make a guess. Post a comment what the date will be when the last piece of Mr. CB will disappear. Winner will win a nice prize.
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Sunday, April 16, 2006


Easter Dog Posted by Picasa
Took a 5 hour bike repair/maintenance course yesterday at REI. The instructor Brian said I would go much faster if I unclipped the cards from the spokes. He said the tassels on the handlebars are OK though. Removed a pound of sand and gunk from my chain and gears.

Rode 22.8 miles today, longest ride yet.

Week 22 summary: 5 rides, 5hr:39min ride time, 72.1 miles. A 28% increase from last week. Doing well on donations, too. Thank you all who contributed.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Good Friday Weather

Got caught in the rain today. It seems the weather is usually Bad on Good Friday. Had a good cardio workout with average HR=146, Cadence=95. Ride time=59 min, Distance=14.1 miles.

Thank you Joe & Christie for your generous donation. Way to go!
The Donation Thermometer is rising...check it out at
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Thursday, April 13, 2006

How Arthritis Disables the Joints

Normal joint: Where two bones meet, our bodies normally provide a simple and effective lubricating system. Ligaments binding the bones together form a capsule within which a thin membrane called the synovium exudes a fluid lubricant. For good measure, the ends of both bones are cushioned by a smooth layer of cartilage.

Osteoarthritis: In this form of arthritis, trouble begins when the protective cushion of cartilage between the bones slowly degenerates. As it disappears, the synovium and the ends of the bones thicken within the joint, leading to the aching stiffness that characterizes the disease.

Rheumatoid arthritis: The culprit here is the synovium, which for unknown reasons becomes swollen and inflamed, leading to irreversible damage to the joint's capsule and protective cartilage. Eventually the unprotected ends of the bones themselves begin to erode.

No ride today

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Fore! Another Dangerous Sport

Rode 14 miles along the San Gabriel River Trail for 1 hour. Kept an average cadence of 90 RPM. I've seen clubs being thrown because of a bad shot, but I've never seen a golf cart thrown-until now.
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Angels Come From Behind

Adam Kennedy gets a clutch two run hit in the bottom of the ninth to beat the Texas Rangers. "Getting a walk-off hit to help your team win is nice, but that's just one hit," said Kennedy. "Mike Nakata has to ride 500 miles for his team." "Seeing fans at the game waving their ralley monkeys, eating hot dogs, and slurping on beer gives me incentive to play my best," He added. "Be a fan of Nakata's team and support the Arthritis Foundation."

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

From Water Hazard to Road Hazard

Silver Rock Golf Course, La Quinta
Got in a 54 min, 12 mile ride along the Santa Ana River Trail today during my break at work.

Some Arthritis Facts
  • Women are almost twice as likely as men to suffer from arthritis. The disease becomes more prevalent after age 45. Yet it is not a disease exclusively of the elderly, for more than 300,000 children are also affected.
  • Arthritis is a costly disease: It's the leading cause of absenteeism; more than 45 million work days are lost each year.
  • The estimated yearly cost in lost wages and medical bills is $65 billion -- second only to the bill for heart disease.
  • Arthritis patients average eight visits to their doctor each year -- twice as many as those suffering from other chronic illnesses like high blood pressure.
  • Approximately six million people are "self-diagnosed" and improperly "self-treated."
Support the Arthritis Foundation

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Monday, April 10, 2006

Laurel's Busy Weekend

Congratulations to Laurel for placing second at the Cal State Long Beach flute competition. She also participated in seven other events over the weekend:
Woodwind Quintet, Saxaphone Quintet, Flute Trio, Flute Solo Ensemble, Piano Certificate of Merit, Jazz Combo, and Long Beach Poly Jazz Band.

Many thanks to Gloria and Sharon at North Anaheim for their generous donations to my ride. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Two Hills and Some Cadence Work

Lefty wins the Green Jacket back. Mickelson stated: "Playing in the Masters is easier than a 500 mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles."
Halos take 2 of 3 from the Evil Empire.
Rode on the street today, climbed two hills-100 feet elevation change. Then hit the bike path for some cadence work-up to 113 RPM. Dark red line is altitude, green line is cadence, red line is heart rate. Total ride time 1 Hour.
Two Hills And Some Cadence Work Posted by Picasa

Saturday, April 08, 2006

General Information About My Ride

I am taking on a personal challenge. It's a challenge of physical endurance and a challenge of making a difference in my community. From September 9-16, 2006 I will be cycling from San Francisco to Los Angeles as a part of the California Coast Classic Bicycle Tour. That's 500 miles!! This will be no ordinary trip. I will be cycling on behalf of the Arthritis Foundation as a member of their training team. We will be joined by others from across the country to support arthritis research and community based education programs for the men, women and children affected by arthritis. Your donation is needed to help me reach my fundraising goal.

Donations can be made on-line at

I'd Rather Be Sailing

There was a 10-15 MPH headwind riding back along the San Gabriel River. I had to use my "Granny Gear" to keep my candence >80 RPM and my HR<80% max.
Weekly summary: 5 Rides, 4Hr:22Min, 58.9 Miles. 22 more weeks to go.
I'd Rather Be Sailing Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 07, 2006

The Professor and His Student-Which is Which?

Got the honor of seeing the visiting professor again. No biking today, gotta work some time.
Donate to my cause on-line at
ADDENDUM: It was such a nice day that I had to go on an EZ ride for 38 min, 7.9 miles.
The Professor and his Student Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Riding in the Long Beach Grand Prix

Tomorrow starts the Long Beach Grand Prix and got this shot of two Mustangs trying out the track. Tried to bike on race course but security wouldn't let me. He said I wasn't fast enough. Ride time today 57 min, 12.9 miles, average speed 13.8 MPH, and average cadence 84 RPM.
Getting ready for the Long Beach Grand Prix Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Mag Trainer

My Mag Trainer allows me to use my bike as a stationary bike. It uses a magnet to create various levels of resistance. I can shift gears to also vary my resistance. Today was a rest day-just as well since is hailed earlier today.
Tim Salmon hits another homer, but Washburn beats his former teammates-Mariners 6, the other Los Angeles team 4.
Mag Trainer Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Polar Heart Rate Monitor

Another rainy day. Did some interval training on my Mag Trainer. Cycled between 70% of maximum HR (125) and 85% maximum HR (150) by increasing my candence and resistance. Red line is my Heart Rate and Green line is my Cadence (Pedal Revolutions per Minute). The lower red line is the atmospheric pressure.
Interval Training using Polar Heart Rate Monitor Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 03, 2006

500 Mile Ride Itinerary

Today is a Rest Day and the start of Major League Baseball-Go Blue Crew. Oops . . . Dodgers lost despite 17 hits-what's with that. I think the other Los Angeles team won though.
To get a better idea of what my ride will be like click on the link to the right. "About the San Francisco to Los Angeles Bike Tour"
Itinerary of the Big Ride Posted by Picasa

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Countdown Week 24-California Coast Classic

Weekly summary: 4 hrs, 18 min saddle time, 53.4 miles. Please support my cause The Arthritis Foundation.
Cruising down the San Gabriel River Trail. Those are some TALL bikes Posted by Picasa

Angels 0, Dodgers 0 . . .

. . . Game called in 10th inning due to boredom. "Good thing we brought lots of snacks", said #1 Angel fan Andrew.
#1 Angel Fan-Andrew Posted by Picasa