First Hike in Over Two Years

Very exciting day! I went with my wife and kids (5 and 2) for a hike near our house. It is a trail I had been on countless times in the past and had often also run on. I don’t think I’ve hiked it in at least three years. I had spinal surgery about two years ago (Jan 9th, 2019), and have definitely not done anything like this since then. Feels like a huge accomplishment.

I never saved anything for the swim back.

From Gattaca.
(Not really true, but I was thinking of this on the way up)

In the end we walked for about 80 minutes total with a break in the middle to have a snack up at a bridge that didn’t exist the last time I hiked this trail. About 2.4 miles and 480 foot elevation gain. It was a beautiful day, a bit windy, but nice and sunny. I used my knee braces for the first time in about nine months (used to use them every day), and used my hiking poles on the way down.

It was really great seeing the kids hiking. Connor (2) did quite a bit of walking, but Mekayla also did a lot of carrying. Morgan (5 ½) hiked the whole thing though and kept up really well. On the way down, Mekayla, with Connor on her back, circled around on some other trails to get a couple extra miles in and go back to our house. Morgan kept me company on the way back to the car. It was great and I had a great little hiking buddy.

So now I’m settled in on the couch for the 24-48 hours of nerve pain I am anticipating from so much exercise. I started the day at a two (out of ten), and am now at a five. The big question is if I’ll be able to fall asleep tonight. I had been at a mostly-maximum dosage of my neuro-pain med at night and I finally decreased it last week. So potentially I could boost the dosage tonight to help me sleep. We’ll see.

6 thoughts on “First Hike in Over Two Years

  1. Hi Greg, how are you? I’m so glad you’re being able to go back little by little to do what you love!!
    I wrote to you a long time ago, My name is Leonel, from Argentina. I’m finally going to have an arachnoid web operation. In my case it is in T3-T4. It turned out that beyond the compression my spinal cord is now inflamed, and so they have to operate. This will be in 3 weeks.
    I wanted to consult you again, because I still have doubts that what is happening to me is caused by the arachnoid web.
    Throughout these years my main problem has been fatigue, lack of balance, contractures, especially in the legs. I also feel weakness in the lower back, for example, when sitting I have a hard time being upright.
    This year I have had some important atrophy in one of my legs. Did you lose muscle too? On the other hand, did you have muscle fasculations? Did you feel an abrupt worsening of one of your legs, and perhaps, months later, that leg improved but another part worsened? Your ankles were weak? Has the shape of your feet changed? With the cold, did you feel much worse?
    In what do you feel that you improved at the body level after the surgery?

    From what I have read (I am a biologist) my symptoms are extremely related to lower motor neuron diseases than a upper motor neuron which is the case of cord compression. In addition, I dont have sensory losses, just needels or burning pain, but very ocassional.

    Thank you very much and I send you a hug from Argentina


    • Best of luck on the surgery. I have definitely had all of those symptoms: fatigue, lack of balance, and contractions of my legs. A lot of it got much better after my surgery though. Up until surgery things were just slowly getting worse and all of those symptoms got worse. After surgery I saw a lot of them go away. The lack of balance is still a problem, but I’ve gotten off of most of the meds I was taking to control the pain and spasticity.


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