Team: Team GB Para-cycling
Best Result: Double gold medallist Beijing Paralympics, gold and bronze in London
Speciality: Road racing
Born in Birmingham, based in Leeds, David Stone is a free spirit whose cycling career was split by an adventure sabbatical in India, Pakistan and Nepal. He came back better than ever before, and with eight world titles and three Paralympic gold medals in the road race and time trial, he’s the man to beat in his category. This is what he told us when met him for a chat…
What’s more important, nutrition or training?
JM: Training, but then training hard balances out my cravings for foods that might not be so good nutritionally. Training makes me want to eat healthily, but allows me to enjoy some treats. Training also leaves me feeling less hungry.
What’s your favourite pre-ride meal and why?
JM: I train in the morning, so it’s always porridge with milk and a load of dried fruit (cranberries and un-sulphured apricots) and cashews, with a fresh black coffee. I eat over CNBC Squawk Box Europe [finance news programme] to see if I’m going to make enough for coffee and cake later on, during my ride.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given, and who gave it to you?
JM: Sid Barras told me this when I asked about the Paralympics road race in London: “Just stick to your plan.” It worked a treat.
When it comes to ride nutrition, what do amateurs tend to get wrong?
JM: I’m not big on nutrition. I eat healthily, but I’m not obsessed about it. However, I’ve had girlfriends in the past who’ve eaten what I have and become a little larger, so I’m probably not the best person to give advice on the subject.
What do you know now that you wish you’d known when starting out?
JM: This probably boils down to two things: the skills of how to ride well in a group, and knowing when I’m too tired as that’s when training becomes counterproductive. I’m good at getting my feet up these days.
Favourite naughty food?
JM: Fish and chips without a doubt. It’s pretty rare that I’ll treat myself to it these days though.
Tell us about a time when you got your nutrition wrong. What happened?
JM: Eating too late before an early ride, and I still do that most Saturdays!
Do you prefer real food
or supplements when you’re training or racing?
JM: I struggle with solid foods when I’m training or racing. I’ll have gels. When I’m really on the limit, a banana is good.
What’s the key to
JM: Enjoying it. It’s a real cliché, but there have been times when I’ve completely hated cycling. Some time off really helps me to focus my mind when that happens.
If you packed up riding right now, what are the three most important things you’ll have learned from participating in this sport?
JM: To learn from those around me, how to suffer and the art of self-discipline.
London 2012 Paralympic Games: Lora Turnham and Fiona Duncan narrowly miss out in Women's B road race