Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Back In The Saddle

I’m back

I’m back in the saddle again

Well, I am definitely not fully recovered, but I did get a chance to hit some single track to see how the fractured ribs and shoulder would feel.  Before I get into the ride itself I should first tell you about the ride location.  I decided to do my first “test the ribs” ride at the only mountain bike single track course in North West Ohio that I am aware of.  It is at Jermain Park in Toledo, OH and it was created by Toledo Free Ride.  Now anyone who has ever been to NW Ohio knows that it is pancake flat and this is the main reason I decided to ride here.  The Toledo Free Ride mountain bike park offers two loops that when combined together make up about 6 miles with only about 200 feet gain.  It is considered more of a beginners’ course and is not very technical.  Just watch out for the little tree stumps because they can get you if you are not paying attention.  They got me twice! 

For this first ride back my steed of choice to saddle up was my 1995 steel framed rigid  converted 1x.  The bike is a beast!  It has been abused beyond imagination and still will not break.  It is definitely a trust worthy ol’ faithful.  Anytime I am going out for a training ride on gravel roads or non-technical, flat single track I always grab this bike. 
Starting out on this ride I was nervous and really didn’t know what to expect from my body.  It still hurts to sneeze, laugh, and cough so hitting some single track could be painful.  On my first lap I hit all the log piles and some of the small jumps.  I quickly found out that my ribs and shoulder didn’t approve of this so for the remainder of the ride I skipped them.  Once I settled down and decided to spin easy while mostly remaining on the saddle I really didn’t feel too bad or have much pain at all.  And it felt so good to get back at it again. 
This park also offers a pump track and a lot of big jumps in a centralized section beside the trail head that is not part of the single track cross country course.  I knew better than to hit the jumps, but I couldn’t pass up the pump track.  Now obviously you can’t stay in the saddle on a pump track so I did a slow, old mans’ version of pump track riding.  I basically rolled as slow as possible without falling over, but yet just fast enough to make it over the humps. 
All-in-all I had a good time riding at the Toledo Free Ride mountain bike park.  Besides the single track the park has a lot to offer.  Many playgrounds and picnic areas.  A golf course, paved bike trail along the outskirts of the entire park, jumps, a pump track, and a river running through the park that many people fish.  Plus, you see lots of deer while riding which also makes riding this park interesting.  I believe the family is planning to spend the Independence Day holiday weekend at the lake so I will most likely hit this park up again.  Hopefully I can talk some of my Dynamic Physical Therapy Cycling powered by Pathfinder teammates into joining me.
Thanks for reading!