To celebrate the release of our new cycling socks, we met up with our cycling ambassador Bryan Steel to talk about all things cycling and what he has been up to recently. We have made this Q&A into a video, so if you would like to see the full version of this interview which includes a review of our new socks, please keep up to date with Sockmine to see when it will be released.
We began by talking about how Bryan got into cycling, he said “I started cycling when I was 14 through my brother, he took up the sport through school. He wasn’t very well behaved at school and not very sporty either, I had to go watch him one weekend, so my dad bought me a bike and told me to give it a go. I gave it a go and three years later I was on the national team.”
Bryan also mentioned his favourite Sockmine products, “I’m quite a traditionalist so I like the white socks you have done but also I’m coming around to the different coloured ones... Actually, I like the whole range and I just think they’re really comfortable.”
We then went on to talk about the importance of performance clothing for athletes, specifically cyclists. “I think it’s essential, one thing when you’re performing at a higher level is being comfortable and being relaxed in your clothing. It’s the last thing you want to be thinking about when you’re trying to go as hard as you can is if something is uncomfortable. Also, for the weather conditions you need to be obviously cool when it’s warm and then warm when it’s cold, a big thing about cycling is you get wet a lot, so also to keep you dry at the same time. We do know that you’re probably not going to keep dry but keeping warm at the same time is really important.”
Whilst on the topic of athletes, we also asked Bryan what sort of advice he could give to young cyclists who are looking to pursue a full-time career in the sport. “Cycling is a really really hard sport... Just go out and give it a go, the great thing about cycling is its quite sociable at the same time, so you can go out with friends and also go out perform and go quick and stuff. One thing I would say is please be safe out on the roads they are quite tricky, so maybe take up cycling off road to start with but just go out, do it, and join a local club. There’s a massive club network around the country. My best advice is to go on to the British Cycling website and just Google your name and they will tell you where your nearest club is.” To get connected with local cycling groups, check out our Facebook page which is linked at the bottom!
We also wanted to know the things he cannot live without when cycling, he replied “Obviously there are the essentials like your clothing, but I always take some food with me… One of the main things I really like wearing is my sunglasses. Sunglasses are not only for a fashion item out on your bike but they’re really essential when it is cold, it keeps the cold wind out of your eyes but also protects your eyes at the same time. Plus, glasses make you look pretty cool as well!”
As a cyclist, it is obvious that you will travel great distances over a long period of time. So, the next question we asked Bryan was ‘on average, how many miles do you cycle a week?’ He said “on average I do between 300 and 500 kilometres, I coach now so I’m generally out with people who I coach but the great thing about cycling is you can get out in the big outdoors and the fresh air and actually go out into the countryside. There’s nothing nicer than just going out and forgetting about the world and its troubles and just going out for a nice bike ride.” How impressive is that!
In addition to this, he also mentioned that his greatest achievement so far was “winning an Olympic silver medal and an Olympic bronze medal. But funnily enough, my Olympic bronze medal is more important to me than my silver. A certain Mr Wiggins, who was in my team, used to say ‘you win a bronze medal but you lose a silver medal’, so my treasured possession is my Olympic bronze medal and also it was my first major achievement.”
So, what is next for Bryan in the world of cycling? “We’re going into the winter now, so everybody is going back to base training and base work, everybody is now looking forward to the Spring already. My first major target for next year is I’ve got a training camp in Majorca and also a training camp in Greece. We’re taking the guys, our coach, out there and in early season and I’ve got the Gran Fondo, so I’ll be going off to Mallorca again to do the big Gran Fondo there and in Cyprus as well.”
We really appreciate Bryan coming down to the Sockmine HQ and answering our questions, if you have any yourself, why not get in contact with him on social media:
Instagram - @bryan_steel09 - https://www.instagram.com/bryan_steel09/
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/bryansteelyouth/
Twitter - @BryanSteelAcad - https://twitter.com/BryanSteelAcad
Website - https://bryansteel.co.uk
Also check out our social media:
Facebook Group (Sockmine Family) - https://www.facebook.com/groups/1950628855173607/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel
Twitter - @sockmine or #sockmine #furtherfasterlonger
Instagram - @sockmine or #sockmine #furtherfasterlonger