Canadian Cycling Magazine
A ride in the rain on borrowed bike turned the news anchor into a cyclist
A ride in the rain on borrowed bike turned news anchor
Sophie Lui into a cyclist
Being on TV every day puts Sophie Lui, anchor of Global News Hour at 6 BC, in the spotlight. Riding her bike lets Lui get away. “I live and work downtown, so getting out on my bike and out of downtown to be somewhere where there’s not as much traffic is one of the things I really like about cycling,” Lui said. “I like the peace and quiet, the scenery and the chance to just be in my head either to think the things I need to think or just to zone out.” Lui’s introduction to cycling began about seven years ago, after she mentioned it both intrigued and intimidated her to a friend at work. That friend connected her with Philip Meyer, an avid cyclist, former racer and director of the Georgia Cycling Team. “Philip took me on my first ride in the pouring rain, but surprisingly I still liked it,” she said, adding he had to borrow a bike for her because she didn’t have her own – or any other gear, for that matter. “I had absolutely none of the things I needed,” Lui said.
“I wore leggings and running shoes, and I think I ended up having to buy a helmet that day.”
Soon, she bought herself a bike. It wasn’t long before she did her first big ride – the Ride to Conquer Cancer in 2013, which at the time was from Vancouver to Seattle. Since then, she’s just kept going – signing up for gran fondos, travelling with her bike, riding with groups and solo, and building up her arsenal of cycling gear, including another bike. “I realized early on this is an expensive sport, but then it just became the thing I do,” she said.
Seeing herself as a cyclist – or an athlete at all – still feels new for Lui. “I’ve never really been an athlete. It was only in the past decade that I started to take an interest in my physical fitness,” she said, adding that cycling has changed how she sees herself. “It’s not just an accomplishment for me to finish hard climbs and rides, but it’s an accomplishment for me to see that I can do anything that’s physical at all. Now that I’ve been able to push myself in this direction, I feel like I can do anything.”
So, what’s next on her list? Lui looks forward to improving her times on some of her favourite Strava segments. She also wants to combine her lifelong passion for travel with her newfound passion for cycling, something she’s only done a little of in spots such as California, (where Meyer – now Lui’s partner – lives currently), Colombia, where she travelled for a story, and around British Columbia. “I really love being able to see the world, whether it’s my city or another part of the world, from my bike,” said Lui. “I love that cycling is quiet and beautiful and physical all at once, so you get to take in gorgeous places and challenge yourself physically and mentally at the same time.”
“It’s not just an accomplishment for me to finish hard climbs and rides, but it’s an accomplishment for me to see that I can do anything that’s physical at all.”