Don’t let the salt-and-pepper hair fool you: Eric Heiden still has the physique of a world-class athlete. Even though his electrifying Winter Olympic achievement in Lake Placid, New York was 28 years ago, the 50-year-old knows a thing or two about proper conditioning for sports. Now, along with longtime sports medicine partner Massimo ‘Max’ Testa, Heiden has written a book called Faster, Better, Stronger (HarperCollins) to share his insight after 30-plus years as an athlete and a physician working with the world’s best cyclists and speedskaters, including 2007 Tour de France podium finisher Levi Leipheimer.
The Madison, Wisconsin native won five gold medals in speedskating in 1980, then transitioned to professional road racer. Parlaying his Olympic fame and along with fellow Olympic speed skater and cyclist Jim Ochowicz, Heiden formed the foundation for the successful 7-Eleven Cycling team. Heiden raced the 1985 Giro d’Italia and nearly finished the 1986 Tour de France, crashing with a week left in the race. Teammates Davis Phinney, Alex Stieda, Andy Hampsten and Ron Kiefel enjoyed their major victories wearing the red, white and green 7-Eleven kit in the 1980s. Ochowicz was team manager, and Heiden became a team doctor with Max Testa. Motorola became title sponsor in 1990, and by the time that relationship ran its course, Lance Armstrong won the world road championship. Heiden and Testa opened their sports medicine practice in Sacramento, California at the University of California-Davis, focusing their expertise on cyclists and speed skaters. They now run their clinic at the Orthopedic Specialty Hospital (TOSH) in Murray, Utah.
Max testa (c) and eric heiden (r) work with a u23 development rider in utah.: max testa (c) and eric heiden (r) work with a u23 development rider in utah. USA Cycling/Casey B. Gibson
Max Testa (C), works with sports medicine partner Eric Heiden (R) and a U23 road racer in Utah
BikeRadar will do a proper review of the 336-page Faster, Better, Stronger. In the meantime, Heiden and Testa are embarking on a book signing tour. BikeRadar will have an exclusive interview with the sports medicine duo after their book signing at the Bicycle Outfitter in Los Altos, California between noon and 2 p.m. on September 13 .
For more information, visit the website here.