After many years playing rugby in the top tier also at a county, divisional and national level, the time had come for my very battered body to have a rest from the physicality of such a great game. Being in the fire service challenges were also being thrown around at the mess table, So the one thrown my way was “a fat rugby player won’t do a triathlon”!!! HA so the bait was taken, and I signed up for The BANBURY TRIATHLON ( sprint distance)in 1999 run by a couple of friends and part of The National Fire Service Series across the UK. I borrowed a bike of a mate at work done the route a few times, swam a bit in the pool (breaststroke) and run a bit as usual.
The day came, and I was Bricking it!!!! I swam steady cycled as hard as I could, having four gels on the bike route!!! and run hard (very slowly).
Having played both first division and international rugby for 15 years, my retirement from the game was met with “what now?” Talking to my EIS lifestyle coach, Triathlon was the most obvious transition sport. Transition from International sport is hard, life changes and so does the reasons why you train. On attending my first team Cherwell training session, Richard Hughes the swim coach commented on my interesting swim stroke. “Transitioning from rugby right?” I found my new coach; four years on, 3 Ironman full distances and additional middle distance races and half marathons. Triathlon has transformed my philosophy on training, mental focus and respect for my mind and body.
A passionate Physical Education teacher, I have been a strong advocate of fitness for life. My passion and drive for physical activity comes the little moments you get when you play; the hairs on the back of my neck standing when we sing National Anthems, the adrenaline rush on the pitch and turning the butterflies, you get before you play into positive energy when it matters.
My MSc in Sports Psychology has allowed me to delve into the partnership of body and mind. This I feel is essential for personal training.
In learning so much from Richard Hughes, the process of personal training was inevitable. A really good friend and PT suggested the personal training career. I have just completed my level 2 gym instructor’s course and my level 3 personal trainer qualification with Future Fit Training. Witnessing clients working hard, fulfilling their goals and transforming their lives is the reward, which inspires me to develop my skills as a PT.
In 1998 I was employed by Middlebury College in Vermont. Coaching Field hockey and Lacrosse winning two National Collegiate Athletic Association titles in one year was pretty memorable.
After the Vitruvian middle distance Triathlon, I entered Majorca Ironman, my first Ironman. Mediterranean 2.5mile sea swim, 190K mountain cycle and a marathon in 32-degree heat, completed in 14hrs 12mins and 44secs. To date, my current Ironman PB was set Maastricht 2017 in 13hrs 42mins 12secs. Within 2017 I achieved PB’s in 3 separate races that year.
I am really proud to have represented my country with Rugby. Moving forward, I have lots of Ironman goals I am working towards. I am loving challenging my mind and really understanding the psychology of performance. It is allowing me to challenge my body to really believe in itself. Limitless expectations to always say “I’ll have a go at that” and finish with a smile!