It's a new year and time once again to give a new look to this blog. New graphics and colors. Same bike writer!

This blog is created not only to track my own progress on my biking journey but it is intended to also assist others who have either osteo or rheumatoid arthritis or both like I do. I hope as you read about the progress I have made that it gives you inspiration and hope that you can overcome the dibilitating effects of these conditions.

If your doctor agrees that you should be capable of expanding your limits read on and don't be afraid, just listen to your body and give it challenges. Biking is a great non-impact form of exercise and greatly enhances flexibility and range of motion.

It's not a substitute for Doctor visits, taking your meds or otherwise getting off your health plan but it auguments what your Doctor does for you and can give you a better quality of life. Go for it!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Preparations For Next Year's Riding Season

Or otherwise known as passing time dreaming of the new season to come. I've been busy at MapMyRide searching out and mapping routes to help accomplish next year's riding goals. One of the things I intend to do is to ride in urban areas. While it may sound frightening to consider riding in downtown Detroit, from what I have read and hear from others, riding the new River Walk and Belle Isle is safe along with the ride north out of downtown on the Dequindre cut to the Eastern Market. You can find my maps here and here at the Map My Ride website. In this instance I'll look schedule these rides with one or more friends, twofold; for safety's sake and I imagine it's going to be a fun outing best enjoyed with others. I expect that photo opportunities, if not the actual ride itself, will be rewarding.

These photos are taken from the Detroit River Front Conservancy's website where I found a storehouse of information about using the water front for
a bicycle outing and tour. The photo in the upper left corner is of the Milliken State Park and Harbor with the Ren Cen in the backgrop. The photos above this paragraph are of the Dequindre Cut leading to Eastern Markent and the small photo on the right is of the River Walk. The Dequindre Cut was a below grade rail bed leading to the Eastern Market, presumably for goods that came via river freighter, abandoned long ago the railway has been paved, the graffiti remains as "urban artwork." The Eastern Market is a vast area of food retail and wholesalers that is much more than a farmer's market, it's a retail food hub of epic proportions with a long history of being "the" marketplace for all things edible.

I was born and raised in the city till about 4th grade when my parents moved and still have a fondness for it. Detroit has a poor image, worldwide and nationally, however there are several corporations who invest heavily in the city. General Motors is one of several who, being one of the Big Three automakers in the Motor City capital of the world, has donated heavily to efforts to help revitalize the city and are major stakeholders in working toward a comeback.

Will it ever happen?

Can this ever be a great city again?

It's possible but first the corruption and isolationist mindset must be routed out of City Council. The current Mayor Bing, who was a former Detroit Pistons Basketball star, has the vision coupled with an athlete's winning attributes, however he is hampered by the Council who perhaps share that vision but are clueless over how to achieve it. The River Front redevelopment is a large undertaking by volunteers and persons dedicated to revival in the city, there has been cooperation from the State with the Harbor and Milliken State Park which is named for a former Governor of our state. So far the redevelopment has focused on the property eastward of Cobo Hall, their next project is westward which currently remains blighted and a poor waste of a valuable water resource. For years the river was never regarded as the star that it is, warehousing and industrial uses littered the banks and the natural features went ignored and out of sight of the people. Waterways serve a useful purpose for commerce and trade but sections, especially in down towns should be reserved for the enjoyment of the natural feature by it's people. If the city is ever to make a comeback these kinds of efforts will help to lead it to a rebirth. The video below sure can give hope to that dream.

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