Lauren Stephens is planning her life after the race, but don’t talk about retirement

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Lauren Stephens (EF Education-TIBCO-SVB) will race next year but the American is starting to make plans for when she hangs up her wheels. Just don’t mention the word “retirement” to him.

Stephens is nearing the end of a busy travel period after competing in the Mountain Bike Marathon World Championships in early September, quickly followed by the Road World Championships. She then took a brief break in the USA, but is now back in Europe for the inaugural UCI Gravel World Championships.

Gravel Worlds may be her last race of the season, but she still has big plans with a potential appearance at Big Sugar Gravel in late October before another trip to Europe to compete in the UCI Championships. sports director‘ Classes.

“I plan to race next year, I have a contract to race with the team, but I’m taking the management course, in Switzerland,” Stephens said. BikeNews. He’s looking more towards 2024 and just preparing for that. I was just like I might as well take the class. There is never a good time to take a course. It’s a whole week in Switzerland, and it’s quite expensive.

“I just want to be ready for 2024. You know, I don’t know what I want to do yet. Right now I’m still running. But I finally know. I want to do something else. Yeah. I just want to have this opportunity I’m just keeping the options open, and if you already have the license, I think it would be a very smooth transition.

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Stephens is paying her own way to the DS course, but her EF Education-TIBCO-SVB is supporting her in her efforts and helping her enroll in the course.

“Financially the team is not supporting it, but the idea that I take the course. They wrote a very nice letter to help me get into the course. They are fully supportive, like the idea of ​​me doing it,” she said.

Although she laid the groundwork for a post-retirement career, Stephens says she doesn’t think too much about life after racing. He still has at least another season to go before he really has to think about what’s next.

When it comes time for the 35-year-old to hang up her steering wheels, don’t mention the “R” word. Stopping the race won’t be the end, it’s the start of the next adventure.

“I don’t really like that word,” Stephens said. BikeNews when asked if she planned to retire. “Nowadays I think there’s so much entrepreneurship and everyone just doing a little here a little there that for me that word is so definitive. Like my parents, they’re retired They are the ones who found the money, they realized that they can just enjoy life.

Help the next generation

Like many female cyclists, Stephens had another life before she started racing full time. Whenever this happens, the end of her competitive career is an opportunity to bring her old life into her present life.

“For three years, I taught mathematics, so I have a degree in mathematics but also a minor in secondary education. I’ve always really enjoyed helping people do their best,” Stephens said. “Everyone always asked me if I wanted to go back to the classroom and I’m not really interested in an eight-to-five year job and just very rigid like school teaching would be, but there are a lot of aspects of school education that I Miss. I feel like some of them can be accomplished as a director.

For Stephens, potentially becoming a director in 2024 or beyond is a chance for her to guide future generations and help them find their best selves. As any educator knows, teaching isn’t just about subject matter, and she wants to help others understand what motivates them.

“I guess the main reason I became a teacher was because I wanted to be a coach. And I mean, that’s basically what a director is. They’re like the line coach. You know, but if you watch any other sport, that would be the word that is used,” she said.

“It’s about understanding that the person finds how to get the best out of each person and I really appreciate that part. Even as a math teacher, it wasn’t about numbers. It was about finding the students, figuring out how to motivate them, learning more about that person, and figuring out how to get the most out of them.

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