Sharon Taylor - Athlete Ambassador
Have you always been into sport?
Not at all. I never really enjoyed sports at school and wasn’t really any good at any of the traditional school sports. Then as an adult, I started running with a group from work to train for a Race For Life 5k and caught the running bug. I started to train for longer distances and really began to notice both the physical and the mental benefits. When I became a Mum, I wanted my children to see exercise as a normal part of life and encouraged them to do whatever sports made them happy.
How did you first get into triathlon?
I’d been a runner for a few years and was looking for a new challenge. I signed up to a sprint distance triathlon on a bit of a whim and then realised that I had a fair bit of work to do to as I couldn’t swim for more than two lengths without stopping and hadn’t ridden a bike since I was 16! My first race was London Triathlon and the atmosphere was amazing. I grinned the whole way round the course and started planning my next event almost as soon as I crossed the finish line.
What has been your favourite race to date and why?
It was actually a local Race for Life. I was training for a marathon at the time and set out at a slightly quicker pace than usual and somehow managed to keep it up. I crossed the finish line first and didn’t quite know what to do with myself when I ran through the ribbon. There was a very cringe-worthy picture of me in the local paper but it was worth it to see the look on my sons’ faces at the end of the race - they were convinced that my success was entirely down to the posters that they’d made for me!
What is your proudest achievement?
Completing Outlaw X last year was a real highlight. It was only my second race at that distance (70.3) and training had been challenging due to the pandemic so I wasn’t convinced that I would make it to the start line, let alone the finish line. Conditions were tough with the swim being shortened due to the outside air temperature and strong winds on the bike leg. I don’t think that I’ve ever been so pleased to see a finish line but it felt good to overcome such tough conditions to complete the race.
Have you ever had any racing disasters?
Being organised, I like to get into transition as early as possible to rack my bike and set up. Unfortunately this backfired at a race the other year when I inadvertently left my race number belt in my bag. By the time I realised what I’d done in T1, my bag was at the bottom of a huge pile of bags so I spent a fair bit of time digging through them in order to retrieve my belt. I think that it was probably one of my longest ever transitions!
How do you overcome setbacks?
If I have a bad training session or race, I allow myself a couple of days maximum to reflect then think about what I could do differently, if anything and focus on what I can improve in the future. If I get injured, I remind myself of the importance of rest and try to look at is an opportunity to recharge my batteries.
What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?
Buy an alarm clock as triathlons and early starts go hand in hand!
What are your goals?
This year I’m training for two Outlaw Halves and also planning to complete my PT qualification so that I can help others to achieve their health and fitness goals.
Who inspires you?
There are some amazing successful triathletes who inspire me; Chrissie Wellington and Lucy Gossage in particular. I’m also hugely inspired by some of the fantastic friends that I’ve made through triathlon; balancing families, jobs and triathlon training isn’t easy but when I watch someone cross the finish line and I know how hard they have worked to get there, I am completely in awe.
Why work with Sundried?
Sundried have a great range of products that are not only high quality but also comfortable and sustainably produced. It’s also a privilege to be associated with a brand that is so committed to having a positive impact on the environment and community through its charitable partnerships with Water for Kids and Surfers against Sewage (something that is particularly close to my heart as I live by the coast and see the devastating impact of sewage on our marine wildlife).
To hear more from our ambassadors and get free tips on workout plans and more, connect with the Sundried Personal Trainers on our app.