JONATHAN, YOU SEEM TO HAVE TAKEN THE EXTREME SPORTS INDUSTRY BY STORM. HOW DID YOU INITIALLY GET INTO IT?
My first obstacle race was the original one, Tough Guy. Held in January, Tough Guy is infamous for hypothermia and extreme fatigue! Entering with the simple goal of finishing (which I did) I loved the experience and started entering into similar challenges only with the purpose of completing them as fast as possible.
WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO KEEP TRAINING FOR DIFFERENT EVENTS?
I don’t necessarily train for specific events and I like to think I would train just as much without races lined up. I like the feeling of being fit and don’t like the thought of not being as fast or strong as I could possibly be. As for when I’m actually training, I sometimes remind myself that the harder I push in training the less it will hurt when racing.
IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT MAKES YOU A GOOD ATHLETE?
I would say I am well rounded; there are many athletes who are stronger than me or faster but I seem to be able to balance the two quite well. This has proved to be a big advantage when doing obstacle course racing!
OBSTACLE COURSE AND SPARTAN RACES HAVE BECOME EXTREMELY POPULAR IN RECENT YEARS, WHY DO YOU THINK THIS IS?
I think people enjoy a different type of challenge and have grown bored of simply testing themselves by running a set distance on the road. Obstacle racing also rewards athletes with a well-rounded fitness, where elements such as speed, strength and adaptability play a big part.
HOW IMPORTANT IS THE TEAM ASPECT IN THOSE RACES?
For me the team aspect isn’t entirely necessary as I usually compete alone. I do enjoy seeing friends before and after races though, or even completing extra laps together as a group for fun. Many people enter these challenges and complete them as a team though and it’s great to see people helping each other through the experience.
WHAT DOES BEING FIT MEAN TO YOU?
Being fit means everything to me – it’s amazing to see how many people treat their car or their phone better than their own bodies. I have always had health and fitness as a top priority and to be honest it’s one of the things I think (and care) about the most.
DO YOU HAVE ANY TRAINING SECRETS?
Not so much, I am pretty open with everything I do. In fact you can follow me on Strava and see every meter I cover in training - https://www.strava.com/athletes/437111
WHO’S YOUR ROLE MODEL/MENTOR?
I have never really had a role model or mentor in the fitness world. There are some athletes I admire though, even though they are really fit or fast it’s usually their mental strength I admire the most.
FINALLY, WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOUR CAREER?
At the moment I am gearing up for two Skyraces; the first coming up in the Dolomites, Italy and the second in Tromso, Norway. Following these training will begin for the stint of big obstacle races in the autumn including the independent OCR World Championships, Spartan World Championships and the Toughest season finale. I always write about my experiences so watch this space for my latest progress, or check out www.jonathanalbon.com