Times and medicine change. Now, thanks to a single person who refused to go down without a fight, we know that exercise is actually good for people with MS. (I wonder what else they’re telling me that will be corrected eventually?) The pioneer of this idea was a former Olympic medal winning skier named Jimmie Heuga. Sadly, Heuga died last year, but not before he established the Heuga Center for MS and revolutionized MS care worldwide.
What in tarnation does that have to do with the title of this post? I’m getting there.
There is a dilemma for people with MS. How does one exercise when one is unable to perform many of the movements required for said exercise? I can’t do many of the activities I used to do: running, tennis, long walks, lots of stairs, and skiing, for example. One thing I can still do is bicycle. (Now do you get the connection?) So whenever I get a chance, I go for a ride. Since my balance is not up to snuff, I prefer off-road bike paths to the street.
When I’m home, that means the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail. Although I had to wait nearly 25 years for the path to be completed, it’s now one of my town’s finest features. Sometimes with friends, sometimes alone, I ride the trail as often as possible. Riding its length allows me to observe varying landscapes from pristine meadows to downtown bustle, to shining lake. Because trees enshroud much of the length of the path, it’s usually cool in the summer – a real relief on days like today.
It’s also a haven for many forms of wildlife. I never know what kind of flora or fauna I may encounter on the path. One of the best parts of the path is that it gets me to more remote areas that would otherwise be very difficult to access by bike.
Each ride seems to have a different highlight. A couple of days ago, for instance, I turned the trip into a continuous prayer of thanksgiving. For the entire ride, I thanked God for each and every thing and/or living being I encountered. It was a glorious time.
Today I had a different experience, which I will relate in my next post. (How’s that for a cliffhanger?)