KÜHL Bike Team Bio: Elli Hildebrand

Elli_Belgium_2Elicia (Elli) Hildebrand is a member of Kühl’s Pro/Elite Cycling Team. She lives in Belgium where she works for Trek Factory Racing (now Trek Factory Segafredo). She loves exploring, riding her bike, cooking and spending time with family.

What makes you a Kühl Kid? How do you live the Mountain Culture?
I think my sense of adventure and always wanting to look around the next corner or climb one more hill to see where it goes makes me a Kühl Kid. I’m always game to go anywhere and try anything!

It’s very difficult living the Mountain Culture in Belgium. There aren’t mountains so I have to find adventure in everything, not just big mountains.

Living in another country is an adventure in itself, an opportunity to learn about myself, and a challenge to push past all comfort zones.

What’s your most memorable adventure?
Having a ceremonial shot of some terrible moonshine with the village elder in a remote village in Cambodia. The entire village came to welcome my group and sang, danced, and tied symbolic string to my wrist. It was surreal.

Who inspires you?
My Dad. He inspires me to be a better person. He taught me the meaning of putting myself in someone else’s shoes and the meaning of compassion.

If you could adventure anywhere in the world for a week or two, where would you go?
I have traveled all over the world so my choice would be to go to Wisconsin where I grew up. I want to spend the time exploring the woods and lakes  up north with my Dad.

What’s your favorite piece of gear?
Chapstick

What’s your worst habit?
Pulling out my gray hairs!

Elli_Spain

Elli stops to take in the view in Spain

What song makes you most stoked to play and ride hard?
Ozzy Osbourne Shot in the Dark

What’s your favorite food and drink after an adventure?
Really cold carbonated water with lemonade. Usually after an adventure I’m so hungry that whatever I get my hands on is the best thing ever.

What’s the best way to end a first date?
With butterflies in your stomach!

Do you have any pets? Do you take them on your adventures?
I have two pets, a pug and a cat. They live with my parents in Wisconsin and don’t come on any adventures. They are both princesses.

Elli_Belgium_1What’s the worst injury you sustained from adventuring and how did you recover?
Breaking my jaw bike racing was pretty awful. I had my jaw wired shut for 8 weeks. A friend of mine lent me his Silver Bullet, which is a little blender, and it was a lifesaver! I could only drink liquid through a straw. I made milk and cookie shakes, pizza shakes, and burger and French fry shakes!

What the fastest speed you’ve ever gone under your own power, assisted by gravity?
I do not have the need for speed! The fastest I’ve gone is 45 mph down a mountain on a road bike. Too fast is scary!

Genie gives you three wishes and you have five minutes to decide all three. What are they?

  1. No litter
  2. I could feed the world’s hungry
  3. I could make everyone I meet smile

What’s your favorite thing about Kühl?
I really like that they are interested in and support the cycling community.

What’s your favorite piece of Kühl clothing? How do you use it?
My favorite piece of clothing is my Alska Hoody! I wear it ALL the time. It feels like crawling in the softest bed ever and pulling the covers over your head!

If your best friend already had your favorite piece of Kühl gear, what would you recommend to her that functions just as well playing outside as it does in the bar at the end of the day?
The Mova Aktiv Skort is amazing. I wear it when I get off the trail from a long mountain bike ride, to the grocery store, and when I want to look nice.

Kühl Editor

At KÜHL, the passion remains to get outdoors and have fun. Our Born in the Mountains contributors share their love for the mountain culture with their stories, reflections and photographs.