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Home / Fitness and Health / Gus Kenworthy talks about the upcoming AIDS / LifeCycle and social media activism

Gus Kenworthy talks about the upcoming AIDS / LifeCycle and social media activism

  The Olympic skier Gus Kenworthy.

All photos: Jason Rivera

Gus Kenworthy is always on the move. The 27-year-old has earned the reputation of a world-class skier for almost a decade and won a silver medal at the 201

4 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. X Games and World Championships. But that's just part of Kenworthy's story – off the slopes, he's becoming a real pop culture force, collecting more than 1.2 million followers on Instagram, finding his way to Hollywood with a role in FX & # 39's ninth season American Horror Story and to become an important activist in the LGBTQ community after appearing in 2015.

This is a lifelong success before he turns 30, and Kenworthy is far from finished. On June 2, he will participate in AIDS / LifeCycle, a cycle route from San Francisco to Los Angeles, which aims to raise funds for the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and the Los Angeles LGBT Center. After Kenworthy decided to ride in 2019, it became the largest fundraiser in the history of AIDS / LifeCycle, with over $ 166,000. We spoke to Kenworthy about the ride, how he uses social media to raise awareness about LGBTQ issues, and the challenge of a week-long bike ride.

M & F : First of all, can you briefly tell us about AIDS / LifeCycle and how did you get there?
Kenworthy: Last year I had a few friends riding and I saw their posts promote the ride and various fundraisers for their campaigns. I have donated a few times and have gone to the goal of showing support as they have completed the weeklong journey. I was not familiar with the ride before last year, but being there in person and feeling the energy and morale surrounding the event was incredibly touching and I was moved to sign up for the following year's ride. This ride is now only a stone's throw away and I could not be more excited!

They are strongly represented in social media. How did this kind of visibility help you talk about issues like HIV / AIDS and LGBTQ rights?
My intention for the trip was to raise as much money as possible to help people living with HIV, but also to get as much attention as possible to help destigmatize the disease. The great thing about social media is the ability to connect with your audience instantly while reaching out to many people. I raised my eyes and wanted to raise $ 1,000,000 for the cause. I figured that with over one million followers, I could reach my goal right away if each person donated only $ 1. It was not that easy, but I'm really proud of how much money I've accumulated so far and how much I've been able to get involved, and I hope to make a big last push for donations before that Journey.

 Olympic skier Gus Kenworthy.

How do you train for a 545-mile ride like AIDS / LifeCycle and what kind of diet plan do you have?
Honestly, I did not train as much as I probably should. I have done a few test drives. I've done a few spins and just keep my fingers crossed, that'll do. I know that my legs are strong from skiing and that overall I am in a decent shape, which I think will help, but I also know that this ride, no matter how much I prepare for it, will be very exhausting. As far as nutrition is concerned, not much has changed as a result of the journey. I try to eat quite cleanly: lots of protein, low-carbohydrates, etc. But I'm not as strict with myself as I probably should be.

If you ride a bike for something that takes seven Is it harder physically or mentally these days?
I think that in everything in life the mental challenge is always more difficult than the physical one. When your body shows signs of tiredness, your mind becomes active, prompting you to rest and take a break. For me, that starts early in training, and it's about overcoming that pain and making an effort, even if it gets really difficult. Then you will see the desired results in the gym. Then you set your personal bests and then you achieve things that you did not think you could do before.

What's next for you after the AIDS / life cycle? What can fans be happy about?
I have no cycling schedules after the ALC. I had not even ridden the road bike before it all started, and although I like it more and more, I do not think I'm capable of making it competitive or anything. As far as sporting activities are concerned, I am still in the ski slopestyle, in the halfpipe and in the Big Air on the way and I hope that in 2022 I can return for the third and last time to the Olympic Winter Games.

Donate here for Kenworthy's AIDS / LifeCycle concerns.


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