The good news…
I have NOT not been on the bike due to wimpiness regarding weather, time, etc. And I have NOT been eating my way through bags of chips (crisps). fried food, or any of my other demons.
The bad news…
The reason I have not been writing pithy posts and posting Steve-esque photos of all my January rides is because – for the first time in my 40+ years – I have injured my back.
According to the MRI, I have no less than four discs bulging in various stages of… bulgyness. Now, most dudes my age have a bulged disc or two, especially if you’re carrying too many pounds. But they are usually “minimal” bulge. Not the case here.
I won’t bore you all with the sordid tale of how/why except to say that both an experienced physical therapist AND two different doctors all agreed that — If I WEIGHED LESS and had better core strength this likely would not have happened.
My last ride was 10 days ago. I was setting a PR on TRFKATP when I felt a twinge in my left foot… then my left hip… then I stopped at an intersection, waited for it to clear and as I clipped in again and started to pedal, I was greeted with pain the likes I have only experienced once before in my life — when I broke my elbow.
The pain can only be described as “Someone taking a thermal lance and driving it into my butt, down my leg and through my foot, all while I chew razor blades as Phil Liggett pokes my face with an EPO needle.“
It shot through me so fast and hard that I was forced to abandon the bike, call my wife and have her pick me up in the SHAME wagon.
I have started rehab and if things go well I can get back on the bike soon, albeit I have been told in no uncertain terms that I cannot attempt any massive climbs or go for any Strava segment KOM’s.
I need to ride on the hoods or tops, keeping my spine as straight as possible. But by this week’s end, I should be cleared to remount the Goat. (side note: I may make those first post-bulge rides in Cycling Mecca. Stay tuned)
Watching cycling’s return to television this week with the Tour Down Under should inspire me. Until then, it’s core strength exercise after core strength exercise and eating not just better, but LESS.
Every pound overweight I am is unnecessary pressure put on my poor spine.
I just thank God that nothing has herniated. The searing pain ride was my body’s version of RED ALERT! RED ALERT! DANGER WILL ROBINSON!
Ride your bike
Work your core
Fair winds and following seas, Willy