Tuesday, May 4, 2010


My work week last week was both physically and mentally exhausting.  I had both ups and downs last week, the ups involved catching a mistake that another crew had made setting a job up (and after being approved by 2 supervisors), fortunately we only ran 4 rolls into a 25 roll run when I caught the error.  Each printed roll (approx 15,000 linear feet) is valued at $10,000 after being printed and coated.  My downs centered around working long hours with RA.  By the last half of the last day, my OA in my right knee was kicking my butt.  My knee was swollen and I could barely walk.  I limped home, applied my Voltaren Gel, grabbed a quick bite and went to bed.

I woke up Monday, my first day off this week, and after walking out to the shop, realized my knee was not hurting at all.  I had told Randall that I hurt too bad to ride this week, so it was too late to catch him ... he was already gone.  I loaded my bike and gear up and headed out for a leisurely, solo,  35-40 mile ride.  Riding is my therapy.  No bosses around, no cell phone, just you and your bike out in the woods, the dirt roads, wherever you decide to ride.  I rode across Poteau Mountain and when I reached Bates, I turned and rode a short stretch of asphalt for a different look to get where I had in mind.  I hit 6 miles of some prime single track trail and found myself back out to a dirt road, more trail, asphalt, trail, then more dirt road.  I started back toward the truck and looked down at my odometer.  81 miles!  I was still 30 minutes from the truck, and had one more short single track trail to hit.  Perhaps ill advised (I know better than to listen to myself ... not the first time I have got myself in trouble, won't be the last either), but I rode on.  I dropped off of the road onto a fast little section, turn the bike left while brake sliding and light the throttle up on the 525.  Not a rock on this trail and it is fast, yet tight.  I navigate the trail, weaving in and out of trees, with a big smile on my face.  Almost at race speeds everything was going fine, then the front end washed out with no warning.  BAM!  The ground wasn't near as hard as you'd think for not having hardly any rain this spring.  After picking myself and my bike up, I jumped back on, fired it up and rode out.  The last 150 feet of this trail is awesome, it gets tight, has a rock ledge you cross, then about 40 feet after riding across the ledge, you hit a 20 foot tall bank that twists to the left and has a tree limb at the top that you have to ride over.  Not too hard, but not a beginner trail either.  I made that part just fine.  In fact, I was disgusted with myself for crashing in an easy section, so I rode back down the road and rode the trail out again, this time without crashing.  Didn't want to load up with a crash being the last thing I did for the day.  Went out to ride 35 miles, loaded up with 97 and felt great.

I also made a new friend Monday night.  His name is Guilty and well, ... it fits him.  This dog is so spastic!  He is one of my daughters friends dog and we went down to her apartment, knocked on the door and when Kay opened the door out charges Guilty.  He doesn't stop, he heads straight for the stairway.  He flies down them, runs through the parking lot and straight into someone else's apartment that had left their door temporarily open.  He was a live wire, but is so lovable when you can get his attention.  Oh well, at least I don't have to keep up with Guilty!


Anonymous said...

Terry, how COOL that you felt good enough, after a long, bad week, to get out on your bike and GO -- and alone, yet! It sounds like you had a beautiful ride, too, except for the crash. That you got back on and re-rode that trail so you wouldn't have to end the excursion with a crash says an awful lot about your tenaciousness. AND you went about 60 miles further than you'd planned. Wow. Just WOW.

What I want to know is: How did you NOT get injured in the crash, and ... how do you feel now, post crash?

You continue to be an inspiration. Thanks for sharing your adventures!

tharr said...

Hey Wren, yeah ... crashing sucks!! lol

It all happened so quickly, the front end washed out (pushed out from underneath me in a turn) and I separated from the bike. I went down pretty hard, but rolled and was up to my feet immediately. I actually feel great today, drove up to my parents (80 miles north of us) and helped my dad get started on a new project, then went and shot an iron bridge for my other blog. My RA (and OA as well) is feeling better than before I went riding.

While I don't recommend crashing at speed to help with your RA pain, it seems to have worked for me.

tharr said...

Wren, by the way, I always wear a DOT/Snell approved helmet, padded riding gloves, riding pants with knee and hip pads, jersey with elbow pads, motocross boots and a chest protector.

Living It, Loving It said...

It sounds like you had fun and a great end to a crazy work week. The crashes won’t kill you, the RA will so the crashes are just icing on the cake – I am kidding. Screw RA – enjoy life and this awesome weather. Guilty is adorable and what a name!

tharr said...

Lana, Guilty was great! And the name is so appropriate for him. Lisa is going out of town for the summer and my daughter was telling me that she is going to keep him for her. My daughter will definitely have her hands full. lol