The day I trained so hard I paralysed my dog

It was raining when I left the office this evening. I’d been vaguely planning to smash out a few hours of riding “on the way home” to make up for a weekend of CBF. When I saw the state of the local microclimate, I figured I’d hit the home trainer and do an hour or so in the tender loving care of The Sufferfest instead.

This is where the trouble began

This is my home trainer.

This is my dog, Loki

Loki doesn’t much like the home trainer. He thinks it’s a noisy, evil torture robot that occasionally takes his major food source (me) hostage for an unspecified amount of time. In this, Loki is of course correct.

This evening, I cued up Blender, Sufferfest’s “endurance racing” offering, closed the door to the torture room and spun the pedals quite hard, emitting occasional swears as I did so. By all accounts, Loki took up station on the other side of the door and whined. And whined. And whined. An hour and forty minutes later, I staggered off the trainer, let the dog in and went for a shower. Shower done, I walked to the bedroom to find the dog staggering around in distress, whining, unable to walk and generally acting like a dog that’s been bitten by a paralysis tick.


I grabbed the dog, took him to the loungeroom, and with my long suffering partner Esther, proceeded to do a tick exam. Nothing. We tested him out. Maybe walking a bit better, but still shaky, and in obvious distress, not unlike the time we accidentally overdosed the other dog with too much flea treatment.

So maybe not a tick. Maybe poisoning? Maybe he ate something particularly noxious? Maybe something else?

Bugger it. Call the late night vet, tell them I’m on the way.

So off I drove to the vet, where I was whisked into a consulting room. On examination, Loki was a little shaky but broadly OK. Heartbeat normal, breathing normal, temperature normal. No signs of paralysis at all. We put him on the floor and he walked around kinda normally. Something was going on here. The helpful vet and I came up with a tentative diagnosis.

To whit: my dog, being a sensitive blossom of a somewhat neurotic bent, had an anxiety attack because his favourite food-bringing human was being tortured to an absurd degree by the evil bike robot behind a closed door.

Or, more simply put:

I trained so hard I paralysed my dog.

Temporarily, admittedly, but this is a first in the annals of my cycling life. Never before have I removed the power of locomotion from a companion animal through the raw power of a turbo session.

So I’ve ticked that one off in the bucket list. Now all I need to do is come up with a dog distress remediation strategy, and I can continue my training program. Maybe the guys at The Sufferfest have some ideas on that front?

3 Thoughts on “The day I trained so hard I paralysed my dog

  1. Jon LaFOLLETTE on 28 May, 2013 at 2:37 pm said:

    It is rather simple. Buy a doggy treadmill and let Loki train with you !

  2. Why don’t you just let the dog in the room with you? If he sees that you are basically self-torturing, he may be ok with that. Our cats used to be quite confused with their two humans on the their torture devices (aka bike trainers), but have now gotten used to it. Just an idea…

  3. admin on 29 May, 2013 at 6:30 am said:


    it’s a good point. I do normally keep the doors open – in fact I don’t think I’ve ever shut him out of the room while on the trainer. But on this occasion, my long-suffering GF was in the next room watching TV and for some reason I thought closing the dog out would be the sensible option. I think I shall take your advice and leave the door open next time.

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