The Global ElliptiGO Riders Club recently launched an exciting opportunity for its members: the chance to plan and host ElliptiGO Days! These one-day events feature a 20-30 mile ride where no rider is left behind, plus a social gathering pre- or post-ride.
A couple of ElliptiGO Days have already happened this year, but the one coming to us this weekend is hosted by the October 2019 Rider Of The Month: Jim Stahlman. Jim is a highly active member of our community. You can find him sharing his riding photos in the private Facebook group run by our customers, posting his rides to the Strava group and racking up points during the GOGO Challenge. We’re excited to share a little more about Jim’s story with you, as we honor him for his unending enthusiasm, his perseverance through medical challenges, and the encouragement he offers to his fellow riders.
Jim is husband to Lori, has five adult children and step-children, and lives in Burke, VA. Jim’s service and dedication to our community are mirrored by his service and dedication to our country. He is a retired Navy helicopter pilot and a current civil servant in the Office of the Secretary of Defense at the Pentagon. In total, he has offered 43 years of Federal Service.
Jim was a high school athlete and college cheerleader at UVA in the 70’s and competed in local short course triathlons into the early 90’s until his knees said no more. On a single bad long jump in high school track, Jim tore his ACLs in both knees, also suffering three other ligament tears, and three of four cartilage torn.
“This was in the pre-arthroscopy days, so they just removed all the cartilage,” Jim described. “I was lucky enough to find a great orthopod who sewed me back together well enough to pass a Navy flight physical and stay pretty active…but, over 40 years, the left knee finally gave up the ghost.”
He continued weight training and sought out no-impact cardio options for his workouts. Though, in the spring of 2018, he could no longer pedal a full circle on a bike due to deterioration of his left knee. He couldn’t bear the thought of exclusively exercising indoors for the rest of his life. He took to Google to find a solution and found ElliptiGO bikes.
He test rode with a local dealer and purchased an elliptical bike from another ElliptiGO rider. The bike was a game-changer, allowing him to overcome his knee issues and other challenges that life had thrown his way.
“In the five years prior to getting my ElliptiGO bike, I worked through two strokes, had a hole in my atrial wall plugged by a stent, had both rotator cuffs repaired, along with a lower back laminectomy, and ultimately had the full knee replacement — so I had become a walking medical experiment!” Jim told us.
Jim continued, “My ElliptiGO bike let me exercise until the day prior to the knee replacement in August 2018 and put me back on the GO in just five weeks, in time for the GERC team challenge in September.
Jim rides 4-6 times a week (“The GERC has been great to reestablish that competitive spirit!”) and typically logs 100+ miles and 4,000-5,000 vertical feet a week. Since May 2018, he’s ridden just over 3,000 miles and climbed over 100,000 vertical feet.
“My fitness level has skyrocketed since I started on the long-stride bike. I did my long ride of 61 miles on my 61st birthday in July. I have no back pain, no knee pain, and no shoulder pain,” Jim said.
Jim shared these kind words with us in conclusion: “The unique culture of the folks who build and ride ElliptiGO bikes has brought a new measure of fun in our lives. The service focus of the ElliptiGO staff in San Diego have been a pleasure to work with. I see riding my GO until I just can’t balance on it anymore. Thanks for a great product and a great group of folks!”
Thank you, Jim, for being a part of our community of riders. We’re wishing you and all attendees of this weekend’s ElliptiGO Day a great time. If you’re interested in riding in Ashburn, Virginia (30 miles northwest of DC,) register for the Gathering of the GOs ElliptiGO Day event here! Don’t delay — it’s all happening on Oct. 26.
Know someone who should be Rider Of The Month? Email [email protected] to share your story or the story of another ElliptiGO rider you know who is inspiring others, thriving in our community or doing incredible things on their ElliptiGO bike!