Nick Leventis On His Decision For Early Retirement

Nick Leventis, British racing champion and founder of Strakka Racing, announced his retirement from competitive racing. “Announcing my retirement and actually retiring from racing was hard,” he said, “especially because I’m still physically fit enough to continue. Though for the past months, I could already see my priorities changing. Honestly, retiring has given me a much clearer picture of what my priorities are, and the sacrifices I have been making in other areas of my life.”As for many, if not most, professional athletes competing in a physically demanding sport, Leventis decided to retire before his body was compromised too much.

“You don’t want to be waking up in pain for the rest of your life. A lot of the training I do at the moment is undoing a lot of the bad positions and over-worked muscles that I have had for a long time. Almost trying to give the body a reset. The demands of daily life and being able to enjoy physical activity for the next 20 years is important to me, so we are working really hard for me to have a body that can do that.” Leventis explains.

Family and Charity

After dedicating their mind, body, and soul to their craft, “what do I do now?” is the question most athletes ask themselves. “It is not a question that anyone else can answer for the individual, so you have to do a lot of deep thinking,” says Leventis. “The main thing when making the transition from being an athlete to being something else is to look inside yourself, try and find what is really important to you at your core.”

Leventis will be focusing on family and helping others. “I have two sons, Marley and Zion, and another one on the way before Christmas. Looking back, I have already forfeited so much quality time with them. I would take them to a race weekend with me but then spend the whole time apart from them. I was always driving, or recovering from driving, or preparing for the next stint. Now I can really focus on being there with them and for them instead of myself, exploring their interests.”

Leventis will focus efforts on his charity organization in Bulgaria, the Wonderful World Foundation, and help up-and-coming athletes in various sports, including motor racing and surfing. “I guess that was always kind of my hobby,” he said. “But now I’m starting to realize I can turn my hobby and my passion into my purpose.”

Purpose and Self-Improvement

Stepping away from the steering wheel gives Leventis time to work on himself and his personal life. “Before, it was all about me being good in one specific area and physical improvements. Now it’s about rounding out who I am as a person. Luckily, I’m sharing my life with a very disciplined woman who is constantly trying to improve herself. She is a huge inspiration to me. All the exercises—physical, mental, goal settings—we do together or individually are of great help to give a purpose to my retirement.

He is constantly expanding on his practices; using EEG brain training devices, float tanks and more. “I feel like the better I function, the easier it is to help other people. Today, with Instagram and YouTube, it is also very easy to find inspiration and extra motivation, thanks to all the young people leading the way as they advocate a more spiritual, respectful and greener way of life.”

Current Activities

As an active person in his earlier days, surfing and skiing, Leventis developed a passion for skydiving. “I have not been doing it that long, but it’s really fun learning to do something new. The rate of improvement is so high, you literally feel like you are getting better with every jump.” He is currently working with the instructor who taught Tom Cruise how to skydive for his movie “Mission: Impossible”.

Leventis enjoys the fall, but not the climb. “The flight up is not the most enjoyable in my opinion, but once you are out of the plane, the feeling of freedom is unrivaled. It is such an incredible experience that I want to share with people. I even convinced my trainer to jump out with me.” He prefers an easy-going lifestyle. “It is not the wild environment most people would imagine,” Leventis conveys. “Going to a drop zone you see very calm people, approachable without much ego.”

Project Uprise

With Project Uprise, Leventis is currently partnering with people who have inspired him. “The Uprise Project aims to inspire people towards doing something meaningful. Think how many views a really good YouTube video can get—a couple of million easily,” he voices. “Now think of the impact we could make if all of those people that saw the video went and did a beach clean-up, per se; gave up single-use plastic or even just donated some money to charities that already do this. Skydiving will be a big part of our initial piece, but that is a secret I still have to keep a bit longer.”

With his retirement, Leventis is setting sights outward instead of inwards as his career demanded. “The younger generation has mastered how to inspire, but we need to harness that into some sort of action. If I had to give a message to the world, it would be that no matter who you are, or how insignificant you think you are at the moment, with the right mindset you can achieve anything. You only need to inspire two people to create something bigger than yourself.”

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