SKLZ is entering its 3rd year sponsoring the Challenged Athletes Foundation's annual fundraiser, the Million Dollar Challenge. And this is the 3rd year a SKLZ Team Athlete has trained for the 620-mile cycling event down the California coast. In 2010, Tim Norris took on the challenge to kickstart his life and be an example to his kids and grandkids. Last year, Mike Carlson found himself inspired by Tim's success story and decided it was his turn to take the leap and become an inspiration to others. This year, the SKLZ Team is looking forward to supporting Lucas Barbieri as he trains for and participates in this momentous event.
Lucas shared a bit about his cycling journey in this Q and A:
Do you have any prior cycling experience?
I've been road cycling for the past 7 years. Early on I got a racing bike, trained hard, and competed in local cycling races on the road and at the velodrome. Most recently my cycling has been to stay in shape, enjoy the San Diego sun and have fun.
Why did you decide to participate in this event?
I have a great deal of respect for the people supported by CAF and am truly inspired by their stories. I've had two major hospitalized experiences in my life. The most recent being from a bike crash I had last year. I have been ... extremely fortunate ... in my recoveries. Now SKLZ has given me a great opportunity. This is my chance to feel accomplished in my own life, to succeed over the challenges I've faced and help those in CAF that have inspired me to do more.
What do you want to get out of the experience, both the experience of training and the experience of the 7-day ride?
7 days 620 miles, it's a daunting thought. With the support of my family, friends and new CAF family there are two things I want to achieve from this experience. From the training I want to find discipline, in my athleticism and my life for now and later. From the MDC ride I want to feel the accomplishment. This is my chance for a real highlight in my cycling career and in my life.
Lucas and his new CAF family pose in front of the
Deni + Jeff Jacobs Challenged Athletes Fitness Center
What do you think will be the most difficult part of training?
The nutrition! Why cant California burritos be part of an athlete's diet ):
What do you look forward to least?
7:30am training ride on Sundays. zzzzz
What do you look forward to most?
The route from SF to SD is one I've driven before but have always wanted to do on a bike. It's beautiful. I am most looking forward to the journey.
What goes through your head when the going gets tough?
In a Dory voice... Just keep pedaling!
Help Lucas in his efforts to raise money for CAF by clicking here.