One-on-One with Jessica Belisle
Having discovered cycling in 2014, Jessica never stopped challenging herself since. From a challenge to another, she is, without a doubt, an inspiration to the women cycling community.
Discover the portrait of Jessica Belisle, a passionate and active PEPPERMINT ambassador but above all, a brave and resilient woman who never seems to stop one second.
1. Describe yourself briefly.
Math teacher in college and high school, graduate student in mathematics at the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières (UQTR), passionate about outdoor activities and training, I would say that these few points describe me quite well. I recently discovered triathlon and took part in my first Ironman and Xtreme Triathlon competitions in the summer of 2018. Since I started cycling in 2014, I have achieved several challenges such as three Quebec-British Columbia crossings, two world records in stationary bike and have crossed the 17 administrative regions of Quebec in 10 days.
2. Why do you do so much?
I am a really demanding person when it comes to myself; I always want to go beyond my limits. I also wish to demonstrate that everything is possible when you work hard towards your goals. People often challenge me and as long as I am having fun, I am more than happy to up my game and show them what I can achieve! I also believe that all this training helps to channel my hyperactivity, undiagnosed but very present nonetheless!
3. Why choose to accomplish everything in solo?
Achieving challenges in solo allowed me to discover and respect my pace. In a way, it’s kind of a self discovery journey. Every challenge allows me to know more about myself about my mind and my body. When I first started, I decided to train alone because I was new to the sport and I didn’t know many people who liked riding as much as I did.
4. Why do you use Strava?
I love the Strava App because it allows me to track my different activities and results. I appreciate the healthy competition it allows me to have with myself and with my friends. Moreover, it keeps me up to date with other people’s training, which inspires me and motivates me when I need a little extra push.
5. What are you most proud of as a cyclist, what is your biggest accomplishment?
What I am most proud of is definitely my first cycling trip; when I crossed Canada from Trois-Rivière to Victoria, BC. I took the decision on an impulse because I needed change and a challenge. This trip left me with lasting memories and widened my vision of the world. I am no longer shy and I am now aware of my strengths and weaknesses, such as my resilience.
6. Did cycling teach you a lesson? If so, what is it?
Without a doubt, cycling taught me that the body is a beautiful machine that we have to take great care of. I have more than once pushed my body to its limit and beyond, but when well cared for, the results you are aiming for are more easily attainable.
7. What are your projects for 2019?
In 2019, I will take part in my first Ultratrail with Gaspesia100; an 100 miles race through the Gaspesian landscape. I might register for a half-Ironman and an ultracycling competition. I have many projects, both in sports and personal, that I would like to accomplish this year.
8. What motivates you to always keep going forward?
I like to diversify my trainings and challenges; this helps me stay motivated. Also, sharing my passion with others keeps me inspired and makes me discover new aspects of my favourite sports.
9. What advice would you give to a girl who wants to set herself goals and challenges in 2019?
I would say that the most important is to do something that you love. When the goal is important to you, it’s easier to put the effort in to achieve it. I think it is also essential to split a big goal into several smaller goals in order to constantly have victories along the way.
10. Why did you want to be a PEPPERMINT ambassador?
I wanted to be a PEPPERMINT ambassador to be a part of a team of incredible women who are engaged into their community and who thrive to make women cycling shine in Quebec. The fact that the gear is high quality and super comfortable also contributed to my desire to be a PEPPERMINT ambassador.
11. What is your favourite PEPPERMINT product?
I have two must-haves in the PEPPERMINT collection. Since I started wearing skinsuits, I now have a really hard time going back to two-pieces kits! Skinsuits are so comfortable and I love the style that it gives while riding. Also, the windproof vest stays one of my all time favourite items, particularly for chilly Fall rides.
12. What crazy idea would you suggest to PEPPERMINT?
I would like to encourage women to surpass themselves by pushing their limits further by trying the ultra distance. Maybe a 300km ride could be added to the PEPPERMINT program in 2019? Who knows?