If you want to say I did a stupid thing, please get in line behind me. I've told myself this to distraction over the last 2 days
After maintaining adequate fitness for cycling days (once a week, usually on a Sunday) on my Globe Sport Hybrid (do not say anything bad about my bike, I love him to pieces and he's served me wonderfully) to be 100km - that's 60miles - or longer trips to be satisfying, or shorter but then with as much climbing as possible, I let my riding lapse. There were many personal challenges this year, and for about five months my cycling record was relatively dismal. I was still pretty fit and am very active in my normal daily life, though.
As my personal life righted itself the last month or two, I've been going out cycling again. Bliss! Wonder! I'm back where I belong, on the road! I worked up to a 46km outing, very hilly, and the next week (this last Sunday) I decided to push for that 100km barrier again as I desperately needed that, mentally. I realised it would be a bit of a risk, but there's a route nearby which is flat as a pancake, and I thought if I took it easy it would be fine.
On the day, I turned around at the 45km mark as I was feeling incredibly good and thought I'd fit in a bit of hills on the way back, taking a small detour home. At the point where I'd have to go either the short way home, over the mountains home or the loooong way round home, I still felt on top of the world and made a snap decision to take the long way, which has a few small climbs but isn't a very difficult route and is very pleasant cycling.
Too far into it to turn back, I became AWARE of my upper right tendon, the one that lies just below the hard bony bit of my hip. I'd hurt it before and had to go on anti-inflammatories and stick to the most boring flat cycling in the world for two weeks. It didn't hurt yet, and I did my best to favour that leg, but it was unavoidable: the tendon left me no doubt that it's seriously unhappy about the abuse I put it through by the time I got back home. I'm too ashamed to admit how far I'd cycled.
I went straight to the doctor Monday, am on 600mg 3x a day anti-inflammatories (I think it's something related to Ibuprofen) and have been very careful to take it as easy as possible. Using the car for everything, and paying for parking instead of parking far and walking a km or so to get where I want to be (yes, I'm the world's greatest cheapskate ).
The doctor said, as I expected, tendon overuse injury, surprised me a bit by adding 'possibly even a mild bursitis'. I want to cry my eyes out because I know I now have to be very careful not to go cycling again too soon. But I had just made up my mind last week to start doing triathlons, and was all set to start adding running to my weekly routine in preparation for a small duathlon end January 2010. I'd have just managed to fit the 8-week training schedule in if I started this week. That's out the window now.
I have four questions:
1. Are there any supplements/boosters I can take to help healing over and above the anti-inflammatories? I take Glucosamine Sulphate and a multivitamin every day.
2. How long do I wait before I can get back on the saddle? The dr said I must wait until it has stopped hurting, and then go for about 20km over easy ground, and build it up very slowly from there. He's a great guy and probably right, but he's not a cyclist. I thought I'd ask from people who do a lot of cycling for confirmation, or if you think I should possibly wait even longer, or if perhaps I can just do some swimming even before the pain is completely gone? And will I be okay to then maybe do three slow, easy 20km trips in a week instead of one 100km trip once in the week to start back up, or will that be taking too great a risk? I'm just devastated over losing fitness again when I've just got it back.
3. Prevention: while I realise I'd been a big idiot this week, the fact is this same tendon got hurt before (June last year), when I was at peak fitness, on an easy ride (though I concede it's possible the injury had been building up over weeks and just happened to reach pain point at that time). Is there anything I can do to stop this happening again?
4. I'd stopped for an hour's rest before setting out again, and it's after this that the tendon started becoming sore. It was a cold day, too. Is it possible that was the mistake, rather than overdoing it? I'm not trying to find an out here from the fact that I was really stupid, but I do want to take whatever steps needed to avoid this happening again.
Not being able to even cycle the kids to school is agony. I hate it. Please help if you can with advice that can help me back in the saddle, without the problem recurring, as soon as possible. Thanks for reading this far.