I would like to share my story with you. It’s about a bike I invented and a personal trainer that has helped me achieve positive results within myself. With dedication and encouragement I have been able to reach my goals.
It all happened on June 29, 1992. I fell from a roof and broke my neck. I laid there in the hospital bed and nothing moved. Then six months after my injury, I moved a toe the day before Christmas. Doctors told me I would never walk again. I was out to prove them wrong, 6 hours a day for 5 years. I was now up standing and walking with braces on both legs.
In 1996, I created a bike that would help me gain more movement. The bike, what do we call it, a contraption, whacha ma call it, thing? I hear all sorts of comments from people as they watch us go by. I love it when they say: “Wow cool bike, where can I get something like that?” It has taken me eight years to develop the Two-Fun bike.
In 2001 I was accepted to the Miami project. It was a great experience that at the time I felt I would never get through. I was hung over a treadmill by a harness that took off 20% of my body weight. An electric wire was hooked to my legs. “Look straight ahead, into a mirror, not at your feet" I was told by the trainer. Let me tell you, at 47, this was the hardest thing I have ever done. Sitting in a wheelchair for 11 years of my life was my comfort zone. As the treadmill started to move, I tried to move my legs, feeling the electric shock to my leg. It felt like someone was hitting your funny bone. I spent an hour a day for 3 1/2 months in a harness over a treadmill. What I did learn was when I believed I could do it without any doubt, my mind took over my body and I started to walk normally without the electric stimulation to my legs. When I had a negative thought, my legs stopped moving and I fell. The mind is such a powerful tool. I have continued to improve by the directions of my person trainer and my bike.
My personal trainer Angelina, has taught me to set realistic goals and to continue to challenge myself. It feels good to accomplish these goals and even better to create new ones. I have learned many important things throughout my life, but nothing has been more useful than my determination and devotion to challenges. There have been times that I feel like giving up and find excuses for my disability. I become introverted, pushing those who have been most faithful to me away. My trainer does not allow me to give up. As much as I try to ignore her, she is there to encourage me that I can and will do this. I love her for her dedication and vision of me reaching my goals.
I now ride my bike 9 miles a day, three times a week with Heidi. My legs are strong. With the help from your tax deductible donation, this will move me to the next step. Pushing Boundries provides a variety of exercise therapies such as body-weight-supported treadmill walking, computerized electrical muscle stimulation cycling and visualization-activation muscle training. I am almost there. Please donate and help me reach my goals of walking again.