Pernille Mathiesen decided to end her career at the age of 24 to dedicate herself to mental health. She sent a message to her fans via social media. “I have decided to stop my career as a professional cyclist, after a long time not finding joy and motivation in riding my bike at professional level,” Mathiesen said for cyclingnews.
“I had a hope that it would be a period of time and that the joy and motivation would come back, but that’s not the case”. Cycling has been her love since she was little and Mathiesen is happy about the experience.
“Cycling always been a huge part of my life and identity,” Mathiesen continued. “I started racing when I was 8 years old and been ongoing for 16 years. I’ve been professional for 6 years, on my absolutely dream teams… Virtu, Sunweb, Jumbo-Visma and Cofidis and I am thankful for all the experiences I got and all the people I’ve met”.
Pernille Mathiesen on her decision
The Dane is happy with the decision she made, and she realized that health is a priority. “I’ve also been struggling with mental health and an eating disorder because of the massive focus on body composition there is in the sport,” she said.
“I am proud of my achievements, my results through the years and I am really proud of this decision I took to focus on my overall health”. She is ready for some new challenges and some new experiences. Obviously Mathiesen hasn't been happy lately, and this is the right decision for her.
“I also want to thank Team Cofidis for their understanding and handling of this situation,” she said. “I signed a 2 years contract with the team in September and breaking the contract with a great team before time haven’t been easy”. “It’s now time to find joy in other things in life, because nothing is worth not being happy”.