I used to have a collie called Jessica, a rescue dog. We did the basic training, but then I saw an ad at the vet’s for a dog agility course. Jessica was really hyperactive and I thought she would probably love it, and I would too. We went along and she took to it like a duck to water.
My husband and I were looking for a hobby, so we started going to our local gym. At first, I focused entirely on cardio. Like many women, I thought that if I did weights I’d get big, but I know now that’s not necessarily the case. My husband encouraged me to try weights, so I started with squat lifting and it was so much fun.
I had asthma as a child, so at school I always came last in cross-country running. I joined the army at 16, and that’s when I started doing lots of sport: rugby, boxing and so on. Running was always a big part of those sports.
I studied at Cardiff University but in my first year I didn’t do any sport – the only game I played was poker. Then, in year two, my housemate convinced me to go to a pool kayaking session with him. Five and a half years later, I’m still doing it.
Slightly randomly, our company is a member of a liquidated stock website. We’ve bought things like breathing apparatus in the past but one day balloons and pressurised tanks appeared on the site. The stock was from a commercial balloon rides company that had gone bankrupt. The balloons weren’t any good for learning in, but the manager put me in touch with my local club.
My interest in shooting goes back to when I was young. I used to go out with my uncle: we would go fly fishing and I would also watch him shoot, so I had a good understanding of the countryside. I’ve always been interested in rifles, and I joined the army when I was 16 and went into the Scots Guards.
A few years ago, I had a cleaning business. One evening in 2012 I was cleaning an office and met a lady who was working late before going to rugby training. I had no knowledge of rugby union and she encouraged me to give it a go. I was intrigued and went to Harrogate Rugby Club soon afterwards.
Last year, my mother, my wife and my son all had major surgery, which made me think about how valuable the National Health Service (NHS) is to us. Then I saw a TV programme in which the presenter, motorcycle entrepreneur Henry Cole, met a blood bikes group. I found my local group, Derbyshire Blood Bikes, at an event in Crich and I signed up. I started riding for them in December 2016.
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