In 2010, on a wet mountain road, I crashed my bike and broke my pelvis. The pain was excruciating. At that very moment, I had no idea that my life as an athlete has been forever changed…and changed for the better.
While I plan to heal and make a full recovery so I can return to the active lifestyle and sports I love, I also know that I will never be the same person again.
Even just a few days after the crash, I was well aware of the fact that I would be spending months in rehabilitation just to regain my basic fitness. The weeks and months of hard work that followed my accident not only redefined what was as an athlete, it also transformed my perceptions of what “fit” really was. Here I am in a video recorded right after the accident:
[If you can't see the video above, please click here to watch it online.]
Re-Thinking My Fitness
Like most of you, left to my own devices, I would swim, bike and run almost every day. Training wasn’t just something I did, it was whoIwas. Being stuck in a wheelchair forced me outside of my comfort zone. I had to relearn what patience was. With my athletic gifts taken away, I had been reduced to just a person, as in the singular — my athletic self was officially more mental than real.
Over the course of 5 months, I began the slow process of regaining critical core strength and flexibility.
I started off in the swimming pool with various flotation devices on me. I graduated from there to physical therapy sessions 3 times a week. After building up to over an hour of daily exercises, I began slowly exercising again. First on the bicycle, and then on the run. As my confidence grew, I found a local ART provider who could keep me both flexible and focused as I attempted to regain my form.
2011: A Breakthrough Year
Looking back on it now, it’s hard to believe that I was disappointed about my accident. Little did I know, sitting on the side of that mountain road, that I was about to embark on a journey that would lead to my best season ever. In 2011, I set personal bests for the Half Iron distance, the 5K, 5-mile and 10 mile distances. I virtually PR’ed every race I entered. Not only that, I broke 10 hours for the 1st time in an Ironman, qualifying for my 4th time to get to Kona in Lake Placid with a 9:56. In Kona I went even faster with a 9:52.
Fast-forward to 2012
While I don’t have an injury to define me, knock on wood, the lessons of 2011 have not been lost. I know that critical core strength is what will make me more durable and faster than the competition. Over the years I had developed the basic morning routine off crunches and push-ups as part of my exercise program…but it wasn’t enough. It couldn’t hold a candle to the simple, effective work I endured as part of my physical therapy routine.
Fortunately, one of my local training partners invited me to her TRX training session at a local gym.
All it took was one 30 minunte session and I was hooked. My forearms were shaking. My quads were screaming. My core was literally numb. But three days later I could feel the effects and knew I had found an edge.
While everyone else is thinking about base miles and dreaming of the lava fields in Kona, I’m building critical core strength and lean muscle mass. The results are stunning: I have achieved race-ready body composition and fitness in February. And the results are following:
If you’re looking to get your own TRX system, please continue reading!
What is TRX Training?
TRX® is the creator of the TRX Suspension Trainer and the TRX Rip Trainer. Both innovative exercise tools help you build lean muscle, boost your metabolism, tighten your core and increase endurance. Both trainers come with real-time workout DVDs, exercise guides and everything you need to get started.