You were seriously injured while riding your bike in 2006. What happened?
It was just one week after I had participated in Ironman Canada. I headed out for an easy cycle. I was on the highway, just outside of a small town near Edmonton, where I lived at the time, and a truck rear-ended me at highway speed. I sustained a fracture in my back and a pelvic fracture, and I also broke my arm in a compound fracture. I just remember how loud the metal wrapping around my bike was.
How did your background in fitness help with your recovery?
More than anything, I think that’s what made my recovery so successful. As athletes, we challenge ourselves every day, whether it’s “How far can I ride on my bike?” or “Can I make it up this hill?” Recovering from a traumatic accident like that is an extension of those challenges. My best advice is to set small goals, be patient, continue to be optimistic and enthusiastic while you’re working toward recovery and have faith that, one day, you’ll be at the finish line.
What do you hope people take away from your story?
I think just not taking movement for granted. A lot of people lose their physical capabilities, not because they get hit by a truck or have some traumatic incident that takes away their mobility but because they sort of give it up. My message is to just keep at it.