To all the moms out there, happy Mother’s Day. Thank you for not only raising our future, thank you for showing your children how important self-love and care is. You’re amazing, and we appreciate the impact you have on this world. Cheers to continuing to push the envelope of what a “mom” is.
We asked our athletes and ambassadors what being a mom means to them, and how riding has impacted them. Here is what they had to say:
Miranda Carfrae: “Being a mother is a beautiful privilege – to be the person that gets to show and help guide our perfect little person around this weird and wonderful world. being a mother has changed the way I look at cycling and being a professional athlete. I feel in some ways stronger than ever, after having practically a year away from proper training and bringing our daughter into the world cycling is just much more enjoyable. Its something I choose to do and not something I do because its just my job.”
Elizabeth Young: “Being a mother to me means, unconditional love. I desire that my son Royal, and daughter Emjay, carry in their hearts and mind a belief that they will always have a safe place to land. I need to ride my bike, it makes me a better mother. My kiddos are 12 and 14 now, and when they were little I didn’t understand that I needed to be Elizabeth Young, artist, athlete, and show off…as well as, momma to Royal and Emjay. When I ride my bike I have the freedom to be an individual. I am an introvert through and through, I use my cycling time to be present in nature. I ride so I take time to see the beauty that surrounds me, to hear the quiet sounds of nature while I focus on my breath. I ride to replenish my heart and soul. When I return to my family I am ready to give, to meet the infinite needs of my children and husband. Without my time on my bike I would be drained and unable to create the safe and loving environment that I desire to give to my family.”
Debbie Prestininzi: “Being a mom for me means being there to guide my kids in their journey. To be there when they need me but to know when to step back a bit and let them learn some of life’s lessons on their own. It’s hard to control those ‘Mama Bear’ instincts from time to time and allow them to fight their own battles. My boys are amazing and there is no doubt in my mind that I am a better person because of them. Riding makes me stronger both mentally and physically. It also gives me an outlet when I’ve had a particularly challenging day. I have a group of moms that I ride with and yes, we talk or vent the whole way!!! Sometimes a ride is just a ride. Sometimes its about hanging out with your friends but other times, it’s a therapy session. My bike is one of my favorite happy places. Road, mountain, beach cruiser….doesn’t matter! After a good ride, I am a much more patient and happy mom and wife.”
Briana Knights: “To me being a mom means waking up sleep deprived from night time nursings but being able to find energy to play and dance around, changing your plans for the day because your little one needs some extra loving, hopping on the trainer to try to get a spin in during nap-time just to hear her wake up only a few minutes after you started, getting crumbs on your little ones head because your trying to eat while they are nursing, being on call 24 hours a day 7 days a week and your only time to rest and relax is when there sleeping but no matter how exhausted, dirty, rundown and grumpy you might be you forget about it all when you see them smile at you. My ride time is my mental relaxation time. It’s my time to recharge my battery and give back to myself. It’s such an amazing free feeling and I can’t wait to bring my daughter along so she can experience this same feeling with me.”
Erin Turtle: “Being a mother is the most important role I will ever have in my life. I take it more seriously than anything else. I see it as my responsibility to not just love and nuture vulnerable humans, but also help them grow and learn, and help them become successful, responsible, self-sufficient, fullfilled, hard-working adults who take responsibility for themselves and their actions, who are kind, polite, generous and brave. It seems impossible when I phrase it like that, but that is what is in my mind when I wake up every single day and what I think about as I lay in bed at night. “How can I do this better? What can I do differently? How can I help them more?” Riding is huge in my life. It not only gave me something outside of my role as a mother, that is self-care (and self-care is NOT selfish!) It gave me something to work harder at, improve at over time, and it’s also a great stress relief and a source of great happiness. But then when I moved into racing – it made it a great example for my children. They’ve seen me crash my bike in a race, pick myself up, bloody and battered, get back on my bike and finish. They’ve seen me disappointed in my finish – but go out the next day and keep trying. They’ve seen me put in hard work over long periods of time for big goals. They’ve seen, by example, that you don’t quit. That the hard work is worth it. They’ve seen resilience in action. They’ve seen disappointment and self-reflection. I think cycling has allowed me to show in action things I’ve been preaching to them for a long time – and we all know actions speak louder than words.
Sarah McPherson: “Define what being a mom means to you. I am a step-mother to two beautiful girls that call me Mama Sar:) They have brought so much joy, happiness, love and fun into my life. They show me everyday what unconditional love looks like and feels like. Being a Mama means the world to me, it is a gift that I never thought I would ever have, I am grateful for their unconditional love everyday. Riding has impacted me as I know I inspire two incredible girls to do the best they can, and to find their own passion’s in life. Riding has also impacted me as it is something we can all do together and they teach me something every time we go out, especially the go anywhere aspect and just have fun out there with no judgments and leave the fear behind.”
The Redlands Bicycle Classic is one of the longest-running and most prestigious stage races in the United States. Check out our behind-the-scenes photo gallery of the Stage 1 time trial and the Sho-Air TWENTY20 Pro Cycling women's team to catch a glimpse into the world of pro cycling.
Like so very many, we were heartbroken to have learned of the passing of Kelly Catlin this past weekend. Kelly was a beloved member of the Felt Bicycles family, the Rally UHC Cycling professional team, the USA Cycling track racing program, and the worldwide cycling community. Kelly will always have a special place in our hearts.
Today is International Women’s Day, an opportunity to celebrate women in sport, and a call to action for a more balanced world. Check out our video showcasing the talents of some of the greatest athletes on earth, and read how some of the top female racers in the world believe we can reach equality in sport.
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