I'm going to openly admit that I've done too much the past few weeks and it's taken a slight toll on my "recently operated on" back. I arrived home from hiking in Arizona and camping in Ohiopyle feeling great and anxious to get on my bike. Thing is...I have a problem with moderation...I always have. I guess, fortunately for me, my drug of choice is the outdoors...or, more specifically, my mountain bike. Unfortunately, like any drug that you take too much of...especially when you shouldn't...the outcome isn't always positive.
|Celebrating the first day of summer and "National Selfie Day" with Matt Linnane & Tim Sindlinger with a ride in Michaux -- June 21, 2016|
|Taking a break in Michaux (Tim Sindlinger, Dave Raymond, Matt Linnane) -- June 21, 2016|
|Timmy gliding over a newly created ramp on one of our favorite trails in Michaux State Forest -- June 21, 2016|
|Matt taking a post ride shower from the back of his truck -- June 21, 2016|
|To our horror, there was no ice cream at Mountain Creek Campground until 1 PM today -- June 21, 2016|
The first official day of summer (also National Selfie Day) fell on a Tuesday this year. As in previous summers, Tim and I have again designated Tuesday mornings as our "ride in Michaux" time. Each week I invite as many people as I can...but at least Tim and I know that we will have some time to ride together. Matt joined us for our first "Tuesday ride" of the summer. We rode all of our standard trails and mixed things up a little by riding a few of them in the opposite direction before wrapping things up and heading to Mountain Creek Campground for our post ride ice cream. My heart almost stopped when I saw the sign on the door of the camp store: NO ICE CREAM. Thank goodness it was just for one day as the freezer was being defrosted. On this particular day, all trails led to coffee instead.
|Hiking Tumbling Run with Alex -- June 22, 2016|
|This guy slithered out of our way as we made our way up Tumbling Run -- June 22, 2016|
|Alex took this super cool photo of me at the top of Tumbling Run. Check out this photo sphere to see my view -- June 22, 2016|
I had promised my son, Alex, that the next day, Wednesday, I would take him hiking in Michaux. I think I realized that morning, after I completed a road ride through Manchester, Mount Wolf, and York Haven, that I wasn't in any shape to go hiking. Honestly, I shouldn't have even done the road ride. I woke up sore from mountain biking with Tim & Matt the day before and should have planned to spend the day on the couch with an ice pack...not on my road bike...and definitely not on a hike up a mountain in Michaux! Moderation...I'm not good at it. Even when I know better...even when I know that I probably shouldn't be doing it...I push myself to keep going. I'm just not good at turning that switch off in my head. Halfway up Tumbling Run (which is one of the most beautiful hikes that you can do in Michaux) I began to feel some of the pain I felt prior to my surgery. It felt great to get to the top, rest a little, and take in the view. A day off of the bike...and off of the trails...is what I had in mind for Thursday.
|Mark and I paused to take a break at the intersection of Rattling and Dry Run Trails -- June 24, 2016|
Thursday came and went without as much rest as I had intended...or needed. On Friday morning Mark picked me up for a ride that we had scheduled earlier in the week. We planned explore some trails north of Swatara State Park. Because of circumstances beyond our control we ended up in Rattling Creek later that morning. I had not been to Rattling Creek since 2010 and the thought of riding there got me pretty excited. We spend the remainder of the morning navigating fourteen miles of unforgiving, rocky, technical trail. I had a a blast...I had a great time...and I was spent. For the first time since my back surgery I really knew that I had pushed myself too hard. My "drug" had ceased being good medicine.
|Three straight days of rest made for a fun and enjoyable ride in Michaux with Glenn & Tim -- June 28, 2016|
|Glenn's back...and he hasn't missed a beat -- June 28, 2016|
|Thumbs up for Glenn on his first Michaux ride in over five years -- June 28, 2016|
Twice a week. That's the bargain I struck with myself. Tuesdays with Tim (and whoever else can join us) and then a ride on Thursday or Friday. That's what I need to hold myself to for the time being. After my ride at Rattling Creek with Mark on Friday I spent three complete days resting my back. I had extra motivation for today's Tuesday ride. Today, Glenn Medice joined Timmy and I! This is one of the coolest (and most unexpected) consequences this blog. Glenn, and a few of the other guys that rode with us years ago, are back in the game. The band is slowly coming back together....and the feeling is beyond description. At one point today, I was leading the three of us down the trail and I could hear Tim and Glenn just talking away in the background. The smile on my face went from ear to ear. This is the best medicine...being with friends and enjoying our time together. I can't do that with a sore back. If this means cutting back and riding just a little bit less (at least for the time being)...then so be it.
Life is a journey...not a destination.
David A. Raymond -- June 28, 2016
|The best Medice(ine)...some post ride ice cream at Mountain Creek Campground. Thanks for buying, Glenn! -- June 28, 2016|