As if to prove the theory, I went out on a Dawn Patrol ride with Chris, Jon and Trevor this morning. They very patiently put up with my wheezing and gasping on the climbs, and I in turn provided entertainment with wheezing and gasping on the climbs, and a beeping Hr monitor that sounded like something out of a Die Hard sequel was getting ready to blow. For the most part it was a great, great ride, I wound up getting in about three hours of sub- and supra-threshold riding, learned some more new skills, didn't have a major accident, and finished up just as my legs were blowing up bigtime - we're in moderate crampitude right now so I know it was a good ride that went right up to my admittedly limited limits.
That doesn't mean The Nystrom Index was invalidated. Oh no, far from it. Right after started the ride I failed to clear a pile of rocks and tipped over ignominiously. I dinged a knee on the rocks but kept riding, my knee warmers soaked up most of the blood. The pain, I just lived with - but when you're a fat novice mountain biker, that's what you have to do. Or as Chris put it in comments below, You Have to Pay Your Dues in order to get better.
Yeah, that's a #2 pencil eraser-sized hole just below the knee. Gotta go scrub it out with some Betadine.
It's a mark of how highly I esteem Chris, to know that I'm happy to ride with him even though I seem fated to give offerings to Tullio Campagnolo and Fausto Coppi ("The gods") every time we're on the same trail system at the same time. Is he my own personal mountain biking kryptonite?
So be it. On the positive side, this is a *lot* milder than knocking myself out running into some frickin' tree, so maybe The Nystrom Index, or perhaps The Chris Effect, is waning a bit. So at least I got that going for me. Which is nice.
Ps. I don't actually believe that The Nystrom Index is in play, in fact Chris offers tips that have probably saved me from some GINORMOUS endos. But I will confess, two or three more concussions, a couple more pints of blood, I'm going to start having some questions. Though the ride was so sublimely fun today that I think I would have still ridden, even at the cost of two or three more cuts like that. [One day, I'll look myself in the mirror and take responsibility for stacking it up all the time, until that day, I need some good natured scapegoats...]
Just kidding Chris. Thanks for the ride bro.
[Update: 5:30 PM: *Still* hasn't stopped bleeding. I guess I'll hit Nighttime Pediatrics and get some stitches put in. Bummer. Everybody says it, but that *will* in fact leave a mark.]