Professional Coach and Category 1 Cyclist
Family: Christopher Cooley, Lala 8-year-old Yorkie
I was overweight and needed to reconnect with my body and what I was doing on a day-to-day basis. I borrowed a bike from my father and rode it in my basement while trying to understand nutrition and the foods that I was eating. Eventually, I purchased a road bike and was immediately hooked.
My weekly routine differs depending on if there is a race coming up and where we are in the season. On the bike, it oftentimes includes VO2Max workouts, Sweet Spot workouts, and a lot of endurance miles. Off the bike, I do max power strength work including bodyweight exercises, kettlebells, and weights. A variety of movements like medicine ball throws, plyometrics, and velocity exercises are important for cyclists.
My guilty pleasures are homemade cookies and any sort of fried potato.
I am inspired anyone training and racing at the age of 50 or older. Cycling is a sport that you can participate in for a very long time. The guys and gals out there crushing it and beating kids in their twenties motivate me to continue working hard as my days of racing in professional events come to an end, and I purely focus on different growth aspects of the sport and masters (age-based) category events.
The most underrated exercise is riding endurance pace at a consistent clip. It’s the easiest interval but one that so many cyclists can’t do.
I’m intrinsically motivated, but also growing our EVOQ.BIKE coaching business and other projects that we have on the cusp really keep me hungry to improve as much as possible.
My advice to newbies is JUST RIDE. Ride consistently, and once you don’t see yourself getting faster, ask us for help. We’ll get you pointed in the right direction, for free!
Many endurance athletes need to overcome their own mind. We hold ourselves back, doubt our capabilities, and always think the next girl or guy is faster. Trust your process, trust your coach, BELIEVE IN YOURSELF, and you’ll accomplish more than you ever could have expected.
My next big challenges are Master’s National Championships, Gravel Worlds, Tour of Southland in New Zealand, and the Tennessee State Road Championships…there’s always something!
People are surprised when they find out I’m gay. Since I don’t fit the stereotypical image in many people’s heads, it surprises them. I’m hoping to help to break these stereotypes because, as all stereotypes, they’re so inaccurate to the population they encompass.
I usually have a few books going at once, and the last ones were: “Jab Jab Jab Right Hook” by Gary Vaynerchuk, “Seeking Wisdom: From Darwin to Munger” by Peter Bevelin, and “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz.
My spirit animal is the giraffe. We’re both tall and max out around 35mph!
Check out Brendan Housler at Brendanhousler.com or EVOQ.BIKE.
Interview by Amy Goode. Photo by Taylor Tartera.