Championship Lifestyle/Supportive Relationships
38“This is something I never expected but it really touched my heart because of the presence of my parents and some close friends who mean a lot to me.” Sir Marc Madiot, Champion Cyclist, on being knighted by France
One of our purposes is implemented in relationships. Part of professional development includes a supportive network. We can’t make those we care about care for us, but we can choose who we let in and for how long. Having sensible boundaries regarding family and friends is part of championship lifestyle.
Some athletes have the uber-parent who takes a second job to support junior’s equipment needs every season. One pro’s wife set up a family business to support his racing. Some are persuaded into support when they witness the happiness and success of their cyclist-loved one. Some never quite get it but tolerate it. Others actively oppose it. The latter requires well-thought out responses that are in one another’s best interest.
Champion lifestyle minimizes unresolved tensions with others and keeps short accounts – as quick to resolve conflict either through reconciliation or reevaluation as they are to reach the finish line. Rather than being selfish as serious cyclists are often accused, instead be responsible by being upfront about levels of engagement. Often energies limit the network a champion can maintain and hard choices ensue: this is where knowing one’s purpose helps guide. Sometimes, concessions can be made to maintain healthy interactions with others outside the tiny winner’s circle. Sometimes it’s better to pursue the relationship than serious cycling.
Supporters need to be cultivated. Winners keep it simple. This can be tricky with a demanding schedule, travel, and lack of face time. Therefore, direct communication is the best tactic. Certain relationships tolerate insulating oneself from drama for the sake of race focus and some do not. Family and friends that are flourishing help nurture championship potential.
Prayer for Supportive Relationships
“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” 39Deuteronomy 31:8
We are grateful for God’s omnipresence – someone supportive always with us. We pray for happy relationships in a well-ordered life and for the important family and friends who also endure our cycling.
Ponder How much time and energy must I give to maintain a certain relationship? Affirm I enjoy and thank faithful supporters. Watch for energizing ways to interact with and bless loved ones.
38“Madiot knighted by French president,” by Jean-François Quénet First Edition Cycling News, January 25, 2008 Edited by Laura Weislo www.cyclingnews.com Mark joins Jacques Anquetil and Bernard Hinault among the road cyclists who have received the award.
39The Bible, New International Version, Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society