GROEDER   194,219
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A gift to myself

Sunday, October 23, 2011

I turned 60 years old today!!!!!!!
Yesterday I gave myself a very important birthday gift that will stay with me forever. I gave myself a lesson in what is possible with a positive attitude and determination.
Shortly after my knee replacement surgery in June, I decided it would be a good exercise in my ability to access my capabilities if I were to ride my bicycle 60 miles on or before my birthday. Well, yesterday was the day!!!!
About a month ago, I told some people about my plans and some offered to ride with me. I thought that would be a great time, so I began preparing to ride to a small town 30 miles from home for lunch with my friends and then ride back. We even had a friend who offered to drive along with a bike rack and extra bike.
As of the beginning of the week, everyone except the chase car driver had backed out of the ride!!!
I told him he didn't have to use up a Saturday just to follow me, and that I would revise my route and just ride the paths and streets here in town. I was going to do this, even if I did it alone!!!!!!
Yesterday it was sunny, calm, and very cool. Perfect conditions!!!!!
After my normal morning activities ( weight workout, breakfast, and walk the dog) I headed out to start my ride. I had never ridden more than 25 miles in one day in my life, so I was very unsure of my ability to make my goal. I decided to start with one of my favorite bike paths, and just took off.
At 20 miles I headed home to have a snack and refill my water supply. When I got home I found a friend who had just stopped in to visit, so my return was delayed slightly. The next route was to a new path that I had never been on before, and since I had made plans to meet another friend ( who doesn't ride) for lunch, that ride was only 15 miles. Even at that I was ahead of the schedule of half before lunch and half after!!!!
By the time I rode home to take my dog outside, the wind had come up it was now blowing at 15 to 20 MPH from the southwest, and some gusts were stronger. So to show how smart I am, I took of to explore more areas that I had never been on before. My route lead me out of town and onto 4 miles of gravel road!!! Not wanting to go back on that, I found a paved road leading to the main highway back to town. It is a nice 4 lane with wide shoulders, so I thought it would be perfect. WRONG!!! I was going directly into the wind - and I found 2 hills that I had never noticed when I was in my car. I am not a very fast rider, but I didn't know I could ride that slow and stay upright!!! LOL
I got back to town out of water, tired and with 9 miles left. So I took a short break, filled my water bottles and took off again. The goal was in sight and I WOULD reach it!!!!!!
I hit a path close to home and took off. By that time I was really watching as the tenth of miles ticked by on my odometer!!! My calculations were right on. As I turned on to the street where I live, I saw 60.00 appear !!!!!!!
I was in the saddle for 6 hours total, and was very tired, but I DID IT!!!!!!!!!
I am proud of what I accoomplished and glad that I pushed myself to do it.
Who knows, maybe next year I'll go for 61!!!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IMEMINE1 11/24/2012 2:32PM

    emoticon emoticon

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JOYATLAST 2/18/2012 3:30PM

    Congratulations!!!! I can't think of a better way to celebrate 60 years than by tackling a new accomplishment. Win or lose you're alive and well!!!! Success is that much sweeter. Cheers to YOU! We rejoice with you.
BTW: I know all about wondering how you can stay upright at such a snails pace up those hills!!! LOL

*high 5* You can be proud!!!!!!! I am.

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KCNEWF 10/30/2011 7:52PM

    Excellent! 60 miles is a very significant biking distance! emoticon

It is very inspiring to see you set and reach this very significant goal!

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DAVEINSEOUL 10/30/2011 5:29AM

    Way to go, Greg! That's just awesome. 60 miles on your 60th birthday - what a gift!

Let's see - next May I'll be 58 - so 58 miles for me? Or should I double it - 116 miles - now that would be a real, real hard challenge. Hmmm.....

Glad your special day turned out so well!

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KALISWALKER 10/29/2011 8:58AM

    Congratulations to you and your knee! What a wonderful accomplishment. All the best to you in the next year.

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WILDFIREKRISTIN 10/27/2011 11:48PM

    I am with everyone else...first, Happy Birthday! You are a true inspiration to many I see and I agree all the way. What a fabulous gift to give yourself.
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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EXCUSES-BE-GONE 10/26/2011 3:06PM

    Congrats on your accomplishment! Happy Belated Birthday!

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SKINNYPOWELL1 10/24/2011 4:32PM

    Happy belated birthday, how did I miss that? Congrats on accomplishing your biking goal. I know you are very pleased, as I can tell from your blog. I want you to know you continue to inspire me and I'm very proud of you reaching your goals. Hope you aren't saddle sore after such a long ride. YOU ROCK !!!

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CAROLANN27 10/24/2011 12:14PM

    You are such an inspiration. I likd your blog so much I read it to my grandson who was sitting at a table near me working on his hobby. He liked it too. You're the king!

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RAINBOWMF 10/24/2011 9:27AM

    What an inspiration you are Gregg.
Wonderful birthday gift to YOU!

60 miles is no easy feat, I am so happy for yea!

I like the way you were determined to do the ride and nothing stopped you.

What a guy!!!!!!

Happy Birthday!

Hugs Mary

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ACTIVE_AT_60 10/24/2011 6:22AM

    First Happy Birthday. I cannot come up with enough positive comments related to how you decided to celebrate your birthday. Beyond feeling proud (rightfully so) I also hope you feel good about what you did yesterday. In the words of John Bingham - the miracle isn't that I finished - the miracle is that I had the courage to start.

Well done my man.

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MRDPOLING 10/24/2011 6:11AM

    emoticonHappy Birthday!!!! emoticon

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SUNNYWBL 10/24/2011 1:56AM

    What a great present for your birthday! and a big BOO-HISS for your friends (?) that chickened out.

What a wonderful achievement! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon



emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BARBARAROSE54 10/23/2011 10:03PM

    emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 10/23/2011 8:52PM

    So impressive -- you did not let ANYTHING interfere with your determination to celebrate: 60 for 60!!

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YJNANA 10/23/2011 6:49PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

"Happy Birthday Enjoy your Special day and week"
emoticon
Nice ride for your 60

Yvonne

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ELYMWX 10/23/2011 6:13PM

    Happy Birthday, Gregg, and well done on your 60 miles.

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SCOTTK3000 10/23/2011 9:20AM

    that is awesome! happy bday! new knees rock!
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MEGA_MILES 10/23/2011 9:10AM

    Greg you continue to amaze and inspire!! Happy birthday and congratulations on your most amazing ride!! WOOHOO!!

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DIDMIS 10/23/2011 9:05AM

    WOW what a good job. My birthday is the 26th. A lot of good people were born in October.

Sounds you are recuperating or should I say have recuperated.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TMW54812 10/23/2011 8:21AM

    Congrats and Happy Birthday! It's not my Birthday till June but you have inspired me to attempt a new personal best in walking as soon as I can (recovering from foot injury). emoticon

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CLAUDECF 10/23/2011 7:53AM

    Happy birthday! And congratulations on your bike ride, too!

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JULIA_211 10/23/2011 7:06AM

    Happy Birthday! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
I didn't miss it after all! May you have many, many more successes and birthdays to remember! emoticon

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WINE4GIRL 10/23/2011 6:47AM

    Absolutely amazing! emoticon
emoticon Happy birthday!

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NERVOUSWRECKIAM 10/23/2011 6:05AM

    Congrats! You are amazing!

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REBECCA431 10/23/2011 5:59AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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I can't believe I did this!!!

Monday, September 19, 2011

I just came in off the bike path and checked you trip meter. I found that I have ridden 754 milse so far this summer!!!
That may not seem like much for a summer of riding, but 2 1/2 years ago if I had been asked to go biking, I might have made it to the end of the driveway!
Now, 160 pounds lighter and with a new knee ( which I got on June 17th of this year), I have my sights set on 1000 miles before winter comes to North Dakota.
I put 500 miles on new Trek Navigator 2 before my surgery, picked up my (even newer) Trek FX3 on August 23, and now hav 254 miles on that one.
It seem the more I ride, the more I WANT TO ride. I think I'm becoming a "cyclepath"!!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEVSMOSS 11/13/2011 6:12PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WILDFIREKRISTIN 10/27/2011 11:43PM

    I haven't ever heard of a cyclepath..lol, but what an awesome choice of words to use. I think you are doing amazing and should be darn proud of that and no doubt you will reach 1000 soon!

Wahoo!

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BUSY_BEE68 9/25/2011 8:10AM

    emoticon

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SKINNYPOWELL1 9/22/2011 7:46AM

    You are emoticonin my book. Great mileage and great determination, you've been through a lot and you still keep at it. A M A Z I N G !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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LUNADRAGON 9/20/2011 8:51AM

    Congrats on the great mileage and successes! You should be proud of yourself for your accomplishments and improving your healthy lifestyle!
emoticon emoticon

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BARBARAROSE54 9/20/2011 8:34AM

    emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 9/20/2011 8:28AM

    Love that: "cyclepath"! Sounds like a terrific mania to cultivate!

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JULIA_211 9/20/2011 4:30AM

    That's the best kind of "path" to be! emoticon I have no doubt that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to do. emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 9/20/2011 4:30:47 AM

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CAROLANN27 9/20/2011 2:01AM

    Have been thinking of you a lot since my brother's knee surgery last week. You were so well prepared and positive it is impressive. Love the "cyclepath"!

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RAINBOWMF 9/19/2011 11:37PM

    "cyclepath"!!!! I love it LOL

You are nothing short of the emoticon

emoticon mileage.

How about a picture of the new bike and you?

Hugs Mary

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DIDMIS 9/19/2011 10:35PM

    cyclepath"!!!! I liked that. emoticon emoticon

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MRDPOLING 9/19/2011 10:06PM

    Dude that is nothing short of amazing! Good on ya!!!!!!

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LADYANDREA2012 9/19/2011 9:49PM

    Awesome!!!! You inspire me!!! I want to go back to biking, one day, as I used to. Great job!!!!

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BARCLE 9/19/2011 9:44PM

    emoticon that's awesome emoticon emoticon

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TO_BE_FIT 9/19/2011 9:44PM

    That is fantastic. Great job.

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K1TT3N 9/19/2011 9:34PM

    Awesome that is great keep going

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PASTORMIKE7 9/19/2011 9:33PM

    This is really wonderful!!! Keep up the fun and exciting cycling!!

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ACTIVE_AT_60 9/19/2011 9:30PM

    Yeah, it is pretty addictive that cycling. Congrats on your mileage.

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Six weeks ago.....

Friday, July 29, 2011

It has been six weeks since my knee replacement.
Everyone says I'm doing great, but I'm not so sure!!! There is still a fair amount of pain when I do therapy, I haven't been given the ok to ride my bike, and I can't completley straighten my leg or flex it as much as the Doctor wants. I am only able to straighten it to about 7 degrees and flex it to about 109 degrees (he wants me at completley straight and to at least 115 degrees for bend).
On the positive side, I am able to take Otto for short walks, make it to work every day, got rid of the crutches and cane a week and a half ago, and still doing therapy twice a day (once with the physical therapist and once on my own at home).
Maybe I'm just impatient, and expect more to happen faster. I will just keep working on it and time will tell.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

YJNANA 8/6/2011 10:30AM

    Hi, we miss you on Change is Good, Team.
Come share your experience with us. I agree, patience is a hard thing, but you WILL be 100% in time. Your a fighter and you will win this. How is your other knee doing?
I read someone mention YMCA, have you thought of joining the Y for the use of the POOL???
OR a local High School with a pool open to the Public.
think about it.
Yvonne

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SUNNYWBL 7/30/2011 4:42PM

    Impatient you are, just like the rest of us! No goal , however heart felt, arrives when WE want it to, but you will get there! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ANDYINBC 7/30/2011 12:30PM

    Remember, your weight loss was gradual and the healing involved in this, is also gradual. You will be back and riding, walking, swimming with the best of them soon.

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CAROLANN27 7/29/2011 6:00PM

    I'll add my vote to those who say you're impatient, but you're keeping at it, and I'm sure you will be fully recovered in good time. Your getting yourself into such good shape before the surgery is really paying off now.

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TMW54812 7/29/2011 3:37PM

    Greg, if you are frustrated with your progress now, imagine if you had this before weight loss! You are way ahead because of your superb fitness level and you WILL be fully recovered soon. Keep up the great work!

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MEGA_MILES 7/29/2011 2:36PM

    My friend, you are impatient! Good for you, it only demonstrates your motivation to get better. Please remember though that your body/leg suffered allot of trauma to implant the new hardware. This will take time to heal and cannot be rushed along. Just like a fine wine or cheese needs time to reach it's potential, you will need time and continued therapy to reach your potential.

Keep up the daily work, and I guarantee you that it will get better and better.

emoticon emoticon

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MRDPOLING 7/29/2011 11:25AM

    I am a slow healer. After my accident I kept having to remind not only myself but my doctors that I heal bones very slowly but eventually I exceeded everyones expectations for my recovery. But it was a year before I was back to some level of normal and over 2 more years before I stopped having 'PAIN' days.

Remember, right now you may be the tortus but even the tortus beat out the hare.

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DINGALLSTOO 7/29/2011 10:15AM

    PATIENCE!!! sounds like you are doing great.

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DIDMIS 7/29/2011 9:52AM

    Greg I had wondered about your surgery as I hadn't seen you on the team in awhile.
A friend of mine just had knee replacement. She just left the hospital and is going to a place for therapy. When she left our local TOPS group she said she should be back in two weeks. I thought that was pushing. I had hip replacment a few years back. Be patient, do all you can without hurting yourself and you will see yourself improving little by litte.
Thanks for stopping in.
Irene

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BARBARAROSE54 7/29/2011 9:34AM

    Just take it a day at a time. I think you are doing great !

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LADYANDREA2012 7/29/2011 9:21AM

    I agree with DAVEINSEOUL, I think you are impatient, and I really understand you. I had an ankle replacement, about a year and a half ago, and it took 9 months to start moving and bending it. Still I am in therapy at YMCA pool. It has help me a lot and I am doing much more better with them than with the doctors therapy because the water protects from injury and impact. But I really understand how you feel, and why you are impatient.

Take care do not push yourself, but please do not stop using your knee. Keep on with therapy and keep on with your exercise at home. Walk, walk, walk, and keep walking it will ease the pain and it will help your knee to go back to normal. For 6 weeks you are doing great, that is for sure, I can tell you.

I hope you will feel less pain soon and you will recover faster. Have a great day.

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ULTRAKING 7/29/2011 9:06AM

    I hope it really keeps healing quickly for you. Surgery is always difficult, no matter how "minor" it seems. Before you know it, I'll bet you will be back to burning it up on that bike. I hope you get better soon! emoticon

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DAVEINSEOUL 7/29/2011 7:50AM

    Yes, I think you are impatient. For six weeks out of surgery, I think you are making great progress. Don't try and rush it too much, or you'll set yourself back.

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Now for the HARD part!!!!

Monday, July 04, 2011

My surgery went well. All the new parts fit and are in place. Now all I have to do is the rehab so I can get back to the activity level I was at before and then move forward.
Actually I got home last week, but was very surprised how much the surgery took out of me, and how much pain is involved. Today is the first day I have even sat at my computer long enough to write anything. I can't imagine how it would have been if I had not gotten myself into the condition I was before going in. I would probably still be in some rehab facility trying to get strong enough to go home.
I was in the hospital for about 4 days, then stayed with my sister and brother-in-law for a few days before I drove back home. The 180 mile drive was surprisingly easy!!! I did stop in Grand Forks (about half way home), which helped. I had to stop there at the bike shop to order my new one!!!! Ya, I'm a little crazy, but I just thought I would need a faster, more road type bike when I get all healed. I'm really looking forward to getting it and being able to really go riding!!!!! I'm already planning my goal for October. Since I won't be running a 5K by my 60th birthday, I have changed my plans and am going to work on a 60 mile ride on that day!!!!
Back to the knee. The Doctor said things went well although he had to put in a couple more screws than usual (something about a crack in part of one of the bones where the attachment was made). I started therapy the day after, and by the time I left the hospital I had 88 degrees of flexion in the joint. Now I am going to therapy here twice a week and doing exercises at home. The therapist says I'm doing fine (that makes one of us!!! LOL).
I still spend most of my time with the leg elivated and ice on the knee, but I think I can see some improvement daily. It wil be a week or two before I can go back to work and I still have trouble sitting at my computer for very long, but I will get back soon, I'm sure.
I'm glad it is over and I want to thank all my Spark friends for their prayers and well wishes. Knowing some one cares makes everything a lot easier.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SKINNYPOWELL1 7/26/2011 8:49AM

    So glad to hear everything went well and that you are on the road to recovery and a 60-mile bike ride !!!! What an optimist you are !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOve the "CAN DO" attitude. emoticon

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DIDMIS 7/10/2011 4:43PM

    I was wondering about you so went to your page. I can't believe you drove that far so soon after knee surgery.
I had hip replacement some time back and didn't let it stop me for too long either.
The doctor's always say you can't drive for 6 weeks after any kind of surgery but sometimes it is easier than if we were doing other things like running a 5K for example. emoticon
Happy about the new bike. Keep up the good work. emoticon emoticon

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SCOTTK3000 7/7/2011 9:36AM

    take it nice and slow and easy! all the best!



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GEMINI-SKY 7/5/2011 5:17PM

    So Glad You're back Gregg and all in one piece (that works) ! ! !LOL


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MEGA_MILES 7/4/2011 11:12PM

    Welcome back Gregg. I'm glad to hear you are doing well. Don't rush your recovery. Just like your weight loss, it takes time.

I'm curious to hear what you decided to purchase for a road bike.

Take your time, but get well soon. emoticon

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DDOORN 7/4/2011 10:51PM

    Great to hear from you and that things went as well as they did!

I just KNOW that as soon as you can you're gonna be up and SPARKIN' in whatever way you can!

Don

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WATERMELLEN 7/4/2011 10:43PM

    Welcome back: and thanks for the good news. You prepared and were in optimal shape for the surgery, and you'll work hard on the rehab . . . love the idea of getting the new bike!!

Hope that every day reduces the pain and increases the strength and flexibility!

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ANDYINBC 7/4/2011 9:58PM

    Hope you are back at it and feeling better real soon.

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RAINBOWMF 7/4/2011 9:57PM

    So glad all went well. I know a lady on here that is nursing her Hubby back after the same surgery, he does not seem to be doing as well as you so I would have to agree, it was the fine shape you got yourself into before your operation.

New bike yeahoo, you deserve it.

Hugs Mary

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SUNNYWBL 7/4/2011 8:56PM

    I'm so happy you are back home and recovering on schedule! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

With your spending on things to help you recover, when are you going to get a laptop to make Sparking easier on you? Just saying. emoticon


emoticon emoticon emoticon

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YJNANA 7/4/2011 8:17PM

    Welcome back
Glad your doing well on the therapy and have Goals already.


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MRDPOLING 7/4/2011 7:53PM

    OMG I am so glad everything went GREAT for you! And I am excited to see you progress in your recovery and get back to biking!

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MNNSAIDE 7/4/2011 7:51PM

    Glad your back and that everything went well.

See ya on Trivia!

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JULIA_211 7/4/2011 7:38PM

    I'm so happy that you're back sparking and making plans already, lol! Very determined guy! emoticon emoticon

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CAROLANN27 7/4/2011 6:51PM

    Welcome home! I'm glad to hear everything went well. You will be off to new heights soon! Can't wait to hear about your adventures.

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ELYMWX 7/4/2011 4:29PM

    Thanks for the update, Gregg. Good luck on the 60 (x2)!

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TMW54812 7/4/2011 4:11PM

    Glad to have you back on-line and on the mend. There is no question your level of fitness plays a major role in your rapid recovery....a nice dividend for all the effort you have put in to achieve fitness and a healthy lifestyle. It won't be long before you are cooking dinner for the ladies again! LOL....

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ACTIVE_AT_60 7/4/2011 4:07PM

    Welcome back 'mr bionic man'. Glad to see everything went well and you are on the road to recovery. So, new bike? tell us more....

So, 60 miles in october, that is impressive. Good thing the bike is good for rehabilitation. I am very impressed with the goal you have, and send mea mail if you need any information about hydration and nutrition for that distance. There are several way of doing it - and just to warn you - if you ask three cyclists about nutrition and hydration you will get 5 different ways of doing it.

Again, glad to see you are back and you are well.

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BARBARAROSE54 7/4/2011 4:05PM

    Thanks for update and glad to hear all went well. Now to get you back to 100% better.

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Leaving early in the morning

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

I will be leaving early in the morning on the 16th to go to Fargo. I have to stop and do a number of things is Grand Forks on my way to Fargo. I am taking my bike to the shop for the 10 hour check on cables etc. I'm about 25 hours over the time!!!! I guess I got a little carried away, but I have been on it for a total of 35 hours since the weather got good enough to ride this spring.
Otto is already at a friend's playing with their beagle, so they both should have a good time while I'm gone.
I don't expect to have access to a computer while I am recovering from the surgery, so this will be my last time to post until I get home. I will be back as soon as possible and report on how GREAT I am doing!!!!!!
Gregg

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLAUDECF 6/27/2011 3:32PM

    Keeping my fingers crossed for you and looking forward to 'seeing" you again emoticon

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MRDPOLING 6/24/2011 2:53PM

    With all the water they are getting up there, I hope you are safe!!!!

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MNNSAIDE 6/17/2011 10:33PM

    Gregg - God Speed
You will be in my prayers for this trip to my
home - Fargo, North Dakota!

Your Spark Family emoticonwill be here
awaiting your return.



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DIDMIS 6/17/2011 8:58PM

    Gregg, may the Lord be with you, with the doctors and everyone who will be helping you to get well. Get well soon and we will see you when you get home
Irene

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ELYMWX 6/17/2011 12:10AM

    Good luck, Gregg!

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MEGA_MILES 6/16/2011 8:16PM

    I'm anxiously awaiting your first report. All the best Gregg!!

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CAROLANN27 6/16/2011 4:32PM

    Gregg, I know you have already left, but you know I send my best wishes and thoughts your way. Can't wait to hear how it all went.

Carol

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SUNNYWBL 6/16/2011 4:14PM

    I'll be keeping you in my prayers for a fast and thorough recovery! Vaya con Dios!

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RIVERWRITER 6/16/2011 11:36AM

    I'll say a prayer for your successful surgery and quick recovery, Gregg. We'll be watching for you to be back asap!

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BARBARAROSE54 6/16/2011 10:44AM

    emoticon emoticon healing wishes for speedy recovery.

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GEMINI-SKY 6/16/2011 7:04AM

    You're in my thoughts and prayers.
Come back safe and sound...
OXOX

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JULIA_211 6/16/2011 4:33AM

    I'm looking forward to hearing how well it went. Have a safe trip there. Congratulations on hitting your 350 goal! emoticon God Bless! emoticon

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