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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello all,

My sports/fitness pursuits were originally confined to running and weightlifting. I've been cycling for 1 year 7 months.

In 2004 while running with my 11 year old we were hit by a driver dialing a cell phone. My son was killed and I nearly lost both legs. The right leg was the worst. The quad tendon was 95% severed. The patella tendon was completely severed. The patella tendon insertion on the shin bone was 60% ripped out. Only 75% of my knee cap remained. The other portion had broken off and had to be removed.

The left leg wasn't much better. Broken tibia and fibula, severed anterior tibial tendon.

Then five weeks of fighting infections in both legs that nearly caused amputation in and of itself.

After two years and 13 surgeries my legs were saved.

For three years after the last surgery I walked for exercise. Then at five years post accident I purchased a bike. I had no idea if my legs could handle cycling but I had grown weary of being a couch potato and gaining excess weight.

The cycling worked wonders for my physical condition. My legs increased in strength and my body weight dropped. I could never have started with weightlifting or running, I was too week and severally injured.

After two months I added swimming to my routine. Then after several months of mailbox to mailbox running in excruciating pain was able to run for a mile. Then five miles. That summer I was able to participate in some short distance triathlons. I was at the back of the pack but had fun. This went on from summer 2009 through summer 2010.

Now at the end of the summer 2010 the knee pain on my right leg is too severe to run. Osteoarthritis due to the trauma has eaten the surface coating of the back side of my knee cap.

So what's my complaint. Lol Well it's hard to convince myself to never run again despite the pain.

How do you folks let go of running or another favorite sport and move on to something as good or better but more tolerable to the body?

Thoughts and opinions about where I've been and where I am and similar situations in your lives are welcome.

I'm hoping to stimulate a lively and interesting thread for all.
 

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Wow, Bucky. First, my condolences to you and your loss. What an absolutely horrible experience to go through.
Hats off to you for coming as far as you have with everything you've had to deal with both emotionally and physically.
I don't have any advice on how to let go of a sport you love doing. I suffer from an autoimmune disease that when it flares up, pretty much makes my life miserable - all my joints "hurt", I'm tired, I lose my speed and endurance. Really set back my triathlon training for this season as I spent much of the first four months of this year just doing whatever I could, but not able to "train" much. Fortunately for me, I'm not in pain like you are. Although, I "suck" at whatever I'm trying to do at the time, I can still do it. Takes me longer to hike trails, can't ride as far as I should be able to, affects my breathing, and my softball ability goes out the door (as a shortstop, I need all my wits about me, especially as a female playing on a coed league! :p) But I've never had to stop any of it.

....you know, thinking a little more, I did give up something I loved. I sold my motorcycle at the beginning of this year. I didn't ride much of last year at all as I kept getting more and more ill. I was (still do sometimes) losing focus more frequently, I'd get dizzy (I have really low blood pressure as it is, but it would drop for no reason), and the vibration of the bike made things worse. I couldn't feel my hands and feet, so braking and shifting gears became difficult, as did stopping and putting my foot down. I was just too scared to ride anymore as I felt it was just a matter of time before I had an accident. I guess I traded motorcycling for something else - more bicycles :) Seriously, before this year, I just rode around on our trails at a leisurely pace and commuted to work. Don't get me wrong, I rode a lot, just not competitively or with groups. After I sold my m/c I bought my Fuji Cross Comp - I had never had a road bike, and we have lots of dirt trails around here, so I wanted something that could do both which is why I got the xc bike. Riding became a whole new thing for me, I've competed in two tris this summer, with one more on the way, I "work" for a my LBS as a group ride leader on the weekends, and I'm planning on trying cyclocross racing this fall. I borrowed a girlfriend's mountain bike and did a mtb race a couple weeks ago and loved it!! So I'm getting more of that kind of riding in. I suppose it's just a matter of finding something that you enjoy as much as you do running. With your cycling and swimming, you shouldn't have to worry about putting weight on, and it will keep your joints moving. That's all I've got!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks so much. Just hearing that other folks are up against similar and usually tougher challenges is a comfort. Keep on keeping on. Best wishes! Bucky
 

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Wow. After all you've been through I'm confident you have the strength to do anything. At 16 I suffer from terrible joints in my knees (hereditary from my mother) and as a TEENAGER cannot run more than a couple nights a week. This is where biking comes in, where I live there is no shortage of trails within city limits. I can explore on my MTB for a couple hours without getting in a car. What keeps me on the bike and out of the running shoes is the ability to get out and away from it all for longer periods of time. Getting out on the bike with my phone turned off (Big step for someone my age) and just exploring and finding new things for me makes up for not running. If you're the type that gets enjoyment out of going farther and faster into new places biking can be the way to go. I recently road about 60 in around 5 hours, 30 minutes. I could never cover those distances on foot.

Again my condolences to you and your family. I hope that you find biking as beneficiary as your joints probably will!
 
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