Audrey Villancourt: More freedom for her projects and passions | Jean-Francois Tardiff | Sports the sun

“What I love and what attracted me in the beginning was the ability to live abroad,” explains a Quebec resident. “I soon realized that working in reforestation has many benefits. The great thing is that it allows you to make a lot of money in a short period of time. So you can enjoy a lot of freedom during the rest of the year. It’s much less restrictive than having a file.” Function 40 hours a week throughout the year. You have space for your personal projects and your passions. You can touch all your interests. And when I miss the computer a lot, I get small translation contracts.

“In the beginning, reforestation was a temporary job for me. I never expected to do more than one season. Today, I am planning to work on this for several more years. But I am not putting a crossover on translation even though I’m pretty sure I won’t be working on it permanently I really enjoy doing translation. It’s a way of life that I don’t like very much. Spending 35-40 hours a week in front of the computer finds it very difficult. But doing it part-time works well for me. “

Audrey was around 12 years old when she first started biathlon. For many, it was written in the sky that she would practice the sport, and her two older brothers, François and Maxime LeBeuf, models, being part of the elite at the national level. And from her first training sessions, she fell in love with photography, as she was immediately impressed. Not because of the handling of a firearm, but because of the dexterity, precision and consistency it demands and contrasts with cross country skiing where the athlete has to unlock the machine and give 100%. “Shooting a biathlon takes a lot of restraint. You have to be calm. It’s the opposite of the image we have of the density of people when shooting.”

Audrey said she never felt pressured to exercise the same discipline as her siblings. At home, her parents always encouraged her, as well as her siblings who admired her ease of shooting. Motivated, she added, it was possible for her to realize that she could do better than her elders in certain areas. She did not feel more pressure on the competition venues as, although she carried her mother’s name while her siblings had their father’s name, the majority of people knew her family ties. “And those who didn’t know that Francois and Maxime were my two brothers, realized it quickly because of our physical similarity.”


Audrey was only 24 years old when she hung up her skis and put her gun away in May 2016. A few weeks earlier, she competed in the Canadian Championships presented in front of her parents and friends at the Myriam Bedard Biathlon Center where she was and he had won the twelfth event, the 5-kilometer group start. In addition to winning another silver and bronze medal in individual races of 7.5 km and 10 km. The former athlete admits that she would have pulled out of her original game plan the day after the Olympics. But at the same time, she did not want to force herself to do something that no longer pleased her.

“I still love the sport so much and I still find it very beautiful. But I am no longer enthusiastic. I felt that this was no longer my place. And I had a bit of severe nausea from the lifestyle and restrictions that accompanied my career. I wanted something more than seeing the same places, the same hotels. Every year at the World Cup, the same people and the same routine. It was an emotional decision. But the moment I realized I was no longer okay, I moved forward. I had a lot of projects that I wanted to accomplish. ”

Although she was well prepared for retirement, the former player didn’t hide the fact that returning to a more normal life was very difficult at first. She must have been in mourning and her body, used to stimulating adrenaline and endorphins, must have gone through it as well. Fortunately, she had a clear plan to get through this difficult time and was well surrounded.

“When I retired, I put an end to something that was close to my heart for several years. I also left an environment that I knew, where I was used to developing, which I loved and where I was in good shape for a long time. And I jumped into the void to try new things.”

After being called out to evaluate her career, Quebec stated that she was very proud of her, even though she had not achieved all the goals she had set for herself, such as going to the Olympics. She said she is proud of what she has accomplished, but also the way she has managed her career.

“In my ideal world, I wanted to go to the Olympics. But the fact that I did not qualify for that does not detract from my wonderful career. When I first started playing biathlon, I probably didn’t expect things to work out the way I did. I just wanted to have fun. And then, after.” Realizing I had a talent, I took the opportunity to go as far as I could.

After completing her studies, Audrey first worked for a year in the translation office where she completed her internship. Then she realized an old dream by setting out to explore the world with her boyfriend. The couple first traveled to Guatemala via the United States, Mexico and Belize on a plane Cart. The following year, he visited Central Asia, the first destination being Kyrgyzstan, the country they fell in love with after seeing pictures of its vast green spaces, valleys, mountains, and green hills. “There isn’t a lot of tourism there. It was a big crush. It’s the country we liked the most in Asia.”

Audrey does not hide that her travels have distinguished her. Poverty was present in most of the countries I visited. And I found it very difficult to identify her as a rich white.

“In countries where there is almost no tourism, the situation was less bad. We felt that we were more surrounded by hospitality. But in other countries …. in Nepal, for example, a country we were keen to go to for long trips. But it was tough. Because we have been constantly encountering the landscape’s beauty Feeling From rebellion when we saw the conditions in which people live. Nepal includes all tours. There are superhuman tourist streets where wealth is everywhere and a little further away, people live in chicken houses. Emotionally, it was very difficult. “

On her return from a trip, Audrey became a tree grower. Meanwhile, she accepted a job at Courcelette Biathlon’s Club, a job she didn’t want to take on when she retired, but liked it instantly which made her realize all the way she had “ walked. She adds, however, that she does not intend to work on it TrainingSponsoring young people who compete on the regional stage to its full satisfaction.

Quebec was forced to give up overseas travel due to the epidemic, and suffered little from the situation. Firstly, because she and her boyfriend have already planned to plant trees in Quebec in 2020. But also because she says she feels good about traveling.

“Over the past year, we have enjoyed being close to home, our friends and our families. My friend and I are very close to our families. And we realized how good we were. I am not saying that I put the idea of ​​traveling again, but for the time being we want to stay with our people and take advantage of the great freedom that our work gives us.” As a forest delimiter. “

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