After my trip to the doctor Wednesday to attend to my gout, I was looking forward to a quick reversal of my condition. But these things don’t happen overnight.
I continued to limp around Thursday and Friday, and still had trouble walking the dogs around the block. The saving grace was my biking. As reported, I can ride with a gouty toe, because it doesn’t move when I pedal. After a morning of meetings, I was anxious to get back on the bike Friday afternoon.
I set out on my usual Friday evening jaunt, a neighborhood ride that includes a couple of laps on the Veloway. It’s been a good starter for my weekend rides, because I can stomp on it over a few stretches, and take it easy on some downhills. It’s not all that long, but does keep me out for more than an hour, so it works for me.
Except this time. A frontal system was heading through the area, and the skies opened up on me. Since I was at the farthest point away from home when the rain hit, I figured I’d be wise to cut the ride short and head home. I’ve alluded to my dislike of riding in the rain, but maybe all that public concern helped. Anyway, I didn’t feel skittish as I have in the past, and kind of enjoyed the ride home in the wet. Still, at only 11 miles, it wasn’t much of a ride.
Saturday went better. Pat wanted to ride our Mopac loop, which is about 13 miles, mostly along a busy highway. But the traffic wasn’t so bad this morning, and we moved along nicely. Until we got close to the turnaround. There, the scudding clouds passing overhead decided to let loose, and we found ourselves in a summer shower again. But this was one of those freakish things were the delineation between the wet and the dry is a sharp line — drenched on one side, bone dry on the other. I knew when we turned around that we would be in the wet for only a quarter mile or so.
When we got home, I continued on for my Saturday trip up Convict Hill. I hadn’t been there for several weeks, and wanted to see how much uphill ability I’d lost going up the hill. Yep, it was a downer. I can do it in about 2 minutes, 30 seconds — sometimes a little better. But today I took 2:55. Not my worst of the year, but a definite decline in performance. I chalked it up to the weight I’d gained because of the enforced inactivity due to my gout. I’ll do better next week.
Today, we were making plans to travel south and ride along the Guadalupe River. But that was nonsense even during our planning. Weather radar showed another frontal system — this one huge — moving in from the west. I ended our email exchange with the caveat that if it was raining in the morning, I wouldn’t ride. About midnight, the torrent hit.
It rained hard for over an hour, and lightly for another hour or so after that. My little chihuahua mix is terrified of thunder and lightning, and sat shivering in my lap until 2:30 a.m. We woke up to no rain, but drenched streets, and canceled our riding plans.
By this afternoon, things had mostly dried out. I was busy working on some things for my wife, and running errands. Finally, I got out this afternoon for a little over an hour. It was a modified version of the ride I’d done Friday — a little longer, but nowhere near what I normally do on Sundays. The result was that I ended September with my lowest monthly total since February. September in Austin is a summer month. I should have had 150 miles more.
But today, my foot is almost all better. A twinge of an ache in the toe joint still, and I expect that will be gone in the next day or two. The rain is past, the weather will be milder, and I’ll try to get back to normal soon.
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