These days, professional mountain biker Amanda Batty comes across as a confident, strong and tough women.
She’s an outspoken advocate for women in sport, a vocal critic of the way mainstream media treats women, of the cycling industry in particular and doesn’t seem to be afraid to share her deepest and darkest secrets (especially around body image) online.
But it wasn’t always that way.
A survivor of childhood sexual abuse, a ward of the State and “eventful justice system participant” (as she describes herself on her website), Amanda rekindled her childhood love of cycling which ultimately gave her back her sense of self and self-worth at a time when she’d lost her “sparkle”.
In this conversation, we discuss:
* how mountain biking teaches you a lot of life lessons and it’s where you find your truest sense of self because you can’t worry about what you look like while riding,
* why fear is healthy,
* how her Dad used to lament how stubborn she was and how that (seemingly negative) “story” she constantly heard as a child has turned into one of her greatest strengths,
* how the brain works around fear and our ability to only chase one “rabbit” at a time (i.e., we can either choose to avoid hurt/pain or we can chase a reward — but we can’t do both at the same time),
* what holds women back is not a fear of crashing but a fear of failure,
* that fear is “bullshit” - it’s just a series of lies we tell ourselves based on situations we can’t understand or foresee
* why she shares her deepest and darkest secrets around body image on social media,
* how the cycling industry is perpetuating negative body image and self-hatred messages within the community.
Amanda is softly spoken, someone I’d describe as a deep thinker and this is quite a philosophical conversation, in some ways very different from other conversations we’ve had on the show.
But there are so many gold nuggets and great insights in this episode, I hope you’ll enjoy the conversation as much as I did.
Click here to listen on iTunes.
Notes and resources:
iTunes | Stitcher
To find out more about Amanda or to say hello, you can find her on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or via her website.
The video of Amanda feeling like a badass that she posted on Facebook (that we discuss towards the end of the conversation) can be found on Amanda's Facebook page here.