Tim grew up in a sporty household and now enjoys living a sporty lifestyle with his family. He talks to Sundried about training and racing.
Have you always been into sport?
Yes, for as long as I can remember. My parents always played sport so there was always lots of kit, bats, rackets, and balls lying around the house and garden for my brother and I to play with.
What made you decide to enter the world of triathlon?
Having played high level hockey and tennis for a number of years, I was ready for a new challenge; there was a big hole in my sporting life. A friend signed me up to my first triathlon (Norwich – a cracker of an event) which I completed in my surfing wetsuit, my dad’s tatty old commuting bike and using a cat litter tray for my transition kit. I loved it!
What’s been your favourite race to date and why?
Sandman (Anglesey, Wales). A stunning swim with the Snowdonia skyline one way and sand dunes and pine forest on the other. A beautiful ride around the island finishing with a truly beautiful trail run through the pine forest (save something for the last 750m on the sand!).
And your proudest achievement?
Apart from my family, it was getting to the start line of London Marathon 2019 in great shape. It was a particularly busy time for us but through a flexible and creative approach to my training I was ready. For me, the journey is as (if not more) important than the destination. The day itself was about execution and enjoyment. It was a magic day out and I finished in 2.58!
Have you ever had any racing disasters/your toughest race yet?
I did the Classic Quarter trail race in June 2019 and totally overlooked one of the most important parts of any athlete's preparation – food!
I was so excited on the morning of the race, that as I sat around chatting with all the other runners I totally forgot to have any proper breakfast. They were all tucking into massive bowls of porridge, inhaling bananas and scoffing peanut butter bagels. I had a coffee and a slice of malt loaf. I have never felt so hungry during a race and obviously crashed in some style. The last two miles weren’t pretty.
How do you overcome setbacks?
I always try to stay in the moment and focus on being the best I can be on that given day. It’s important to have a flexible approach to goals and see setbacks as a learning opportunity. There are so many variables in our busy lives with a huge amount out of our control. Be prepared to shift goals down when things have conspired against you – but remember to raise your goals when you’re in one of those magic moments.
What advice do you wish you'd been given before you started competing?
Train hard and race happy. Always try to enjoy everything about race day. Just by getting to the start line, you’ve put in so many hours and demonstrated a huge commitment. You’ve already succeeded.
What are your goals for 2020?
2020 is a year for Heather (my partner). Time for me to support her target races, chase her around various race courses with our 4 and 2 year old and provide a constant supply of snacks and encouragement. I do want to go sub-36 minutes for a 10k and complete a multi-terrain triathlon though.
Who do you take your inspiration from?
Most of my inspiration comes from the people I see in the street, at the gym, on the road, trails - just getting on with it. Working hard, being active, working towards their goals with a smile on their face. It doesn’t matter what’s going on in their day, how little sleep they’ve had, how difficult or easy their day currently is – they're just out there being the best they can be in that moment.
What do you like about Sundried and what’s your favourite bit of our kit?
I like everything about Sundried. They have strong values, clearly care about their staff and customers and all their kit is great – well designed, hard wearing, comfy and performs really well. Key for me is that they make every effort to ensure the products have as little impact on the planet as possible – if only more companies had this approach!
My favourite bit of kit is the Plaret Training T-shirt. It’s what I wear for the vast majority of my training – simple, well designed, comfy and hard wearing. It’s always there for me during the hard training hours and helps me get race ready.