Simon is a triathlete who has his sights set on his first Ironman. He talks to Sundried about his passion for triathlon.
Have you always been into sport?
From a very young age I have always been into various sports such as cricket, football and rugby. Cycling has always been a consistent part of my life mainly due to the fact that this was the main way you used to meet up with your friends after school and at weekends, so when I wasn’t playing a sport for a local team I completed various cycling events mainly for a hobby and continue to do so every year. Becoming older I started to move towards triathlon.
What made you decide to enter the world of triathlon?
I got interested in triathlon at the point where I was getting silly knocks and niggles from other sports I was playing which was affecting my work and lifestyle so I decided that I needed a sport where I could not only use as a means for fitness but also become interested in too and being a good cyclist, I could transition with good training and understanding easily, so with that in mind I selected triathlon.
What’s been your favourite race to date and why?
I took part in the Doha sprint triathlon series, why is this my favourite? I personally believe Qatar is a growing destination for triathlon, I can see Qatar holding an Ironman event in the coming years and being involved in a sprint series surrounded by a growing excitement for the sport was fantastic also this was the race in which kick started my love for triathlon and gave me a purpose to begin the journey I am currently on, in essence it is where it all my passion started from.
And your proudest achievement?
My proudest moment was completing the Humber coastal half marathon, it may only be a half marathon but at the point in my life I was doubting if taking the step towards middle distance triathlon was achievable and worth it. The week before I did a full race run and it was horrendous; I suffered physically with weather etc and mentally was all over the place with pace and I completed it around 13 minutes longer than my target goal. Fast forward a week I arrived with a different mindset and finished the day with a PB! And a new hunger for more.
Have you ever had any racing disasters/your toughest race yet?
As a self-proclaimed beginner I believe in good preparation ensuring you have tried and tested all your nutrition and it works for you! I have used energy gels that haven’t agreed with me and it will affect your race, so don’t use race day to try anything new! I also found competing a handful of sprint triathlons useful as one they get you back in the mindset of transitioning especially after winter training and secondly a good opportunity to break in new equipment, try different things that you could bring and utilise when competing in your chosen discipline.
How do you overcome setbacks?
Injury is the biggest setback that has previously affected me, I tend to push myself from injury before I am really ready, when I was younger I got frustrated and annoyed I wasn’t/couldn’t train so the first day I felt I was recovered I got back into training only to pull, knock or tear something else again and setting me back another 6-8 weeks. The one bit of advice is don’t get frustrated and be patient with injuries and when the time is right keep things easy and don’t over load.
What advice do you wish you’d been given before you started competing?
Set yourself achievable goals. It is the simplest statement and the most common one told, but it is the truth. The reason for this is you spend so much time training before, after work in your spare time and the last thing you need is chasing an unrealistic goal and not achieving this goals then it can have negative effect on your mindset, yes even the professionals have off days we all do but constantly missing unreachable goals or targets can cause you to fall out of love with a sport that can bring so many positives to your lifestyle. Your goals not anyone else’s!
What are your goals for 2020?
2020 is going to be an exciting year! Training is already being conducted and heading certainly in the right direction. I am keeping an open mind on what could be possible, staying competitive is the main goal. Being in the British Army I have an aim to represent the Army at an Ironman branded event and become a regular member of that team utilising great experience and coaching to push myself forward. My main goal for 2020 is to complete Ironman 70.3 Weymouth and see where I am competitively in my age group and then use that to kick myself forward for 2021.
Who do you take inspiration from?
There is a lot of talent in the British Army. But one person has stood out in 2019 and that is Katrina Rye, turning pro this year and having a fantastic year gives me hope and inspiration that with correct dedication and focus you can push yourself to chase your dreams.
What do you like about Sundried and what’s your favourite bit of our kit?
Sundried brings good looking style to all its ranges, unfortunately looking good does nothing for your training so it is a good job that Sundried provides unmatched comfort and smart design in which other brands follow the norm, Sundried employs smart design to increase the comfort whilst maintaining the style and design that will assist you in your training.