Sunday, April 13, 2014

Spring Has Arrived!

I was back at Twin Cities Orthopedics Monday morning to have my right knee looked at yet again. I was last there 17 months ago when I was considering stem-cell therapy for my knee and wanted to get a more educated opinion about going that route. Stem-cell therapy looks promising but as my doctor cautions me, it lacks enough case studies to support its efficacy. He doesn't feel it's ready for prime-time. I have a friend at work who's had it done and swears by it so I'm a little conflicted about it.

Dr Johnson took another round of x-rays and suggested I consider a corticosteroid injection. He said the cartilage in my right knee has deteriorated to where there are areas where it's nonexistent. I asked him about Synvisc and he said that would also be a good course of action but that my health-insurance provider will require me to have the steroid injection first. I agreed to give it a try.

He stressed that my cycling is the best thing I can do for my knee and to keep at it. Keeping the muscles strong that support the joint is crucial to its health. I don't know if he really appreciates how hard I ride though. I'm considering less hard days on the bike and more days where I allow myself to soft-pedal it but it seems I've had this discussion with myself before. It's so much easier said than done but the thought of not being able to bike isn't one I want to think of so I have little choice.

Speaking of biking, it's never been more dangerous out there for those of us who love this form of recreation. Look no further than my video from one of last week's rides to understand why I say that. If I had to guess I would say the driver of the truck in that crash was likely preoccupied with their phone. It's that sort of lack of attention which leaves me feeling even more vulnerable than just a few years ago. Fortunately, airbags protected both drivers from serious injury in the crash I witnessed. To increase my odds of continued safe riding I've added a Dinotte taillight to my bike. It's so incredibly bright that it's not for night use. The flashing of this light should do lots to alert people of my presence well in advance. It can't hurt I figure.

We were in the studio Thursday morning and had the place all to ourselves. We kinda liked that.

I got a text from Rachel while we were there asking if we'd like to meet her for coffee when we were done. I told her we were both pretty grubby looking but yeah, it would be nice to see her. I too often forget that she works in Minneapolis three days each week just a few miles from us when we're at Foci. There's a coffee shop in the same building where she works so we settled in there catching up over some drinks and eats. It's always nice to see her!

Some warm air finally settled in over us this past week if only for a few days. I took advantage of it by going out for a longish 12-mile walk Thursday afternoon. It was so nice to feel the sun on my face. I even got the deck furniture out and fired up the grill. It's almost as if a weight has been lifted now that our oppressive winter is no more with the exception of some still mostly frozen lakes; a chilly reminder of the winter that was.

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