Chef Colin Rides Again

Fearrington House’s very own Executive Chef Colin Bedford is getting ready for this year’s Chefs Cycle to support No Kid Hungry. We thought it would be interesting to hear more from him about why he rides.

Why did you get involved with Chefs Cycle?
I got involved in chefs cycle because my worlds collided, this fit in with my everyday life of half and full distance Ironman triathlon training and to be able to help raise money for children to be able to eat just seemed like the right thing to do. Sometimes you don’t need a reason. I felt at the time it was the right thing to do and I could ponder the bigger picture somewhere between miles 1 and 300. There is not a negative element to this whole event, everyone wins and we continue to move toward in that goal of fixing a fixable problem.

What is the best part about riding with a bunch of chefs? The hardest part?
The start of the riding is always fun and the end is rewarding but it is like climbing a steep hill. It might not be as fun knowing that you have to get up and over it but it is all about the journey. It is a time where you can be by yourself and a time for camaraderie. A chefs life is not always the easiest. One thing I especially like about the race is that it’s a chance for chefs to hang out as part of a community that’s giving back in a meaningful way. And then there’s the training that goes into it also. It takes about 4-6 months to train for something like this and that right there can be a life changing moment in itself. We have a difficult industry where sometimes the odds are stalked against us. Our work can be an enabler for all the bad things out there but this is a mind set that promotes change and a sense of family and community with every pedal stoke, all of us moving in the same direction, the same common goal but deep down we have our own goals too for whatever reason. I have always found day two the hardest and then by day three the legs are primed and ready to go, I just hope it works out that way this time too!

Tell us about this year’s ride – where, when, any goals you have for the ride.
This ride is in Charlottesville, Virginia at the end of September probably going to be a little different than riding in California. I am looking forward to the challenges of the unexpected, I am definitely climbing more hills these days to get ready. Goal is for all of us to get home each day safe and sound.

If you could do just one thing to help hungry kids and families, what would it be?
Bring more awareness and find a solution to this problem. I don’t have any children of my own but my fondest memory really solidifies my reasons for riding. On my first year of riding I just knew I was doing the right thing by raising money for a charity with the vision to end childhood hunger. During my first year we had principals, teachers and children sharing how the program had changed the lives for so many children, still did not hit home for me. After day 3 and 300 hundred miles we entered a playground in Santa Barbara where children where waiting for us. I put my bike against the fence, stretched and walked towards the children having fun and playing. On my walk over to them I was stopped by a little boy “Hey Mr!” as he gives me a high five, “Thank you for riding I really enjoy my breakfast every day!” Then it hit me. Yes, yes I am riding for all the right reasons.