Greg Houghton Athlete Ambassador
Greg has completed multiple Ironman triathlons and still has big goals for the future. He talks to Sundried about training and racing.
Have you always been into sport?
Yes – from my earliest days in school I’ve always been involved in and loved sport and just being outside taking part in activity. Sitting in a classroom just wasn’t for me, which is probably why I ended up becoming a PE Teacher/Outdoor Instructor and then managing a Sport department at an FE college as my career.
How did you first get into triathlon?
I was persuaded to give triathlon a go by a colleague at work who had competed in several Ironman events. After hearing him talk about triathlon and racing day after day, it was easier to join him and give it a go than keep listening to all the reasons why three sports are better than one.
What has been your favourite race to date and why?
Ironman Copenhagen 2017. This was my first Ironman and the experience was beyond anything I had ever been through previously, both in how it pushed me physically - as I had never set myself a target like this before and had never run above a half marathon, ridden over 60 miles or done a triathlon longer than a sprint before I signed up - but also just the whole race weekend experience from registration to finish line to the journey home sharing that knowing look with everyone else dressed in finisher gear for the flight home.
What is your proudest achievement?
Completing Ironman Ireland in 2019. My training had not been ideal in the run up to the event and I wasn’t 100% sure how the weekend would go. For anyone that saw the weather conditions that weekend, they already know just how horrendously wet and cold it was. Where some people may be thankful for a race where the swim is cancelled, when it’s your strongest discipline and it buys you more time to complete your worst (the bike), suddenly finding yourself wondering about cut-offs on top of just trying to stay upright in the wet made for an interesting and challenging day's racing. As it turns out, I didn’t need to worry, but at the time it took up a lot of my mind.
Have you ever had any racing disasters?
Luckily no major racing disasters yet, although rounding a corner during a 20-mile road race to find a 400m stretch of waist-high flooded road 8 miles in that needed to be waded through in January probably comes closest.
How do you overcome setbacks?
It sounds cliché, but I really believe that all setbacks are just a chance to learn and go again slightly differently.
What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?
Don’t compare yourself to anyone else.
What are your goals?
Sub 12-hour Ironman and maybe an ultra marathon.
Who inspires you?
At the highest level, the likes of Lucy Charles Barclay for her efforts in chasing Kona and Jan Frodeno for his achievements in achieving success across multiple distances, but equally anyone who is out there trying to achieve a goal.
Why work with Sundried?
Sundried have a great reputation for high quality kit that performs when needed, but more than that the values of the company around sustainable product design and creation really appeal to me and set the target for others to match.