I'm pretty athletic and slow, but I don't really know how much I can blame on the rods. I have a feeling I'd be pretty slow without them too
I swim pretty much the same speed, or faster than non-pro triathletes, however I run much slower despite how much training I do. I do think the rods are partly to blame because I feel like my body is telling me my max speed before damage occurs below and above the fusion. That's why I like to go for longer distances, versus sprints.
I think it's great to stay active and minimizes back pain for sure (although may increase other pains...ha ha!).
Harrington Rods in 1991 at age 15
Surgery at Scottish Rite in Dallas, TX
Fused from T-4 to L-3