From The Zone to Grinders and Back Again! - Part 2

by Brian Astell November 22, 2017 3 min read

Two mountain bikers traversing a dirt path near a river.

BodyHealth Team Member Brian Astell by his really cool TrailWorks Mercedes Van!

I had a lot riding on the next few months with a ton to do to get ready for the season. Tearing my Achilles was seriously not helping at all. I was effectively homeless, the van was unlivable, and I wasn’t going to be able to do any skills clinics or guided rides on which my income had become dependent. I stayed on my friend’s couch for two days before I quickly realized I wasn’t going to be able to recover there.

My beyond amazing dad ended up stepping up big time to help me out. He jumped on a plane from New Hampshire to California to help me fly home to recover because I could barely move at the time. Huge thanks to my dad for swooping in to save the day. What a guy!!!

I got in touch with my sponsors and let them know the bad news, that I’d have to cancel an interview, American Ninja Warrior and a few other early season engagements.

If you missed Part 1 of this article, check out Brian's ANW entry video HERE, super fun!

Now, BodyHealth was a brand-new sponsor of mine. They liked my proposal but I hadn’t yet held up my end of the bargain. I let them know what had happened thinking that there was the possibility that they’d drop me. When I got in touch and told them my story I was shocked by the amazing response that I received from all the guys at BodyHealth including Dr. Minkoff himself. They were extremely understanding and instead of saying this isn’t what they had agreed to, they stepped up to the plate far beyond what I could have ever imagined. They asked what they could do to help. They sent me a load of product, which I now swear by, and I know it had a direct effect on how quickly my recovery has been. They put me on a regimen of Greens, Multi Complete, the max dose of PerfectAmino, and Perfect Calm. 

I used all my super geeky training and recovery tactics to recover as quickly as possible. I got as weird as I could with my recovery. I did everything from Kaatsu to full ice baths. I did electro-muscular stimulation and used my RRT machine. But by far, there is absolutely no doubt in my mind whatsoever that the PerfectAmino had the biggest impact on my speedy recovery.

Now to be clear I ended up tearing about 70% of my calf muscle from the tendon. There was some tendon damage but not a full rupture. No surgery needed but still a long recovery. After about three weeks I was out of the boot and very carefully moving it around and using my complex on it. Because I had torn all the nerves there was no signal getting through and I figured doing it very carefully manually would be the way to speed things up. After less than a month I was on a stationary bike, I had to start out with the boot on and I alternated between using the boot and going without.

All the while I was taking the max dose of PerfectAmino. Every single day I could see a noticeable improvement! And I’ve rapidly made progress every single day since the first night of my accident, which is when I started taking the maximum servings of PerfectAmino.

As of this writing, it is May 3rd and I tore my calf and Achilles on February 19th. Although I don’t have full strength back yet, and I’m a ways from running, I did my first mountain-bike ride 2.5 weeks ago, gap jumps included! Yeah I know, I was advised not to. I’m working the California Enduro Series leading rides and doing skills clinics. This weekend will be my first race of the season. Even though I’m not expecting to be super-competitive this time—I’d say I’m at about 60% left leg power—I’m still excited to be able to carefully take part in the race and have my company present to help out as many racers as possible.

I want to give a huge, HUGE thanks to BodyHealth. Not just because they make awesome products with great ingredients. Not just because they are in the business to truly help people but because of the respect and integrity that the people of the company have shown me. I was just another athlete looking for sponsorship who really enjoyed their product. They really went above and beyond to truly help me get back on track when I was down. The positive messages I received from all of them is what really stands out to me as far as how BodyHealth does business and cares about its customers and for providing me with the necessary building blocks for an unreal, super-speedy recovery! I am a customer for life.  

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