Even in your darkest moments, the potential for redemption lays in wait.
Mark Cavendish is a living illumination of this truth—a man who bounced back from career-ending setbacks and a protracted battle with mental health to become the greatest sprinter in cycling history.
Over the course of his storied career, Mark has taken home 55 Grand Tour stage victories, 162 professional victories, and has won an astonishing 34 stages of the Tour de France, tying a previously thought impossible-to-match record set almost 50 years ago by Eddy Merckx.
At the pinnacle of his career, Mark suffered a debilitating crash, began to battle seemingly insurmountable health obstacles—a debilitating crash, disordered eating, depression, and Epstein-Barr—that took him out of elite performance contention for nearly five years.
But instead of ending his career, Mark fought back. In an extraordinary comeback Tour de France in 2021, Mark won four stages and the green jersey nearly a decade after he had last won it—a meteoric rise, fall, and resurrection beautifully portrayed in the recent Netflix documentary, Mark Cavendish: Never Enough.
“Negativity drags you down—it’s a massive weight lifted if you can overcome it.”
– MARK CAVENDISH
This is a powerful and revealing conversation about grit, commitment, mental health, and the hard-wrought journey to success.
In addition to discussing his new Netflix documentary, we recount the highs and lows of Mark’s incredible career, his battle with mental health, and his unique relationship with cognitive performance strategist Dr. David Spindler.
Mark also shares his new relationship with goals, and how he manages the pressure to eclipse Eddie Merckx’s historic record by winning his 35th stage at the 2024 Tour de France, where he will compete against riders nearly half his age.
I found Mark to be humble and grateful—a gentle champion with a firm grasp on what is truly important and why. My hope is that Mark’s story serves as a powerful reminder that taking responsibility for your mental health is crucial, and that no matter how far you’ve fallen, there is always hope to build a better future for yourself and others.
Note: Today we discuss mental health issues some might find confronting. If you are struggling, please raise your hand and reach out for help. You can call SAMHSA’s National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP and if you are experiencing suicidal ideation, know you’re not alone. I encourage you to call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1(800) 273-TALK.
Final Note: If you dig this conversation, look out for my upcoming podcast with the afore-mentioned neuroscientist and cognitive performance strategist Dr. David Spindler, which will be released in the not-so-distant future.
Peace + Plants,
Listen, Watch, & Subscribe
For 1000s of delicious, customized plant-based recipes & so much more, check out our Plantpower Meal Planner.
Birch Living: The best, most affordable, organic, and sustainable mattresses on the market with a 100-night risk-free trial. 1% of each purchase is donated to the National Forest Foundation and Birch purchases carbon offsets for each mattress sold. For 20% off ALL mattresses and 2 free eco-rest pillows visit BirchLiving.com/richroll
Babbel: Start speaking a new language in as little as 3 weeks with lessons designed by over 150 language experts. Babbel teaches you language skills for real-life scenarios, and all of their tips and tools are approachable, accessible, and delivered with conversation-based teaching. Babbel is offering 55% OFF your subscription at Babbel.com/RICHROLL. Rules and restrictions may apply.
Indeed knows that when you’re doing everything for your company, you can’t afford to overspend on hiring. With Indeed you only pay for quality applications that meet your criteria. There are no long-term contracts and Indeed gives you full control so you only pay for what you need. Start hiring now with a 75$ SPONSORED JOB CREDIT to upgrade your job post at indeed.com/RICHROLL. Terms and conditions apply. Offer good for a limited time.
Whoop: The 24/7 health and fitness coach that helps the best obsess over the details that matter most. WHOOP tracks your sleep, strain, recovery, stress and more to provide personalized insights that help you reach your goals. Try WHOOP for 1 MONTH FREE, and get ready to unlock the best version of yourself at WHOOP.com and use code RICHROLL to save 10% OFF your order.
AG1: 75 whole food sourced ingredients designed to optimize 5 key areas of health, AG1 is the delicious daily habit that sets you up for a healthy future. I take the packets everywhere I go. Invest in your health without compromise! Go to: drinkag1.com/richroll to get a FREE year supply of Vitamin D AND 5 free travel packs ofAG1 with your first purchase.
BetterHelp: This episode is brought to you by BetterHelp, the world’s largest therapy service, 100% online. Designed to be convenient, flexible, and suited to your schedule. Just fill out a brief questionnaire to get matched with a professional, licensed, and vetted therapist who you can trust. Listeners get 10% off their first month by visiting BetterHelp.com/richroll.
ROKA: Cutting-edge eyewear & apparel built for top performance. Ultralight construction. Arms-Up Design. Official USAT Partner. If you’re active like me and wear prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses, ROKA combines the no-slip performance you’ve been waiting for with fashionable frames. Unlock 20% OFF your order with code RICHROLL at ROKA.com/RICHROLL.
- Connect with Mark: Website | Instagram | X
- Netflix: Mark Cavendish: Never Enough
- BBC: Mark Cavendish robbery: Third conviction over raid at cyclist’s home
- Velo: Inside Astana-Qazaqstan’s Plan to Make Tour de France History With Mark Cavendish
- Bicycling: Mark Cavendish Is Putting the Finishing Touches on Postponing His Retirement
- The Guardian: ‘I just love riding my bike’: Mark Cavendish announces he will race on
- CyclingNews: Self-belief key to success for Mark Cavendish, says former teammate Adam Hansen
There are a few simple ways you can support the show and the content we strive to craft and share every single week
Patronize Our Sponsors: Supporting the companies that support the show! For a complete list of all RRP sponsors and their respective vanity URLs and discount codes, click the ‘Sponsors’ tab in the ‘Shop’ menu.
Spread The Word: Help grow our reach by sharing your enthusiasm for the podcast and/or your favorite episodes by posting about it on social media.
Thank The Team: I do not do this alone. Send your love to Jason Camiolo for audio engineering, production, show notes and interstitial music; with additional audio engineering by Cale Curtis and additional music by Moby; Blake Curtis & Dan Drake for video, & editing; graphics by Jessica Miranda & Daniel Solis; portraits by Davy Greenberg, Grayson Wilder & Gizelle Peters; video clips for social media are created by AJ Akpodiete; copywriting by Georgia Whaley; and theme music by Tyler Piatt, Trapper Piatt & Hari Mathis.
Amazon Disclosure: Third-party books and products denoted on this page and website may be hyperlinked to the Amazon affiliate program. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.