Ellen grew up in Sweden close to the Arctic circle and has been into sport her whole life. She talks to Sundried about life as a long distance triathlete as well as being a personal trainer.
Please tell us about sporting events you have taken part in or have coming up.
I started off in triathlon in 2015, taking a 7th place finish in an Olympic distance event, after which I signed up for Ironman 70.3 Mallorca in 2016 taking 13th place in my age group. My best performance to date is the Sussex middle distance triathlon where I got 2nd overall female.
In 2017 I got 3rd in my age group during the Owler British Championships then another 13th place in my age group at Ironman 70.3 Weymouth. This year the goal is to finish Ironman Wales.
Tell us about your journey to fitness? Where did it all start?
I have always done sport. I grew up doing activities such as cross country skiing and hiking. Dance was my main activity which I started at age 4. At 16 I got into a dance program in Sweden which lasted 3 years. After graduating form there I went onto study at Salzburg Experimental Academy of Contemporary Dance for 4 years. I got interested in fitness and strength training when I was getting injured from dancing. I wanted to find a way to keep some level of fitness and maintain the strength in the specific muscles you use when dancing. Nowadays I call it sport specific training.
What are your training goals now?
My main training goals are to get faster in the three triathlon disciplines (swim, bike and run.) At the same time staying injury-free and and conditioning my body to cope with the training volume. This year my main goal is to finish Ironman Wales.
Tell us one unusual fact we wouldn’t know about you:
I grew up in my parents house 10km south of the Arctic circle.
What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?
It sounds counter-intuitive but it would be to not take it so seriously.
Do you follow a specific nutrition plan? If so, what/when do you eat?
No, I don't follow a specific nutrition plan; I eat to fuel my training. Since it involves a lot of cardio, I need the energy, especially in spring and summer when my sessions are longer. I eat clean food and plan my meals so they fit in with my day, especially around the runs since I have a hard time running right after a meal.
What do you do to keep your clients motivated? Do you have any top tips to keep motivated?
I always try to keep it fun. I often say to my clients that if you want something long-lasting you need to want to do it.
Talk us through your training regime.
I do 3-4 bike rides each week, one being a long ride of up to 4 hours and the shorter ones being 1 hour with high intensity work.
I run 20-40 miles a week depending on where I am in the year and if I have any injuries that need attending.
I do 1-2 swims a week sitting around 2.5k to 4k and then possibly the most important session strength and mobility sessions which I do 2-3 times a week.
Not all my sessions are max efforts; some are there to build stamina and condition the body and they are done at an easy pace.
How do you keep your fitness knowledge up to date?
I read, watch Youtube videos, go on courses and speak to other trainers, all of which can be a great way to update my knowledge.
What are your top 3 trainer tips?
- Do something you like.
- Consistency is key.
- Form/technique is everything.
If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
That's a really hard question but it would have to be my grandma's cinnamon buns!
Why work with Sundried?
I am obsessed with good quality and Sundried delivers exceptionally well on that front.
Favourite fitness quote:
This is one which comes from cycling and is a bit harsh but so true for any sport/ activity:
"You can have all the heart in the world but if you don't have the legs..."