Marieke van Altena (1976) Epe (The Netherlands)
My name is Marieke and I’m 42 years. I live with my husband and two sons in a small town called Epe, in the Netherlands. Together with my husband, we own 8 clothing stores of Jack&Jones. But 1.5 years ago, I decided to do something different and now I’m the manager of Mindful Cycling Netherlands.
As a manager of Mindful Cycling I teach new instructors how they can give a Mindful Cycling course or clinic. And I give a lot of clinics in the Netherlands. Mindful Cycling is a combination of mindfulness, breathing techniques and cycling.
Sport has always been important to me. With sport I can let go, recharge, or blow off some steam.
Cycling has become really my passion in the last 8 years. The simplicity, your shoes and your kit on and go! That also makes that everyone can do it, at every level. It makes you loose from your daily worries. This passion for sports, making yourself mentally and physically better, if only with small steps, is something that fascinates me immensely.
With regard to cycling, the virus came when I gave up for the Alpe D’huzes, 8 years ago. I had never sat on a road bike and would have to cycle up to 6x. To set a goal and reach it was fantastic, that gave such a kick! Since then I set myself a cycling goal every year. When I ride for example the Pyrenees in 4 days, I am 1 with my bike. Every time when it gets heavy, I have to find myself again, by inner struggle, just alone in the world between all those mountains.
But when I reach the top, it is so fantastic, I feel so strong! Whether it’s a week’s cycling in the mountains or one of the local rides…
“It’s not a race, It’s a journey, enjoy the moment!”