Seven Tour de France titles. Endorsements from Nike, Trek Bicycles and Oakley. A $500 million charity raise for cancer survivors. The greatest athlete of his era. Everyone knows we are talking about the one and only Lance Armstrong.
But is Lance Armstrong the cancer survivor and inspirational athlete that adults and children everywhere look up to? Or has he been hiding a secret for years?
Last week, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency brought formal doping charges against former cyclist Lance Armstrong in an action that could strip him of his 7 Tour de France titles. But what does this mean exactly?
The USADA made allegations against Armstrong saying that his blood samples from 2009 to 2010 were “fully consistent with blood manipulation including EPO use and/or blood transfusions.” EPO stands for erythropoietin, which can add energy-boosting properties to the blood. This type of drug is often used by athletes in endurance sports like cycling, running, swimming and cross-country skiing.
So what do we think? Should Lance Armstrong be stripped of his 7 Tour de France titles?
According to Lewis G. Maharam (also known as Running Doc), there are a few pieces of information we need to consider. First of all, Lance had a legitimate use for testosterone (for the removal of one testicle due to cancer). And secondly, a majority of cyclists were using EPO-type drugs at the time, so the playing field was not 100% altered.
Although we cannot say whether or not Lance Armstrong is guilty of EPO use, one thing is for sure: at Hitch Fit, we believe in achieving your fitness results in a natural way through proper nutrition and training, regardless of what type of physique you are going for—whether you’re wanting to shed body fat or gain lean muscle tissue or improve at a given sport. We aren’t here to cast stones or judge people for their personal choices, but our stand is that if you are participating in a sport where it is against the rules to use any substances that will give you an advantage over athletes, and you do so anyways (and then keep this information hidden and mislead people to thinking that you are completely natural), then that is wrong.
All in all, we believe that the outcome of Lance’s situation should be spent focused on the betterment of the sport of cycling. Lance Armstrong, and other cycling icons, should make it a priority to clean up the sport and begin setting the right example—regardless of the allegations.
What do you think?