While riding my road bike on October 6, 2013, I slid on gravel at the corner of 15th St. and Highview. My left hip and leg were laid open and my road rash was deeply embedded with bits of dirt and gravel. It was around noon and all my friends and family were at work; thus, I did the only thing I knew how to do...I kept riding. Needless to say, this was an extremely poor choice. Approximately 6 blocks later I fell again. This time, I was knocked unconscious.
To make a long story short, I ended up at Freeman Emergency room to get my leg cleaned out and to have an MRI on my head and other tests. I had a concussion with a brain bleed on the left side of my brain. A week later, seizures set in.
I could not exercise for several months due to the delicate nature of healing one’s brain and being on seizure meds. I missed working out and felt I was getting sluggish, overweight and I knew I was losing muscle mass daily. For a woman who has worked out all her life, this time of healing was very difficult and at times unbearable. I wondered if I would ever be physically fit again.
In February 2014, I was taken off my seizure meds and given the go ahead to start exercising again... slowly. I started once a week, lifting weights and waiting for the summer biking season. When it came, I started riding again, but I was scared of falling. I found I could only ride one day for 15-20 miles and then I'd need about a week to recoup.
I kept at it and by the end of the summer, I could ride three times a week, but mileage was still low...20-25 miles on a good day. It still seemed like I had such a long way to go.
While lifting weights, Fred Snavely [Spin Instructor] started talking to me. He encouraged me to keep trying and he invited me to spin class. Frankly, I didn't think I could manage spin class, but one day I gave in and came to class.
Six months later, I'm still in class 3 time a week; I've gone to "spin school" and have become a certified spin instructor, and I can honestly say that 1.6 years after my accident, I'm stronger than I was at the time of the accident.
My advice to others: Pray! God hears our prayers and certainly answered mine!
Secondly, don't give up. Yes, it will seem like baby steps sometimes, but with perseverance, your body with change and improve.
Thirdly, try to work out 3 times a week; it makes a huge difference!
Fourth, eat to live; do not live to eat.
Fifth, congratulate yourself even if you just got out and walked for 5 minutes.
God's Blessings Always,