October 23, 2010 in Sports

Another Armstrong return

But this one is Kristin, not Lance

BOISE – A month after giving birth, Olympic gold medalist and two-time world champ Kristin Armstrong is returning to pro cycling in hopes of joining the U.S. team for the 2012 London Olympics.

This makes her the latest cyclist named Armstrong to shake off retirement: Two years ago, Lance Armstrong staged a comeback to ride again in the Tour de France.

But Lance Armstrong’s return didn’t include one hurdle Kristin Armstrong faces:

Lance, a father of five, never had to stop for a breast-pumping break while on a four-hour training ride.

“Most likely, the biggest challenges are not going to be about my training, or nutrition, the things that a lot of people struggle with to be at the top,” Kristin Armstrong said, while relaxing in her living room with her son, Lucas, and husband, Joe Savola. “It’s going to be about the challenges of raising a child.”

Armstrong, a University of Idaho graduate and resident of Boise, joins several high-profile athletes who gave birth recently while at the peak of their careers. Paula Radcliffe, the British marathon champion, and Kara Goucher, an American who finished third in the 2009 Boston Marathon, had boys in late September.

And like Radcliffe, who ran 14 miles a day while pregnant, and Goucher, who logged 80-mile weeks with her baby bump, Armstrong rode until just days before she gave birth Sept. 15 – including up the grueling 14.5-mile mountain road above Boise renamed the “Kristin Armstrong Bikeway” because it was her favorite training route for her 2008 Olympic triumph.

Armstrong, 37, retired in 2009 immediately after winning her second cycling world title in Mendrisio, Switzerland.

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