The shoulder impingement I’ve mentioned a few times recently has been getting steadily worse. I’m not sure exactly what I did to aggravate it so much, but in the second half of June it went through a period of hurting so intensely and constantly that I just wanted to lay my head down on my desk at work and give up. It was a peculiarly harsh, stabbing pain that felt like someone was shoving a knife directly into my shoulderblade.

While I worked with my physiotherapist on trying to settle things down, I did everything I could to avoid increasing the inflammation. This meant temporarily abandoning the road bike and commuter, both of which have rigid forks, for the squishy comfort of the full suspension ETSX. I’m supposed to be preparing for a couple of 160km rides later this month, but recently I’ve traded road rides for trails interspersed with steep, gravely hills.

It hasn’t been all bad. I haven’t been very far afield or ridden anything particularly technical given the need to avoid jarring the cranky shoulder, but I’ve explored pretty much every inch of the Pacific Spirit Park trails and ridden endless circuits on some of the gentler Stanley Park singletrack. On these baking hot summer days, there are far worse places to be than riding smooth dirt under cool trees.


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