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Here’s the Wild Idea

Rebecca’s Wild Idea: To encourage others to take risks, push themselves physically and mentally, and get everyone in the world on a bike.

Today we welcome back Rebecca Rusch, this show’s first repeat guest. Rebecca has been called a modern day wonder woman and the queen of pain for her ability to not only withstand harsh conditions in endurance racing, but for her well-versed career. She has been a pro athlete for over three decades. She’s a seven-time world champion, author, philanthropist, and she’s shattered the glass ceiling in everything she’s done from finishing ahead of every guy in major mountain bike races, becoming a fire fighter, breaking records, and winning major adventure and endurance mountain bike races.

Since we last spoke, Rebecca was on tour with the feature film Blood Road, which follows her journey along the 1200km Ho Chi Minh Trail to find the site of her father’s plane crash during the Vietnam War.

This year, Rebecca is about to celebrate her 50th birthday, and she’s had some time to reflect back on her life. We get deep into her philosophy about how to pave your own path in life and how to make it in a career without a clear road map. We also dive deep into taking risks, how she trains her body, and most importantly how she trains her mind. She also shares tips and science she’s learned from the Red Bull coaches.

Presented by REI

Listen to this Episode if

  • You love biking, any kind.
  • You want to take more risks in life.
  • You are interested in pushing your body or your mind.
  • You want to hear from a badass athlete and get motivated.

Key Takeaways

  • 2:30 – Reviewing Rebecca’s huge year.
  • 4:00 – What Rebecca learned from her film Blood Road.
  • 6:00 – What she wrote in a letter to her 15-year-old self.
  • 7:15 – How the time of social media makes it easy to be hard on yourself.
  • 8:10 – How she found success in a nebulous career.
  • 9:45 – The rules that Rebecca set for herself to help make decisions, even risky ones.
  • 11:45 – Why she decided to quit her job opening climbing gyms.
  • 13:15 – Rebecca joined an adventure racing team.
  • 15:10 – What was Eco Challenge.
  • 16:45 – A race that had a big impact on her.
  • 22:10 – The challenge of being a pro athlete and finding sponsors.
  • 29:50 – How Rebecca looks good and trains hard at fifty.
  • 33:05 – What kind of brain training Rebecca does.
  • 37:00 – Rebecca’s journey to body positivity.
  • 44:20 – Another lesson she learned from Red Bull brain training camp.
  • 47:50 – Rebecca already throws her dream party every year.
  • 50:35 – Why everybody needs a bicycle.
  • 52:30 – Risk equals reward, passion equals payoff, give equals get, and less equals more.

Listen to our previous podcast with Rebecca Rusch


Rush to Glory by Rebecca Rusch


Headspace App
Blood Road film
Rebecca’s Private Idaho
Sea to Summit

Connect with Rebecca




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Wild Ideas Worth Living on Twitter