“I read somewhere, that if you have limited funds, put it towards professional training rather than buy the latest gismos and gadgets. I can’t agree more. I may not have a new bike or a Garmin on my wrist but I really believe I could not have achieved what I have without the help and full support of Atlas.”
Everyone has a story and everyone has a journey. Just over a year ago Susan was one of our beginner women and only recently she completed our Rainbow Beach Training Camp (cycling 160km’s from Mooloolaba to Rainbow). Here is Susan’s story.
In March 2014, I ruptured my ACL skiing in Japan. It was day 2 of a 14 day family holiday. It ruptured because I was unfit and my hamstrings and calves were in bad condition. To be honest, I did nothing to prepare myself for that skiing trip.
The ACL reconstruction and the rehabilitation is the most challenging thing I have ever been through. It was much longer and harder than I ever imagined. It took me 18 months before I got my ‘back to sport clearance’. It was frustrating but slowly month by month I got stronger and stronger.
I applied for the Beginners Women’s Course with Atlas in Jan 2016. I was absolutely amazed with the professionalism of the business and our coach Anne Campbell. I met some amazing girls doing the same course and many of us are now close friends.
In March 2016, I fell off my bike doing the Bribie Island short course and broke my collarbone in half. I chose to have surgery.
In July 2016, I started back riding. I did a Tuesday morning ride out to Mudjimba and I pretty much failed. I felt so embarrassed because I had no speed, no strength and no power – I had nothing. However, Jason Crowther stayed with me all the way home, for that I am very thankful.
I really wanted to get better so I figured I just needed to ride more. I kept showing up to rides and I got to meet more and more of the Atlas Team. Lisa Crowther rode with me at the back of the group for a few months where we would ride a maximum of 90mins.
Jason wrote my first personalised program in September 2016 and I started attending group training for swimming and riding. My main goal was to be consistent. Running still proved to be problematic as I was still running with a limp. This took time to build up.
I did the Atlas Xmas Training Block, the Mooloolaba Triathlon and just last weekend rode to Rainbow Beach. Initially, I thought the ride would be outside my current ability, however, I was encouraged by Ruth, Greg and Sue to give it a go.
I’ve had some really positive feedback regarding last Saturday’s ride. People keep saying “You did great for a beginner.” I really enjoyed last Saturday’s ride. Sure it rained but everything else seemed to fall into place for me. I had a massage with Bec Edwards the Thursday before to loosen up my hamstrings and calves. I felt really comfortable with the people I was riding with. For most of the ride, I tucked in behind Ann Campbell. She made it easy for me. She is a smooth, experienced and talented rider and I knew I was safe. I loved the support of the ride from support vehicles and coaches. When I wanted to give up and hop in the bus, coach, Brendan Butler and the other riders encouraged me to keep on riding. I drank heaps and ate heaps. I stretched during the ride and after at the group Pilates class when we got to Rainbow. I seemed to have pulled up really well.
So to me, the ride was made easier because of the people around me. This includes my family and friends who were thinking of me and wishing me well in the rain. It was the people that I rode with and the other Atlas riders that cheered us in when we got to Rainbow. It is also the wider Atlas community. If you surround yourself by positive people and have the right mindset, the impossible is possible. Thanks Jason for allowing me to ride on Saturday and thank you to everyone else that has encouraged me, given me advice (and granted me Kudos on Strava). To each and every one of you, I am extremely grateful and very thankful to be part of the Atlas Group.