Saturday, December 01, 2007

On the (Slow) Road to Recovery

I'm baaaaaaaaaack.

Well, sort of.

Let's put it this way - by the time I take delivery of the Heliotrope Wonder, I will be ready to ride it. I may not be ready to ride it more than 30 miles, and those would have to be flat, but at least I won't be forced to sit and stare at it with unrequited longing.

Anyway, today I went out for my first REAL bike ride in 5 weeks. I had done 30 minutes on a stationary bike on Thursday with no ill effect, and so figured I was ready to try something short and flat. I considered going out to Hillsboro for the Velo ride, but the forecast was for snow above 500 feet and I didn't feel like driving my car over the SW hills with all the Portland numbskulls who don't know how to drive in snow. Yes, my years of living in Illinois and Vermont DO make me feel a tad bit superior in that arena, thank you very much . . . .

Plus, I know myself too well - if I rode with a group I would kill myself to keep up, even if my leg were screaming at me to stop. So I decided to take a solo ride on the flattest course I know, the
Springwater Corridor, a local Rails to Trails project. My goal was to go to Gresham and then turn around and come back, but I stopped at Paesano Park, or whatever it's called (where the Barlow Century starts) because it was starting to snow and I was getting a headache from bouncing on the chipseal (my favorite part of the Springwater is when it crosses the city line into Gresham and the pavement turns to nice, smooth asphalt . . .). On the way home, the snow started falling fairly heavily, but the ground was far too warm for it to stick. It didn't snow for long, but it sure was pretty while it did - nice, big fluffy flakes.

I decided not to go all the way home on the trail - out and back rides are SO boring - and so turned off about halfway back and took city streets the rest of the way home - it snowed again briefly, but there was very little traffic, so I was not worried. What WAS worrying me was that my hands had suddenly gone completely stiff and numb. I have Raynaud's and cold weather does a number on the circulation to my extremities, and I have yet to find the perfect glove - I had on my warmest, Descente Wombats, but they were not doing the trick. Braking and shifting suddenly became a much more difficult proposition . . .and there was one pretty steep downhill on the way back. Yes, I managed to pick a route with no climbing, yet still got to go downhill fast - my kind of ride!

Checked my stats when I got home - I was out for just under 2 hours and rode 27 miles. Kind of slow, but I expected that - the chipseal certainly didn't help my pace. My leg felt okay. I made sure to stretch well once I got back, and it still feels okay - the torn calf muscle is sore, but not extremely so, and the hamstring seems fine. Of course, the pain in my hands when the blood finally started flowing back into my fingers may have masked any pain in the leg!

1 comment:

beth h said...

A slow day for you is a fairly fast one for me. Bravo on the recovery! Feel better quick!