I was first introduced to Power Cranks via a professional cycling friend. I was retiring from cycling, took on a 'grown-up' job, and started into triathlon. Without a running background Power Cranks really assisted me with making a 'transition' to the triathlon world especially in regards to my running. I could keep run volume low to start and supplement with Power Cranks. To my surprise I was improving tremendously on the bike as well, especially sustained climbs which were never my specialty especially living in Minnesota.
One key element that I find Power Cranks to be extremely useful for, but is rarely discusses, is bike fit. So often I see people with extremely high saddle height especially in the triathlon world. The extension/ plantar flexion of the lower leg coupled with rocking hips leads to calve cramping and low back pain. I've used Power Cranks to demonstrate that you can't even pedal with independent legs in such a position. I've also had success dialing in cleat position with the Power Cranks. Just another use for this great tool.
Perhaps my biggest story is in regards to a brutal accident and recovery. In April of 2008 I was in great shape coming into the season. My main goal for the year was the Hawaii Ironman which I had qualified for at Ironman Wisconsin the previous September. I was commuting home from work on my motorcycle when a car swerved over 4 lanes of empty freeway (it was late evening) and took me out. The impact was on my left side and I shattered my tib/fib and pelvis. 5 surgeries and 10 weeks of training after getting off crutches almost exclusively on Power Cranks allowed me to finish the Hawaii Ironman. I continued religious use and baffled my doc in regards to the expedited rehab especially in regards to bilateral strength. In 2009 I came back strong winning a few local races and setting a course record on 1 occasion in which I averaged 28mph for an olympic distance, more than 2.5mph faster than the next fastest on the bike segment. I also had the fastest run time - I hate run training and only run 25 miles per week.
This past year my wife and I had our first child, a boy named Kai. My focus has been on him and 90% of my limited training has been on Power Cranks. Although I'm certainly not as fit as last year I am able to stay in relative shape with limited time. I plan to make another go next year with the main goal of getting back to Hawaii to actually race versus simply finishing.
My experience with Power Cranks has thus served many purposes: performance (both bike and run), rehabilitation, bike fit, and time crunched training. There are obviously many more uses out there and I'm excited to check this blog frequently to get more ideas.