Ok, so the title might be hyperbolic as I’ve still been active…just not as active as I wanted to be in the ways I found meaningful (it shouldn’t surprise anyone that a person working on a PhD in kinesiology would have a bunch of fitness equipment in their home)…but the scooter has indeed brought me back to being able to hit the gym like I knew it would! I’ve been using my university’s rec center, which was previously inaccessible because of a giant hill that I couldn’t safely climb with my manual chair and the walk would have angered my cyborg bits.
Not only does it feel awesome that I’m back in a gym, but I’ve been able to see first-hand some changes that were initiated because I commented on some access issues on a comment card. The notable one is that it would be awesome if they could make sure that a couple of the recumbent bikes had space next to them to park a wheelchair or scooter as many wheelers are able to use their legs (it used to be that the only machine with room was the handcycle). I zoomed in and was delighted to find a couple bikes that I could park next to!
It’s not a great photo, but for a spur of the moment shot it does the trick. The photo shows the grey carpet of the Rec as the background with my scooter in the foreground along with a bit of my blue pants to show that I’m sitting on a recumbent bike with my scooter next to me. Huzzah!
When I got on the bike, I completely forgot about the problems I had last time I tried to ride a recumbent bike for a workout because of a combination of my hypermobile joints and my borked spine (this was pre-surgery). I would be in agony with electric shock sensations down my legs and would get spasms if I went longer than five minutes (which I would do because I really wanted to work out). I’m actually glad that I forgot so I could be mindful of my body in the here-and-now instead of fretting about what might happen.
I intended to ride for about twenty to thirty minutes…which turned into forty-five minutes. Once I felt confident that I wasn’t going to have severe issues (meaning I would tolerate an increase in pain and some spasms, but anything that caused verbal outbursts or the desire to cry meant I was done), I was in my element. My heart started pumping, I started sweating, and I felt awesome. I think I could have cried from pure joy. I cranked out about eight miles (Fitocracy has the actual stats recorded) and left the Rec with a gross sweaty t-shirt and a dopey grin on my face.
I’ve been to the Rec several times since that workout and have left happy & sweaty every time. On top of that, I ran into a classmate at my office who offered to give me free personal training at the gym she works at so she can show off her training skills. I’ve only had one session with her, but we’re figuring out how to keep me a happy healthy gimpy gym rat. It’s a bit of an adventure, especially as I’m trying to heal tennis elbow that I got from using my forearm crutch.
Next adventure? Finding my cute workout clothes…or acquiring new ones (I am in pretty dire need of new sports bras).