Tim Panagis – A short bio
A little about me and how I got to where I am today. I am originally from a small town north of Milwaukee, Wisconsin called Cedarburg, where we are known for expansive cornfields, dairy farms and summer festivals. I attended Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where I earned a bachelors degree in Bioelectric Engineering. Following graduation, I moved with my now fiance to Ann Arbor, Michigan where I earned a Masters degree in Electrical Engineering and my fiance is earning her PhD in Biomedical Engineering (she is SUPER smart). I currently work for Ford Motor Company writing software for advanced suspension control systems.
Now that the formalities are out of the way, onto the good stuff. BIKES! I first started biking in earnest my sophomore year of undergrad as a way to lose weight (I lost 45lbs in one summer!). After that, I was hooked. I bought my first road bike and, as they say, the rest is history. Following my move to Michigan for graduate, I joined the Michigan Cycling team and began racing in earnest throughout Southeastern Michigan. I loved the culture, loved the people and loved the joy that being out on two wheels brought to me and my life. I continued to race and ride throughout graduate school until one day I was out on a training ride with some friends, hit gravel in a corner, went down hard and fractured my collarbone. Following the months of recovery and rehabilitation, I was eager and yet tentative to get back onto my bike. Racing had lost its appeal, but I was amazed at how fast my body responded, in many ways I came back stronger than I was before the break. That following spring I got some courage back and decided to try racing again, this time on gravel roads. I had an incredible winter of training and was eager to show people what I could do on the bike. Unfortunately, fate was not on my side and I went down hard for a second time, re-fracturing the same collarbone I had broken previously…UGH! Much like before I persevered. I pushed through the pain and sweat of rehabilitation and was back on my bike only weeks after my second surgery. It was then that I realized my racing career was over. I was 26 years old, had broken my collarbone twice and had two surgeries.
I set a lofty goal for myself in April that in September I would ride 200 miles unsupported in a Ride Across America (RAAM) event in Ohio. I put in countless hours on the bike, riding 100, 120, 150 and 170 miles by myself to prepare. September came quickly and soon it was time for my big test. I went off the line at 5:45 AM and some 10 hours later crossed the finish line first and had set a new course record, I couldn’t have been happier! Following that event, I needed a little break from the road and started mountain biking in earnest. Things were going super well and I was enjoying my time on the trails when fate popped up its head, once again….. Yep, you guessed it, I fractured my collarbone for a THIRD time. One more surgery later, and I was (against everyone’s will) back on my bike. I couldn’t and wouldn’t let anything keep me from my true passion, being on two wheels. Since that third break, I have begun training again just for the sake of training. I am taking 2017 off from any competitive events as I am set to marry the aforementioned fiance this coming August and wasn’t planning on walking down the aisle in a sling!
If you couldn’t tell, I am a very passionate and above all else extremely driven and motivated person. I love to push myself in all aspects of my life and strive to be the best I can be on and off the bike. I am a forever optimist and try to see the best in everyone I meet. I will always greet you with a smile and try to brighten up your day with casual conversation or a joke. I think everyone and everything is awesome and I encourage you all to get your GOAT on!
All the best and keep being an amazing person!
PS. Please search and follow me on Strava. I will undoubtedly follow you back and promptly proceed to give you kudos because I think you’re great and want to encourage you to be your best self.
My two favourite stolen goat jerseys – What’s yours?
Make sure you #stolengoat for the chance to be featured!
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