Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Riding a bike is fun

I've been getting really nervous about racing a SS for 12 hours next weekend...being that I have not done much SS'ing to speak of...until very recently. I've been trying to get out on the Kona Unit 2-9 at least once a week...for the last couple weeks. This weekend I got 10 hours on it..but it was hard. Saturday was a long 5.5 hour ride in Helen, and Sunday was a 4.5 hour ride at Dauset trails in Jackson, GA. I had 32x22 gearing on it for Helen and forgot to change it out on Sunday. The easy gearing actually felt good on the climbs at Dauset because my legs were pretty tired, but it was way too easy for all the flat stuff there. About 4 hours into the ride I was suffering from fatigue, lack of calories, and the heat. We were on one of the rocky trails alongside the creek and I knew there was a steep pitch coming up so I started pedaling like mad determined to make it to the top (I have never made it on my SS), all of a sudden I'm about a foot from the top and my rear wheel isn't moving..I picked the line over the big rock in the middle..oops..so I stall, reach for the little sapling at the top, but I'm just out of reach. The next thing I know, I'm falling backwards, on the low side, about 8 feet from the ground..not sure what I'm going to hit with what since I can't see behind me. I land on my right hand..on a rock. OUCH. I immediately feel like I broke my hand. Everything else landed in a soft spot. I didn't want to be a baby so I got back on and kept riding. About 30 min. later I couldn't take the pain, I couldn't even hold the bar with my right hand. Luckily there was a bailout and I limped back to the car via gravel road.

I did some research on hand fractures, and I read that usually a cast is required for 3 months, minimum. That sent me into a panic...what would I do if I couldn't ride my bike for 3 months?! That thought consumed my mind for the next several hours...racing is over for the year, I would have to take up running again..maybe I'll sign up for an off-road ironman in November? I could work on my leg strength and pedal stroke...hmm. Orienteering? Maybe this will get me back into Adventure Racing. I could spend more time planning minute wedding details. Lay by the pool and even out my cycling tan. None of this sounds as fun as riding a bike. Everytime I thought of missing a ride or race that I've been looking forward to this year, I was near tears. It's crazy how riding a bike can be so important in staying happy, healthy, and sane. Anyway, my 2pm doctors appointment revealed that my hand is, in fact, NOT broken. I couldn't believe it...then how could it hurt so bad? It's just a really deep bone bruise, that will take a few weeks to heal. I am in a wrist brace now, hoping the pain lessens enough for me to race the Cowbell Challenge this weekend. Oh well, I'm just so excited that I CAN RIDE! (well, sooner than later, anyway).


Blogger Danielle said...

I'm so glad that you are OK. I fractured my wrist my first summer riding and it sucked...plain and simple.

Good luck this weekend if you do race, and take care of your hand. I had my first experience riding an endurance race on a SS and it was an experience that I won't forget soon:-)

Have fun and ride safe!

11:42 AM  
Blogger cathi said...

girl, i know all about the deep bone bruises - they suck! your hand should be easier to heal than my foot - i couldn't exactly stop the impact on my heel. good luck!

7:04 AM  
Blogger mp3 said...

I know exactly what you were feeling right after you crashed. It's great that it didn't mess up your season.

9:33 AM  
Blogger namrita o'dea said...

thanks guys. it's still sore and i have not ridden in two days. i'm still trying to be optimistic.. but i'll make the call on friday. at least i can still go to nat's in WI. phew! danielle- are you going SS at nat's now? ;)

12:29 PM  
Blogger Arleigh said...

Wow - I'm super glad you are ok. I hope to see you out there this weekend!

7:06 PM  
Blogger Danielle said...

I don't know. When I was racing the Lumberjack I was thinking that I would NEVER race an endurance race on a SS again. Now I can't remember why that I was....

The 9 mile course would be the only 24 hour race that I would EVER do on a SS, because it's basically all flat. Last year a bunch of racers were hauling out there on SS 29ers.

What I do know for sure is that this time we are drinking beer after the race :-)

6:14 PM  

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