Skip to main content

Oh, the memories...one year ago I blew out my shoulder

Many times, it's best to recognize and reflect on memorable moments during the anniversary date of that special occurrence.

So on this day, I'll give a shout out to a Giant Anthem test bike, Rocky Knob mountain bike park, and a blown shoulder that became a game-changer in master man's endurance sport life.

I was coming off a somewhat similar summer, tons of travel and time away from Appalachian State University.  Upon my arrival back, I was looking forward to aggressive mountain bike adventures, as my pace had quickened...of course, there was only one logical next step, which was to get off my Cobia hardtail and step up to a full suspension 29er.

The seller on Craig's List said he'd meet me at the park; I took several cautious loops around the parking lot, then headed onto the access trail.  Barley a minute in, those hair trigger hydraulic discs got the best of me and locked up both tires.  By the time I reacted, it was too late and I was pitched onto a rock pile.   I took the brunt of impact into my shoulder and pop! Instant knowledge that something snapped and came apart.

Wish it was a broken collarbone - I had one of those from road cycling in the early 1990's and despite a ton of pain, they heal well.  A grade 3 separation is much different.  I now have a floating collarbone that isn't truly attached to the shoulder blade. I'm investigating repair procedures, but there are no guarantees that the outcome will put me in a better place.

I crashed, got hurt, and there are consequences.  Some days I want to pout about it, but at other times I  settle back and understand that we put ourselves out there most every day and over time, *%## will happen.

As we age, injuries don't truly "heal." Rather, we receive back a percentage of what we used to be. It's another facet of the master competitor life. The dimensions get complicated, but we can either embrace what we have left or pack our gear bag and head home for good. I plan to hang on as long as possible.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Scott Jurek ate vegan, won ultras...then got divorced

(Disclaimer:  I am a Brooks-supported athlete; as part of that relationship, I was provided a complimentary copy of "Eat & Run")

I was recently on a few flights making my way home to Wisconsin and en route was able to plow through Scott Jurek's new book "Eat & Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness."

It's a fast, enjoyable read. I've been around the ultra scene for a long time and have known some of the greats, i.e. ultra champ Eric Clifton. So it's always interesting to see how the world looks from another icon's point of view.

My thoughts in no particular order:

1) I've been vegetarian/borderline vegan for 12 years and have always been concerned with protein intake.  Jurek advocates for the protein he naturally induces through his plant-based diet.  Maybe that is enough. Maybe it's not necessary to bang down 100+ grams of protein supplement every day. Good info and good advice.

2) I'm buying on big time to Scot…

Build your low cost gravel and commuter bike

It's the saga of Craigslist. You have a great perfect condition road bicycle to market. You ask a fair price. A few calls come in, most often the caller throws out a low ball offer, maybe 50% of asking price.

You don't need to give the bike away. You may not need the cash.

Consider re-purposing. You already own an excellent commuter and gravel bike. Think your bike is too low end, not good for the purpose?

Wrong. In most cases less expensive bikes are build with heavier parts, which means they are stronger. Heavier wheels = better ability to absorb commuter bumps and gravel roads.

A few simple modifications and you'll be rolling for transportation or logging road expeditions.

Here's my 2011 model Specialized Roubaix. I rode it for several seasons as a serious piece of road equipment. A few buyers offered up a few hundred dollars, so I went in another direction.

1) Added 700 x 28 Continental Gatorskin tires. Gatorskin tires wear like iron and you can trust them in off …

Now this is better...

Hey, I don't want to dole out too many epic photos in one day...but after that fatty shot from the New York City Marathon, I had to dig a bit deeper, and found this:

Check out that attractive specimen (second from right) circa 1986...only a year earlier and Tommy Terrific was looking pretty ripped.

I'll tell you this triathlon training camp was one of the high points of my master competitor career. On the left is Mark Hinson, the best triathlete in the southeast in the mid 19890's...and far right is Frank Kohlenstein, a soccer coach from South Carolina and the dude who got me into ultrarunning...that's tanned and toned Tommy next to David Bailey, one of the greatest men who ever threw a leg over two wheels with an engine.

So, right around the time of this camp, I crewed for Frank at the Western States 100 mile endurance run in California. Hinson ran with Frank through a very tough 20 mile desert section and when he made it to the next check, he pulled me aside and told…