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It’s often presumed that sport is all about tunnel vision: having a laser-like focus on winning, and filtering out everything that is not connected to that. Watch athletes in competition and the level of concentration can appear absolute. Ditto for preparation; in the training phase for events such as the Tour de France, months of work is put in, honing the body and mind to reach the required level.
However at times seeing the bigger picture has real benefits. As explained in this podcast, there is a clear risk for the athlete in being obsessively one-dimensional. Sometimes getting away from being centred on the self is vital.
For the wider community too there are benefits. Hope Sports works with athletes to build houses in impoverished communities, using the energy and drive of sportspeople to effect positive change. During the off-season the organisation combined with the all-diabetic Team Novo Nordisk to build three houses in a shanty town in the Dominican Republic, laying literal and metaphorical foundations which should yield numerous benefits.
CyclingTips travelled with Team Novo Nordisk on the build and traces the unusual off-season activity in this podcast. Riders and others speak with real candour about their own personal journeys, discussing diabetic comas, emotional breakdowns, transforming lives and much more.
Follow the links below to listen to this podcast on the platform of your choice: