Lincoln County News | Newcastle, ME
Tuesday, May 3, 2016 Serving Maine and Lincoln County for over a century. Volume 141 Issue 17


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5/22/2013 2:00:00 PM
Two Students Train for Trek Across Maine
Two Great Salt Bay School eighth-graders work out at the CLC YMCA early Friday morning to get in shape for the 180-mile Trek Across Maine, to raise funds for the American Lung Association.
Two Great Salt Bay School eighth-graders work out at the CLC YMCA early Friday morning to get in shape for the 180-mile Trek Across Maine, to raise funds for the American Lung Association.
By Paula Roberts

Great Salt Bay School eighth-graders Ben Milliken, 13 of Newcastle, and Theo Seidel, 14 of Damariscotta, are waking up early to get in shape for the 2013 Trek Across Maine. While most of their classmates are still sleeping, Milliken and Seidel, are taking a spinning class at the CLC YMCA two hours before school starts to get ready for the 180 mile bicycle ride.

After school and on weekends, they, along with Seidel's dad Ed Seidel are logging the miles on their bikes to get their bodies in shape for 60 mile a day, three day ride to be held on Father's Day weekend, June 14 to 16.

Both boys had a grandparent die of lung disease, Ben's grandmother, and Theo's great grandfather. They are taking part in the event to help raise money for the American Lung Association. Their goal is to raise $400 each. They are soliciting pledges on their Facebook pages, and on the Trek Across Maine page. Click on pledge, then type in their name to make an online pledge.

Over 2000 riders from across the country are expected to take part in the American Lung Association of the Northeast's Trek Across Maine. The event is the largest fundraiser for the non-profit organization. The event raised $1.8 million in 2012, and the goal is to raise $2 million this year.

The Trek Across Maine is the third for Ed Seidel, and the first for the two boys.

Milliken and Seidel started training for the event in the middle of May. "I love to bike naturally, and I love to go mountain biking," Milliken said.

Both boys are riding their bikes to school, a distance of eight miles for Milliken and two miles for Seidel. Their longest training run so far has been 30 miles. Their weekend rides take them to Round Pond, Damariscotta Mills and Jefferson, where there are convenient swimming holes along the route in case of hot weather.

Milliken says he enjoys biking to get closer to wildlife, as they are not spooked by the near silence of a bike approaching.

The Trek starts at Sunday River Ski Resort and ends in Belfast. Cyclist will spend the first night at the University of Maine Farmington and the second night at Colby College in Waterville.

"The trek is really well set up and well organized with different rest stops, music playing and all kinds of healthy food. There are massages every night. There is gala outdoor dining at night with life music. It is really a fun event," Ed Seidel said.

The younger Seidel estimates it will take them about six hours to peddle the 60 miles every day. "I can ride 15 miles in an hour spinning, and on the road 10 miles an hour. It is split up in 20 mile intervals," Theo Seidel said.

"We start biking at eight and with a relaxed riding day we'll finish up around two," Ed Seidel added.

"I hope it doesn't rain," Milliken said.

"The Trek carries all your gear, you only have to carry a water bottle and small pack," Theo said. When asked if they had practiced fixing flat tires, Ed Seidel responded, I'll have to show them how to repair tires."

The Trek is not a race, it is an adventure of endurance and will for a good cause. More than 34 million Americans are living with lung disease, and it is the third leading cause of death in the United States. The proceeds from the race go to research for lung disease cures.

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