Cara from Columbia, MO

An image from a SSoD user who submitted a testimonial.
An image from a SSoD user who submitted a testimonial.

I had multiple people ask how I was able to stay so fit after my knee surgery. The answer was always easy; SSoD!  The biggest compliment came from my surgeon. He could not believe how fit I was… I told him I rode A LOT…  He gave me a look and I could see his doubt. I simply quoted Cat Kom and said “These are not your mama’s spin classes”.

From the outside looking in, there is nothing monumental about my story.  But for me, what I have been able to achieve with SSOD is priceless. I have been active all of my life. I played two sports in high school and did rodeos (barrel racing) in the summer. After I started to run at age 26 to quit smoking, I fell in love with the sport. Since 2005 I have done 1 marathon, 10 half marathons, 3 sprint triathlons and multiple 5k & 10ks. 

After my first child was born in 2008, I need to work out from home and would strength train periodically but mostly ran. But I grew bored with my workout. So, in 2012 my husband got me a spin bike and I joined SSoD. I would spin 1 or 2 times each week. But, my SSOD story does not begin until the fall of 2013. 

In September of 2013, I did the Tough Mudder and found myself to be really weak and that drove me crazy. So, I visited a local CrossFit gym and gave it a two-week trial.  During that trial, I tore the meniscus in my right knee (but would not have surgery for another 6 months). I did not return to Crossfit and was told not to run and the only cardio/workout that would be good for me was a bike. I was able to spin 4-5 days per week and maintain fitness.  It was also suggested that losing some weight would help too. 

During the no running phase I got pretty bummed and gained some weight (heaviest was 180lbs at 5’9”).  But how could I lose weight with a bum knee? That is when I went all-in with SSOD and it became my savior. I purchased a heart-rate monitor and went to 6 days/week of SSOD classes.  I started to lose weight and had my first knee surgery in March 2014.  Two weeks after surgery I was allowed gradually get back on the bike.  We took a family vacation in June 2014 in the Wisconsin Dells and we went to a couple of water parks. I was able to walk around in my two-piece swimsuit with confidence and felt very strong (I lost 15 lbs)! 

Then in late summer, I started to have more pain in my knee. After a visit with my surgeon, it was determined that I had to have a second surgery to remove a cyst that developed in my IT Band (same knee). So a second surgery was done in October 2014. I was determined to have it be my last. I worked extra hard to increase my strength training, taking more pressure off of my knees by strengthen my core and legs. 

I had multiple people ask how I was able to stay so fit after my knee surgery.  The answer was always easy; SSOD! But the biggest compliment came from my surgeon at my last checkup. He could not believe how fit I was and how strong my quad was after two surgeries in one year. I told him I had been riding my bike, A LOT.  He gave me a look and I could see his doubt. I simply quoted Cat Kom and said “These are not your mama’s spin classes”.
 
I wake up at 5am every morning to get in a workout, I crave the sweat and the burn. The priceless gift that SSoD has given me is a sense of confidence. I have two daughters (4 &6). I want to be a role model for them and not have it be someone they see on television or in a magazine. I want to show them a woman should be strong both mentally and physically. I was able to do that a few weeks ago while running my first 5k in over 18 months. I had only run about 3 times before the race, so all I was looking to do was finish and not have to walk. 

I ended up being the first female to cross the finish line! There is no way that I could have done that without SSoD. My legs, heart, and mind were strong thanks to the countless amazing workouts and trainers. I will never be able to say thank you enough for the priceless gift of health and confidence that you have provided me and my family!

Columbia, MO