I rode for the first time, again, yesterday. It was amazing. I had hernia surgery in October and have been out of the saddle since September. I have been riding the local green way for about a month trying to regain and retain some leg strength, but was worried if I would ever be able to go full speed again in the woods. I purchased a sweet ride while I was out, and deep in the back of my mind, I was worried it was going to be a bad buy. All of that was erased yesterday. I rode a monstrous 4.5 miles on what can only be described as the "kiddie trail" at my home trail system but, man it sure was good to be back out in the pine straw.
I was unsure of what the day was going to hold, if the mildest climbs around would prove to be too much, or if the handful of rocky and root sections would take a toll on my frame. It would have broken my heart to have to hike a bike out of the woods...I am very glad to announce the big guy held up just fine. I learned after my broken arm last year that slower is better while recovering, and pushing yourself too hard when north of 30 years old is ill advised. So despite my burning desire to go ride before work over the next 2 weeks, I will reserve it for off days, so I can rest properly before and after these sedate rides.
I did make it a point to sit on a bench at about the halfway point, for about 10 minutes to rest even though I was feeling fine (I heard my wifes voice in the back of my head). I found myself playing some video games on my phone. Shortly after my second game of Internet checkers I thought, "WTF am I doing? I've been DYING inside to get out here, and now I'm playing checkers?" So I put devil instrument back in my pocket and lay with my face in the sun. I heard an army of squirrels burying nuts and whatnot's. There was what had to be a deer lumbering around behind me which I never saw, which lead me to think "these woods feel really squatchy".
This was also the biggest ride for the new Adamo peak bike saddle. This thing may be one of the most magical items I've added on my steed. I was on the hunt, post surgery, because my "boys" were were not happy after the surgery while on a traditional saddle. I will write more about this saddle at a later date, but while it looks simple in design, it works for so many complex reasons. You forget your sitting on a bike and staying comfortable is not part of your thought process, because you don't even think of the seat. Its the feeling of sliding your feet into a pair of favorite old sneakers, except your rear end and soft parts get to feel that way.
So it was 4.5 miles in 30 minutes or so. No where near King of the Mountain, or a personal best, but it was in the top 10 of important rides completed at this point for me. The confidence is coming back, the problems that come with hernia surgery are getting resolved and I am excited at the prospect of spring biking season being a few months away.