I am on the verge of being able to say I have achieved something with this bionic knee that I didn’t even achieve when I still had my own two knees! Want to know what it is?
My main focus for this new knee has been to get back what I lost before the injury started – I didn’t even have the idea of ‘breaking new ground’ on my radar at all! But it seems I am about to do exactly that!
This was not something I even thought about till I was 2/3 of the way through my long bike ride today. I was working out how many kilometers I would have covered by the time I completed the ride. Then I was trying to remember when the last time was that I had covered a similar distance. There came the problem.
As a triathlete, I was always a sprinter. I tried an olympic distance triathlon twice (1500m swim, 40km bike 10km run) and I hated it both times! I also tried a 1/2 ironman distance triathlon once, just to tick it off my bucket list (1900m swim, 90km bike and 21km run). Sprint was always my preferred. That comprised of 750m swim, 20km bike and 5km run: all at flat tack sprint pace. I loved it, go hard or go home, all done by breakfast!
So training for the aquabike has meant a massive mind shift for me: absolutely no sprinting going on here, it is now all about endurance. The distances are 3km swim and 120km bike which is longer than a 1/2, but not quite as far as a full ironman distance triathlon (3.8km swim and 180km bike, 42km run). Again, this is not something I had thought much about. I simply decided I wanted a crack at a multisport race that had world qualification status but that didn’t require running. Aquabike is the only option.
The swimming was never a worry for me, I can cover 4km of swimming easily and relatively effortlessly. The bike was always going to be the challenge because of the distance, I just have never trained for that distance.
The last time I completed distances like this (I just had to google this!!) was 2008. That was when I did my one and only half ironman distance race. Today I cycled 74km. The target race distance is 120km, so todays ride was just under 2/3 of the target distance.
The last time I did any middle distance training was 11 years ago. I only have to add more than 16km to my weekly long ride and I will be cycling further than I have ever cycled before.
Just think about this for a moment. This new knee of mine, which is only 8 months old by the way, will soon be doing things that I didn’t even achieve when I was fit and well and had both of my own knees!
How totally awesome is that!!?