Sunday, March 09, 2008

What's With all the Cycling?


I sometimes think that we give the impression that all we do is goof around, chase after birds and ride our bikes. We do do a lot of cycling, but there's a purpose to our fun.

Robb is going through a phase where walking is more difficult than it has been in a while.

We believe that he is experiencing increased neural activity (in other words, his damaged nerves are continuing to heal), but this leads to inappropriate neural responses, such as discomfort and spasticity and muscle clenching.

It is the weirdest thing. Robb can (and does) cycle twenty miles at a time, but at the moment walking a couple of blocks is terribly difficult.

Okay then, walking is on the back burner, because other activities like swimming and cycling are not only easier, but more beneficial. When Robb rides the trike or swims, he actually experiences a decrease in spasticity (which currently increases when he walks).

With this in mind, we took the bikes out to China Camp in Marin County, because both of us are getting a bit sick of the Bay Trail, and because I wanted to look for spring wildflowers. The trail we rode was quite challenging, and Robb assured me that "challenging" wasn't merely a polite way of saying "this whole experience sucks." There were a lot of hills, and the trail surface was often very rough. The trail was also very narrow, curvy and full of other cyclists and hikers.

I did a pretty good job of avoiding rocks and tree roots, muddy puddles and ruts. But this task was much more challenging for Robb. On a normal bike, you just point your front tire at the stuff you don't want to hit, and you keep pedaling. Riding a trike is more complex. You can see your front tire, but you have to use your brain to avoid running into obstacles with the two rear tires. Robb really had to concentrate as he rode. He said that it was like doing calculus or geometry equations while he rode.

I, of course, kept hopping off my bike to check out the trail-side nature.

The trail-side nature checked out Robb, as well.

(Look over Robb's left shoulder. With the exception of the crazy moocher-deer at Yosemite, I don't think I've ever been so close to a deer.)

Robb and I are both really tired after our day of cycling, but it is a good feeling to wear ourselves out, doing something physical.


Anonymous said...

You have amazing photos on all your blog pages. I enjoy reading about you and Robb. I feel like I know you and are friends. Ya'll keep up your amazing spirits.

from AQ

Gothknits said...

I'm so envious that you guys have flowers already.

Knit-Marie said...

Your photos of flowers are really breathtaking. I LOVE them!
By the way, I saw your comment on my namesake Britt-Marie's blog...about how you were thinking about how she made the autum scarf that's among your favourites. Well I made one just like it and put the pattern on my blog.

Anonymous said...

Love the flower pictures! I wish I had a scratch and sniff screen to get the aroma. I can still scratch at the screen, but it wont do much, except push the dust around.

It's still brown here on the east coast, but at least I can see the teeny tiny little buds on the trees starting to form. I have some oddly placed flower bulbs starting to poke up out of the ground and so am very hopeful when I go out in the yard, The most dissapointing thing about going out in the yard is some jerk keeps running off with my Hillary Clinton for President yard signs. I was asked to put a giant 4 by 8 foot sign on our barn, but I suspect it will scare my neighbor's cows.



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