Q&A with Cid Cardoso


by Liza Roberts

photograph by Kelsey Hanrahan

When São Paulo, Brazil native Cid Cardoso, a competitive swimmer and cyclist, graduated from the University of Virginia in 1991, he moved to Raleigh and took a job exporting car and truck parts to Latin America. On the side, he competed in triathalons. “The great thing about the sport is the huge sense of accomplishment you get,” he says, “and there’s always so much you can do to improve. Improvement is never-ending. There’s always a new goal.”

It wasn’t long before Cardoso traded his consuming hobby for his day job, opening Inside-Out Sports, a sporting goods store catering to triatheletes. The store near N.C. State quickly became the area’s leading triathalon source and community hub. More than two decades later, Inside-Out Sports is based in Cary with stores in Raleigh and Charlotte, and ranks as the largest triathalon retailer on the East Coast.

On June 5, Cardoso plans to race the Ironman 70.3 race in Raleigh. “It’s a fun race,” he says, designed to incorporate scenic roads for biking and a downtown double-loop run that makes for great crowds and spectator support. “Ironman has really done a good job creating a course that works well for the city.”

Which do you like best: Swimming, biking, running?

Biking, no doubt.


Everyone has one sport that comes easier for them, either due to body type, biomechanics, temperament, etc. Cycling has always come easily to me.

Where do you train locally for biking?

I usually ride from Cary toward Jordan Lake and then north to Chapel Hill and Saxapahaw or south toward New Hill and Shearon Harris. I also like the ride from Cary to Wrightsville Beach, which is about 145 miles.

My wife works at SAS, so I’m fortunate to have access to a very nice pool on campus.

I run at Umstead Park as much as possible.

What motivates you most?
Probably having a goal. Having a goal makes me wake up at 5 a.m. to ride the trainer, or go swimming that extra day. The goals are usually the races or events that I pick.

Do you listen to music while training?
Only if I’m riding or running by myself.

What’s on your playlist?

A lot of ’80s music, especially one-hit wonders (In a Big Country and Come on Eileen included). But most of my new music I get from my 18-year-old daughter, so it includes stuff like The Killers, Fall Out Boy, Coldplay, Imagine Dragons, Matisyahu, and whatever new she finds, like Strumbellas and the Chainsmokers. We also like country so I have some Eric Church, Josh Thompson, Lady Antebellum, and Brad Paisley.

Favorite piece of gear?

A good wetsuit for swimming, a power meter for the bike, and Hoka running shoes for those two-plus hour runs.

What do you think about while training? 

Work, races, kids, things that I need to get done. Working out helps me refresh my mind and see things more clearly, so sometimes it’s better to just let the thoughts flow.

While racing?

I think about racing. I tend to keep the focus on the task at hand and on what’s ahead.

Hardest race ever?

Probably UB515 (Ultraman Brazil), which includes 6.2 miles swimming, 261 miles cycling, and 52 miles running over three days.

Best race ever?

Doing Ironman Brazil in less than 10 hours comes to mind, but there have been others. Maybe my best race ever will be the next one.

Inside-Out Sports:

Raleigh: Brennan Shopping Center, 8111-124 Creedmoor Road
Cary: Preston Walk Shopping Center, 2002 Grisdale Lane