Did I just go on a 36-mile bike ride or a safari?


My ride this morning was gorgeous, rain-free, and so exciting!  I saw so many wild animals!  My first encounter was a turtle:


He was stuck in the gutter so I knocked on his shell (to make him hide inside), picked him, and placed him near the grass, facing a nice pond:


Up next was a duo of Sandhill Cranes.  I love these big birds; they are so pretty.


Then, I saw a wild bunny rabbit.  I have this weird superstition that spotting a wild bunny is actually a good luck omen!  So I was very excited.


Around mile 15.0, I spotted an ALLIGATOR!


For a native Floridian like myself, gators are really not a big deal (they are literally everywhere), but they are still pretty cool!  Just like a living dinosaur.  🙂


And last up…. I rounded a corner around mile 17.0 and saw a momma wild boar and four baby boars!  At first, I thought it was a group of BLACK BEARS — that’s how big they were!  I slammed on my brakes, but the moment they spotted me, they turned and sprinted into the trees.  I was so excited; I’ve never actually seen a real boar before.


Twas a very exotic ride!


  • Duration: 2 hours, 55 minutes
  • Distance: 36 miles (I’m so slow; I realized towards the end of my ride I’ve been in the wrong gear this entire time. Duh!)
  • Calories Burned: 1,200 (estimate)


New Gear!


I tried out a new pair of sports sunglass on my ride today!


I’ve been dying for a good pair of sports sunglasses (the key is buying a pair with shatter-proof lens — you don’t want plastic in your eyeball in a crash!), but all the ones I’ve found in stores have been $50 or more.  That’s TOO RICH for my blood.


Yesterday at the grocery store (of all places), I found these Foster Grant IronMan sunglasses for $15.99!  They were great, stayed on my nose, and had gripping sides for stability!  Loved them!


Fueling for Rides


Something I’ve been thinking about a lot is how I should be fueling for bike rides.  I felt like I had eating for running down — I knew how much to eat before, during, and after a long run.  But biking is so different!


Today, I had 1/2 a whole wheat bagel, PB, a coffee, and a bowl of watermelon before I left for my ride:


My conundrum with fueling for bike rides if although I am not burning the same calories/hour that I would be if I was running, I am out on the bike for a much, much longer time.  I think that I will need to take two packets of goo when I’m out there for longer than 3 hours, because I got pretty hungry towards the end of my ride!


Today I ate one packet of Clif Shot Energy Gel around mile 15.0.  I like the Razz flavor AND I ate it while moving.  With the Bloks or Jelly Beans, I have to stop the bike to eat them.  There’s about 100 calories in each Gel.


When I got home, I attacked the fridge!


I took the leftover Mini Asparagus Quiche, heated it up, and stuffed it into a whole wheat wrap.  Viola – lunch in seconds!


Plus more watermelon!  I just found a HUGE whole watermelon so expect to see lots in the near future.  🙂

I need to eat more food!  I’m not nearly refueled enough.  But, a shower calls!


Have a wonderful day!



  • eatingjourney May 24, 2009, 8:31 am

    Try frozen watermelon..it’s awesome. Are those goo packets good?

  • Leah @ Simply Fabulous May 24, 2009, 8:34 am

    Alligator! Holy crap!

    Just curious, how do you estimate your calorie burn during biking?

  • elliebelle May 24, 2009, 8:37 am

    Wild boars! That is amazing! Are wild bunnies uncommon in Florida? We have gazillions of them in Wisconsin.

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point May 24, 2009, 8:38 am

    eatingjourney- the are OK but i like bloks more.

    leah – http://www.calorieking.com/tools/exercise_calories.php

  • Christina May 24, 2009, 8:41 am

    wow that sounds like a crazy ride!

  • Holly May 24, 2009, 8:42 am

    I found that out about biking/fueling yesterday too. I’m great at it with running but just didn’t even recognize the signs on the bike! When the group stopped for a bathroom break at mile 15, I was WIPED but I thought I just wasn’t as strong as the other girls. But while at the bathroom, I had 3 shot blocks and some sports drink, and wouldn’t ya know it, in the next 10 miles I kicked butt!

  • Jennifer @ His N' Her Health May 24, 2009, 8:43 am

    I love all the wildlife you see. All we have here are millions of rabbits and coyotes that are so skinny. I feel bad for them! Glad you had a great bike ride!

  • Moran May 24, 2009, 8:56 am

    Oh my gosh Caitlin I cannot imagine an ALLIGATOR being a normal sight! This would make the front page of the newspapers here!!!

  • jenngirl May 24, 2009, 8:59 am

    Exotic ride indeed! I would never get bored exercising in Florida! 🙂

  • K from ksgoodeats May 24, 2009, 9:06 am

    The most exotic animal I’d see up here is a squirrel! I love the idea of that wrap!!

  • Maddy May 24, 2009, 9:26 am

    what a fun ride! i didnt even know we HAD boars in Florida! The other night my friends and I saw a baby coyote and we were in shock for like a day after haha

  • katecooks May 24, 2009, 9:31 am

    isn’t watermelon so addictive??! i bought a huge one the other day and am quickly making my way through it — it’s just SO good!!!!

  • Recipes for Creativity May 24, 2009, 9:32 am

    Your trip was totally awesome! We don’t have gators here, although we do sometimes see black bears! (I live in the mountains in Western NC, near Great Smoky Mountains National Park.) I’ve seen a bobcat, too. That looked like so much fun.

  • seekinghealthybalance May 24, 2009, 9:33 am

    We saw an alligator on holiday in Florida and it was the scariest thing ever! THe wrap looks great!

  • Niki May 24, 2009, 9:44 am

    What a fun Safari ride!! Your lunch looks so good! What a great idea to stuff the quiche in a wrap! I haven’t had any watermelon this season yet but I am so ready for some!! Keep up the awesome bike rides!!

  • Anna May 24, 2009, 9:50 am

    I have the same issue with fueling for bike rides! Anytime I ride over 20 miles, I never know how much to eat because biking just doesn’t make me hungry like running does. It’s mostly mental- I think it has something to do with the fact that I am so much less aware of how hard I am working when I’m on my bike as opposed to my feet. Does that make any sense?

  • Priyanka loves food May 24, 2009, 9:54 am

    That is one awesome bike safari! I can never get over the fact that seeing an alligator can be a common thing!

  • Keegan May 24, 2009, 10:14 am

    Oh man, I’m so jealous of all your long rides. I’m missing the 2+ hours in the saddle. I’m itchy to spend more than an hour but just can’t swing it with my board study time…two more weeks.

  • strivingforbalance May 24, 2009, 10:25 am

    That’s so awesome that you saw those animals during your bike ride !


  • just me May 24, 2009, 10:36 am

    I’m loving the bike ride! and jealous! too bad all the roads around here are way too dangerous…

  • iowagirleats May 24, 2009, 10:59 am

    Ooo how fun seeing all those animals!! I always feel like exercise goes faster when you have something to look at 🙂 Congrats on the long bike ride!

  • Help Meghan Run May 24, 2009, 11:08 am

    Looks so fun! And apparently I can predict the future, since after your last long bike ride I think I told you to watch out for alligators. 🙂 Have fun refueling.


  • Katie May 24, 2009, 11:10 am

    What do you use to map out your long bike rides? I have only gone about 10 miles because I don’t know where to go!

  • Susan May 24, 2009, 11:11 am

    Awesome ride!!! Man, I never knew turtles just showed up on the side of the road in Florida until yours and Meghann’s blogs today. And boars?? I live in Canada and I’ve never even seen a moose!! 😛

  • Emily May 24, 2009, 11:24 am

    What a fun ride! You’re right…as a Midwesterner, I would be SOO completely excited if I saw an alligator during a bike ride! Glad it was pain-free..you’re getting to be quite the biking pro. 🙂

  • Bec May 24, 2009, 11:26 am

    love the bike safari!

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point May 24, 2009, 11:31 am

    katie – try googling “bike lanes” in your city, not bike paths. bike lanes are just on the shoulder of the road. its good if you can find something in a deserted area, of course. my bike lane is three miles from my house and then another 6 to the end. so i do lots and lots of loops. 🙂

  • Sarah (Running To Slow Things Down) May 24, 2009, 11:37 am

    I love your recaps of your bike rides. They totally inspired me to bike today. I didn’t see anything quite as exotic as you (alligators? oh my) but there were a couple of turkeys spotted. haha…:D

    Yummy looking food too! I have a similair “problem” of trying to figure out how to fuel for bike rides vs. running, but it looks like you made some really good (and tasty) choices. 😀

  • HangryPants May 24, 2009, 12:16 pm

    I am going to start calling you Dr. Doittle. He was the one who talked to animals, right?

  • Katie May 24, 2009, 12:36 pm

    Yummy looking wrap! Wow I made it 15 miles this morning yay for personal distance records 🙂 I wish we had that scenery where we ride that has to make the time go faster. I have similar problems with fueling I am not a breakfast person AT ALL. So by the end of a long run or bike ride I am STARVING!!

  • Adi (oatonomy.com) May 24, 2009, 12:46 pm

    Cool! The most exotic animals I see on my bike rides are groundhogs. Not quite the same as a boar.

  • Melissa @ For the Love of Health May 24, 2009, 12:48 pm

    Caitlin what an awesome ride!! Congrats! You are really inspiring my desire to get a bike myself. What a cool looking turtle haha
    I remember seeing alligators when I was in Tampa. Yikes!

    Yummy looking food.

    Have a great one!

  • Stacey May 24, 2009, 1:02 pm

    At least your pre-bike foods aren't totally weird!

    My boyfriend eats ANYTHING before riding. This morning he was chowing down on leftover calzones, cereal and a pb&j!

    I could never eat that stuff for breakfast!
    That's so cool you saw an alligator! The coolest animal I've seen on a run would be a gray fox 🙂

  • Kristi @ Sweet Cheeks May 24, 2009, 1:04 pm

    I need to go buy a watermelon..they scream “summertime”!

    I also need to start biking more. I miss it! Glad you have a good ride!

  • amanda May 24, 2009, 3:55 pm

    ah! if i would have seen a
    gator i would have peddled away faster than a speed of light. you are a champ for stopping to capture a picture. but like you said, you’re all floridian and such-so it doesn’t even phase you.

    i love watermelon. such a feel good summer fruit!

  • Lindsay May 24, 2009, 4:46 pm

    Sounds like a great ride! Thanks for helping out the turtle! That was very kind of you!

    I myself had a 30 mile bike ride but mine was all city; Bike The Drive in Chicago to be exact. Quite the opposite of yours. I think I like yours better! 🙂 Although seeing the skyline of Chicago is something special too.

  • Anne May 24, 2009, 8:13 pm

    Wow, that looks like such a fun bike ride! Aww, that’s so great that you helped the turtle! Poor guy. What a great bike ride though! You have such awesome scenery 😀

  • seesaraheat May 24, 2009, 8:35 pm

    What a fun ride! I love watermelon 🙂 Good insight about fueling for biking vs. running, I was curious as to how that would be different. I would freak out if I saw an alligator, but thats because I live in KY, haha…

  • CeciLiA May 24, 2009, 10:39 pm

    thank you so much for saving the turtle (i cant imagine what would happen to it if you didn’t save it)… go you!!

    OMG, you are so right! Eating what you crave is the way the shut that craving away … it’s such a simple solution, but I always find myself trying to satisfy that craving with other (healthier/lower cal) thing … YAY YOU!

  • Christina! May 25, 2009, 6:44 am

    Hi Caitlin! I’m new to your blog but what a time to find it, I’m just getting back into biking for the summer and your rides are really inspiring… just wondering if you use anything to calculate your distance.


  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point May 25, 2009, 2:15 pm

    christina – i use google earth

  • Peter May 25, 2009, 6:35 pm

    If you’re looking for bike rides in your neighborhood, try mapmyride.com – results will vary, but it’s worth a click…

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