This is the best day I’ve had in a while, and I’m incredibly grateful for it. The news has been so overwhelmingly bad over the last few weeks, and everyone has been under so much stress. The adults in our family all notice that we’re exhausted, even though not that much is going on at home. We’re taking naps in the middle of the day just to give our brains and body a rest from the constant onslaught of things to worry about.
Today the sun was shining and the temp was up, so Roo and I decided to take the bikes out along a local trail that we hadn’t tried before. It turned out to be the best decision we could have made.
This is my Catrike, which I just got a few weeks ago. I love riding bikes, but it’s become increasingly hard over the years with the fibromyalgia. The regular riding posture leaning over the handlebars causes immense pain on my wrists, shoulders, and low back. I had a recumbent bike years ago, it was incredibly comfortable. I began to check out YouTube for reviews of newer models, and found a channel created by Sylvia Halpern who takes long tours on her recumbent trike. Sylvia’s channel pulled me (happily) down the rabbit hole of trikes, with their many benefits. They’re great for people with injuries, chronic illnesses, different types of handicaps related to mobility, balance problems, the list goes on.
A year or so later I found myself at Recumbent PDX in Portland, trying out a few models to see if this trike idea was a good one. The Catrike was love at first test ride, and we brought it home.
It’s been a fantastic bike for me, I just love it. Would highly recommend this to anyone who can’t ride a normal bike because of pain associated with a traditional riding posture. I’m able to ride without extra pain, it’s still mind-blowing to me every time we go out. It also lets me get my heart rate up, getting my cardiovascular system in shape. People with fibro are told to exercise to help the pain, but it can be nearly impossible to find an activity where increasing pain doesn’t stop you before you can get your heart rate up. With the trike, I can ride long enough to become winded, without causing all the extra pain that would normally haunt me for the next few days after a ride on a regular bike.
My original bike doesn’t languish – Roo inherited it! She loves it!
There’s a park nearby where Roo and I will often bike to, but today we decided to go past the park by a few blocks, and see if we could discover something new. We ended up finding a local trail that runs along the river. A vast waterfront park, with a good half mile of flat rock to walk on. It was exactly what we needed after the week we’d had.
The sun was shining, and we pulled off the trail and parked near the water. We took off our shoes and waded in a bit, but mostly sat on the bank and just watched the river go by. The air was fresh and smelled like water on rocks, a forest-y smell that I love. We had a snack, read our books, and took off our sweaters to let our skin get all the vitamin D.
I drew a little sketch in a signature that I will bind into a new journal.
I enjoyed the sketching, and I have a big stack of books that will help me get better once I have time to read them all (hey, looks like I might have some time), but I still want to take tons of photos wherever I go. I think I will always be a photographer at heart. All I had was my iPhone, but I really love the camera on that thing, and the Portrait mode gives you some neat options.
Here’s two minutes of ducks, for no reason at all: