Friday, July 27, 2007

Cut my ride short

Date: July 26
Mileage: 99.4
July mileage: 792.9
Temperature upon departure: 54
Inches of rain today: 0.01"

I'm feeling a little bummed right now. It's the kind of creeping guilt I usually feel when I intend to get up and do something active first thing in the morning, but instead muddle around for several hours with back issues of the New Yorker and handfuls of Honey Nut Cheerios. It's the kind of remorse I feel when I realize I just watched an entire sunset from the narrow screen of a digital camera viewfinder. It curls the edges of my memory until the only image I see are the bold-type words, "Could Have." It's regret. Not the way I usually feel after bashing out nearly 100 miles.

I had big plans today. Twelve hours of big plans, and lasted through about half that. The regret comes from the fact that I had everything in line. I was feeling strong, and eating well, and finding plenty of water despite having only one water bottle - meaning I wasn't wearing a pack, which meant I wasn't having shoulder issues, which meant I shouldn't have had any excuse not to hit every dead end in Juneau. Except ... except for those pangs. I knew them well once, but then I mastered them. I mastered them and then I ignored them. But as the miles wore on, they began to slice deeper. I was rounding an arbitrary point near mile 80 when I finally decided that there was no longer reason to ignore. There is sometimes much to be gained by being stubborn, but rarely anything to gain by being stupid.

So I am back to second-guessing my knee again. It makes sense that the inflammation would creep back. My saddle time has skyrocketed. I am basically reliving January. I was never under the delusion that I was a healed person, but I did believe I was finally in a position to ride it out. And I probably am in a good position to ride it out ... under a more conservative set of limitations. But that's what has me bummed out right now ... not the idea of longterm or possibly permanent injury, but the reality of limitations.

I did lots of icing tonight, and Aleve, and actually feel quite healthy right now. The rest of my fitness is falling together pretty well, but I can't really ignore the return of angry knee. It was very minor today compared to past bouts, but the fact that it's the first in a while has me suddenly rethinking, well, everything. Not a real fun place to be.

A need a day or so of rest and a couple of good rides before I do anything drastic. There may just be an element of having had a bad day rather than a full-on regression. Still, I don't want to go back. To injury, or to moderation.