Sunday, 22 December 2013

Injury - The Inevitable End Result

I'm injured... again.  For me there are two types of injury, ones that slow you down and cause discomfort and ones that stop you doing what you want to do, unfortunately this one is the latter.

I shouldn't be surprised really, after all riding mountain bikes fast in techy terrain invites crashes and crashes tend to lead to pain and injury!  Over the years MTB has seen me spend plenty of time in various hospitals.  As far as I can remember the current list is two broken wrists, one broken arm, broken hand, collarbone, leg, kneecap, two ribs, cracked elbow and hip and a couple of knockouts, one where I didn't wake up until I'd been in hospital for a while.  I can possibly add a broken thumb but I'm really hoping not.

The crash was pretty hilarious really, first run on an incredible new trail in Donard Woods I clipped a tree with my bars at full speed.  That sent me wider than planned on the next corner and my front wheel washed out and I flew OTB into a river.  My first reaction was to laugh, after all I was up to my elbows in water but then a familiar burning pain kicked in followed by a few minutes of swearing and annoyance.  I finished the trail sheepishly, quickly realising that my grip on the bars was weakening and a strange bulge was appearing on my thumb.  For once I did the right thing, headed home, took Ibuprofen and iced it for an hour.  The swelling went down and despite shooting pains and no movement at all I was confident all would be well in a week or so.

That was over a three weeks ago!  I have a small amount of movement back, I can almost grip a toothbrush but I definitely can't wrap my hand around a handlebar and hook my thumb under.  It's dawning on me that it may be worse than I thought.  Needless to say I'm gutted.  I was just starting to get back to speed and had survived a couple of other big crashes in the previous week which always breeds that sense of invincibility that adds a couple of mph when things get scary.  Now it looks like I'll be off the bike for a few more weeks, made all the more annoying by the dry trails I'm missing.  On the plus side it's only a thumb so I can at least still run and sit on a turbo trainer, on the downside, it's only a thumb which makes it more annoying that it's preventing me from actually biking.

So what's the point of this blog?  To let myself share my self pity?  Well yes!  But not only that.  There are plenty of times when I can't really be arsed to head out, getting changed, filling Camelbaks, getting wet and cold, the washing, the cleaning etc etc all seems too much.  As ever though, the minute you can't do something, the degree to which you want to do it magnifies massively.  I never regret going biking, even when I break bikes or bones, right now I really regret the times I've decided not to head out.  Go ride your bikes people and crack a smile for me...

Paul falling off his bike... on a road by the look of it!

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