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Monoborracho 06-27-06 03:24 PM

My Last Ride For A While
I’m off for one last ride this afternoon. At least the last ride for a while. It is a quite balmy low 90’s day here with low humidity…mild for a Texas summer. Thanks are in order to my friends here in this forum because you have kept me challenged and interested in pushing ahead for the last year.

You may recall from one of my threads that I have had some shoulder pain. That is an understatement. Last November I was at Copper Canyon SP in N.Texas on my mountain bike when I managed to get the front wheel turned sideways and, Newton’s laws being what they are, I kept going forward, bike and all still clipped to my feet. I didn’t go off the 30’ drop but I did have a sharp pain in the shoulder when I stopped sliding. The pain got worse and worse. Cortisone injections did the trick for a few months, but then wore off. An MRI and X-rays revealed a torn ligament within the rotator cuff. There is also a good deal of loose material and rough bone (“Ah, you played baseball did you?” said the orthopedic surgeon.) in the shoulder. Years of baseball, and then 15 years of Little League with four boys didn’t help, but the bike flip did me in.

It is ironic that I had planned to leave tomorrow for a week on the Katy Trail and my wife was providing the SAG wagon. Last week we cancelled all reservations. So, instead of starting my ride across Missouri I’ll be having surgery on my shoulder. Bummer.

It’s been good year for me, and I am ahead of my goals, but this is a set back. Last year I rode probably 800 miles. Most of it was 5 to 10 mile treks around town, some rail trail riding, and a couple of very short tours to the state park. My goals for this year were three tours, and at least 2400 miles. As of yesterday, I had over 1400 miles for the year with only one short tour included in that total, for only 120 miles. About 900 miles have been on my Schwinn hybrid-touring bike, nearly all at average speed of less than 12 mph. Probably 200 miles have been on the mountain bike on dirt roads and trails.

Having joined Stapfam on the dark side, I now have about 300 miles on my three week old Fuji flat bar road bike, which has been a renewed riding experience. The road bike has added a whole new dimension. Average speed for a 30 mile in this hilly country are nearing 15 mph for me. It is a treat to pedal for miles at 20+ mph when I have some flat ground, and to hit the high teens going into the wind. I plan to go run the the Fuji for 40 or 50 miles before dark. But I can't get out of the saddle because it hurts too much.

Though I’ve only lost 5 pounds this year, my resting heart rate has dropped over 10 bpm, I sleep better than I have in years, and have muscle patterns in my legs I haven’t seen since I was in the service. I also have these funny “tan dots” on the back of my hands.

There are several goals I still hope to meet.. I was hoping to ride my first century this summer before the HHH in Wichita Falls. A lot of my riding has consisted of getting in a couple of 15 to 20+ rides during the week, particularly as the weather got warmer, and then doing 40 to 60 miles on Saturday morning, so I should be able to do the century all right. I was also planning the Katy trail, plus one unsupported tour across most of Texas. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get back on the bike before long.

I’m not sure how long I’ll be off but hopefully within a few weeks I’ll be back riding. Things like this, and how slow we heal, remind me that I’m not 18 anymore. Maybe I can ride the hybrid without putting weight on my arms if I used a set of those “ape hanger” handlebars with a wide seat.

I’ll catch up with you guys in a few days.

cruzMOKS 06-27-06 03:36 PM

I wish you the best and hope to hear that you are riding soon.

LynnH 06-27-06 03:47 PM

Wishing you well! I love stories like this, not the part where you hurt, but the steady relentless growth of your bike riding, it spurs me on! You will be back soon!

sentinel4675 06-27-06 03:49 PM

Good luck. Rotator cuff surgery is a b*tch! I've got a friend who had it done last summer and is still having pain.

Big Paulie 06-27-06 03:49 PM

This is really good news, because you'll finally get your shoulder fixed, and when you come back, you'll be in great shape!

old99 06-27-06 04:28 PM

Hey (the universal Texas greeting)--you know that we're all pulling for you and hope for the best. I know that I appreciate your posts; your experiences as well as the little flashes of memory that you provide. I haven't thought of a Mrs. Bairds fried pie in at least 40 years! And I grew up a couple of blocks of the Mrs. Baird's plant in Houston (right across the street from Shipley donuts) too. We'll miss you.

You know, you could use the off-time to go check out a recumbent. No weight on the arms (USS) and a really wide seat.

Take care!

SemperFi 06-27-06 04:35 PM

My best wishes for a full and speedy recovery.

turtleguy54 06-27-06 05:03 PM

Best wishes for a succesful repair and recovery. We expect you to monitor these threads and keep them lively during your recuperation.

Wildwood 06-27-06 05:04 PM

Good luck and best wishes for a speedy recovery.
Maybe I'll join you for a Katy ride in the future, I'm a short distance to the eastern end in St. Charles county, MO.

Blackberry 06-27-06 05:13 PM

Good luck, big guy. I met a 55-year-old woman on my Indiana Ride who had similar surgery a number of months back and was now riding her age and more every day for a week pain-free. Maybe we can both ride for pie together sometime soon.

Digital Gee 06-27-06 05:21 PM

Best o' luck for a speedy recovery, and hope you're back on your bike REAL soon! Keep posting, however. Not riding is not an excuse for not posting! :)

BubbaDog 06-27-06 05:45 PM

Good luck, and don't push too hard to get back on the bike right away. You don't want to take a tumble on a recently operated-on shoulder, that would be a pain that would linger. Let me know your plans for your Texas tour, I'm in Houston and was thinking of riding the Texas route on the Adventure Cycling maps. Company can be good....


AshevilleFusion 06-27-06 05:58 PM


Originally Posted by old99
You know, you could use the off-time to go check out a recumbent. No weight on the arms (USS) and a really wide seat.

Another option could be one of the "Crank Forward" bikes such as the RANS Fusion which also are very easy on the arms...

- Dave, enjoying the comfort of his Fusion at 58

p8rider 06-27-06 06:57 PM

Best wishes for a speedy complete recovery!
In a short while I look to see you back at it and posting your accomplishments!

jppe 06-27-06 07:19 PM

Mono-I'm really sorry to hear that news and that is a tough one but it's just a temporary setback. Hey, you'll enjoy the riding even more and should be even more comfortable when this thing has been repaired.

I know it doesn't make you feel any better but my brother broke hip and was back riding in a few months. Get that thing fixed so you don't have any long term effects.

Let us know how the surgery goes.

DnvrFox 06-27-06 08:10 PM

Best of luck with your surgery. Take your time getting back in the "groove" to be sure everything is healed properly.

Isn't it great that modern technology allows something like this to be fixed!

big john 06-27-06 09:03 PM

Good luck to you on this surgery. I had a shoulder surgery years ago and I'm very happy with the result. It works better than the other one and the pain has stopped.

dauphin 06-27-06 09:43 PM

I think I might be facing the same thing before long. I wish you well and just remember that bike will be there waiting for you when you are able again!

Scooper 06-27-06 10:19 PM

Good luck with the surgery, and best wishes for a speedy recovery.

I went through the same surgery on my right rotator cuff ten years ago. Mine was totally severed in an accident, not just torn. They installed four titanium "micro-anchors" for the repair.

I'd like to offer a suggestion - take your post operation physical therapy exercises very seriously. Also, if the shoulder that's torn is the same side as your dominant hand, get ready to lose some weight while your arm is immobilized. It's really hard to eat with your left hand if you're right-handed. :D

Get well soon and get back on your bike!

Grampy™ 06-28-06 04:43 AM

Don't give up on the goals..... You only have about a thousand miles left and you'll be able to ride in Sept. and October if not sooner...... Get well quick! :D

sandlapper 06-28-06 06:19 AM

Shoulder Surgery
I had a acccident back in 1998 in which I broke my shoulder in three places. Before that accident I rode my bike about 20 to 30 miles almost everyday. I had to quit riding my bike after this because the pain.
After 5 years of complaining about how bad my shoulder hurt my doctor did a MRI and discovered that had a torn roto cuff and a lot of infection in my shoulder. I had surgery to repair my shoulder and five months after I had the surgery I went back to bicycling and have not look back. In the first 18 months after surgery I rode about 9000 miles in about 15 states. I do not have anymore shoulder pain.

If you are as fortunate as I was you should be back riding again very soon and problably will be a much better cyclist. It sure makes a lot of difference not having shoulder pain.

The bad news is that I had another accident last December and fracture my leg tibai plateau in forty places. I now have 9 screws and a plate in my left leg just below the knee. I had ambitious plans for touring this year but had to cancel touring all together. At first I was told it may be more than a year or maybe two years before I would be able to ride a bike again. Thank goodness I was able to start back riding after 5 months but I am not nearly as good as I was before the accident. I suppose it will take a long time to recover fully and be able to start serious touring again. Anyway I am thankful that I can at least ride my bike some.


FarHorizon 06-28-06 06:22 AM

You & your family'll be in my prayers, Mono. Get well soon!

capejohn 06-28-06 08:15 AM

Recovery will seem to last forever. But when you finally get back on your bike you will realize that it wasn't all that bad. Remember how we thought we would never get out of high skool. It was a long long time ago. (this forum is a giveaway).

Speedy recovery. At least you can watch biking on the tele for a month.

edp773 06-28-06 09:02 AM

Enjoy the ride because you will remember this one for some time.

Good luck to the surgeon performing the operation (so that he may do a good job) and to a good recovery for you!

Carusoswi 06-28-06 03:35 PM

Best wishes for a good outcome and speedy recovery.

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