When did you start competing in triathlons and why?
I started racing in triathlon in 2014 when I entered Ironman UK. This was something a friend of mine was doing and I just thought I would have a go.
What is your favourite leg in triathlon?
My favourite discipline in triathlon would have to be the bike; I seem to be relatively strong in this part but generally this is my favoured part of training too.
How do you stay motivated?
Staying motivated to train is the hard part, but I know that if I don’t keep up the consistency then I will not see improvements that I crave. Sometimes you do have to back off and recharge.
Time to do a self critique: Which part of a triathlon is your strongest? Your weakest? Why?
Biking is probably my strongest although I have seen improvements in running over the years from structure helped with a coach. Swimming is the hard part for me as I am not a natural swimmer having taken this up as an adult however things have improved! Although timings are hard to cut, I do feel less fatigued at the end though now.
What’s your biggest accomplishment in your triathlon career so far?
Having Raced at Kona in 2015 after my second IM, this is my biggest accomplishment to date but having qualified for Kona again for 2018 I feel truly humbled and now my main focus for 2018 is that.
Preparation is obviously the key to success. What is your training regimen?
Training has varied over the winter due to some niggles post 2017 season, for that reason my training has been managed around that to ensure I don’t lose fitness totally but also rehabilitate able to come back stronger. Now into 2018 and things are starting to increase in all three disciplines but also working on strength and getting certain muscles working that had switched off due to injury. Having a reliable coach that understands me and is able to adapt around injuries and family / work life has been critical but this also ensures that training is increased periodically.
Are there times when you think “Why am I doing this?”
Normally on the marathon during an Ironman, they never seem to get easier you just become more acceptable of them knowing you can finish them. During my first triathlon IM UK this was also my first marathon (not advised) that was a mental battle but finishing that I am now not phased.
Give us a bit of insight as to what goes on inside your head during a competition and how you keep yourself going.
Ironman during the swim I try to stay away from others and focus on my approach to the buoys trying not to get dunked. On the bike I settle into my own pace forgetting what everyone else is doing and try to manage myself this is where my mind can wander and think of all sorts of things like holidays I want to take etc.
How do you approach race nutrition?
I will train with what I plan to use on the event pretty much until on the run. Fortunate I can take most things without issues (Touch Wood), the one thing I have noticed is not to mix drinks on the run as this can lead to cramps. Every event you always learn.
How long do you see yourself competing?
I have no intention to stop triathlon at this time in my life, it has become a big part of what I enjoy doing and I feel my knowledge of racing and coaching is only growing.
What’s your advice for someone just starting?
Enjoy it, don’t think about needing all the gear as that comes in time as you develop. There is a lot of people out there that have the money to buy everything but then generally are not as good as your first impression would think. That said if they are enjoying what they are doing and can afford the top end kit then that’s also great. Lets face it we all buy what our budget lets us in life.
Many people only think about the physical aspect of competing in an extreme event, but don’t take into account the mental part. Which is the more difficult aspect of preparing for the competition, the physical or the mental? Or are they equal in difficulty?
Physically training should be hard and as your season progresses it should get harder, however staying motivated to train day in day out is very hard and that is more a mental battle to get up and go again, and again. If you can stay motivated to train the physical aspect will be come easier. And then the events become easier as many others are with you.
Who are you inspired by as a triathlete?
I have found many friends through triathlon, especially on the Ironman circuit. For me it’s the selflessness and support athletes show others by supporting on the side-line or positive words during the events as they race. Triathlon brings all abilities together and I love that. One team that stands out to me is Team Passion Fit, their club support for each other across the season is quite special to see. But also my own club RAF Triathlon seems to be growing in strength of all abilities with some phenomenal performances.
What events do you have planned this year?
Ironman World Championships
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Race your race, don’t worry what other people are doing they might burn out later.
What’s your favourite triathlon kit?
My favourite kit in triathlon is my bike, over the years I have had a few brands for one reason or another but generally really happy with my current model although if I had more money I would go up a model.
RAF Tri Coach & Raceskin Ambassador
Love life, my family and my bike. I'm blessed because my hobbies and passion for sports (in particular triathlon & cycling) is also my business. We provide clubs, teams and companies with the ultimate custom triathlon, run and cycling clothing.