Amy Kilpin Triathlete
Amy went from not even being able to do the front crawl to being a professional triathlete. She tells Sundried about training and life as a multisport athlete.
What has been your best result to date?
I placed 3rd in my age-group at the European Long Distance Championships in 2014
Sum yourself up in one sentence:
I’m hard-working and passionate, sometimes clumsy, and generally excited by life!
How did you find yourself in the world of triathlon? Have you always been active?
I used to ride horses growing up but hated sport, so while I was active, I wasn’t particularly sporty. As I entered full-time work after university I needed something else to fulfil me so I started rock climbing and mountaineering. This was a major part of my life for the following few years and during this time I also started running. I eventually built up the distances to complete a marathon, ran a few more, then looked for the next challenge. This was a triathlon in the year of 2012, but I couldn’t swim front crawl, so really had to go back to basics to learn. From then on, I was addicted!
What does your training regime look like?
It really varies depending on what time of year it is, whether I have races coming up, and what phase/block of training we are in. I usually train twice a day for around an hour each session, but at weekends it is longer, usually three to four hours a day. Naturally training for three sports is quite time consuming so it’s a case of balancing the three disciplines throughout the week.
Do you have any unusual pre race routines?
Not really, I’m pretty conventional when it comes to pre-race procedures - I eat the same foods the day before a race (all high starch, low fibre), and always do some light training the day before a race. With triathlon, there is SO much kit that pre-race is almost 100% faffing - there’s not much time for any other routines!
What has been your toughest setback and how did you overcome it ?
I would say not being able to swim front crawl was probably the most challenging thing I have had to overcome. I trained so diligently; in the pool around six times a week working with trainers and coaches, just so I could not be last out of the water anymore. It paid off over the years, as nowadays I am pretty well-positioned as I exit the swim.
What are your top tips for athletes looking to move into triathlon?
You don’t need to be an athlete to get into triathlon so my advice to anyone would be just give it a go. Everyone starts somewhere and it’s now such a fast growing sport, which means that more and more people are getting into it having never participated in sport before. You won’t be alone! For athletes moving from another sport into triathlon it’s probably far less daunting, but maybe the prospect of doing three disciplines back to back puts some people off. It’s not as hard as it sounds and you are more than capable of training to accomplish it. The most common thing I hear is that people would like to get into triathlon but can’t swim very well. I am testament to the fact that you can turn that around! You just have to work hard and believe in yourself.
What are your training and competitive goals?
Naturally, when you’re in a sport, your goals constantly shift as you progress. I would say my primary goal is just to continue getting the best out of myself - I am still improving as an athlete and while that’s happening, I can’t really ask for more. Having said that, I would also like to qualify to compete at the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii some day - it’s like the holy grail of triathlons.
Favourite motivational fitness quote?
“Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.”