Hello, I am Amélie, I am 27, and I live in Montpellier (France)
Your very first memory of riding a bike? As a child, on a mountain bike to climb Mont Aigoual, but by road! My father used to take us to do that every summer with my little brothers, I never understood why we didn't have a road bike or why we didn't go by road! Halfway up there was a small shop of local producers, that was the motivation, climbing to go and eat pelardon. And then it became a tradition that we still do today ... But my father wants to buy an electric mountain bike because he can't keep up!
How and when did you start cycling? I started cycling on a bet in August 2017 with a friend, we wanted to do a triathlon a month and a half later but we couldn't swim and we didn't have a bike. I did this first S triathlon on a road course with my famous mountain bike, I didn't even finish last! And then ... I bought my first road bike at the end of 2017 and that's when my passion started ...
How have you progressed in cycling? Having invested a rather large amount of money in my first road bike I wanted to "payback" so I was going to ride every weekend. I started by doing 30km, then 40km with a break in the middle, then 40km in one go, etc ... Then I met the right people who gave me a lot of advice, which made me discover new routes where I could train. I was challenging myself, like my first 100km with 2000m of positive elevation gain! I realized that I was really crazy when I accepted the first time to go for a split hill climb by bike, in the middle of December, with the rain threatening to fall at any moment. All these little challenges made me progress from training to training and then everything followed each other very quickly, bigger and bigger challenges: an IronMan70.3, the 300km of the Race Across France, and today I'm preparing my first full IronMan. Since June 2019, I've been working with a coach who has helped me progress a lot on my bike and it's still going on ...
Do you belong to a club? Just recently, yes! I belong to a great club called LVP they are all so adorable, passionate, and strong. Riding with them makes me progress too!
Are you competitive? What do you like best about it? Competition, more or less. I compete on bikes with rankings, yes, but at the moment I'm not trying to be competitive. Maybe the desire will come eventually ... For now, what I like is to ride along and challenge myself.
What's your fondest memory of riding a bike? I have lots of them. But I think that the most beautiful is my participation in the 300km Race Across France, my biggest outing on a bike... and so many emotions...and a next to come the 500km!
When you're at the end of your rope, what resources do you call on? I make my brain forget that I'm at the end of my rope, I advance step by step until I reach my goal!
What advice would you give to a woman who wants to start cycling? Don't be afraid to ride alone! Don't wait for others to be available to go cycling, otherwise, you'll never go ... and it gives you so much self-confidence.
Can you tell us about your training routine? My routine depends on the goal I'm preparing for. Right now it's a triathlon, I do all three sports.
I have office hours, so in the winter I, unfortunately, can't go cycling during the week. I go on weekends, once or twice, for a long outing and therefore work on endurance (but not only, because I love climbing moguls too!) and a home trainer session during the week at home to work on the specific.
I also run and swim. My training weeks are usually a minimum of 10 hours. I let my great coach manage it all.
In the summer, when the sun goes down late, I have the luxury of being able to go cycling after work... so the number of bike training can quickly increase. I do yoga at least once a week, alone, or at least not in a yoga studio. I find it really important to stretch and relax both mentally and physically with the amount of training I do.
When you go riding in your area, do you have any nice refuel addresses to recommend us? To tell the truth, I don't like to stop when I'm cycling... I eat on the bike and quickly fill my water bottles at the village fountains... I recently learned to enjoy stopping for a coffee (when it's cold to warm up) or a Coke when I go on a long bike ride. It's finally super nice to settle down and enjoy this moment in the middle of a bike ride! I recommend the bars on the place of Saint Guilhem le désert or the one in Saint jean de Cuculle.
You can follow Amelie on Instagram: @amelieglutenfit