Evelyn Stevens Leaves Wall Street for Cycling Courses

Evelyn Stevens starts career in cycling

Evelyn Stevens | Image by Jon Devits, from CyclingNews.com

Evelyn Stevens | Image by Jon Devits, from CyclingNews.com

Would you leave a high-paying job on Wall Street for the chance to make only $30,000 a year as a professional cyclist? Everyone has a hobby — something they wish they could make money doing. If there were a way for me to make money by singing karaoke I certainly wouldn’t spend 40 hours a week in an office anymore.

Evelyn Stevens is the latest example of someone who is living “the dream” — or at least her dream. Some people might dream of doing exactly what Evelyn Stevens was doing before: working at a Wall Street investment firm at the age of 26. She might not have even known that she had the option of making a living another way. She only discovered her love of cycling a year ago, and it turns out she happens to be really good at it as well. A couple of month ago she left Wall Street, and now her bicycle is her moneymaker. Only she doesn’t make nearly as much money as she did before.

Lifestyle change

She didn’t need secured loans to switch careers, probably because she was managing her own investment portfolio and putting some of her earnings into savings. However, Evelyn Stevens took the plunge. The Examiner reports:

On Sunday,  August 9th, the 26-year-old former college tennis player began the Route de France, a six-day race that draws some of the world’s top female cyclists.

This is the part where it gets crazy. After just a short period of training, Evelyn Stevens came in second place in the Route de France, a stunning accomplishment for someone who is still considered a beginner by many.

Moving on up

It looks like Evelyn Stevens’ chances of making a career out of professional cycling are pretty good. However, even if she makes top dollar as a female cyclist, she’s going to be making quite the sacrifice. Wall Street Journal’s The Examiner reports:

A big obstacle to success for female professional cyclists is the pay: Top women’s professionals make about $30,000 a year, a figure that makes it almost impossible to train without working a “real job”. Most people agree Stevens could be one of the next great American women cyclists, but there’s no guarantee that she will conquer the world.

The Wall Street Journal reports on the next stage in Evelyn Stevens’ journey:

The next big question is whether Ms. Stevens will be chosen by USA Cycling’s selection committee to compete in the World Championships next month in Switzerland. It’s a hilly, 77-mile race. Appointment to that team would put her among the top handful of women cyclists in the country, and her inexperience suggests she could still improve tremendously.

Living the dream

Evelyn Stevens says that living the life of a professional athlete is “pretty nice,” and that training is a lot more refreshing than going into the office.

However, I’m interested to see how she adjusts to the drop in salary. It’s true that money doesn’t buy happiness, and she will probably be happier doing something she loves for less money rather than continuing a Wall Street career just for a paycheck. Some people, though, have a rough time giving up the finer things in life once they’ve gotten used to it.

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