Ireland's Dan Martin: If I want a beer I'll have a beer
His Tour de France already a success thanks to a spectacular stage win in the Pyrenees, Dan Martin is gearing up nicely for the final days of the three-week race - the old-fashioned way.
"He's old school," his Garmin-Sharp team mate David Millar says.
Martin, who won the Liege-Bastogne-Liege classic this year, is the antithesis of the Team Sky rider: he refuses to train at altitude while the British team have two sessions a year way above sea level.
Sitting in the lobby of his team hotel in Orange after a training ride on the Tour's second rest day on Monday, the 26-year-old Irishman said he was not willing to make a lot of sacrifices for his sport.
"I'm probably going to shoot myself in the foot, Jonathan (Vaughters, the Garmin-Sharp team manager) is not going to pay me anymore," he told a small group of reporters.
"Cycling is a hard sport and if I have to make too many sacrifices I can no longer do it. I've found a happy medium.
"It's not that I'm going to get drunk every week but if I want a beer I'll have a beer.
"To me, altitude training does not really work so I'm not going to go and stay in altitude for three weeks in isolation, like in a concentration camp-like environment," he said.
"It's just my personal opinion; it's the way I live my life."
Martin, who was 11th overall eight minutes 28 seconds behind leader Chris Froome of Britain going into Tuesday's 16th stage, prefers to stay close to home in Girona, Spain.
"The physical effect of the altitude is balanced out by how psychologically happy I am in my environment at home," he said.
"I'm so much more relaxed there. That mental break of isolation counteracts the benefits of altitude. What I found works for me so I guess I'm not going to change and try something different for the sake of it."
The method has been working wonders for Martin this season as he won the oldest one-day classic in Liege and the Tour of Catalunya.
The stage win in the Pyrenees on the Tour means that Martin is already happy with his performance in France, although there could be more to come.
"I'm taking a stage (win) over top 10 in GC (general classification)," he said as the race enters the Alps, a terrain Martin believes suits his climbing abilities.
"The Alps are going to suit me a lot better. We saw in the Pyrenees that I'm strong when there are multiple climbing efforts (during one stage)."
Martin and his Garmin-Sharp mates will be looking to blow up the race, exactly as they did in the Pyrenees when they went on the offensive while other teams, such as Movistar, played too defensively to unsettle Froome.
"You see a bit of negativity. That's modern cycling," Martin said.
"At the end of the day if I finish ninth in the Tour de France nobody is going to remember my season for this. I will always remember from this Tour the stage win, not if I finish nine, 10, 15th. I like winning, I like racing." (Editing by Clare Fallon)