“They are all idiots” said my surgeon. I was explaining about how much flack I get about riding my bike long distance, but have trouble standing and walking. “Riding your bike is the best thing you can do” he said.
ACC have declined my claim again for the fourth time, because – get this – I am too active (amongst other reasons). Doesn’t that strike you as contradictory that they reckon I have degeneration, but am also too active!!
I’ve had enough; I’m getting this cartilage tear fixed if I have to find the money myself. So in a month’s time, 20 months after the accident that caused it, I’ll finally have normal knees again.
|Sunrise on the hills on leaving Hanmer Springs.|
It hasn’t stopped me however. I rode home from seeing the doctor in Christchurch, a mere 535kms in 3 days. Day one: from my Mothers place south of Christchurch through the city – which was weird as they had rebuilt the place after the earthquake so much, that none of the roads looked familiar, as they had different buildings on them and I thought I must have gone the wrong way. Anyway I got through to the northern towns and on to Hanmer Springs. It was raining and very cold there, and you could even see your breath. I had a cabin booked there at the camp ground and got warm, fed and rested after 160kms. Day two: was an early start as I had a big day ahead of me of constant up and down hills – I counted 30 hills by the end of the day.
summiting Lewis Pass I was shaky with fatigue and lack of food, so stopped at
the very beautiful Maruia Springs restaurant for lunch. I have to admit I was rather
saddle sore today, but 8 applications of my best friend – anti chaff – and I
was able to keep going to Murchison and a ride of 180kms. Day three: Murchison
to home sounds easy enough, but I was sick of the traffic and decided to take
the ‘dry weather road’ to Tapawera. It was rough and corrugated on my skinny
road tires, but I got through without getting a pinch puncture on the stones.
From Tapawera it is a bit further home than if I had stayed on the main road,
so after135kms I arrived home tired but very pleased with myself.
|Tired and having a rest and food at Maruia Springs restaurant.|
|Kawatiri Junction - just before the dry weather road.|
With that effort, I’m halfway to being fit enough for the Paris / Brest / Paris. I need to be able to 1000kms in 3 days. I still don’t know if I can do that, but then a year ago I wouldn’t have been able to ride 535kms in 3 days.
I can now plan my next year or so of cycling. Riding the length of Australia may be a possibly in late winter to set us up for spring fitness, and the qualifiers for the Paris / Brest / Paris next year.
ACC staff are all idiots, but my doctor and I aren’t and riding my bike is the best thing I can do. So why can’t I get any of my cycling friends to do a 200km ride with me?
|Food and a rest - what every long distance rider looks forward to.|