I played netball at a high level when I was younger, but I lived in London for a while where I was working crazy hours as a chef and I never had time to train or exercise. Plus I drank and I smoked. When I got back to Australia I wanted to get fitter so I started looking around for something I could get involved in. A friend of mine was doing the Trailblazer 50km hike so I asked if I could join her.
From hiking to running.
It took us a long time to hike that 50kms and there were moments when I thought we’d never get through it. I actually started trail running thinking it would mean I could get through the distance faster, but it’s ended up that I’m still out there for the same amount of time, and now I just go further.
I’m definitely not a natural at running. I’ve done a few half marathons and a 56km ultra marathon, but I really only have one pace – what I call ‘ultra pace’. That is, not very fast. Running long distances is not a natural thing for me. I find trail running a lot more challenging than going to the gym and I like the I like the solitude and the release it gives me.
Hitting the slopes.
My other great love is snowboarding. I first went with my brother when we were living in London and we went to Austria. I just wanted to do something a little bit crazy and I absolutely loved it. I love being up in the mountains, zoning out and just getting into it. It’s so peaceful up there. We went to Austria a few times, and since then I’ve been to Japan, Canada, Chamonix and Mt Hotham here in Australia.
Keeping it natural.
I originally discovered merino when I took up snowboarding – I especially loved the socks because they stay warm even when they’re wet and they don’t smell so you can get a lot more use out of them. I found ioMerino at a Trail Running event here in Australia and I love it. My favourite item would be ‘The Mongrel’ – I’ve got at least three different designs of that one – they’ve got more character and I wear them for everything from running, under my snowboarding gear, or on their own with jeans.