Published on Jan 7, 2019 by Tom Owen

For professional cyclists, training, racing, and traveling take up the majority of the year. However, between the end of their racing season and start of the new one, there is a small window of rest, recovery and relaxation that usually comes as a welcome treat after a long season in the saddle. How each athlete spends their time off is different, but one thing is for sure, all use those precious weeks off to rejuvenate their love of the bike. We spoke to several pros about how they allocate their time during the offseason. 

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TJ Eisenhart (Holowesko-Citadel p/b Arapahoe Resources)

Fourth overall 2017 Colorado Classic

“I have been having the time of my life this offseason, First, and I have to say most important, I married my "goddess." We were married Nov 10. I have also been working with new sponsors and designing cycling shoes for Spyder Korea. My art has also kept me busy, and I’m working on numerous commissioned pieces at the moment. I’ve also had the opportunity to speak at schools about suicide prevention. And not to forget, I’ve been riding both my road and mountain bike every day for just the pure joy and happy vibes it gives me. So wow, life is amazing.”

 

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Katie Hall (Boels-Dolmans)

Winner of the 2018 Amgen Tour of California Women’s Race empowered with SRAM

 “Most years, I will go somewhere for a vacation without my bike, but this year, I decided to stay home. It was great! I went hiking a couple of times, taught some skills clinics, and I became a mat pilates instructor. This is a thing I have wanted to do for a while, but it was great to find time in the offseason. I'm already back to training though and hitting the gym a bunch. I just finished my first camp for 2019, and now I am trying to find an apartment in Girona.”

 

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Evan Huffman (Rally Cycling)

Two-time stage winner of 2017 Amgen Tour of California

“First, it's become a tradition the last several years for me to get tattoos during the offseason. It's a little easier to let them heal properly when I'm not riding as much, and it gives me a whole year to think of new ideas. I'm a big music fan, so I usually go to a lot of concerts. There are several venues pretty close to my house. Other than that, just spending extra time with my wife and friends. I don't like to travel that much because I do so much of that during the season that I'm burned out on being away from home. However, my wife and I will usually do a couple of short road trips, just for one or two nights.”

 

RidersOffSeason_RobSource: https://rallyuhccycling.com  

Rob Britton (Rally UHC Cycling)

Overall winner 2018 Tour of the Gila, 2017 Tour of Utah

“Normally by the time the racing season wraps up you’re ready to put the bike away, and for me enjoy some of the foods you can’t eat so much of during the racing season. M&Ms, cookies, pizza, burgers, beer...you name it. That gluttony will usually last about two weeks then I go a little stir crazy and start mountain biking, doing little projects around the house and also try and fit in a trip or two with my girlfriend (and no bike). That’s more or less my offseason in a nutshell.”

 

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Nate Brown (Team EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale)

Overall winner of 2013 Tour de Beauce, fourth on stage 10 Giro d’Italia

“As a professional cyclist, we only get around one month of an offseason. During that month we don’t have to worry about riding, or anything bike related. Personally, I like to do all the things I haven’t been able to do during the season. I go for hikes, eat a lot of hamburgers and play basketball. It’s just a time to reset your mind and enjoy the small things.”

 

RidersOffSeason_TravisSource: https://cyclingtips.com

Travis McCabe (Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling)

US national criterium champion, 2018 Tour of Utah stage winner 

 “For my offseason I typically try to get in one or two “boys” trips and then spend the rest of my time with my fiancé. This year I went out a five day river trip down the Colorado river, followed by a 10 day mountain bike trip through the front range of Colorado and Moab. It was a blast catching up with friends and not having to worry about anything. A lot of alcohol was consumed and many memories were made. (Some forgotten!) 

After that I came back home, went on a few small trips with Isabella but mostly just enjoyed being in her company with the dogs.  Now it’s back to setting goals, and preparing to accomplish those goals!”

 

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Brent Bookwalter (Mitchelton-SCOTT)

Third overall, 2016 Amgen Tour of California 

“We have our gran fondo here, the Bookwalter Binge, that has become a big part of our off season and a great way to get back to enjoying riding and connecting a little bit of the pro cycling world with the community here in Asheville.

I usually try to get in some camping and backpacking in and get outside without the bike. However, I still love to ride, so I definitely take out the mountain bike. The "off season" seems to get shorter every year so there isn't time for too much.”

 

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Gavin Mannion (Rally UHC Cycling)

Winner of 2018 Colorado Classic, second overall at the 2017 Tour of Utah  

"This year's offseason seemed to fly by. The break for training took up most of October and was very welcomed after a long season. Besides the normal R&R and catching up with non-cycling friends, I managed to get in a few long hikes in Colorado with my girlfriend Reese including a 14er (Mt Quandary just outside Breck). We also made a trip to Vermont for my former teammate and longtime friend Ian Boswell’s Peacham Fall Fondo. It was great to support his new event and spend some time in New England in the fall. Touring some of Vermont's finest breweries and doing some more big hikes completed our little vacation back east."

 

About the Author

Tom Owen

Tom Owen is a cycling writer who has worked with some of the cycling world's biggest media brands, covering everything from the top levels of the professional sport to bikepacking adventures in the Balkans.