26 May 2020

Victoria Pendleton answers your questions!

April 10, 2013

Want to know what double Olympic Champion, Victoria Pendleton had to say about triathlon, being a pundit and what her favourite bike would look like? Read on…

Would you ever tackle a triathlon? (non-competitively)

I don’t think I could tackle anything non-competitively! I love running and I love cycling but I would seriously have to do some work on my swimming technique, but it is something that would interest me at some point. Mind-you, I am not sure abut swimming outside – it’s a bit cold so I am not sure I like the sound of that. Maybe I could do a duathlon instead?


What sport would you do if you couldn’t cycle?

I am really enjoying my running at the moment and I also really enjoyed hockey at school, so maybe either of those.

We heard you took part in the Laureaus run at Copacabana Beach in Rio – how far was that and wasn’t it hard running on the beach?

Every Sunday they close one half of the road that runs along the beach so that it can be used for sporting activities (also easier to run on than the sand). I think the run I did was around 6km, so just a nice distance that a lot of people could attempt.

Seb Coe said I had good running technique so I was pretty happy with that!

How was Rio – any signs of the Olympic developments yet?
It’s still very early stages and the stadium is all fenced off. But the major thing is all the road building – there’s massive development going on, especially with the World Cup coming up soon. I didn’t see loads of hotels being built yet, but I am sure they will come!

How did you enjoy your current stint at presenting/being a pundit?

I did really enjoy it, although I was quite nervous beforehand. Luckily Craig MacLean was on at the same time as me, so that put me at ease. I did find it hard to watch some of the races though – It still feels really close.

Would you like to do more TV presenting – even non-cycling presenting?

Yes, I would love to do more cycling coverage. I am not sure about covering other sports though,  I would have to do a lot of research beforehand because I would want to know what I was talking about. Someone I really admire is Clare Balding as she has so much knowledge and obviously works really hard to understand the sports. She has set the bar very high!

Any plans to go into coaching?

Yes, it is something that I would really like to get into. I want to get my strength and conditioning qualification first as that’s an area that really interests me, and it’s also very transferable to other sports. I am not ready to tackle coaching in cycling yet, especially since all my coaches are still there – I can’t imagine standing alongside them right now, but definitely in the future.

How can I use the static bike to train for the road ?

Riding intervals on a static bike is a really efficient way to get fit for cycling, and is great to mix in with training but obviously you can’t beat getting out and about on a real bike as it’s so different.

One really effective, but short session is to warm-up for 10 minutes and then go flat-out for 30 seconds, rest for 1 minute and repeat six times. Then rest or spin gently for 15 minutes and repeat. It’s short, but tough!

Now that you have helped inspire a nation of potential Olympians do you think there are there enough Talent ID opportunities for aspiring cyclists?

Personally no, we are lucky in cycling as there is a lot invested in actively seeking talent. But not all sports have the funding to be able to do that – often it’s a case of luck if they find the real talent.

However, it’s also worth pointing out that there is no massive rush to get too serious at a young age – I don’t think I would have made it onto the squad as a 16 year old. I just wasn’t physically mature enough, at 20 I was ready.

That’s why it’s important to have many different routes into sport. I like the idea of sporting academies that work alongside the NGB’s.

What colour would you have as a dream bike and would you have it plain or patterned?

I do like a bit of pattern but I am also really indecisive when it comes to choosing things like that, so actually I have to say I always like a black bike – it’s very chic as well as being quite understated. Maybe I would add a bit of metallic finish too?

Danielle Sellwood, Sportsister
The Women’s Sports Magazine

Victoria Pendleton spoke to Sportsister exclusively through Halfords. Pictured is the 2013 Somerby bike available in store and online at www.halfords.com price £279.99

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