"Paid to Suffer" tells the true story of life in the pro cycling ranks, from the glamour and drugs of the high life in Europe to the gritty reality of the hard-nosed, low-rent American circuit. From the outsider's perspective, the life of a professional cyclist sparkles with travel to some of the world's most beautiful destinations and the glory of racing in countries where pro cyclists are regarded as rock stars. In reality, very few riders reach this level of stardom. The brutally long cycling season pays paltry wages and the road to pro racing requires countless sacrifices. For many, the rewards remain out of reach. Going beyond the public persona of these riders, Rogers digs into the day-to-day details of the professional life: the endless hours of training, the nerve-wracking contract and sponsor negotiations, the travel, the hotels, the pressure to perform, the challenges of dealing with the press and public, the excitement of the races, and the fearsome consequences of injury.
Professional athletes must constantly address significant career choices - questions of trust with team mates and rivals, coaches and managers, sponsors and teams - and they do so largely alone, with few clear answers. "Paid to Suffer" is the first book to reveal the true stories of life in the professional cycling ranks.