Aleisha Cline’s response to the question of how she juggles being both a mother to two small children and an Olympic athlete isn’t too surprising.
“Oh God,” said the Calgary-born, Kelowna-raised ski cross champion with a laugh. “That’s not easy. (I get) a lot of support from the family, because there’s no way that I could do it otherwise.”
Cline, who currently lives in Whistler with her husband and children, has inspired many by not only balancing the two, but by doing so at 38. In comparison, her youngest teammates on the Canadian ski cross team are only 19.
“Hopefully I can be an inspiration and a role model to other women my age with a couple of kids,” she said. “Most women out there think, ‘Oh my god, I have two kids. My life is over.’”
Cline has four gold medals, and one silver, from the X Games.
On Feb. 6, she added another gold medal to her collection after coming in first at the World Cup competition at Cypress Mountain in West Vancouver, winning all of her four races while hometown friends cheered her on.
Having acquired a taste for the precious yellow metal, she hopes to chomp her teeth into it once again at the 2010 Winter Games, when ski cross will be an Olympic sport for the first time.
“It’s so neat to be able to ski and race and show my friends and family what I do when I’m gone,” she said.
“You can send emails and photos and tell them about the course, but you really don’t get a good feel of it until you get to see it.”
• Keep up with Aleisha’s season and progress on her blog at www.aleishacline.com.