I imagine you were surprised, expecting tales of summer riding and fun and given that three had been quite a build up through the Spring.
Followed by this:
I’d clipped a curb on the way home from work, and crashed off, bruising and cutting one knee, half crushing my wedding ring, and, at best guess, trying to put my shoulder through a metal bollard.
No summer rides in the sunshine, no holiday to the South of France to ride in more sunshine. All plans went on hold in favour of long days on the sofa watching Netflix. My shoulder muscles withered as I waited the bones to heal. My mood darkened as doctors told me 3-6 months before I could even ride to work again. I couldn’t bring myself to watch mountain bike videos, but managed to follow the Tour de France live on the telly. I walked miles around North London to keep a bit active, discovering new parks and listening to podcasts, to distract myself from not being able to ride (or really dress myself etc). I bought a turbo trainer to ride inside and tried to stay motivated riding nowhere in a spare room, unable to reach the handlebar and watching yet more Netflix to time my efforts.
I stuck to a solid intervals session based training, keeping my rides short (through boredom and a bruised knee) and sweaty, hoping to stay fit and to improve my mood with some endorphins. Some days it works. I went back to work on the Tube which I actively avoid by riding, and worked on movement in my shoulder to be able to use a mouse. I got inspired to change the commuter bike to a former geared incarnation, but with a road cassette and mech, so ordered the parts and fitted them carefully. I’ve started watching bike videos online again.
So now, 8 or so weeks in, I’m out of a sling and still hugely frustrated. I have permanent metalwork in my shoulder, still can’t reach over my head, and have a six-inch scar across my collarbone. I have no feeling in the upper part of my chest as the nerves were cut during the operation. My current exercises are designed to start to rebuild the muscles and it is starting to feel like I’ll get there again.
My target is a trip to Bike Park Wales in mid-November and a winter of making up for lost time. I know this is hardly a life-changing injury but even one like this has impacts that go way beyond just not being able to ride a bike for a few weeks.