Last Tuesday (15th), after participating in the UCI World Championships that ended on Sunday (13th) in Glasgow, Annemiek van Vleuten announced that she will retire from professional sport and will run the final race on the Simac Ladies Tour, between 5 and September 10, in the Netherlands.
“I will not train anymore. Maybe I’ll do events, but I won’t do it at a high level anymore. Maybe I’ll do some gravel, but I won’t be doing any more interval training to prepare for that. I’m glad I stopped being stressed about needing to keep my level high. That’s not what I want. But you will see me in sport. I want to continue with something, but first I need a year to see a little bit of what I want to do with my life”, said the athlete about the announcement.
The cyclist who finished the UCI World Championship finished in eighth place and with a smile that showed the happiness for her career so far, in which this year alone, she won the Vuelta Femenina, the Giro d’Italia Donne and finished fourth in the Tour de France Femme avec Zwift.
The athlete says she has a desire to specialize in mental training for competitors and newcomers to the sport: “I’ve been working with a mental coach for a long time, so I think it’s really, really good to be open about mental health. Sometimes I get questions like ‘what issue made you start working with a mental coach?’ and I’m like ‘no problem. I just want to improve in all areas’. With my young teammates, I like to help them out a bit with this part of their training. This is something that gives me energy, so I think in that area you will see me.”
Asked about having been sorry about the announcement of retirement, the cyclist reports that she would not go back on the decision and that she usually receives many questions on the subject. However, the athlete is satisfied with all the accomplishments of her career and that she is happy that the public wants her to stay in the sport.