• The Bosson Twins - Sundried Brand Ambassadors

    Sundried cycle ambassador triathlon

    The Bosson twins are two triathletes who have huge ambitions for the future. They talk to Sundried about training and racing.

    Have you always been into sport?

    Joe: Big yes – whatever sport I could do, football being a main one, but when I realised I was never going to be the next Beckham or Scholes (and also broke my knee) that faded out. But yes, swimming, hockey, rugby, cross country, javelin, horse riding, biathlon, netball, basketball and so on.

    Beth: Not really, I used to play netball at school and enjoy going to the gym but had never really been into sport until I got into cycling 5 years ago.

    How did you first get into triathlon?

    Joe: My older sister and her friend decided to do the Leeds Castle Triathlon one year and I thought it sounded fun – I had a road bike at this point and from then on I haven’t stopped – I think I came top 30 out of 250 for my first Standard Distance.

    Beth: My whole family had done a triathlon, including my parents, so I had to give it a go!

    What has been your favourite race to date and why?

    Joe: Definitely, Glasgow European Championships 2018, the buzz of having the set-up the same as the pros and being part of a team was incredible. Or the Sani2c - a three-day, 265-kilometre mountain bike stage race. For anyone that is into mountain bike stage races, this is amazing.

    Beth: Leeds Castle 2019. This is one of my favourite triathlons (because it was where I did my first), the weather is always nice and the course is great (apart from the hilly run). The 2019 triathlon was even better because I got to stand on the podium with my brother!

    triathlon triathletes podium Leeds Castle Kent Triathlon 2019

    What is your proudest achievement?

    Joe: Glasgow GB Team – I didn’t really know what I was looking to achieve when I first started triathlon but being able to represent GB was a goal and being able to do that was amazing – now it's looking to win them!

    Beth: Qualifying for the age group ITU World Championships!

    Have you ever had any racing disasters?

    Joe: I’ve been quite lucky in races but in training, too many! They mostly involve me falling, with the biggest being a training ride on my MTB and going straight over the handle bars down Table Mountain and cutting open my knee to the bone.

    Beth: Almost having a panic attack in the water at the Eton triathlon.

    How do you overcome setbacks?

    Joe: For me, it’s just to keep persevering knowing that there is a larger goal at the end. Sometimes setbacks can actually help me have more drive, as it gives me a reason to push harder.

    Beth: Remind myself that I’m doing it because I enjoy it and that setbacks are all part of it.

    What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?

    Joe: Practise cornering, interval sessions and swim more!

    Beth: Just enjoy it! And train harder.

    mountain adventure travel fitness

    What are your goals?

    Joe: Currently, it will be to win the World and European Age Group Championships and then look into a few Ironman triathlons (I quite fancy a trip to Hawaii).

    Beth: To keep getting better until it gets easier.

    Who inspires you?

    Joe: I think any athlete that has managed to reach the pinnacle of their sport. As the Olympics have been postponed this year, there has been a lot of coverage of previous years and you can see the passion and work that goes into reaching the height of their individual sport and that’s what inspires me.

    Beth: My parents! Seeing them take on mammoth sporting events inspires me to keep working hard and knowing that if they can do it, so can I!

    Why work with Sundried?

    Joe: Funnily enough, the first race I won, I won a Sundried water bottle, so this is where I had first heard of the brand. But it was important to me that if I was to be working alongside a brand, that they would have to have the same shared values. Values that put purpose over profit, a brand that has a conscience and strives to do the best they can. Whether this is knowing that the people directly within the brand are looked after, or that everything is being done to have a positive impact on the world.

    Beth: Because it’s great that they combine high quality products with an ethical approach! It is important for everybody to do their part to help create a sustainable and ethical environment and Sundried’s brand means that I can continue to buy great products whilst keeping an ethical conscience.

    Posted by Alexandra Parren
  • Jack Chevin Athlete Ambassador

    triathlete running cross country

    Jack is a young athlete who shows a lot of potential in the triathlon world. He talks to Sundried about training and racing.

    Have you always been into sport?

    Yes! I have always enjoyed sport as a means to get away from all responsibilities and have fun.

    How did you first get into triathlon?

    I began to have an interest in triathlon after watching my dad complete his first. It inspired me to sign up for one the next later and also compete in my first cross country race the winter before. After performing well in a few local races I decided to sign up for my first British Championships finishing 23rd a year down in my first elite year.

    What was your favourite race to date and why?

    My favourite race was the 2019 edition of the Banana Man triathlon at Eton Dorney. It was part of the Super Series and I achieved my highest result of 9th for Juniors.

    What is your proudest achievement?

    Getting into the East Triathlon Academy as I was relatively late in the sport.

    Have you ever had a racing disaster?

    In a local triathlon the weather was extremely cold and I was unable to get my helmet clip off due to my hands being so cold. One of the transition marshals had to do it for me.

    How do you overcome setbacks?

    Generally in training and races I tend to head towards my coach. We take a step back and look at the situation, seeing how we can adjust training, racing, diet, etc to fix and overcome the setback.

    What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started?

    Nothing is given to you for free, you have to work for success.

    What are your goals?

    My goals for the 2020 season were to qualify for European championships and Super League but as that won't happen I will aim for this in 2021.

    Who inspired you?

    I began being inspired by the Brownlee brothers but as I watched more racing I was really interested in Vincent Luis

    Why work with Sundried?

    Reading the description about the brand, it is apparent that it was founded to make affordable, eco-friendly and performance clothing. The brand supports young and upcoming athletes and that's a great reason to work with Sundried.

    Posted by Alexandra Parren
  • Chris Burman-Day Athlete Ambassador

    running adventure racing

    Chris is an adventurous athlete from the mountains of North Wales. He talks to Sundried about training and racing.

    Have you always been into sport?

    I grew up in the hills of North Wales, and while I played the usual school team sports I was drawn more to the traditional outdoor pursuits. I played a little rugby, did some martial arts but it was the hills and outdoors, whether hiking, running or mountain biking that struck a chord.

    How did you first get into triathlon?

    I recall as a child seeing clips of early Ironman World Championship events and being fascinated. News and brief coverage on Trans World Sports. The feats of endurance and fitness, the (then) vibrant colours of the kit and clothing. In my twenties, as the itch to pursue a sport that pushed me grew started looking at activities that combined elements I enjoyed – not a natural runner, but enjoying hitting the trails a riding a bike, some sort of multi sport event seemed to answer the call, adventure racing and triathlon were solution.

    What has been your favourite race to date and why?

    My favourite organised event has to be Rat Race’s Man v Mountain, for lots of reasons, chief among which is the location. Growing up in the North Wales hills, it will always be “home”. MvM is based out of Llanberis in Snowdonia and is a foot race of some 24 miles starting at sea level in a medieval castle, summiting Snowdon and finishing back in Llanberis after a series of obstacles including an abseil and river crossing. A daunting but achievable event for everyone, it's one I’ve done every year since its inception, dragging friends along for a weekend of camping, trail running and competition.

    What is your proudest achievement?

    Although not race specific, the sporting achievements that make me feel most proud are when I hear feedback that challenges I have completed have inspired or motivated others to take a step out of their comfort zone and challenge themselves in a sporting or fitness context.

    Two notable examples of this are my young son (7 at the time) telling me he wanted to run a 10k race with me, cue some frantic searching for an event that would allow him to run with me. The other was when a group of novice/non-running friends and I trained and completed the Cotswold Way ultra-challenge, each doing different distances from 50km to 100km. In both cases, being able to share the experience with my son and my friends gave me a great sense of pride.

    Have you ever had any racing disasters?

    I’m very fortunate that to date I haven’t suffered any disasters. There have certainly been instances, many, where things haven’t gone to plan but that’s part of the challenge, adventure and experience. Ask me again if I have a biggie, and I may feel differently!

    How do you overcome setbacks?

    The mental aspects of my endurance and adventure challenges are as interesting to me as the physical. Throughout the planning and training build up to a challenge, I spend time visualising the journey and the challenge, I have a structure I like to follow to help me prepare and have written in my blog about this.

    Two of the key elements that help me overcome setbacks are the visualisation of the challenge or event, including asking myself questions about what could or will go wrong? How will I feel? How will I respond? Acknowledging these issues and planning responses in advance enables me to be more prepared if and when things go wrong. Additionally, is a conversation with myself about my motivations and reasons for pursuing a specific challenge, having to be honest about this and understanding what that means to the end goal better enables me to focus on the basic tasks needed for success once I’m at a point of exhaustion where success or completion could be in doubt.

    What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?

    The key piece of advice or information I try to get across to others, and which I have over time figured out for myself is that there is no right or wrong or perfect time to start. It saddens me that so many people are fearful or apprehensive of starting to run, ride or be active because of perceived inadequacies based on long-standing sociocultural narrative – they feel they’re too out of shape, too slow, not strong enough, don’t have the right kit or knowledge. The toughest thing is often to just take that first step and start.

    What are your goals?

    I love conjuring up ideas for new challenges that push the boundaries of my physical and mental abilities. Traditionally, these have been endurance-based. My current training goal is to complete a half marathon pulling an 18-ton narrowboat, a challenge which combines endurance with strength and is definitely out of my comfort zone! I have a number of other challenge goals for solo adventures, and hope to be able to use these to inspire and motivate others to get outside and be active.

    Who inspires you?

    Growing up the names that inspired me to pursue these activities were Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Sir Chris Bonnington without a doubt, and I still devour their work. Today, those who motivate me are athletes who push the boundaries of what we think is possible in a range of disciplines. David Goggins and his pursuit of excellence in a range of challenges is very motivational, as too in a similar vein is Ross Edgely, often dispelling myths and pursuing success in sporting challenges that combine often conflicting disciplines. Courtney Dauwalter and Kilian Jornet too, pushing the boundaries of distance and time in ultra-running and mountain sports.

    Why work with Sundried?

    I found Sundried while researching minimalist style running shoes and came across the Sundried barefoot shoe. In truth, I found more than just a shoe. We live in a consumer-driven world; technology and technological innovation is all over the place, including some amazing innovation in sports and endurance equipment and clothing.

    The technical innovation and detail in Sundried products ticked many boxes for me and places them highly against other established brands. In today’s marketplace, however, the things that separate one brand from another are often not the product or service; a business with innovative design and detail in its products whose ethos and social message is backed up and the cornerstone of their brand and product is so refreshing – I’m more than pleased to be associated with Sundried because of their ethos around ethical design and manufacturing, the wellbeing of its staff and design innovation.

    Posted by Alexandra Parren
  • Stuart Hall Athlete Ambassador

    Sundried ambassador triathlete running racing

    Stuart discovered triathlon as a way of de-stressing from a demanding career. He talks to Sundried about his journey.

    Have you always been into sport?

    I was always active during my youth, however when I moved to London and started climbing the corporate ladder, sport and exercise took a back seat while I focused on “socialising”. As a youth, I played football, rugby and hockey to a high standard.

    How did you first get into triathlon?

    When I started my own business, I needed a release from the work and signed up for a local sprint triathlon. At the time, I felt I would never be able to do it; I could only do breaststroke, my runs were no more than a couple of km and I had not been on a bike in years. The journey and the process of learning all these new sports have been fantastic, it helps me switch off and as I have progressed to longer distances the endurance has actually helped with how I deal with the business.

    What has been your favourite race to date and why?

    I will never forget my first race at Leeds castle, no pressure and a smile on my face the whole way round. My favourite race has been Leeds ITU, I did the standard last year which was a PB for the standard distance, the reason it is my favourite is where else can you race then get to watch the professional athletes straight after while you recover. Brilliant set up!

    What is your proudest achievement?

    After my first triathlon, I set out to be part of the GB age-group team, it was a long shot given my lack of experience in the sport, but through hard work and dedication, I was fortunate to have times that allowed me to be part of the ETU European Championships and ITU world championships. Sadly, I will have to wait for 2021 to put my GB kit on due to the races benign postponed for the year. I also managed to get my level 1 coaching badge this year, which means I will be able to give back to my local club who helped me massively.

    Have you ever had any racing disasters?

    Last year, I had two 70.3 events in over 30-degree heat on the run. During the run for the second in Morocco I have never felt so drained on a run, the course offered no shade, it was tough, I have never had a mental battle with myself during a race, it was hard keeping the demons at bay for the last 10km.

    How do you overcome setbacks?

    I have been lucky so far; as an older athlete I try to manage the loads and recovery as best as I can, I have had a few niggles and sickness, like many I try to rest and recover and not rush back to soon, easier said than done. If you do get a setback, just break it down, don’t overwhelm yourself. I have had friends crash in training in winter, not fully recover until the start of the season and still go on to have good races. Don’t rush yourself back.

    What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?

    I wish that I had started triathlon earlier, my daughter has just started to get involved and loves it, so many brilliant event organisers supporting kids in the UK. For me though, I wish I had got into structured training earlier, its been an absolute game-changer. I also should have joined a triathlon club sooner, the advice from the coaches, especially in the early days, really helped put me on the right track.

    What are your goals?

    To race finally in the GB kit, to continue getting quicker, and make it out to the Ironman world championships one year.

    Who inspires you?

    Many people from many walks of life, in triathlon terms Chris McCormack, the Brownlee brothers and I dare anyone not to be inspired by Halo and Tim Don.

    Why work with Sundried?

    I like the kit that I have had from Sundried, I have always found it comfortable and lasts well which is not always the case with triathlon kit. The fingerless gloves also have the release loops! 

    Posted by Alexandra Parren
  • Ian Smith Athlete Ambassador

    Sundried ambassador cycling

    Ian is a proud triathlete who achieved his dream of completing an Ironman and now has his sights set on the GB Age Group team. He talks to Sundried about training and racing.

    Have you always been into sport?

    I have always enjoyed sport, starting out as a club swimmer from the age of five. I played rugby, football and cricket at school, but swimming was my main love. In swimming I competed at club and county level, before moving into competitive lifesaving and lifeguarding, competing right up to national level and representing England in the European and World Lifesaving championship in 1990. I had really gone as far as I could in swimming and lifesaving when a friend mentioned having a go at triathlon, so around 8 years ago, I joined a local club and started out. My only regret was not taking it up a lot sooner.

    How did you first get into triathlon?

    In 2017 I did my first Ironman in Barcelona. When I started triathlon, I looked at the triathletes in the club who did Ironman with absolute awe. Completing three disciplines over 140.6 miles, with a marathon being the final leg, seemed an impossible task and best left to others.

    What's been your proudest achievement?

    With great coaching and the encouragement and belief of team mates, I began to believe. When I hit the red carpet and heard the announcer say "Ian, you are an Ironman" I must have got a bit of grit in my eye! That will take a lot of topping as a proudest sporting moment. I went back last year to Barcelona again, but this time with two great friends for their first Ironman, and training with them, sharing their journey and their emotions as they achieved their dreams was the best feeling

    Have you ever had any racing disasters?

    With the highs, come the lows. I was racing the Emergency Services Triathlon Championships in Nottingham when I hit a pothole which punctured the tyre but also wrecked the rim of the rear wheel on the second lap. I didn't come off, but the walk of shame back to T2 and seeing friends finish and rightly celebrate their triumphs was a bitter pill to swallow.

    In the days after I reflected and realised that no-one succeeds all the time, success and failure are two sides of the same coin, and once in a while, things won't go your way. Learn from those times, and put them behind you, but don't dwell on them, instead remember the feelings of success and the lift they give you.

    What advice do you wish you'd been given when you first started out?

    When I first started out I was really lucky to be surrounded by people willing to advise and share experiences. Even though they were top age groupers, multiple IM finishers and National champions, they were all humble and encouraging. Seeing people take up a sport they loved and were passionate about, was rewarding to them and bringing more people into the sport secures its future. That ethos has rubbed off on me, and I want beginners to feel as welcomed and encouraged as I was.

    How do you overcome setbacks?

    My run is my Achilles heel, but with perseverance and great running coaches my goal is to be able to finish races strongly, not throw the hard earned gains from a great swim and strong bike away, but I am hoping to apply this not only to sprint events, but right up to Ironman, as they say, anything is possible after all!

    What are your goals?

    I am racing next year as an age grouper in the European Aquathlon Championships, I would like to improve on my 14th place in Slovakia in 2017.

    Who inspires you?

    As much as the incredible Olympic Athletes like the Brownlee brothers, or long-distance winners like Tim Don or Chrissie Wellington inspire me, it's the first timers that I most admire and am inspired by. That competitor who comes out of the water last after a nervous first open water start, but still smiling, setting out on a mountain bike, and finishing well behind the winners. They have overcome countless obstacles and self-doubt, but for them that was their ultra, their Ironman, their moment of glory. I want that to be their first event, not their only one.

    Why work with Sundried?

    I am proud to work with Sundried because as well as the kit being brilliantly designed and fit for purpose, the production is ethical and environmentally friendly. Today companies need to be transparent about production and materials, and Sundried is proudly able to demonstrate both.

    Posted by Alexandra Parren