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"Take Ibuprofen 3 times a day for 10 days and don't cycle for 2 weeks".
Not the words anyone wants to hear, but when cycling is the main way you get your kids around, it really isn't good news.
I've had a pain in my foot and ankle for a few weeks now, and I've not idea what caused it. I've no memory of twisting it or knocking it, and the really annoying thing is that it only comes on when I cycle. If I don't ride for a few days it totally disappears, but two rotations of the pedals and it's back again.
Self medication of Ibuprofen gel and a couple of days not riding (because I've been away with work) hasn't worked, so today I bit the bullet and went to the doctor to see what they thought. A strain where the muscle attaches to the bone has been diagnosed, with pain lasting up to 6 weeks. At least two weeks off the bike is prescribed, along with ice and Ibuprofen tablets. Thankfully it's nothing too serious, but when cycling is the main way we get our two boys around, it's going to be inconvenient.
Chris and I are going to have to rethink our routine. Thankfully he does a lot of the cycling with the kids in the week, as he does the school runs most days. I'll really miss my Friday drop offs at school and preschool - it's my one chance per week to keep in touch with the other mums. We'll also have to change things like who take N to his karate lessons, and I'm often on point for football duty. It's not insurmountable, but I'm very grateful it's me and not Chris that's out of action!
At least we have a car to get around if I do need to take them places. Before today I'd never really thought about the problems of injury if cycling is your only form of transport for getting your kids around - I guess you either cycle through the pain, or have to walk / scoot / take public transport / sweet talk friends for lifts.
One result of this is that I'm suddenly not as bothered about the terrible weather forecast as I was. If summer suddenly turns up and I end up missing out on family bike rides on the best weekends of the year, I'm going to be really cross.
And for the first time ever I've found myself perusing the First Aid and Recovery pages on cycling websites! Should I go for a Mueller Ice Bag, or will frozen peas suffice? Is the Nike Pro Combat Ankle sleeve really £4 better than the Nike Ankle Wrap? Or should I push the boat out and go for this heavy duty Meuller Adjustable Ankle Stabilizer - which looks a serious bit of kit, but comes in at over £20? And, more importantly, do any of these work???
This foray into the world of injury support has revealed a whole world of products I knew nothing about. Who would have thought Chain Reaction Cycles have a whole section dedicated to "Body Maintenance"? And I'd never really thought about where to buy coloured muscle gel before, but now I know!!!
Have you had to cycle with your kids whilst carrying an injury? Any helpful hints and ideas? Do let us know in the comments section below.
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