It is difficult to defend the doping accusations to which Lance Armstrong has now admitted, but there is a public misconception as to exactly what “doping” means.
The public thinks of heroin, cocaine, meth and marijuana when we say “doping,” but the substances used by Armstrong were more stimulants than narcotics and were not illegal or proven harmful but were prohibited by the sport.
Armstrong put in many, many hours of training and conditioning to perform as he did, and performance enhancing drugs or not, he is a superb athlete. You can’t take the average Joe off the street, pump him up with PEDs and have him be competitive in a bicycle race. Armstrong’s accomplishments with Livestrong are genuine and should not be disregarded.
Cycling seems to eat its heroes.