When I stopped racing my bicycle full time for, the first time, it was the winter of 2008 while in Italy for Cross Worlds. The second time, I returned to be the eyes of my awesome partner, Robbi Weldon, on the tandem; It meant back to training just like before and committing to reach the top. We succeeded and closed out my career with a Gold medal at the London Paralympic games 2012. Officially retired.
After retirement, I could’ve stopped everything that had kept me going for years: Cycling, running and training. Many athletes stop everything when they ‘RETIRE’ from their sport. The word can be scary, I even know some companies that do not want their athletes to officially announce it, because it shuts you off right away. I disagree; I think it gives you the chance to close the book, to look ahead, to change or not, to share your sport, to do new sports or activities, work more or less depending:) and enjoy life a different way.
”I’m retired from racing full time on the international level of the great sport of cycling.”
In my mind, I’m retired from doing only ONE sport; retired from following a training plan and avoiding riding with friends because I have a specific training to do; retired from living a professional athlete’s life waiting in my hotel room with my legs raised to the wall, recovering for tomorrows race; retired from not walking because it will make you tired….
I’m not retired from living my life or being an athlete at heart. I’m not retired from running twice a day because I love to, or running after my bike ride because I need to be ready for an upcoming “xtreme triathlon” that I entered for fun. Not retired from running trail marathons, not retired from racing cyclocross when I feel like it with and against amazing young women. Not retired from adventure racing because it’s hard and fun…I will never retire from the active life I love.
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