Biologist on a Bike

A Year Ago Today…

A year ago today the longest bike tour I had ever been on was 2 nights.

A year ago today I began a journey that would take 68 days covering 4,375 miles from the Pacific coast to the Atlantic coast.

Me and my fully-loaded bike at the start of the TransAm Trail
Ready and raring to go

Today, I am 257 days into my 360 Active Days challenge and have only taken two days off. One of those days was April 4th, two days before my first marathon. The second was a week ago, May 14th, for surgery to have a 13cm long fibroid removed from my abdomen. It was large enough that I could feel it at times while riding last year, and I am more than glad to have it gone.

Mom came to visit (she’s still here!) to help me out during my recovery, and I’m incredibly grateful. The first few days especially, I was in need of a lot of help. And she saw to it that I ate something other than pasta, which is probably all I would have had the energy to prepare for myself if I had been on my own.

For a few days I was incredibly sleepy. And for another one or two after that I had to use my arms to get from a prone position to a seated one because using my abs was very painful. My lungs were also not pleased, an unfortunate occurrence made worse because the healing incision in my abdomen meant that it hurt to cough.

A week later and I can say that things are getting significantly better.

A few weeks ago, I purchased a small under-desk elliptical machine. I intend to take it to work so that I can keep moving a bit while sitting at my desk grading papers, preparing lessons, and engaging in all the other seated activities that come with being a community college professor. The bonus is that I had a way to keep my legs moving as I recovered from my surgery.

I’m still not supposed to be lifting anything heavier than 10lbs or engaging in any vigorous exercise, but I’m hopeful those restrictions will be relaxed in my post-operative check up visit next week. In the meantime, I’ll keep up with the walking and the elliptical.

And, with this behind me, I can start thinking about what I want my next adventure to be.

I’m still open for other ideas, but I’m considering section-hiking the Appalachian Trail and starting out with going as far as 6-8 weeks can take me. The other thought is to do another of the Adventure Cycling Association routes, possibly the Pacific Coast or the Atlantic Coast trails.

I’ve got plenty of time left to decide and train once I recover.

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