Wednesday, August 21, 2013


Setbacks are part of living with a chronic disease.  We don't like them but we don't really have a say so in it.  The real key is to not let them get you down...easier said than done sometimes.  Angela recently posted on everyday victories and I think that is an excellent way of keeping us grounded.  Our victories may differ from day to day but thats what makes living with RA so interesting.  That was a joke.  It's hard to explain to someone how it can take everything I have to get out of bed and walk to the living room one day and the next day I can go ride 150 miles.  After living with RA a few years, we learn to listen to our bodies and know when we can push and get away with it and when we need to take it easy.  Still somedays I do get surprised though.  Learn to recognize your victories and use them for self motivation on future rough days.  While you may not be able to relate to me riding a 200 mile adventure ride through a national forest, you can relate to the time you mowed your yard in one day (I have a big yard), went to the movies or for a bike ride with the kids.  You can submit your victories to and UCB will donate $1 for every victory until the $30,000 goal is reached.

I'm excited beyond words right now.  I continue to feel good (for someone with RA anyway) and I have new tires, wheel bearings, chain and sprockets ordered.  I have a long day ride planned for late September and a 2-3 day ride in October.  Plus I have 2 bridge rides that I will work in on my days off soon.  I am looking forward to hunting one bridge down that not only is abandoned, the road is no longer there as well.  I have (hopefully) good coordinates for my gps so the only challenge should be actually picking a good line through the trees.  I may have to ride my KTM for this one though.
 My KLR 650
While looking for an old iron truss bridge in January, I found this old concrete bridge.

I have now put close to 9000 miles on my KLR and while it is far from the perfect bike it is a good fit for what I am riding.  The suspension upgrade this summer is by far the best money I have spent on the bike since owning it.  I bought my KLR used with 4400 miles on it for $3600 and have put another $1005 into it, not counting consumables such as tires, oil and filters.  I have had it to 90 on asphalt, 83 on dirt roads as well as taking it for a mild beating off road.  You can't find a cheaper, more capable adventure bike than the KLR.  The downside is that it does lack brutal, rip your arms out of their socket horsepower, is a bit heavy and being a 650 single ... it's a 430 pound vibrator.  I am easily distracted by KTM and BMW's but the bottom line is I am riding everything they ride for a lot cheaper.

Remember to get your questions to me for Angela's guest post (see my previous post) coming up.


Wren said...

You're so right about "everyday victories," Terry. Heh--day before yesterday, chopping vegetables and making a salad was a victory for me! It seems so mundane, but I felt good about it.

I do so admire your determination, stamina and good cheer as you work hard and play hard in spite of the daily pain and stiffness (not to mention sometimes soul-bending fatigue)of RA. Here's wishing you a fabulous time during your next ride--and easier, less painful days ahead.

Anonymous said...

Definitely something to be said for the Briggs & Stratton of motorcycles.
Just watching the rain in the back yard right now after being able to actually go to work today is a victory for me.
Keep smiling.
Phil - Syr

Terry said...

Wren, I can't take credit here, I got this from Angela. While it may seem simple, these small victories can keep us charged mentally to continue facing our daily struggles.

Phil, I like that ... the Briggs & Stratton of motorcycles. lol We had a ton of rain early this month but it is back to hot and dry now. I'm ready for some good cool fall weather to go riding.

Anonymous said...

I don't live with a chronic disease but I like the victories thing. I can see how it would be helpful. Glad you're feeling good and hope it holds out for you to be able to get some rides in. I do ride and know how much better I feel during and after a good ride. The KTM 990 is a sweet bike, I can see being distracted by one.

btw, nice garage!


Terry said...

Mark, I feel so alive and free when riding. There's nothing like a good ride to clear my mind of anything bothering me. My KLR is adequate but I still would love to have a bigger bike. The downside is that somedays riding with my RA, the KLR can even be a handful so the extra weight of the larger bikes would be detrimental on those days.

Anonymous said...

I was reading a comparison to a KTM and a few other modern dual sports. The KLR came out as old, comfortable, affordable, underpowered and as reliable as a briggs & stratton. The newer bikes had some serious plus's, but the old Timex just kept on ticking.

mary said...

So glad to see you're still feeling well. Get those rides in while you can!! Hope you have a lovely long fall.

I've had a bit of a setback. Seems that I have degenerative disc disease and a plethora of other spinal problems that are effecting my muscle strength. No wonder my back hurt so bad. Once again, I will adjust to a new normal. Luckily, I can still bike. Slower for sure but still riding. Working with a massage therapist for the last 6 months has helped.

Enjoy your planned rides.

Terry said...

Phil, I have been riding a KTM 950 and a BMW 1200 this spring and summer off and on. I love them both but they are sooo expensive! I am going to stay with my briggs & stratton for now and just drool a little bit more. If I do keep my KLR I see a 705 kit coming soon. lol

Hey Mary, So sorry to hear about your setback. Hang tough girl, it's good to hear that you can still ride at least.

I am so ready for some cooler temps and riding this fall. I'll go solo if I have to!