Saturday, May 19, 2012

I'm not giving up . . .

I still believe that I'm going to be able to run pain-free eventually.  I'm not giving up on that goal.  But while I struggle with my hip issues, my fitness just continues to decline.  As an example I ran a 5k last Saturday . . . pain free . . . and slow!.  Took Sunday off.  Then I ran Monday - only finished 2 miles and had to limp home.  And I haven't run since as the hip wasn't happy.  Running 5 miles in seven days just doesn't get it!

So I need to cross-train.  So . . .what do I do?


Now that the weather is getting warmer, I can start to swim regularly.  But I'm guessing my hip would like me to swim.  During an earlier injury a bunch of years ago, I did swim.  I got to where I was swimming about a mile a day but I never really enjoyed it.  I never looked forward to a swim.  And there were never folks to just chat with as you swam.  Plus, I just never got the "post-exercise euphoria feeling . . .  that wonderful feeling of exhaustion that we all love! 

So I'm really starting to think about other alternatives . . . and the first one that comes to mind is biking.


So many friends simply LOVE biking!  So I know it must be a great alternative.  But I've got reservations.  Some are really just fears . . . perhaps overblown . . . perhaps not.  Some are concerns that I have.  So let's lay these out:

Safety - Road biking just seems dangerous.  If there weren't any cars it wouldn't be so bad.  Cars cause problems . . . and they always win in any "bike - car encounter."  So many biking friends have had serious crashes.  Luckily none have died.  Maybe I'm too fearful of this.  But it just seems risky.  I know how I feel as a driver coming up behind a biker or a line of bikers.  I'm not sure if they know I'm there or not . . . and when I'm passing them I worry that another car will come . . . so I slow down to a relative crawl while I wait for a straight stretch.  I worry many drivers just don't always do this!  When you're running, you're facing the traffic and you have a much better chance of getting out of the way.

Mountain biking seems much more safe.  You may crash and break a bone or get cut up, but the chances of dying seem small unless you do that really crazy riding . . . which I would never do since I'm afraid of heights!  But I've tried mountain biking.  My big problem is that to my knowledge there just aren't many good trail riding spots near me.

Cost - Road biking is EXPENSIVE!  Bikes just cost a small fortune to me . . . and a really nice bike costs 2 fortunes!!  And then all the gear you need.  Several thousand dollars!  And then what if it turns out you don't like it!  And I don't have a job right now!  Well, I guess you could either buy a "cheap" bike or perhaps a used one to try biking out.  But I hear 1) it is important to get a bike that is 'fitted' to you, and 2) you'll miss the real enjoyment of you have a poor quality bike and thus won't keep riding. 
  • Here are some cost estimates. These may not even be close . . . . I really don't know much at all about bike costs.


Cheap Quality?

Bike  1,000  2,500

Helmet  40  40

Shoes  120  120

Other clothing  200  200

Annual maintenance  200  200

GPS  150  250

 1,710  3,310


Cheap Quality

Bike  -    -  

Helmet  -    -  

Shoes  200  200

Other clothing  100  150

Annual maintenance  -    -  

GPS  -    -  

 300  350
      •   All in all this looks like a REALLY expensive gamble to me!
Repairs - I know NOTHING about bike repairs and adjustments.  And I hear there are a lot  needed.  So here come another, additional cost!!  And hassle - since there are no bike repair shops near where I live.
Pain - That's right.  Bike seats just aren't comfortable . . . AT ALL.  Bikers tell me you get use to it but when I tried mountain biking 15 years ago I NEVER got to where it didn't hurt.  NEVER!
Clothing - Okay . . . this is embarrassing and may offend some folks . . . but the biking clothes just look silly to me.  All the jerseys with bike company logos, etc. as if the rider was a sponsored rider!  Now, I do understand the need for tight-fitting clothes and I'm okay with that!  But for me, I'm afraid I'll look like a "whale on a bike!" I might get harpooned out there!
How would my hip do biking?  How do I know this won't hurt my hip as much as running? Maybe even more.

Am I wrong in how I'm thinking about biking?  Weighing all this: Biking just doesn't seems to be right for me.  

I need some kind of cross-training . . . something!  Any ideas?  Remember: I live in rural NC!


  1. Hike until you can run. And fly fishing. And weight lifting - one box of wine at a time.

    1. Hill repeats up Medoc Summit . . . the steep way! That could work! Not so sure about aerobic fly fishing . . . And of course I like idea #3!!

  2. You're forgetting the cost of marathons-entry fees, gas, lodging, food..those add up, fast! Look on craigslist under a few surrounding cities at used bikes once you know what you are actually looking for, while keeping in mind that just like with anything, sizing differs with different brands. Get a bike that you know you could sell incase you don't like it. You can put it on craigslist under multiple big cities to increase your chance of not losing TOO much money! I don't know how biking is on the hip, but i would imagine it would be a lot less stress than running. Your welcome for being such a brilliant daughter. No idea where I got it from.

  3. Ironic I spelt "you're" wrong while I was calling myself brilliant?

  4. Well, I'm probably not much help... I'm with you on the biking. It looks like fun, but is way too dangerous. I'd never be able to enjoy it for the fear of riding on the highway.

    I like the idea of just walking/hiking until running is comfortable again. It may not give you the same satisfaction, but you're still covering the distance and you still have the comraderie... all the while, hopefully your hip is getting stronger!

    If you wanted to "gym it", you can always try an elliptical machine. That should give you good hip rotation... though boring, I know.


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Littleton, North Carolina
World's Slowest Runner . . . well, at least in contention for the honor. Just your average "below average" runner.