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Old 01-26-21, 06:37 PM
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Location: Colorado
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Bikes: 2020 Trek Domane SLR 9 (very green), 2016 Trek Emonda SL, 2009 Bianchi 928, 1972 Atala Record Pro

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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post

Since this thread is about creating a setup for 1 hand to do everything, im pretty curious how you ride now compared to before. Is it significantly slower, a bit slower, the same? Obviously speed is mainly from the legs, but I wasn't sure if there is continued balance and core use that exhausts you sooner or if all that isnt really applicable.
Hard to say.

I was 17 when I lost the arm. I had been riding a 10 speed for a few years as cross training for alpine ski racing.

Four months after my accident, one of my teammates entered a 100 mile bike race with domestic pros in the field and did a Breaking Away, start to finish solo win. He rose pretty quickly through the ranks until a drunk driver crushed his left side on New Year's Eve as he was walking along the highway. I'm pretty sure he would have been close to if not on the US Team in the late 70s, early 80s. We were pretty even at 17. If anything, I was a tad bit faster. But I never tested it in a race, which is what counts.

In the late 70s, when I would come for visits to Wisconsin from Colorado, where I was teaching adaptive sports, I rode with some folks whose names most of us would recognize. I never felt the arm was holding me back, except in sprints.

Enter 30 years of marriage, kids, career, and very limited riding.

In the 11 years I've been riding again, I can pretty much hang with most folks, although at 64, I'm not doing any county line sprints for money with the 25 year olds.

I've never been much into what ifs, because the activities I've been able to do at a fairly high level have been satisfying enough. If I had to guess, losing the arm has been a 5% drop at the margins in riding but no more, about the same loss I experienced alpine ski racing. That was enough to take me out of thinking I could make a living skiing, but was also motivation for pursuing school and a professional career.

Don't ask me about driving to my left in a pick-up basketball game, Nordic ski racing, golf with one hand, or dentistry - doable but different story.
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