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Archive for June, 2007

#19 Progress Report

Transitioning off the crutches is going well & I feel that I’m ahead of schedule without pushing it too hard. Last week I was at 25% weight on my leg, this week I’m at 50%-75%. Physical therapy is also going well. The first week of visits was really easy, this week however my muscles feel the therapy. Luckily its purely muscle soreness and nothing to be alarmed about. Added to my routine this week was a few different squat type exercises…OUCH!

Next week I’ll be either on one crutch or walking unassisted…

Watching the CDA Ironman was inspirational, motivational as well as a whole bunch of other “tional” type words. While I’m trying to keep expectations low I think its realistic to race this fall. STOP right there, put down the phone, no need to call and tell me not to overdue it, let me explain. I have a couple different options & none of them include running. I could do a shorter tri and walk the run portion or a longer tri with a relay team. My physical therapist (who is also a triathlete) agrees that its not out of the question.

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Last weekend I was in Coeur d’ Alene Idaho to watch a full Ironman triathlon. This consists of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride then finished up with a marathon. While watching an event like this is amazing, we were there specifically to cheer on Sara, Bo, Chelsie & John. Of that group Sara was the only first timer, the other three had completed the race in the past.

This was the first time I have seen Coeur d’ Alene in the summer months, its beautiful. We had a cabin about 30 minutes out of town that was right on the lake. The confines of the cabin were cozy with 8+ people staying there but it was always enjoyable. Most of the nights it was Sara, her parents & brother, Harmony, Gretchen, Karen & Amy. It turned out to be a laugh a minute and everyone stayed very light hearted about the upcoming race.

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Thursday I was able to swim in the lake. The cold water was a little painful on my hip compared to the pool but I’m sure that will subside as time goes on. That evening we hung out at the cain & caught up with everyone.

Friday morning we headed into town so Sara could swim the course and get her first taste of the event. When I saw the swim course I kept my true reaction to myself…I’ll just say its looooong and to swim 2.4 miles it required two loops. We met up with Bo, Chelsie & John for the first time down at the swim course. After everyone get a dip in the lake they went to pick up their registration packets and Harmony and I went through the expo checking out the exhibitors. This may be a good time to mention how ROUGH the lake was. Our cabin was on a protected inlet and was pretty calm, the swim course however was another story…pretty much while caps.

Friday evening the meat eaters in the group & Harmony went to a true Idaho steak house. This place came highly recommended & I could see why. I ordered the smallest steak on the menu and had plenty of leftovers for Saturdays lunch. It may have been the best steak I have had, Harmony (the veggie of steak house group) overdosed on mushrooms.

Saturday we headed back into town to get Sara’s bike and other gear set up. The total number of competitors was 2200+, we weren’t alone down there thats for sure. It looked like the town had been taken over by carbon fiber bikes with disk wheels.

Saturday evening Andy hosted dinner at his home just west of Coeur d’ Alene. There were a ton of people there, Sara was going to have one of the biggest cheering section. This came complete with t-shirts commemorating the event. On the front of the t-shirt was a tribute to the race day motivational tool…THE COW BELL! Saturday evening was an early one, Sunday was going to start at 4am.

4 am came quick Sunday morning, Sara looked confident. She had been dedicated to training for this race and it showed come race day. We were all impressed with how calm, cool & collected she was. (It may have been a different story on the inside but she wasn’t showing it) We got to ground zero a little after 5, two hours till the starting gun. It was windy and the water was the roughest it had been all week. The athletes all carried themselves a little different, some looked like deer in head lights and others looked like it was just another day of training.

As it turns out the Coast Guard suggested that the option be given for competitors to sit the swim out but still get to bike & run due to the conditions. From what I understand this is a first in Ironman races but the conditions were that ugly. Very few people took that option, the starting gun went off and the pandemonium began. Seeing 2200 people hit the lake at once is a sight. This included people swimming back to shore after heading out only a couple hundred yards. From shore it looked bad but the stories from the swimmers made it sound even worse than it looked. The swim is one of Sara’s strongest areas and she showed it finishing 2.4 miles in an hour & twenty minutes. Bo & Chelsie also had great swim times.

Next was the bike portion of the race, I thought this what the most exciting part to watch. It was amazing to see the pro & elite athletes pulling up the hills in a hard gear and not looking taxed. Sara, Bo & Chelsie all had impressive split and average speeds on the bike. The first 30 or so miles they were all over 16 mph average. Even at that pace 112 miles takes a looooong time to ride. Many people think the bike is the key to a successful Ironman, you need to be fast but save yourself/legs for the final 26.2 miles on foot.

All three of the competitors we were watching came out of the bike looking strong. Summing up each persons marathon can be summed up like this; Sara, well trained, Chelsie, determined & Bo, blistered. All three of them finished the race with personal best times!

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Watching the racers finish 14 to 17 hours after the swim started was amazing. These were mostly everyday people that took on incredible amounts of training & more important ridicules mental toughness.

The rest of the trip consisted of rest and driving.

Sara, Bo, Chelsie & John, amazing work, thanks for sharing it with us!

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#17 P.P.W.B.

Today, June 19th I had my 12 week check up at the doctors. I’m now on the fast track to loosing the crutches, this will be done through whats called Partial Progressive Weight Bearing. In other words each week I can add 25% more weight on my leg. If my maths correct that means another 4 weeks till I’ll be walking completely unassisted. The doctor stressed that in this stage not to over do it & if pain persists to slow down. This afternoon I have my first physical therapy appointment.

All the other doctor’s notes were positive, the x-ray showed that the bone is healing very nicely & the outlook on a full recovery is excellent.

Is it just me or do my crutches get louder every day?!?!?!

Could this be considered a “crutch tapper”

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In the accident I took the majority of the impact, I break a femur & for the most part my bike just got some minor damage. This week I dropped my bike off at the bike doctor to get checked up. (With the help of Harmony’s taxi service)

Dropping the bike off is not really much of a story but the real story was the amount of screwed together bones in one small space. Of the 4 people in the conversation we collectively had enough screws to build a deck. I guess I now have the membership card only seen by airport security to the bicycling inner circle. (Lucky me

Next week I should have my bike back from the doctor and the following week I’ll be getting back on the trainer.

Bike on Trainer

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I’m back behind the wheel…

Harmony did an amazing job as my taxi over the past three months. No matter what, she always got me where I needed to be, hung out till I was done then taxied me back home. She even put up with my passenger seat driving suggestions…comments like “you know thats not a stop sign” or “you know this lane ends, right.”

At work I had Jamie as a taxi driver. I actually think she did it more for her own entertainment. She liked to do things like get me to crutch across 5 lanes of traffic to get to her car.

THANKS FOR ALL THE MILES!!!

This week though I had it & needed a little flexibility & freedom…I needed my car. My car had been waiting for me to heal over at my sisters. Harmony reluctantly taxied me out to the end of the earth (Duvall) pick it up.

I’m back behind the wheel, its a little sore on my leg but I’ll keep out of the drivers seat as much as possible.

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Its been pretty quiet over the past week or so. Harmony and I have just about got 100% settled into the new apartment.

We’ve been swimming a couple times a week. Each trip to the pool I feel stronger & stronger. The gym has been going pretty well also, I remember not to overdo it with weights being that I’m still on crutches. Last week I even peddled for 15 minutes on a stationery bike.

My next doctors appointment is two weeks & two days away. HOPEFULLY I’ll get the ok to ditch the crutches then. I’m confident that my legs healing well, the only pain left seems to be related to all the hacking around they did to get to the bone. Last week Laura (who I see for acupuncture treatment) said my body’s showing very few signs of still being in he healing mode! She also mentioned that if the bone was not healing correctly there was a good chance she would be seeing signs of it.

Next week my plan is to drop my bike off at the shop to get the damage from the wreck fixed. There doesn’t seem to be too much that needs addressed. Other than the hard hit to my hip the wreck was surprisingly smooth. (Its starting to be apparent that I may be a little accident prone)

Other than walking, the trip to Coeur d’Alene is what I’m really looking forward to. We’ll be joining a group of people to watch Sara, John, Bo & Chelsie compete in the Ironman. My partisipation will be a race day decision…I’ll see how I feel 😉

Stay toned, I’m almost of the crutches!

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