Name: Shannon Petitjean
Occupation: Retail Sales at Patuxent Adventure Center Mom of 2 boys Road captain for my cycling club
Bikes: Moot’s Routt, Specialized Camber Comp, Trek Lexa
Q: When and how did you discover cycling?
A: I started riding when I was a little girl. I road bikes up until I got my license. I road everyday, everywhere! In my late 30’s I was introduced to Triathlon races, and rediscovered riding. I bought a road bike, and started riding with a women’s ride at the shop I work at now.
Q: Has your inspiration to ride changed since then, and what is it now?
A: My inspiration to ride is really for my mental well being. I feel like riding makes me happier, and I am better to myself, my family and friends and the community as well.
Q: What are some notable trips you’ve done to enjoy cycling?
A: I have raced a few triathlons in other states. I have stayed very local, but that is all subject to change. I look to venture out this fall to climb in the mountains of West Virginia, and head out to skyline drive in Virginia. Looking to do some gravel rides this coming fall.
Q: You’re a Barnstormer Chapter Leader. What does that entail, and is there anything you hope to help other riders find within the club?
A: As a BCL I hope to organize and lead many rides. I want to set up a gravel ride for kids in my neighborhood, and teach them the importance of bike maintenance. Organize rides and encourage the new riders to step out of their comfort zones. I want other people to dream outside of the lines and become who they’re destined to be.
Q: Everyone who rides has something unique to offer. Do you know what you might offer, in that regard?
A: I am a mother of two boys with active schedules. I always find a way to get in a ride. After losing 196 pounds, quitting smoking after 23 years, quitting drinking and fighting depression and anxiety, I feel like I am more empathetic that most people. I feel what they feel, and have an open mind to people that have fear, doubt and insecurities about riding!
Q: What role does cycling play in your current lifestyle?