Gone Rogue?

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The title to this is a little misleading.  Rogue is the word my neurology doctor at KU Med used when asking me how much I was exercising.  Her exact phrase was “How rogue have you been?”  And I wasn’t that bad.  Instead of riding 5 minutes twice a day I had been closer to 30 minutes twice a day.  But I had been keeping my heartrate below 100.

We came to a consensus that I could exercise as much as I desired as long as the exercise didn’t induce any of the “bad” symptoms of a TBI.   Only once in two month did I have an issue, where I started riding the ergometer and I felt a headache coming on.  So I quit pedaling immediately. But that was a while ago.

Flash forward to now.  Today is exactly two months and, now, one day since I crashed and fractured my skull.  I’ve been pretty good at following all the protocols that have been mandated.  The deal with these head injuries is that each one is different and they each heal on their own terms.  Which means at a different pace, which, to me, is frustrating.

So, my friend Vincent (who was the guy writing initially about me being in the hospital, which is the most read post ever here) asked me to come down to Arizona with him, I told him yes.Mainly because it is 75 degrees here now. I didn’t bring a bike, but couldn’t stop myself from bringing pedals and shoes.  Plus, cycling clothing and, yes, a helmet.

Yesterday, Vincent went by the bike shop here in Fountain Hills,  McDowell Mountain Cycles, and the guys there gave him a dual suspension Scott MTB for me to use.  I met Harry and the guys there last year, right before doing the 24 Hours of Pueblo.  They are good guys.

So, Vincent and I went for a ride.  We rode the road over to McDowell Mountain Park.  I’ve been there a few times, mainly when it was first welcoming MTB’s, year ago.  I raced a couple Specialized Cactus Cups there, so am pretty familiar with it.  We were planning on just riding on the road, but for some reason we ventured off.

It is perfect for me in that regard.  Some of the trails are nearly like pavement.  Super smooth with virtually no technical aspect.  Long story short, we did nearly 30 miles and I feel no worse for wear.  But, we were taking it pretty easy.  There is no reason to push it at all for quite a while.

All in all, I’m pretty happy with how it went.  I do have some issues going on, but none of them seem to occur when I’m pedaling, which is a big relief.

I have a neurology appointment next Monday.   I’m hoping Dr. Nielsen isn’t reading this.  If so, I can assure her I am being very cautious.  Not only about falling, but general feeling.  But, so far, so good.

Vincent took this over his shoulder when we were riding off-road.

Vincent took this over his shoulder when we were riding off-road.  He obviously messed with it a little.

Vicnet and my borrowed bike.

Vicnet and my borrowed bike.

Vincent and cactus.  There are a lot of them around here.

Vincent and cactus. There are a lot of them around here.

Vincent stopped on the highway yesterday to jump a couple guys in a pickup truck.  It was kind of sketchy.

Vincent stopped on the highway yesterday to jump a couple guys in a pickup truck. It was kind of sketchy.


24 thoughts on “Gone Rogue?

  1. GaryO

    Steve – I don’t know I you have ever seen the documentary Meru? But one of the main characters (Renan Ozturk) suffered a horrific head injury (similar to yours), in a skiing accident. Anyway they briefly go into his rehabilitation to get back into climbing, and his workout regiment seemed pretty hard core. If you get a chance check t out.

  2. Ducky

    ???????????? im eating my slice of breakfast pie in honor of your first ride. Its pie season, even if your taste is a bit off, I can assure pie is still delicious!

  3. Wildcat

    I find the thought process involved in deciding whether or not to stop and help someone very interesting. For instance, I think the person and quality of vehicle are taken into account in this decision making. Even though it shouldn’t. Someone dressed nice in a good car could be more dangerous than someone from the other side of the spectrum. Funny though, no matter what – I always stop and ask cyclists that look like they need help if they’re OK. Hmmm…

  4. shano92107

    jealous – McDowell Mtn park is so bitchin!! Raced McDowell Meltdown a few years back, it was a wet winter year and the entire desert looked like a golf course it was so green. AZ is awesome this time of year, cant wait to get back there myself. Enjoy the trip

  5. Cranky Curmudgeon

    So, if you did fall (not that you would, mind you, because the trail isn’t technical and apparently you would only fall on a technical trail), you’d be ok, right? Because of the helmet. Right? That squishy, damaged organ floating around in your thick skull wouldn’t get jostled, right? That helmet emits an inertial damping field, right?

    I recall someone saying something about taking it slow and needing to be reminded about that. But, I’ll admit, this is much more interesting. Thanks for coming clean about your activities. You could have written about socks or something and no one would be the wiser.

    You had me for a while there. I thought you were finally on board with your health care providers. Color me punked. (I actually had scroll up and re-read your post as I was writing this just to confirm that I wasn’t mistaken about what you were doing.)

  6. Brent

    Steve, that was me rolling out of the park when you guys were coming in today. Sort of recognized you at the last second and then the boys at the shop said Vincent had been by to grab a bike for you.

    Welcome back and we’re all stoked to see pedaling again!


  7. Andrei Rublev

    Hell Yes! Riding again. You are the reason I (and I hope so many of us) keep pedaling. I am glad you keep enabling us. For many of us it shouldn’t be the reason to keep going, but it might be the reason to get started or it might be the push between diving into MTB or giving it a pass.



  8. Bob

    Hey steve,SO SO SOOOO Great you y vincent are rolling tranquillo on mtnbikes in az…glad you are enjoying 75 degree temps there! Keep the Great posts going! Bob

  9. H Luce

    I guess the otoliths must be back in their proper places, if you made it for two to three hours without getting dizzy. Good thing you wore the helmet and had Vincent along. I think the neurologist is going to boot you out of the office, though. If you can ride a mountain bike for thirty miles without incident, their work is done.

  10. Steve pascoe

    No more sketchy unsafe car jumping episodes…
    Best Christmas gift idea for anybody, just used mine to help a stranded shopper….
    Vikeepro portable car jumper , size of a thick cell phone ,
    Also charges cell phones and lap tops

  11. Tim

    I’ve been reading every word you’ve been writing for two months. No words have made me as happy as “yes, and a helmet.” I used to ride with you in Topeka with the Wheatlands. You were an inspiration and are today. Keep getting better!


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