After bumping into an old friend at a mutual friend’s funeral, I found myself entering a fitness TV program at 32 and 3 children, and definitely not planned for. However the next 10 years saw me striving to win the competition with myself, which took the most careful planning you can imagine. Though I was fortunate enough to win the TV program Bodyheat, I narrowly missed out on going to South Africa for the final!! I decided that competing and testing myself was good fun; and as a friend of mine was a Pole Vault coach, it seemed logical to take up pole vault – at 32. I had never picked up a pole, and before I knew it, weekends were all about competitions all over the country, and training during the week.
Training and competing with 20 something year olds has a way of making you train smarter and it was this thirst for knowledge and expertise that made me go back to the well again and again to try and be better. People use to ask me if I was getting paid, but the lesson of looking into self was the biggest payment I could have ever had, and certainly sustained me through a lot of cold rainy nights on a track when doing 8 sets of 200 metres. After two fairly painful injuries – my ankles looking like the size of footballs, and a few national medals to show for it, I decided that at 36, I would switch and train for the Long Jump. Even though I was still competing at national level (with younger athletes), I managed to win several medals not least at the national championships, and went on to jump 6 meters 12 centimetres. At 40, after a few injuries, lots of tears and a few arguments with the coach, I competed in my first ever age related competition at the European championships in Sweden, and came home with a Gold Medal! I went on to compete in the World Championships in the same year with 7,000 other athletes in Barcelona, Spain and again came home with a shiny gold medal and hung up my spikes.
3 years later at 43, and missing the quest to test myself I took up heptathlon (7 events, Hurdles, High Jump, Long Jump, Javelin, Shot Put, 200 and 800 meters) with the sole purpose of aiming to win a medal at the World Championships in Finland that year. The most challenging thing was to do my first race in trainers because I had left my my kit bag and all my spikes at the airport – a bit like doing the school sports in your knickers! It was probably the proudest moment of my life finishing the last event, the 800 to fall into the arms of my children who were all there to watch me win gold. A moment I will treasure for the rest of my life as nobody gave me that moment. I couldn’t buy it, I couldn’t fake it, I had truly earned that moment.
A few years later and my desire to learn and grow came back; and through my experiences of taking something I know nothing about, finding the right teachers and being open enough to believe that all is possible, I came up with my new business venture – Id love to do that. I believe that if we are open and can expose ourselves to different experiences, even in small bites then we just never know where life may take us. So often we get too caught up in “living” and not growing because time is so precious.
The ‘Id love to do that’ Concept
What if there was a site to be able just to try something to see if you like it, not commit to forever, – just try; but you knew you could get the best teaching, in an environment that helped you enjoy it. A site that offered up inspiration, ideas and suggestions as well as a whole range of the best, the most unique and quality courses – that what ‘Id love to do that’ is about. I couldn’t find one, that’s why I had the light bulb moment and created Id love to do that for all the women out there that just might want to try something different.!