Hi everyone! It’s David here, Jim’s gym buddy, you might know us from my previous blog.
In this blog I will tell you how Jim’s motivation encouraged him to turn his garage into a gym and he continued to train every single day.
Jim really wanted to retain his independence and relying on others for transport was not an option and the distance from his home to the sports centre meant his new transportation of a mobility scooter was operating just on the limit of its power range.
At this point the pandemic struck, So we definitely now needed another solution, so we converted his garage into a gym.
We installed a cushioned floor to absorb the unexpected tumbles, a handrail to allow easier transfer from exercise equipment, installed shelf’s to hold weights at a easy to reach height and fit balls located in easy access rope loops. Pull up assist bands so Jim could continue with his favourite pull ups, a recumbent exercise bike as Jim could no longer balance on a normal exercise bike. We were incredibly fortunate to obtain a May Walker gait trainer which allows Jim to walk independently and allows Jim to train on his inclined drive doing reps of circuits as we would do together with running training, and a another stroke of fortune we obtained a Dorylax back stretcher, due to the ataxia Jim finds the back stretcher particularly beneficial.
During the past year through various lockdowns Jim has continued to train every single day, rowing , cycling, performing a range of various exercises most days this takes 10/15 mins to get into the garage utilising his walker scooter, then 1-1.5 hours of exercises then 10/15 mins to get back into the house, in absolutely freezing condition, rain, sleet, and sometimes sunshine. Jim never misses a session which he takes great pleasure in sharing his routine with his friends.
He still competes on the Concept rower, doing monthly targets and often teams up with other rowers to compete in distance or timed events. With or without ataxia, Jim is an incredible individual, but in contemplating his efforts with the diagnosis, his determination makes him a true legend.
As a sportsman I truly believe Jim would offer inspiration and motivation to the ataxia community.
Jim Tip: “Never give up or give in. Be your best!”