The Mind Was Willing … The Body Was Not
After years of competing at a high level for (in the loosest definition of the term) “a normal person” and crashing like a pro, I found myself in a position where my mind was willing, but my body was not!
When I tell a none cyclist about my injuries they give me a look that implies I must be; a. really bad at cycling, and/or b. very very clumsy. When I clarify that in fact I’ve had a lot less injuries than many other riders, I feel I may have tainted the whole cycling fraternity in their minds.
Obviously pros get much better treatment, around the clock physio and training, but it makes me wonder, what must it be like to have drunk from the golden chalice only to be returned to reality through injury? It’s been tough for me, but I’ve only been playing at the great game of cycling!
In my dark times it felt like my injuries would never heal and only get worse, it was enough to force me out of BMX racing in 2012, so when I re-tore my ACL/PCL in July 2016, the outlook was bleak.
I had started to mentally close some doors, the desire to protect my fragile knee was beginning to morph into fear and I almost succumbed to it! If it wasn’t for the fact that people don’t buy used bikes in the winter, my bikes probably would have been sold and my garage could look a lot different.
It was getting an email about a new product test and seeing some of the unique parts I have on my mountain bike, combined with making some progress with my injury, that re-lit the fire and forced me out of my funk!
The fire burned so strong that rather than deal with reality and face sedentary life, I needed a target to drive me forward, that target, Ironman 70.3 Ohio.
I had good triathlon knowledge having developed a line of triathlon specific clothing, but my practical experience was restricted to one sprint distance event in 2012.
I re-tweaked my knee in January, but my target had already been set, in my mind this just made the challenge all the more rewarding, I would be a triathlete, despite the best efforts of my body to the contrary.
In February I could barely manage running half a mile, if I was going to make it to IM70.3 level, it truly would be a case of from Zero To IM70.3.
I researched and found a training plan, the only problem was I had no base level at all and I would need to train to simply begin that plan!
With injury weight, a lack of fitness and an ever growing fight between the desire to push myself and the need to rest, just getting to my training plan was eventful, but get there I did.