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World and Olympic 500 metre Time Trial Champion Anna Meares
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Anna Meares recovery and Olympic Games lead-up diary

At just 24 years of age Australia's Anna Meares is one of the world's top track cyclists. In addition to being the reigning World Champion in the 500 metre Time Trial, Meares is also the defending 500 metre Time Trial Olympic Games champion, after taking gold at the Athens Olympic Games in 2004.

Meares suffered a setback in her Beijing Olympic Games bid in January after a horrifying accident at the Los Angeles Track World Cup came close to ending more than her Olympic ambitions. Now back in Australia and riding again, Meares has joined Cyclingnews' list of diarist and will share her road to recovery and, if all goes well for the Queenslander, Beijing Olympic bid with our readers.

Index to all entries

March 10, 2008

Back on track

Hi everyone,

My first time back
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All smiles at the start of the roller session.
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This is what the film crew for Toshiba rigged up to film me riding on my bike.
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Everyone posed for a group photo
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I enjoyed a day at the beach
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It has now been seven weeks since the crash and things are moving along nicely. I haven't written in a few weeks so I will just tell of a few things that have been happening.

On Monday, March 3, I had my six week scan. A written report was sent to my doctor and that night he called me to tell me that it said the fracture couldn't be seen. I had to wait until Thursday to see the doctor and get more information so he could look over the scans himself. I got Marv to talk to the doctor to see if I could do some track in the mean time, because I am getting over doing ergo work, which he agreed I could do a little bit.

I did track for the first time on Tuesday and just did some rolling work getting comfortable on the track again. At first I was pretty tentative, but by the end I felt my old self out on the boards.

Wednesday was a big day. I had 500 metre raisers that hurt like you wouldn't believe. I thought I was going to go pretty horribly, but I actually went really well, I surprised myself and Marv. My last effort was almost one of the best I have ever done. We figure it was from doing all that ergo for the past four weeks. I can't remember how many 30 second efforts I have done so it was nice to see it was worth the pain. I definitely slept well that night. My legs and my butt were not impressed with today's efforts either.

Thursday was my medical with the doctor. He said the scans showed the fracture to be 90 percent healed. There was still an area that was questionable, but this was good I thought. He went through and checked my range of movement. I can look better left then right which for me riding the sprint isn't good and I also can't turn my head quickly without discomfort. Because of these two points and the fact that the fracture is only 90 percent healed, he said he wouldn't be able to medically clear me to ride the World Track Championships. However, if necessary, he would let me ride to 200 qualifying so our plan is as follows:

I have a flight booked on March 25 incase any unforeseen points get added, otherwise I am staying home. If I go, I will only ride the 200 metre sprint and fly home again after to return to treatment and training.

On Thursday I did a shoot for a Toshiba advertisement at the velodrome. Oh my god! It was a long day. I began at 9:30 AM and left at 5:30 PM. I had to say that was it in the end because I hadn't lent over the bike for that long and I was getting a headache in the 42 degree heat. I was getting so very fatigued from all the riding and little sprints they wanted me to do. They were very good though and I had a lot of fun. I met the head of Toshiba Japan, Harito, who flew over just for the day. Mariana from Toshiba Australia also flew over to meet up with Harito.

The team left for World Championships on Sunday, March 9. I am feeling pretty down at the moment and for the past day or so. It's not nice to wave goodbye when you want to be going with them. I'll be training here on my own for the next month, so that will be a challenge.

Other then that I am doing really well.

This past few weeks since has again seen a lot of firsts. My first roller session, first track session, first sneeze, cough or cold shiver without pain, first sleep without waking up from moving, first trip to the hair dresser, first time driving my car and many more.

Training wise I have been doing very well in the gym getting stronger and I have began to put back on the weight that I have lost. I am currently at 69 kilograms with my final goal by Beijing being 72kg. After my crash I was down to 66-67kg.

I will be gearing up on the track while the team is away. My week will include three gym sessions, two track sessions and a number of roller sessions. I still am not allowed to ride on the road for another week, but that will start again soon.

Well I hope you have enjoyed this update. I will be in touch again soon.



For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Anna Meares