Monday, March 23, 2009

Flat Tire

Saturday morning my wife and I headed out for a run together. The temps were in the 50’s, the sun was shining and it was shaping out to be a great day. I forgot to download my Garmin from Friday’s lunchtime walk so I was pushing buttons to try and clear the information so Saturday was the only data I saw, but no such luck. I would just have to subtract 2.33 miles from everything. We started out at a nice 9:30 pace and went a total of 10 miles at 1:40 for a total of a 10:00 pace. This was my wife’s farthest distance to date and she had a goal of ten miles and wasn’t mentally prepared to go any farther. All in all it was a nice run and best of all we were outside in the sunshine, what else could you ask for.

On Sunday, I had a great idea that I wanted to get a bike rack for my vehicle so we could load up the family bikes and head to the local trail. I went to Dick’s Sporting Goods and found what I wanted and checked out. I assembled the pieces that required assembly and looked at the piece that was supposed to fit in the hitch receiver on my Explorer. That’s right, I said supposed to fit, I have a standard truck hitch and the bike rack was made for a smaller car hitch. I have never seen a hitch on a car, so I didn’t even think there was going to be an issue. After going to two automotive places and numerous phone calls, I knew I wasn’t going to be able to find a hitch adapter going from 2” to 1-1/4” today. I did find some on the internet, but that wasn’t going to help me for hitting the trail today. My wife suggested we try and fit the bikes in the back of the Explorer, I was skeptical, but tried nonetheless. Unbelievably they fit. I did have to take of my tire and carefully maneuver everything, but they fit and we headed for the trail.

We unloaded the bikes and headed out. We had no particular goal in mind, but I brought my Garmin to track our mileage. I even remembered to download the data out of it so we were good to go. We started out in Crystal Lake and continued ten miles following the Fox River to East Dundee at the Dairy Queen. My wife and I had a small cone and my son had the mint Oreo blizzard. I was amazed that we had gone that far considering my nine year old was riding a single speed bike. After our ice cream and rest break, we continued back for the return 10 miles. About a mile and a half away from the car, my wife got a flat tire. I gave her my bike and proceeded to run, with a bike for the last part. This was not what I had hoped to do after riding that far, but I had no other option. We all made it back in one piece, some of us a little more exhausted than others, but nonetheless we had a nice day. I need to remember to get a new tube for the bike and get that hitch adapter and I will be all set for next time. I love the warmer weather and the outside activities that go with it.


  1. Sounds like a fun day outside with the family!

  2. Wait a dang minute. Please, please tell me that the photos posted are just random photos and not what you ran in Saturday morning. Temps in the 50's and long sleeves? You wacky Chicagoans!

  3. What can I say, I am trying to figure the weather thing out. I took the pullover off right after we started.

  4. What a tiring workout! Both days! But I love the warm weather and being able to enjoy it like that.

    I need to check out that bike trail.

  5. Congrats to your wife for her first 10 miler!! Sounds like a beautiful day for a run. Sorry about the bik rack...nice try, though.

  6. Tony,
    Nice post and adventure! Did you ever get the hitch adapter for that bike rack? There is an adapter that may work on this page: .

    One thing to note about adapters is the longer it makes the rack stick out the more likely the rack/bikes may bottom out or touch the ground when going up any steep slopes or steep gas station entrances!

  7. Mike,

    Thanks for checking out my blog. Thanks for the link and valuable information about the rack. I did however get the adapter at my local U-Haul dealer for only $15.