Jason Simpson Ironman Triathlete
Having completed a marine engineering degree at university, Jason now works on a motor yacht operated by a conservation company. In his spare time he trains for and completes triathlons. He tells Sundried about his ambitions to complete his first full Iron distance triathlon.
Have you always been into sport?
I have been into sport since I can remember. In primary school I used to play every sport that the school provided and in my final year I added cycling to that list. In high school I decided to focus more on cycling and running. I did a few national cycling races where my best finish was 4th place. I often did a Duathlon and won but I never took it up. Sport took a back seat during my final year of high school and at university there was no time to do anything. Doing marine engineering I had 9 subjects every semester. During the last semester I did a lot of research into veganism and the day my class ended I went vegan. The day after my exams finished I was on a flight to Turkey to join the MY Bob Barker* (Jan 2016). On the Bob there isn't a lot of time to do any training or equipment.
*Editor's note: The Motor Yacht 'Bob Barker' is operated by a marine conservation company to protect marine life.
What made you decide to enter triathlon?
My brother started doing triathlons during that time and completed a 70.3 Ironman. I was very inspired and decided that I want to be part of that some time. At the 70.3 Ironman Durban in 2016 someone asked me how do you compete in sport if you are vegan. This is when I decided to start training properly. I went back on the Bob after that for 5 months and couldn't do any training. After my last stint on the Bob (October 2017) I have been training a lot. I am doing 3 months on the Bob from Feb 2018 and on the 3rd of June 2018 I will be taking part in my first Ironman.
I have set a goal of 5 hours because I believe in setting insane goals for motivation. To keep me focused I do meditation in the morning for about 15 minutes. Meditation also helps me start new if I had a bad day. On Youtube I follow Rich Roll, very inspirational, and a channel called szTRI. They take Ironman footage and put inspirational speeches with it.
What’s been your favourite race to date and why?
Eric van Enter. It is a multi-day cycling race for schooled children in South Africa. It was amazing due to the level playing field. It was a treat every year to compete. I made a lot of friends and had the best time.
4th Place at the Eric van Enter (SA schools championship)
Have you ever had any racing disasters / your toughest race yet?
There was a cycling race in a town close by that I entered in to represent my region. I didn't train nearly enough and I came stone dead last. Without a doubt the worst race I have every done.
How do you overcome setbacks?
I find the best way to overcome setbacks, even in the work space, is to take a step back and evaluate everything you have done. Going back on my training records to see how I have improved and looking at my goals. Looking at how professionals train, re-inspires me. Sometimes just buying a new pair of socks to boost your confidence.
What are your goals for 2018?
Towards the end of 2018 I am going to do my personal training course. I have always been interested in it and it's something to keep me busy when I'm at home.
What is the best bit of advice you wish someone had told you before you started competing?
The suffering never gets easier, you just go faster.
Who do you take your inspiration from?
Rich Roll is a very big inspiration to me. I first saw him in Food Choices and have been following him ever since. I think he is an amazing ambassador for the lifestyle and the sport.
szTRI on Youtube makes really motivational triathlon videos.
What do you like about Sundried and what’s your favourite bit of our kit?
I really like the process it is made from. Ethics and recycled really is the way forward.
I really like the socks and the leggings. The feel against the skin is amazing. Soon I will take delivery of the Triathlon suit and I am very excited.
Teaming up with Sundried is amazing and I am really excited. I love the ethical and recycled ways of Sundried. It really is the way forward.