Pedaling for a Cure

Just a little bit of rain
Sep 09, 2012 by Gates Matthew Stoner

This week admittedly I didn't get out on my bike. I was recovering from my Labor Day race and my legs needed some time off. On Saturday I ran 10 miles with the marathoners, so today I rode with some of the cycling team.

The route was "suppose" to be 47 miles on the east side of Tucson. But it didn't turn out that way.... the group pushed off at 6:30 and quickly the weather turned. Monsoons typically come in the afternoon, but today was a special morning.

Here I am at the 7 mile point on the ride. I'm at the base of the highway to Mt Lemmon. Things were going well and then the first signs of the storm appeared. We were riding straight towards the storm and could see it on the distant horizon in Vail. A decision was made to head back and at least go West to attempt to avoid the storm.

This photo was taken barely a minute before the heavens openned and .4 inches of rain fell in 30 minutes as we were heading back to our starting point. It was a unique experience to ride in such a downpour. I think there was some hail too. Thankfully everyone made it back safely, just a little bit soaked.

In the end my training ride was only 17 miles, but I am ready for another week of training for this cause so close to my heart.


Labor Day Weekend Update
Sep 02, 2012 by Gates Matthew Stoner

This week in Tucson it didn't cool off in the evenings which made afternoon rides more difficult. But I did manage to get out or get to spin class. I'm feeling more confortable on the bike these days.

Yesterday for the team ride, we went 40 miles and travels to Marana. So basically I got to ride with my teammates on routes I already ride. But it was nice to have them in my neighborhood and I did get to go farther north than I had ever done before.

It's hard to believe September is already here. El Tour is basically in about 75 days and it's childhood cancer awareness month. As many of you know I run/ride for Super Nate and other kids like him. Support for LLS goes to help critical research for blood cancers, including childhood leukemia, and supporting families with loved ones in treatment. Please consider supporting LLS with a donation. Together we WILL beat blood cancers.

As always, thank you for your support of my endeavors.

Week Three Training update
Aug 22, 2012 by Gates Matthew Stoner

Training for El Tour is progressing well. I am so thankful for the wonderful coaches from Team in Training.

Since I'm going to be with the running team this Saturday, I did my Saturday ride tonight. I rode my bike longer and farther than I've ever done. It was a wodnerful afternoon after the morning monsoon rains. My route took me from Marana to the east side of Tucson. I traveled the Santa Cruz and Rilato River Path all the way to Craycroft Road. I was able to do the ride in 2:26 and a total of 38 miles.

Along the river path, I got to see a jack rabbit as well as a huge rattlesnake. Thankfully some runners warned me about the snake that was fully coiled and ready to strike. YIKES. After all the hot summer days, it was refreshing though to enjoy a nice afternoon ride. Hopefully as the days get cooler and the miles longer, I'll continue to have many more rides like today.

I'm riding for a cure. I ride for those who can't. I ride to help make a difference in the lives of blood cancer patients everywhere. I ride so no parent ever has to explain to their child they have cancer.

Please consider joining me with a donation to LLS. It will go to fund critical research and support families in treatment. Thank you.

First Team Practice
Aug 11, 2012 by Gates Matthew Stoner

My cycling adventure with Team in Training officially started today with the team practice. It's amazing what a difference a year makes from when I started with the marathon team last August.

We have a great group and almost 40 riders! I saw some familiar faces this morning from the marathon team and got to meet my new teammates. It was a warm humid morning in Tucson, but I've learned one of the advantages of cycling is you generate your own breeze as you go along. The team ride started from Brandi Fenton Park and went along river road. In the first mile, I came along something in the road I was not expecting. Rocks, gravel, tree limbs are common, but not a dead baby javelina.

As we cruised along river road, I was feeling good and adjusted to the clipin pedals on my bike. The true test would be if I could survive the ride without falling over. Spolier alert -- no falls this time. The route for the first part was mostly flat, but then we took a turn on La Cholla road towards Northwest Hospital and a nice challenging hill. I have to say compared to a month ago when I did the hill without the clipin pedals it was much easier.

Half way thru the ride, the team gathered at Ina and Oracle to regroup, hydrate, and snack. The ride then had one more section of hills before a really fast down hill. I was feeling good and decided to attack the hill with a sprint, sort of like we do in spin class. It went well and before long I was reward with a very rapid descent back to River road and the park.

Because I'm a data geek, you can check out the ride on the Strava link below

There are plenty more miles to pedal before I'll be ready for El Tour. I will be riding the full 111 mile course on November 17th. Please consider joining Team Matt on this endeavor. Each mile of my ride is available to be sponsored for a minimium donation of $10. You can use the donate link to the right to make an online donation or contact me to arranging sending a check. Then just let me know if you have a mile preference that you would like or I can randomly assign. See the course map and learn more at

As always, thank you for your support of my efforts and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Time to hit the road in the fight against cancer
Jul 22, 2012 by Gates Matthew Stoner

Fall season kick off is August 4th. I'm so excited. Last Saturday I did a non-training ride with some members of the cylcing team and I feel ready to start training!

1 year ago I was a couch potatoe and now I have completed three marathons (2 with Team). For my next challenge, I'm committed to ride 111 miles in El Tour de Tucson.

Your donation of as little as $10 can sponsor me for one of those miles. I've setup a form in which you can let me know what mile you would like to sponosor. Then just make a donation with the link on this page.

I greatly appreciate your support for LLS and all the great work they are doing for cancer research and supporting familiies in treatment.

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Supporter Comments

    "Go, Matt, Go!"


    Wed Sep 12 10:06:41 EDT 2012

    "Go Matt Go!!!!"


    Fri Oct 05 08:26:19 EDT 2012

My Fundraising Total

Raised: $950.00 | Goal: $950.00
100 %

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In Honor of

Super Nate Dinoffria

My Thanks To

Gates M Stoner $500.00
Len $100.00
Leila Ali-Akbarian $50.00
Barbara Sager $50.00
Sonia Oyola $50.00
Carole Cook $50.00
Sandra Kalnins $50.00
andrew hyman $50.00
Carmelo Sgarlata $50.00
Alex Zaphiris $50.00
Amanda West $40.00
Leah Polcar $25.00
Trish $25.00
Galina Kramer