Commitment - Dedication - Desire

...I vs I

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

One more goal

One more goal.

Today is the 17th day since the crash that left me hurt and pissed off. The doctors told me 6-8 weeks for my foot to heal, 3 months for my back and then re-evaluate. After hearing the long road ahead I switched gears in my mind. The doctors can say what they want, I know my body and healing quickly is a matter of will, want and hard work. I can do better…much better! So I set some goals.

The first goal- swim.
Since the Wednesday following the crash I have been to the pool every day. Every day! The spine doc said swimming would cause pain but not injure me any further. I trust very few people with my medical care. Dr. Chris Webb is one of two so I would call, text, bother him (sorry) constantly asking what I could and couldn’t do. He confirmed, swimming may hurt but it wont cause further damage. Goal #1-Wading became walking, walking became floating, floating became sculling and sculling has now led to swimming. Im slow as hell and my legs drag because tightening those back muscles isnt happening yet-but I swim. 500yds, 1000yds, 1500yds and yesterday- 2100!!! I cant flip turn so I keep my head in the water and spin around to lightly push off the wall with my good foot. I know I look stupid but it’s a work in progress. HA! SPL is 4-5 high and my time…well, lets not even talk about that right now. Thanks Chris!!! Sorry but I still have to bother you.

2nd goal- get back to coaching and the ATC.
I don’t need to go on about how awesome this group is or how supportive they have been or how people I barely know offered to help any way they could, or how Matt & Dustin spent a Friday night moving furniture and hanging out with me. I wont go into all that ;) Yes, the ATC is amazing! Its that amazingness that inspires, supports and pumps me up every time Im around them. They welcomed me and Tami since day 1. That is why this was goal #2. I needed to be back. Last Friday I made it and glad to be back I am!!! Thank you ATC!!!!

3rd goal- get on the trainer.
I set this goal for the start of week 3- Monday, March 24th. It didn’t happen. I was sore from perhaps possibly over doing it in the pool. Possibly… so today I said it needed to be done. Even if for a minute. Chris Rotelli gave me a water bottle last week with the saying; “ I am the master of my own fate.” You are damn right!! Those words hit home and replay constantly in my head. Trainer time- 45 minutes!

4th goal- complete Ironman Florida 70.3, five weeks post-crash.
The limiter here would be my foot. How I was going to make it through the half marathon Im not sure, but I had time to figure this minor detail out. Tami quickly put an end to this goal. I think the term “psycho” was used along with some other explitives…lol!!! Sorry babe!

Im happy with the progress but there is still a lot of work to do and perhaps its outside of the physical healing. Today as soon as I started pedaling the anger began to rise. With each pedal stroke, the pain would come but the anger overtook it. Power and cadence are just like my swimming- way off. Mad, pissed, irate, I stopped.  

I set some lofty but attainable goals for this year. The formula was simple. Swim my swim. Bike at 3.7-3.9. Run was the limiter and we were addressing it with frequency like I have never done before. My weight was down, nutrition was spot on and hydration would no longer hold me back. This was the year!

That’s all gone now. What remains is anger and fear. When I go to sleep, sitting at my computer or drinking coffee in the morning, flashes of wrecking my bike come into my mind. I’ve replayed that day a million times thinking about what I could’ve done different. I should’ve pushed the break. I should’ve pushed the pace. I should NOT have dropped back in. It culminated today as I pedaled on the trainer. I had no power, spinning was painful and all that I had worked for is gone.

I realize Im lucky. Very lucky! This could have been much more serious and ended much worse. I could have no support from my wife, closest friends and ATC. I could still be on the couch and not doing anything at all. I realize this. I don’t feel bad for myself and the will to rehab is stronger than ever. Regardless- Im still extremely angry!! Adding to that anger is the realization that I don’t seem to be a big enough man to let it go.  Anger isnt a bad emotion- I get that. Its natural and if handled well can be useful. I need to figure that part out. One more goal to put on the list…


  1. It's hard to let go of the anger and the emotional trauma (i.e. the flashbacks and such). I crashed heavily in a race in 2009 due to someone else's mistake. Four days in the hospital, a month of work missed. It took lots of miles on the road over the course of several months before I could ride without visions of that day. The reason I was moved to comment, though: it's not "all gone now." Your body hasn't forgotten the work you did. Hitting the ground didn't knock your fitness out of you. You'll heal, you'll work hard again, and you'll get back to where you were. The cards have changed, and you have a new hand to play. That's all.

    1. Thanks George!! Frustrating as you seem all to familiar with. I appreciate the reply!!! Thank you!