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MSers in Training 2017

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  • #31
    Larry, nothing boosts my spirits like hearing you are getting closer and closer to being your old self. Emphasis on old. Kidding!

    Suebee, get a trike. Marina, uh, two trikes might be enough. Part of me was wondering why you didn't just purchase a cheaper exercise bike for indoors and then use the existing trike exclusively for the outdoors, but then I figured there had to be a logical explanation. Like trikes are hella cool. (An aside for Marina, my Dad just picked up a new QX50--he didn't seek out Steve, tho.)

    I've been trying to ride every few days. Yesterday we had huge wind gusts, which forced me to use my lowest gear and really crank, even on the flats! Fortunately that was on the "out." Coming back was a breeze, pun intended.
    Dave Bexfield


    • #32

      Marina I love your thought process. If I sent you my wife's name and address would you send her a letter supporting my need for two trikes??
      I've only been out 2 times so far, both 10 mile rides. It is supposed to be near 50 this weekend so I hope to get some miles in. Instead of riding 3 different bikes, including 2 uprights, like I did last year I might just stick with the trike this year. I feel safer on the trike and my wife worries less when I am on the trike. I've had 2 instances of pulmonary embolism and am on blood thinners. A fall off an upright could cause some serious problems. Plus the trike is just plain fun! I've been doing my daily stretches, squats, push ups and bridges. I have also been doing cardio on the Cybex Arc at the local Planet Fitness. I really like that machine. I continue to be a faithful lurker and enjoy everyone's stories. Larry, I'm glad you are back at it. I can only imagine the number of times during your recovery that you told yourself that you had to do "this" or "that" so you could get back on the bike. Keep up the good work everyone and here's to many, many more miles whether they be by bike, trike, swimming, walking, running, whatever!!


      • #33
        Suebee - the place where I purchased my trike(s) from had a few models to try and the owner actually owns the bike I wanted. I had an idea of what I was looking for though. I went on the BentRiders forums and watched a lot of videos. There are site that have reviews of each bike. I selected the Catrike 700 because it was one of the fastest trikes around but it does not have any shocks so is not the most comfortable. Also the seating angle is quite extreme in comparison to other options. I think you have to decide what your goals are and what you will use the trike for and go from there doing your research until you can pick one or two that you like. I love to ride with my husband and I am so glad not to have to miss out anymore.

        Veronica - thats the great thing about having two - we can ride the trikes together, I think we will both ride them during bikems. Go you with that upper body work, that exercise room must be super nice to have. And that shoveling, wow what a snow fall and go you!!

        AMF - Glad you are back and at it. It seems that your recovery is going well and I am very glad about that.

        Dave - a few reasons why I got a 2nd trike instead of doing it the sane/cheaper way.... Steve thought (And I eventually agreed) that working out on the trike was going to be better overall then an exercise bike, you use different muscles then an upright or even a recumbent and training those is better. Second - this was Steve can trike with me and we'd be able to do our century rides together on them and that could be fun. (the QX-50 is such a nice looking car, I hope he enjoys it!) Glad you are getting out there

        Grady - I think my husband might do better to convince her, as it took me almost 3 years to give in! I am glad you have decided to stick with the trike. A diamond frame would be very nice to ride (and so much easier logistically and lighter) the trike is way safer for me (balance issues).

        As for me - it has been cold the last few weeks - so I have been inside. A few weeks ago I started attending a weekly yoga class and even convinced Steve to come with me. It has been wonderful. Also I just got a fitbit..I realized that while I do get a good amount of exercise I am otherwise pretty sedentary. I work at a desk and sit on the house all night at home. So it has made me more conscious and gotten my competitive streak activation. I hope it lasts! Next major thing for me is a 100 mile ride in the first weekend of May.


        • #34
          Dave, ha, ha, and thanks. With a little help from my friends, I am now ready to declare myself FULLY RECOVERED! And speaking of wind, the videos in this short article are exactly what it's like on a "windy" day around here. If you only watch one, watch the tandems!

          Grady, you are so right. My biggest fear was that I wouldn't be able to do it, accompanied by a terrifying temptation to give up and give in. I have a much greater empathy now for the struggle people go through to claw their way back after bad things happen. Veronica has it right, "Never give up".

          Marina, I've been jealous of your centuries long enough! I'm going to have to try at least one this year. Arg, my butt is already screaming at you! Glad you're enjoying the yoga.

          Got 3 rides in for a total of 75 miles last week, the wind behaved all week. The weight work is suffering, as I knew it would when the cycling picked up, only hit the weight room once. Still doing yoga twice a week but feeling the need to add a little more core work before or after.

          Anyone out there considering the Santa Fe Century in mid May?

          Nice work all,



          • #35
            A quick checkin. The weather was miserable over the last week here, cold, rain and snow. There were two decent days though and I got out on the bike on both of them. I also went indoors and besides weights and yoga, started some core specific exercises.

            I had no idea my core was in such bad shape!!! Right side side planks were nearly impossible! Managed 15 seconds max on the front plank!!! Got 6 reps on leg raises, windmills, kettle bell swings and step ups. Lunges were also nearly impossible! No wonder my balance has been so poor lately. At least I know what I have to concentrate on in the near term now! It's snowing outside at the moment so I'm off to the club to work on core.

            Take care all, hope you're getting some time in,



            • #36
              Quick check in. Made it out on the bike 4 days last week, two climbing days, over 2500 ft each, one long ride for 45 miles and one recovery ride to get coffee with friends. For the first time this year, I totaled over 100 miles in a week with just over 5500 ft. of ascent.

              Today I got 19 miles and 2600 ft. Leggs, the yoga chick, is really pushing the climb. Although she hasn't specifically said it, I can tell, there will be NO walking on Vail pass at the Copper Triangle this year! We are heading for longer, steeper hills next.

              No takers on the Santa feel Century huh? Just as well, I'm not ready.


              Ps: also got one weight lifting session and two yoga classes in.


              • #37
                Lunges the worst

                Agree with lunges being critically hard. This week I had a good one - rowing daily, weights every second day, a 5k rainforest walk - minamurra rainforest - medium incline to waterfall - and 400m in the pool.
                I'm planning to startup KravMaga again now I know to not overheat.
                Honestly - twice as active as before.
                And forgot - taiji yang 88 daily - benefit of years in china.
                Last edited by Stewart; 04-20-2017, 06:14 AM.


                • #38
                  Warning, this is a long one...

                  Well, I have been a bit of a lurker myself these past few weeks! So to all who have posted during this month …Larry, Marina, Stewart, Dave, Grady, Suebee…. Thanks, I’ve been “drafting” off your energies!!

                  Been doing a bit of a “balance” act here with my life, not MS wise, but life wise. Not at all in a bad way, but still adjusting to the very major change in my life that this move has created. My exercise routine is going well at this point, don’t have specific days for everything as my part time work schedule changes daily/weekly, but have been working out regularly with upperbody…have added some weight to some of the work, which is great for confidence! Actually spills out into all aspects of my life…. “Keep doing it, and I get stronger….” Is now not just something I convince myself…it is actually happening.

                  Trike work is still on the trainer, but I am expecting to move it out of the exercise room this week, and take to a trail early in the week. When training, I have been working on keeping a higher cadence, and finally, I feel progress in my cycling. Been able to FINALLY match the beat of the techo music on some training sessions….an outstanding accomplishment for me if I do say so myself! We’ll see what happens when I take this Prime time to the trails!!

                  Been pretty faithful to doing my hip exercises…clam, and a few more, and it has had an unexpected benefit for me. I always, for the past million years, had to lift up my right leg to get it into my car. I am now finding that there are MORE times that I do not need to do this, and can lift it independent of my hand…..such a subtle thing, but if you know what I am talking about, you know what I am talking about. Been also more diligent with my core my last PT session, this past Friday, Herb told me I am "mushy" there. Ha! I guess after working together for 12 years I can take this news from him. I have been quite a slacker, until now, with continual core work.

                  Marina mentioned just starting yoga, and I know Larry and several more of you do this regularly. I have balked at this ( no rational reason at all here….) for years, but when I learned that someone that I know socially up here teaches a weekly yoga class at the local library Monday mornings, I decided to go for it, mainly since so many of you have benefitted from it. I met with her privately first for a session so she could get to know my needs, and this was very helpful for strategizing on where to place the chair, how to use it, how I could adjust poses….yeah, I was a bit anxious about starting this! SO, now I just have to get myself UP on Monday morning to get to the 8am class. Been trying to get there for the past four weeks, and I always have found an excuse in the dead of the night for not going. Consoled myself with a yoga app that got me doing a few yoga poses daily, and this I think is helping me gear up for finally getting to the class. Hell bent to get there this Monday…figured I’d use this Peer Pressure by posting this to get me there. I CAN’T post next that I still didn’t go…..

                  I have given myself a new challenge…. It started with just the reality that I now live in an area of NY State that is just drop dead beautiful, with so many places to explore with walks and hikes. One place that is all of 5 minutes away is Bash Bish Falls…. It is just a very peaceful waterfall that one has to hike to in order to see it. I remember doing this back in the 70’s….. and until I moved here, I felt I would never be able to see this again. The other day, a beautifully warm day, I just wanted to check out the trailhead and see if I felt it was at all doable in time. The hike from the NY side ( the falls are actually in Mass..) is a ¾ mile hike in, or 1.5 miles roundtrip. And the trail is rugged….not a walking path, but a trail, with rocks and tree roots jutting out, and crevasses where rain washed out parts of the trail. I had my trekking poles with me, and did a very small section…found a bench, sat and came back. It is stunningly beautiful…the trail is right alongside the riverbed. I figured that this is such a gift to me to be so close to this, that I just HAVE to train to be able to do the hike in to see the falls again.

                  This will be quite an undertaking for me, my own personal Mount Everest. 1.5 mile walk on a sidewalk is something that is fatiguing for me to even think about, but I really want to accomplish this. I am tired of feeling that I have an electronic fence around me with the MS in terms of walking.

                  So, when I sawmy PT on Friday I broke the news to him. We ended up talking a lot about what I need to do to train for this. He wants me to train off the trail for the uneven surfaces that I will encounter on it, and we discussed my doing so in my own backyard, where I have a tree with a lot of roots exposed. He wants me to train by walking on this uneven area, and just focus on doing so at as slow a speed as I need to accomplish this..…And of course I will train on the actual trail, taking small sections and once I don't feel fatigued, add a little more distance. He also gave me exercises to do inside to improve my dynamic balance. While I have been doing balance exercises in a “static” or stationary position, now he wants me to also shift my weight forward and backward, and side to side from my trunk when my feet are apart, then closer together, and then alternating one foot forward, then the other. THAT is hard for me ( and why I use a cane often outside), but he said it is a skill I need for when my foot hits a rock, root, or uneven surface and I need to shift my balance and recover. And it is also indicative of that "mushy" core of mine! Trekking poles only do so much….

                  So that is what I am gonna do….no time frame on when I will accomplish this, as I will need to just keep increasing the distance in, while keeping a check on my legs’ fatigue scale so I don’t get myself halfway there and run out of juice. I am very excited about this…. To be working toward getting something back that I felt really had been taken away from me completely. And I’ll take any advise any of you want to impart on me!! Recommendations for good light weight hiking shoes??? Oh, yeah, there are always people on this trail since for them it is easy peasy, I will always have my cell phone with me, at times will have friends with me, but will also train on my own…..
                  Be thankful. Dream Big. Never Give Up.


                  • #39
                    Not looking like a big week on the bike here, already having rain and several more days of rain and snow are in the forecast, guess I'll try to make it up inside with weights, core and ellipticals. I do already have 2 days of climbing for the week under my belt though.

                    I might be joining you guys with some hiking this summer. My youngest daughter has just finished climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania and will be returning stateside for the foreseeable future . She has already made plans to take me hiking. I used to do quite a lot of hiking and would do it here again if I could find someone to go with regularly (who could tolerate my limited endurance and awkwardly slow pace). It will probably take a few trials and some mobility aids, but it's looking likely. It appears summer hikes will get on the training schedule!


                    • #40
                      Checking in as I have been a bit MIA. I have my first century coming up on Saturday and have some not great timed work travel. Last week I was in Las Vegas (sounds fun but I never left the hotel/convention center) and then next week I will be going to Chicago. But between all that there is this ride, and I will be away a weekend for that.

                      So hectic, but I did 51 hilly (for me, 1600 ft) miles today so I am feeling good about my prospects.

                      Jet lag is a thing apparently and it hit me HARD on Friday though, I am happy to be over that and hope it doesn't happen during my next trip!


                      • #41
                        Shout out to my hubby for completing the MS 150 Houston-Austin this weekend! He trained by doing increasingly longer local races and spin classes at the Y. This was his 3rd year, but last year got rained out. He said it was the addition of the spin classes this year that allowed him to do all the hills with ease. So proud!
                        Last edited by Suebee; 05-02-2017, 02:54 PM. Reason: added twitter photo link


                        • #42
                          Good luck Marina, I'll be thinking of you this weekend. Hope the weather is good and the wind is at your back.

                          And congratulations and thank you to your husband Suebee. Well done!



                          • #43
                            Finally, got 3 rides this week with my new trike. First time since I bought it in November that we have sunny California weather! I am soooo rusty and I cannot wait to have 6 weeks of training in my legs so it start to feel good to push my self.
                            Right now I do the lady's loop 8 miles with 1200' climbing down from my home.
                            I love the comfort and safety of the trike but miss the bike to go down those smalls curvy roads.
                            Good weekend to every one.


                            • #44
                              Better late than never

                              I am a runner and have been even before my diagnosis. The half marathon is my 'favorite' distance. The last race I participated in before my diagnosis in 2009 - I ran 1:59:38. The impact of MS has mostly been with the strength in my right foot. It drags when I run. I have had a goal since 2009 of getting under 2 hours again. The closest I came was 2014 when I ran a 2:00:49. Almost immediately after MS made itself known and I have not been close since. 2015 and 2016 were filled with MS related things but in late 2016 I switched to Tysabri. Now I am feeling stable again and plan to give it another go - the Rock and Roll Half Marathon in Philadelphia in mid September is my target race with the Philadelphia Half Marathon in November as a back-up. Training has begun. I will keep you up to date on my progress.


                              • #45
                                @walkerhe09 I'm sure you will beat the 2 hour mark. You sound dedicated.