Courtesy of The Howard Stern Show
Courtesy of The Howard Stern Show
Lance Armstrong isn't riding away from any topic these days.
While the former professional cyclist has been staying away from the Hollywood spotlight in recent months, the athlete couldn't turn down the opportunity to be interviewed by Howard Stern.
During Monday's episode of The Howard Stern Show, Lance was asked personal questions including his past relationship with Sheryl Crow.
At the same time, he couldn't help but reveal new information about his life as a cyclist before and after the doping scandal.
Take a look at seven of the many fascinating topics discussed during today's SiriusXM radio show. What you read and hear may surprise you.
Surviving Cancer: While Lance had a few warning signs about his health, he simply decided to ignore them time and time again. "I think most athletes play with pain, play through pain, make up excuses in their own mind for pain so I had a bunch of excuses," he shared on the show. "I thought I was sitting on a bike all day and that was a part of it." Between blurry vision, headaches and coughing up blood, Lance finally decided to visit the doctor where he was diagnosed with testicular cancer.
"I thought I was 50-50 [in terms of surviving]," Lance shared. "I would tell anybody in that situation unless you know it's completely fatal, we're not numbers. We're not stats. Let's go find the best doctors, get multiple opinions. Let's surround ourselves with great people—family and friends—and go fight."
Reacting to Dope Scandal: When Lance admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs for the first time publicly, a whole new level of scrutiny began. Ultimately, the athlete was worried about how his kids would react to the attention. "That's not a one-time conversation. The older kids were old enough to kind of live it with me and there was that conversation and there was therapy," he explained to Howard. "There was work. It's a process." While Lance is in a "great place" with all of his children today, his younger kids may be hearing stuff from their classmates soon. "The younger ones are growing into it. My seven and six year old were alive, but they didn't watch Oprah," he explained. "Now they're old enough where some kids in school can [ask questions]."
Gregg DeGuire/WireImage for The Recording Academy
Loving Sheryl Crow: More than 10 years after Lance and Sheryl ended their engagement, fans are still curious to learn more about the relationship. To this day, the cyclist still has nice things to say about his ex. "It was a good ride. She's a great lady. Obviously it didn't work out, but I think and I hope she's happy. I'm happy," he shared. "It's tough to pull it off. I mean, how many couples have been able to pull it off? To her credit, she was a stay-at-home—one of the biggest rock stars—she was a great partner. She was at the races…it wasn't like we never saw each other."
Trusting in Oprah: Out of all the TV personalities and journalists in the world, Lance decided to sit down with Oprah Winfrey and confess his mistakes. Looking back, the cyclist wonders if it was all too much at the time. "It was too soon for a lot of people and too detailed and too shocking for a lot of people," Lance explained. "The reason I decided to sit with her is because I had an existing relationship with her and I like Oprah and I trust her, but I knew I was going to get sued. When the report came out and they striped the titles, I f--king knew they were lining up." To this day, Lance believes Oprah was sympathetic while also feeling pressure from journalists to ask the tough questions. "It had to happen," he shared. "I left there feeling wow this is pretty good and the reaction was brutal."
Saying No to Bikes: After making front-page headlines for not the best reasons, Lance admitted that he fell out of love with the cycling sport. "For three or four years, I hated cycling because of what my life has looked like for the last four or five years," he explained. "Just like with any kind of breakup, there are hard feelings." Lance decided to purse sports he grew up doing like swimming and running. In the last six months, however, he started biking again and is falling in love all over again.
Lance's Parental Figures: During his interview, Howard brought up Lance's home life as a child. As it turns out, the athlete was never able to meet his biological dad. A few years ago, Lance got a call that his father passed away after being bit by a spider. As of now, Lance doesn't know if he regrets not finding his dad. When he gets older, however, his perspective may change.
Peeing While Racing: On a much lighter note, Howard had to ask his guest one very important question: How do you tinkle when you are racing for hours nonstop? "Anybody at that level knows how to pee off the bike," Lance shared. "There are periods where there is no people [around]. You know what to do, teammate gives you a push from behind."
"Generally, the entire group will just say, 'Anybody need to take a leak?' and everybody will stop so that gives you an opportunity," Lance continued. Who knew?