career vs cycling

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by BullGod, Sep 17, 2007.

  1. BullGod

    BullGod New Member

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    After 2 years riding as Cat 1 (with at first none then recently moderate success) I have been surprised to hear from a local composite club squad that they are forming an elite amateur team for next season to ride a full program of classics, stage races and crits next year in Holland, Belgium and France. They asked me to ride for them, and the coach said he says I have the potential to ride at that level if I took it seriously enough.

    I'd love to accept but I have concerns about work and money etc. Since June I work 50 hrs a week and have therefore lost some endurance and stuck to crits. It has become increasingly difficult to ride at 1 level and work that amount with the stress and pressure. In the evening it's often hard to go out and train, as it means no free time at all. On the weekend I feel really tired to ride 2 crits. Adding a long term girlfriend to that mix has also been tough all round.

    there is no way I could work full time (not for an American run company anyway) and ride for an elite team, so I would have to look at part time work as an option. Income would suffer, but I would hope to be able to stay afloat, with a major change in lifestyle.

    On the positive side I feel I will probably have to work in an office until I'm 65, and might only get one chance to ride in the elites.....especially as I am now 28. The doubts in my mind center around money, status etc....which depresses me.

    Has anyone else ever faced this choice? how did it go? regrets? If you haven't had this opportunity but could imagine you did - what would you do?
     
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  2. cheapie

    cheapie New Member

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    are you married? have kids? if not, then follow your dreams. most of us never had the opportunity, or physical ability to do something like that. the job and money will always be there when you're done.

    a job should be something you have that allows you to achieve your personal goals. don't change your goals to accomodate your job.
     
  3. YMCA

    YMCA New Member

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    If you are on the fast track with your career, it may be a tough decision, as the time lost over a couple years chasing the kermesse scene means you'll have to start a bit behind where you left off. If your job is easily replaceable, then in a few years when you decide to come back, I say "go for it".

    It is the chance of a lifetime to play a sport at a very high level and not have anything to do with college.

    How many 25+ year olds would love to have that opportunity. I did it from age 30-36 and never regretted passing up career opportunities. I do regret not giving a very good effort, but I expect you won't make those same mistakes.

    Good luck and keep us posted. Guye love to live vicariously through athletes that are chasing the dream.
     
  4. Itchy-Tichy

    Itchy-Tichy New Member

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    You might want to talk with someone at your company about your opportunity. They might be able to accomodate you by allowing you to work a shorter work week in order for you to train and race. Depending on who you work for they might even use the fact that they allow you to do that as a marketing tool.
     
  5. fleshbroiler

    fleshbroiler New Member

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    Imagine yourself 20 years older looking back. Which opportunity do you think you'd regret more for having let it go? Which opportunity do you think you'd treasure more having given up the other to chase? You're probably not going to find anybody on this forum who would advise you to pass on a chance to race bicycles at that level, especially if its not a once-in-lifetime career opportunity.

    Best of luck and keep us posted.
     
  6. donrhummy

    donrhummy New Member

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    It all depends on what type of a person you are. Will you be able to seize the opportunity without constantly worrying and not enjoying the "once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity?" if not, don't do it. But if you'll work your butt off yet enjoy it and live in the moment, then I think it will only enrich your life. You can always get a "job" later and can even go back to school for a degree to increase your earning potential and really, the experience and stories you'll gain from this will likely help you in that. Stuff like this actually plays well in interviews. But as I said, it depends what type of a person you are.
     
  7. Pendejo

    Pendejo Member

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    It's definitely a question of personal values. At age 28 I wouldn't work that hard (and spend that much time) unless there was the prospect of fame or fortune in play.
     
  8. KellyT

    KellyT New Member

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    I think the very fact that you are having doubts about committing to racing as a career, probably gives you the answer you already have in your heart.
     
  9. Piotr

    Piotr New Member

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    As anything else racing elites could present career possibilities that you otherwise won't encounter. Doubts are part of decision making, so don't give them to much weight, just enough. If I listened to them I would've missed out on the best 2 years (so far) of my life with my wife. Remember, you doubt because you fear. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering, and suffering is the path to the dark side. :D

    Don't regret, be happy with your decision, and enjoy the ride.
    Edit: Provided that you don't hurt anyone while doing it. :)
     
  10. BullGod

    BullGod New Member

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    Don't worry fellas - I already accepted and will decide on the work thing at the end of the year....of course I couldn't turn down such a chance....I just thought I should at least do some research on the decision....but the truth is that the decision was already made.

    sitting in an office making others rich sucks.
    riding my bike, and being poor rules!
     
  11. YMCA

    YMCA New Member

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    How well can you live poor? It doesn't take much money to live, if you have some savings built over the winters and a team or support sysytem that helps with equipment, travel, maybe a deal on an apartment in Flanders.

    The less you can live on, the more time you will have to rest. Not working at all during Mar-Sep will be best. Or at least keep it to 10 hours or less, just for a litle extra food money and to keep from getting bored with the long rest days.

    Grab a 2 day a week job at the local veggie market, so you can bring the free nutritious foods home. Good workers get a bit of help, you know.
     
  12. Yojimbo_

    Yojimbo_ Well-Known Member

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    A fabulous opportunity for you. Good luck.

    Don't forget, the main reason people go to work is to get money to do the stuff they really want to do. There is plenty of time to work later.
     
  13. vscalia

    vscalia New Member

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    Son Sonnnnnnnnnnnnnnn (in the gangstar sense),

    I would quit your job this instant, and go to europe and race your bike. Your gonna die when your like 85 and who cares if you had a job. Do you like riding bikes? Maybe you would get real dirty in europe, kill it over there, come back, get on a domestic team, and then rock out hardcore domestic races, and have a fun time. Besides, if you have a job now, you can get one when you get back.

    quit your job, live on a couch, mooch off your gf, and bike race. I am 19 years old. I live by myself, have a long term gf who lives with me (3 years) my parents havent spoken to me in years, and I dont work. I am pursuing the dream. Do it to it.

    1
     
  14. donrhummy

    donrhummy New Member

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    Good luck! Keep us up to date on your progress!
     
  15. BullGod

    BullGod New Member

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    I actually already live in Europe, and am European, so this team is actually based in the province where I live, so one good thing is that I don't have to leave for another country. I already have home, girlfriend, friends etc here so that is one thing that makes it a much easier decision.
     
  16. donrhummy

    donrhummy New Member

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    It does but there's something cool about just packing up and moving to a foreign country/area.
     
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