8/1/16

Wrapping up July!

I'm happy to say that my planned and unplanned surgery sessions are now all finished! (Knock on wood...)

After returning from our vacation in Italy, it seems my body went through an overhaul of procedures to fix this and that. The final surgical procedure of the month was to deal with tooth #31 to round out the month of 'hey, let's overhaul what needs fixing'...

Along with surgery comes the residual pain during the healing and the need for pain medications, Ibuprofen, and in the case of the tooth - antibiotics as an infection had settled in around the tooth and neck. Thanks to the tooth pain that began during our vacation in Italy, I have taken more Ibuprofen than I would ever care to take in a 6 week period. So the bloat from water retention had me feeling puffy. I forced myself yesterday to tough it out and go without any pain medications for the first time in weeks. I made it through the discomfort, and a nice long bike ride with Tara helped occupy my mind on something else besides the mouth pain.

RRVTMap

We took advantage of the cloud cover and mild temperatures to knock out our annual Raccoon River Valley Trail ride. It seems that every time we go, we ride it in the opposite direction from the previous time to help keep it interesting. It's not the most challenging ride as there is very little elevation change, and the trail is seemingly straight for the entire 72 miles. The only variety or challenge comes from the wind, and the temperature. However, we do enjoy riding it at least once every season as it is just one member of the excellent basket of trail options we have here in Central Iowa. We figured it would jiggle my teeth the least amount of where we ride.

TaraRRVT

We rode from the Waukee Trail Head due West on the southern portion first with a plan to lunch in Panora. Tara had a nice burger and I enjoyed the daily special which was a brisket sandwich (and proved soft enough for me to be able to chew). Following our tasty lunch stop, we had a nice tail wind heading north before turning back East at Herndon, and facing a side wind/head wind all the way back for the 2nd half. Maintaining the same HR meant about a 5 - 6 mph difference going against the wind compared to going with it, so I bumped up our effort during the 2nd half which resulted in our legs feeling nice and spent as we rolled into the Waukee Trail Head parking lot. Rehab work on my right shoulder had been going well, but when I reached in my jersey pocket to retrieve some pocket change I was reminded I have a ways to go yet and let out a nice loud YELP. There's a good chance all of the Ibuprofen and pain meds have been masking the shoulder discomfort quite well, and that's why I noticed it yesterday without the meds as I have increased the mobility of range quite a bit in the past two weeks.

Back at home, and a nice nap was followed by pizza and wine to recover. That was before we hit Dairy Queen to take advantage of all the calories we burned leaving us with room in the tank to indulge a bit. We drove out to the balloon fields to see the Night Glow that was scheduled, but were too late. It wasn't even dark yet, and the event was over. The Guest Guide schedule for the National Balloon Classic said it started at dark. I guess their definition of dark is different than mine.

Nevertheless, the balloons are in town and the dogs are barking at them...

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I'm happy to report that just 24 hours later of getting off the Ibuprofen and pain meds, at least 2 pounds of the water retention has been shed, and I expect a little more after another day or two of avoiding taking any more. Suffice it to say, not all of my recent weight gain has been water retention alone as I have been packing in the calories (packed on about 5 pounds!!!), and have not been able to ride as hard as usual, nor have I been lifting weights due to recovering from surgery. C'est la vie, I hope to turn that all around during August.

In spite of all the procedures for my July overhaul I went through, I did manage to get some time in on a bike - in some shape or form - to not be too far out of the loop.  About 1/2 of it is due to our riding in Italy, and yesterday's ride.

Miles and time on the bike for July.

July Total Miles: 382.48
July Total Duration: 34:43:26

And that's a wrap for July! August has arrived with what appears to be a morning Thunderstorm and yet another inch or so of rain....

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