Ben Lewis - Life After LIfe
Dealing with Parenthood as a Pro Rider
It comes to a point in your life where you hit a certain age and you notice that your friends are starting to buy houses and settle down by having kids, and battling a 9-5 job to lock down the bills. Long gone are the days of smoking weed at a mate’s house (with more lenient parents than yours) or waiting near a shop for the unsuspecting stranger that looks old enough to buy you some tramp piss booze or a 20 deck of ciggies. For me this was a long time ago but crank on a few years and for many this 'teenage into adulthood' part of your life is replaced with getting a night feed ready for the sleepless night that awaits you.
Recently I spent a few days in Liverpool catching up with Ben Lewis in his new house and got to meet his new baby boy, Sebastian. This had been long overdue and the contrast in Ben’s life from when I last saw him (since losing his frame sponsor) was quite apparent.
Ben, being Ben would have a plan of action in the works for each the four or five days that I was there; all being completed before lunch, and before the heavens would open up. There’s one thing you can always count on with Benny L, and that’s the use of time you have is spent very wisely. As he says himself, "I still ride near enough every day I just sometimes have to make those shorter more intense sessions, built around the lil' guy." Its like, everything and nothing has changed at the same time.
How are things with you? Your life has taken a pretty different path recently.
I’m doing really well. I’ve had a new addition to my life but nothing has really changed too much. I still ride near enough every day I just sometimes have to make those shorter more intense sessions, built around the lil' guy.
How are you finding being a father?
I mean naturally I was a scared at first, so I read a lot of books and went to classes and first aid shit, but once he came into the world nothing else mattered - you just crack on.
You have recently bought yourself a house, how’s that going for you?
Yeah it made sense to have a solid base for his future so I quit basically everything that’s fun once we found out about him haha. I stopped drinking, eating out etc, and just saved hard to get my shit together.
I thought about putting a ramp in the back but then I remembered I love to ride street and explore, so it seemed like a waste of space haha!
What’s your average daily routine?
I have Sebastian 2/3 days/nights a week so it depends on that really. Both times I’m up early but one involves a power breakfast and a full day looking for spots and riding the other eating when I can and trying to show the lil' guy as many new things about the world as possible 😂.
How often are you up in the night?
He just started nursery so has been getting every illness known to man, so he isn’t a happy fella. He wakes a lot maybe 6/7 times a night but you just make it work. When he’s healthy it changes every week.
"I quit basically everything that’s fun once we found out about him. Stopped drinking, eating out etc, and just saved hard to get my shit together. "
- Benny L
How many times have you watched Yellow Submarine?
I know every word off by heart haha. My Dad showed me it when I was a kid so I thought I’d try the same for a laugh but he fucking loves it. It hypnotises him and he just dances along. It buys me a good hour or more peace and quiet if I ever need it.
So when will Sebastian be getting on a BMX?
I mean I’ve tried him on trikes and he just fell off sideways haha. But yeah... as soon as possible he will be on one. He’s a lil' nutter and never cries but constantly head-butts everything haha.
"I thought about putting a ramp in the back yard, but then I remembered I love to ride street and explore... so it seemed like a waste of space!"
- Benny L
Do you get to ride much now?
Yeah the same if not a bit less but more focussed sessions! I really make the most of it and feel more driven to get shit done regardless of what I have to go through.
Do you find yourself taking more caution whilst riding now?
No not at all. I was a bit apprehensive before he was here now it’s like I’m 150 percent into riding and progression. I can’t explain it - I just feel so focused!
Any thing exciting lined up?
Lots of exciting things lined up in Philly and NYC this month then July / August will hold some new treats and answer some questions haha. As for the rest of the year I just want to film as much as possible and ride and do weird and new shit on me bike.
Whens your next trip to Japan? I know you’re a fan of that place...
I’ll be off there for a few weeks end of July to hang out with all the boys. The scene there is so motivated and united - it’s what BMX is to me. The spots and dedication to riding them is incredible, and It always leave inspired.
"BMX is my escape from reality"
A key handful of many over a wild-ass four days of madness...