Staying in Shape this Summer

By Debbie Herbert



I’m officially over the hill.  The picture of my health kick device proves it.

Yes, I’ve joined the growing ranks of baby boomers who still want to ride a bicycle but find balancing their middle aged fannies on the narrow, stiff seat of a traditional bicycle akin to torture after a mere ten minutes.

After nearly two months of daily rides on a traditional bike, I tried to convince myself that my behind would acclimate to the seat, but that never happened.

My husband and I even attempted mountain biking but the best place in our area was a lake trail studded with tree roots and rocks.  Racing downhill, I became convinced I was only one protruding root away from serious injury.  It didn’t help that halfway through the trail was a commemorative marker where a biker had fallen and died.

Not exactly encouraging.

Then there was the day we kept getting bogged down in mud.  The last straw came when my husband discovered a tick on his leg after a ride.

Humbled, we began riding bikes at a nearby state park, on a flat paved surface, where we ran into a dozen people riding these weird bikes that set low to the ground.  We started riding with them, tried the recumbent bikes and fell in love.  Now our only danger in the great outdoors is avoiding the snakes that creep out of the swampy bayou and slither onto the roads.  Disgusting!  So far, I’ve managed not to run over one.

According to the fitness site,, an hour of bike riding burns 414 calories at the slow rate of 10-12 miles per hour.  At a moderate pace of 12-14 miles an hour, I burn 500 calories.  If I went crazy and managed a fast or racing speed, I could use 643 to over 1,000 calories an hour.

That would burn a lot of cheesecake!

We are happily planning our first long bike ride in Piedmont, Alabama on the Chief Ladiga Trail and the Georgia Silver Comet Trail.  On a traditional bike, I could never accomplish a twenty or fifty mile long trip such as this.


Hope everyone has found some healthy, fun summer activity to enjoy. How do the rest of y’all keep in shape?


 Happy trails to all!



Debbie Herbert writes paranormal romance novels reflecting her belief that love, like magic, casts its own spell of enchantment. She’s always been fascinated by magic, romance and gothic stories.

Married and living in Alabama, she roots for the Crimson Tide football team. Unlike the mermaid characters in Siren’s Secret, she loves cats and has two spoiled feline companions. When not working on her upcoming books, Debbie enjoys recumbent bicycling with her husband as well as spending time with her two adult sons.

A past Maggie finalist in both Young Adult & Paranormal Romance, she’s a member of the Georgia Romance Writers of America. Debbie has a degree in English (Berry College, GA) and a master’s in Library Studies (University of Alabama).


Siren's Secret

In Debbie Herbert’s debut novel, there are two secrets, each one with a deadly consequence…

Shelly Connors’s worlds—on land and in the sea—are turned upside down when an evening swim turns into a nightmare. On a sweltering night deep in the bayou, the mystical mermaid witnesses a horrifying act. With a monstrous killer now hot on her trail, her life and the lives of her kin are in jeopardy.

Terrified of becoming the next victim, Shelly has no choice but to turn to Sheriff Tillman Angier. Tillman has had his intense gray eyes on the sultry honey-haired beauty for a while. The feelings are mutual…and impossible to ignore. But he’s determined to solve the murders, and he knows Shelly’s hiding something. Can she trust him with her deepest secret?