A few weeks ago I got wrangled in to doing a 3 hour spin class for something called the Heroes Project benefiting Noah Galloway.
I’d written about Noah and you can read up about it here, but since most of you guys who read my blog have ADD, here’s the important part:
On December 19, 2005, Noah lost his left arm above the elbow and left leg above the knee in an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attack in Yusafiah, Iraq. He was quickly transported to Germany to receive medical treatment and was unconscious for five days.
Noah woke up late in the evening on Christmas Eve to find out he had lost two of his limbs and sustained several injuries to his remaining leg and his jaw. Noah was then transferred to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. Not only was he faced with the overwhelming challenge of his recovery and learning to live life as a double amputee.
I couldn’t even begin to fathom what it’s like to wake up and have two limbs missing. I’m sure I’d freak and I bet a lot of people do. But then there are people like Noah that chose to not let that get him down and chose to move on and do things like, oh I dunno…
…climb Mount Everest
My coach, Tracy McKay led the the 3 hour spin and Noah was out in front to lead us on. We started out spinning to the National Anthem and as the music would rise, so would we. It was a pretty awesome site to behold. After the anthem was over with it was a full on hard spin with music spanning from hardcore rap to country. All around me were military people spinning and pushing it really hard – never relenting or giving up, a testament to the men and women who defend this country.
At the end of hour one, Noah got off his bike and gave this speech:
As we continued hour #2 I was starting to tire out a little bit. I’m used to spinning for, at most, 55 minutes and I’m ready to fall off the bike as well as everyone else around me (or maybe that’s because my spin teacher is so tough on us). Well, normal people are ready to get off their bikes – but this is the military and apparently they think pain means to scream “I WANT MORE!” Of which, we got more…no break…straight on into hour three.
I thought to myself “no big deal, it’s just another 60 minutes then we’re done.” Yeah, that’s what I thought. The excitement and enthusiasm had grown so much that we went through two more songs totally 3 hours and 15 minutes before I finally stepped off the bike.
It was a bucket full of pure torturous awesomesauce.
The 3 hour spin was to raise money for Noah’s quest. Well there might have been a dollar or two raised for it…more like nearing the 10k mark.
I did not get to spend anytime with Noah other than to say “hey” but man if you’re reading this, you are one tough [insert explicative here] dude, man. And to all the other military folk I got the privilege to ride with – you guys rock.