I first learned to ski at the age of 10. While I had a late start, I dedicated myself to mastering the sport.
I was never into the big three sports – sure I played a little football, baseball and basketball. They were all gateway sports for me. My real passion was ski racing.
Instead of weight lifting or sprinting, requirements for the big three sports, I honed my craft – the perfect ski turn. I’ve never felt such intense focus like when I was up in the start house about to race down a course that I had spent the morning memorizing. It was here where I first developed the principles of power, grace and inspiration. I felt special, unique and confident as one of the most beautiful skiers you would see out on the slopes. My goal was to re-define people’s preconceptions about the capabilities of black people.
As an adult, I translated these principles to cycling. I became my most fit self in my mid twenties through competing in triathlons. Again, I loved being one of the only black cyclists out on the road. Redefining my meaning of being a black athlete.
When I forgot what it meant to be an athlete in my thirties, I lived the good life with a good job, good food, good wine, and good television.
As a guy in his mid forties, I got the unreasonable vision to get back my 25 year old body. Once again, I defined myself as an athlete and set out to be powerful, graceful and inspirational on the bike. Redefining what it means for me to be a black athlete, a black cyclist. Redefining what is possible for a regular guy in his late forties.
Being a black athlete in a predominantly white sport always made me feel special. I have always loved being different. This is how I define myself and this is how I have achieved success.
What is your story. Are you a person of color in a predominantly white sport?
I am starting a new podcast. My goal is to interview a new athlete once a week and hear their story. How do they define themselves as an athlete of color? How has their unique athletic experience contributed to the success in their lives? These are the stories I would like to share with my audience on a weekly basis to inspire people to change.
What’s your story?