|Main Focus||Road Cycling / Criterium|
|Bucket List Race||Master's Worlds TT|
|Post-Race Drink||Shakes with a banana, blueberries, and vegan protein powder|
|Off-Day Activity||Mountain biking with my kids|
Fast after fourty.
I am what my coach calls an "elite masters" rider. I have a great job, two kids, a wife and a dog, yet over the last years I have earned multiple medals at regional time trials and even 2 x 7th at the French national championships. I have accomplished this through a combination of a passion for cycling, grit, a willingness to find time to train when the others won't, and of course a fascination with finding the best go-fast gear (I am a time trialist, after all).
I am also (in my real life) a professor of philosophy at an Engineering school. My interest is the ethics of the relationship between humankind (in particular human bodies) and technology. My time on the bike is an extension of this research. I am interested, on the one hand, in how science-- both bike technology and advances in our understanding of training science-- can help us to improve on the bike performance, and on the other, how we can balance our acquired knowledge into a joyous form of existence, one in which we can enjoy riding for its own sake, beyond watts and intervals, beyond winning and losing.
What is my "why?"
For me, the answer is quite simple: I love to train for time trials (my competition of choice) because it involves me in a quest towards becoming the best me possible. I don't really care if I win or lose, and in a way it does not even matter if I hit any PRs. What matters is the quest, the striving after order and self-improvement in an otherwise oft-disordered world. Not that cycling is immune to moral luck: an ill-timed cold can happen to all of us, can ruin an entire year's worth of training. But even when this happens, the preparation goes on. The next year rolls around and we get to play the game again. Season after season I try to do things better, I try to better balance cycling and real life, I try to take on board a little more science, I try to acquire slightly better cycling technologies. Why I do cycling is because sometimes on the microcosm of the bike I feel like I come close to achieving the kind of perfect mastery of existence that idealists have always dreamed of achieving in the macrocosm of social reality. Cycling thus becomes a metaphor of hope for the self, indeed a metaphor of hope for all humankind.