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Joe

Circumnavigating the US by Bike: 26 – Phoenix to Ocotillo

In August 2017 I set out on an open-ended bicycle tour circumnavigating the US. This video blog highlights the twenty-sixth leg of my journey from Phoenix, AZ to Ocotillo, CA.

This video documents my journey into California as I traveled through the desert to the lush farm fields of California. Join me as I pass huge mountains and big cacti. The scenery in Arizona remains incredible as I ride over the Colorado River into California. From there, I ride through California desert and massive sand dunes. I finish up the ride by riding through the hot desert and past blowing sands to the base of the pass. Check out the video for the full experience!

https://youtu.be/IKC7Mg9UHjM

Join the Fitness Crusaders to Follow my Tour

Want more on my tour? Join the FREE Fitness Crusaders FB group for LIVE daily video and pictures. Follow me as I circumnavigate the US on my bicycle. Get the inspiration you need to start your fitness routine. Find the group that will support your battle for fitness!

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Joe

Circumnavigating the US by Bike: 25 – Tucson to Phoenix

In August 2017 I set out on an open-ended bicycle tour circumnavigating the US. This video blog highlights the twenty-fifth leg of my journey from Tucson to Phoenix, AZ.

This section of the ride brought me through some incredible scenery in Tucson traveling completely on bike paths. The cacti you expect in the desert started becoming omnipresent. From there it was a nice ride up the frontage road to the outside of Phoenix. The route passed large mountains and incredible desert fauna. I enjoyed biking up past the lush farm fields and beautifully sculpted gardens outside of Phoenix. In Phoenix, I rode the many bike paths and hiked up the incredible Camelback Mountain. Check out the video for the full experience!

https://youtu.be/yP9anP4ZrqQ

Join the Fitness Crusaders to Follow my Tour

Want more on my tour? Join the FREE Fitness Crusaders FB group for LIVE daily video and pictures. Follow me as I circumnavigate the US on my bicycle. Get the inspiration you need to start your fitness routine. Find the group that will support your battle for fitness!

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Joe

Circumnavigating the US by Bike: 24 – Bisbee to Tucson

In August 2017 I set out on an open-ended bicycle tour circumnavigating the US. This video blog highlights the twenty-fourth leg of my journey from Bisbee to Tucson, AZ.

This section of the ride brought me down from the high mountains of Bisbee the low desert of Tucson. Along the way, I experienced incredible downhills and curving roads. The mountains in the distance were a constant companion to the desert heat. I enjoyed an incredible sunset along the way before Tucson. Tucson brought bike paths and fantastic riding along the river. There wasn’t a moment where I wasn’t on a bike path or in a bike lane. Check out the rest of the video for the full report.

https://youtu.be/GpiphKUuf0s

Join the Fitness Crusaders to Follow my Tour

Want more on my tour? Join the FREE Fitness Crusaders FB group for LIVE daily video and pictures. Follow me as I circumnavigate the US on my bicycle. Get the inspiration you need to start your fitness routine. Find the group that will support your battle for fitness!

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Joe

Circumnavigating the US by Bike: 23 – Hachita to Bisbee

In August 2017 I set out on an open-ended bicycle tour circumnavigating the US. This video blog highlights the twenty-third leg of my journey from Hachita, NM to Bisbee, AZ.

This leg of the journey was an incredible ride through the high desert. I climbed some nice rolling hills and larger climbs for incredible views. The ride to Portal, NM was full of curvy roads and mountains in the distance. Portal was an amazing view of the mountains and untouched wildlife. The road into Bisbee rolled the entire way through open landscapes and desert wildlife. The climb up into Bisbee was rewarded with an amazing town nestled in the mountains. Join along in the video for the full experience!

https://youtu.be/oN0u8HSp0Ug

Join the Fitness Crusaders to Follow my Tour

Want more on my tour? Join the FREE Fitness Crusaders FB group for LIVE daily video and pictures. Follow me as I circumnavigate the US on my bicycle. Get the inspiration you need to start your fitness routine. Find the group that will support your battle for fitness!

Fitness_Crusaders Blog

Joe

How to Enhance Life Through Travel

These past few months have been a whirlwind of activity. I’ve spent time doing things I never imagined. My transient life ended when I spent two months in Houston helping rebuild after the hurricane. I’ve biked over 1000 miles across Texas and New Mexico. My mindset and outlook have been fundamentally changed. I began to enhance my life through travel.

One year ago, I was sitting behind a desk contemplating escape. I had thoughts of what travel by bike would yield, but I never imagined where I would be today. As I write this, I’m lying in a star dome in the New Mexico desert. I’m surrounded by natural buildings, buses, and trailers from people living off the grid. My host is an incredible lady who built everything with her own hands after traveling all over the world. My two friends I’ve just met have biked with me all the way from Austin, Texas. We’ve shared some incredible moments along with some incredible hardship. It was astounding how close we became in a short amount of time.

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When I was sitting in my cubicle a year ago I didn’t understand travel. I took one to two-week jaunts to different locations, but I never felt satisfied. I always wanted something more. At the time, I thought I had a wide knowledge of different culture and ideas. Boy was I wrong.

Vulnerability and Travel

When I set out on my bike I had some plans. One of them was to finish the tour in San Diego towards the end of December. That changed as people and places sucked me in. I enjoyed time with friends (new and old) in locations down the east coast. Days turned into weeks and before I knew it I was arriving in Florida in mid-November. The only rule I had stuck to was keeping the tour open-ended. I never “rushed” out of a location. People sheltered me from bad weather and cold temperatures.

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When I began biking I thought the tour would be all about biking. I imagined the thrill of reaching a destination and absorbing all the beautiful sights along the way. As I rode on, the tour became much more about creating new deep connections. My vulnerability allowed friends and strangers to become vulnerable. My conversations evolved from surface level small talk to deep conversations. I learned so much about other ways of living. I was exposed to different religions, creeds, and living styles while beginning to understand why people formed certain opinions.

The flexibility and vulnerability associated with my trip allowed me to understand myself and others. I began to enhance life through travel.

The Path Unknown

When I set out from Florida in December to cross the country, the tour was already different. My goals had evolved from biking alone to striving to create more connections. It didn’t take long to realize these goals. In Tallahassee, Florida I connected with a couple (Mike and Brooke) traveling across the country on bikes. We formed an instant connection while meeting an incredible amount of people on the way to New Orleans. I learned what it meant to live as a vegan while understanding a simple approach to life. Mike and Brooke taught me that you don’t need much to live simply. You figure it out as you go.

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As I traveled to Texas, I never planned on going to Houston. On a whim, I decided to head there to celebrate New Year’s with friends. Two months later I left Houston. I became engrossed in the community while engaging myself in volunteering. Every hour of my day went to rebuilding houses damaged after Hurricane Harvey. I wanted to give back after so many people had given me so much. I found an incredible community and incredible people striving to make a difference. My goal was to do as much as I could with the skills I had. I made an incredible group of friends I’ll never forget.

The path unknown allowed me to enhance life through travel. I never planned on being in Houston for two months, but the time I spent there was life-changing. I immersed myself in a community that was working to change from the inside. The people I met were far different than anything I had ever seen before. The strife and difficulty were incredibly real. I felt their emotions and pain by being there with them.

The Road Ahead

My time on the road has only improved since Houston. I’ve been able to meet more incredible people while absorbing more points of view. I’ve biked farther and faster than ever while absorbing incredible landscapes. The tour has become a whirlwind of new people and new places. Yet, every place I stop I learn something new.

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This is why I love travel. You can enhance life through travel because travel makes you learn. New situations and people are an everyday occurrence. Most things don’t go to plan. You have to think on your feet while being ready to adapt. Problem-solving is a must as you find yourself in new precarious situations. The people you meet open your eyes to new ways of thinking. You step outside your bubble and immerse yourself in new communities with viewpoints different than your own. Travel forces you to listen and stay open to new views and situations.

How to Get the Benefits of Travel Quickly

Most don’t have time to go on an open-ended bike tour. Luckily, you don’t need to bike across the country to enhance life through travel. Open-ended and vulnerable travel is the best way to expand your thinking and comfort zone. However, local travel can go a long way. Connecting with a new community organization or going to a meeting with an organization you disagree with can go a long way. Try getting outside your comfort zone and use www.meetup.com to find a new group.

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Go on a weekend trip without a set itinerary. Drive in a general direction on a backroad and stop when you see something interesting. You’ll be surprised at the people who will talk to you. Their stories will change the way you think about your own life. Don’t be afraid to start a conversation. People are incredible.

My life has been changed in ways I never imagined from travel. It brings me to tears thinking about all the incredible people I’ve met and all the amazing sights I’ve seen. As I was laying in the desert a week ago in Texas with the sky painted with stars it really hit home. There is nothing like travel. Make yourself vulnerable, lose your plans, and experience the full benefits travel has to offer. You won’t regret a second…

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What have you found to be the benefits of travel? Have you had any life-changing trips? What are your best travel stories? Let me know in the comments.

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