Photos by Kim Oanh Nguyen and Thomas Le Ngo (time to mount these on Plywerk!)

We’re big fans of bikes here at FMYI, from the shared orange Kronan “Dutch” bike in our office, to the bicycling commuting that goes on (be sure to use the Commuting Tracker in your FMYI site!), and bike share partnerships we have. I’ve been getting back into riding more on the weekends, and when a friend brought up the Reach the Beach ride, I was hooked. Who wouldn’t want to ride 104 miles from Portland to Pacific City on the Oregon Coast? Well, to be honest, it was a stretch goal I set for myself because I haven’t consistently put in bike training miles since high school. Nothing like putting a challenge out there as motivation for more training!

Another reason I decided to do it was the great cause the ride benefits — the American Lung Association. Funds raised support research into promoting lung health and preventing lung diseases such as asthma, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, lung cancer and tuberculosis; being pro-active in the fight against outdoor air pollutants and environmental health; and striving to reduce tobacco use, especially among young people, that is responsible for over 400,000 deaths in the United States each year. Supporting initiatives that benefit people is part of FMYI’s mission.

And there’s strength in numbers, so I gathered up 15 other cyclists in town who are change agents in their careers and at home to form Reach the Beach’s Team FMYI. After a few training rides around Sauvie Island and to Multnomah Falls, we were ready. Donning our Team FMYI wool cycling jerseys, we waged an epic battle on May 19 with the undulating pavement through Oregon wine country, over rolling hills, alongside beautiful streams, and finally out to the beach.

Although there were a few injuries leading up to the ride and during it, we were unified in our determination to enjoy the experience together, help out with the ride, and raise money for a great cause. The team ended up raising $3,500 and finished in fourth place in the business division. Go team!

Looking forward to our next ride — and hope to see you on the road soon!