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G4S Community Stories: Siobhan Saunders

Isn’t it interesting how when a movie is based on a real story, it suddenly seems so much better? There is something about hearing someone’s story, whether it’s inspiring, educational or just plain zany that can’t really compare to fiction, no matter what wonderland an author can dream up.

Have you spent much time over at Girls4Sports Community Pages? They’re full of inspiring stories like Siohban Saunders, a swimmer/mountain biker/surfer from California.

She’s been all over the world and has a great outlook on life.  Girls4Sport sat down with her to find out what’s new (ever heard of Ride and Tie?) and of course, get some inspiration!

forester-pass-on-mt-whitney-summit-trip-2011

Hiking at Forester Pass in the Sierra Nevadas

Tell us about your athletic achievements.

I did my first Ironman triathlon in 2006. Completed the Leadville 100 mountain bike race. Have climbed Mt. Blanc (France), Mt. Kilimanjaro (Tanzania) and Pico Orazabi (Mexico). Swam the length of Donner Lake. Won the 12 Hours of Humbolt Mountain Bike race. Won the Muir Woods Marathon, Won the Biz Johnson 1/2 Marathon Athletic.

So you like to travel! What’s your favorite vacation spot?

Anywhere tropical, with warm sandy beaches, good waves and good scuba diving would be ideal. I like to go to new places, so my new favorite place is the next place I am going.

What’s for breakfast on a typical weekend?

Steel cut oatmeal with fruit and nuts or avocado on toast.

Favorite Girls4Sport wear?

I love the long sleeve rash guards. The colors and fabrics are so original and the long sleeves are actually LONG. Yeah!

mtb-st-george-utah-2010

Mountain biking in St. George, Utah

What are you training for right now?

Training for the Ride and Tie World Championships. Two runners, one horse – get all three acoss the finish line. The races are typically 25 to 35 miles. This sport is a crazy amount of fun, with very warm, welcoming people. There is always camping and BBQ involved.

P.S. Anyone can go to the World Championships, so don’t be too impressed.  ; )  But we were last year’s short course (22 mile) World Champions.

Nice work! So when you’re in the water, do you prefer to swim alone or with friends?

Love to swim with friends, whether in the pool or the ocean, but especially in the ocean.

If you could choose a super power, what would it be?

That’s a tough one. It would have to be either to time travel or to be able to fly. I would love to go back in time and see all the geological formations evolve, like the Grand Canyon or Victoria Falls; see the ice age develop and recede; see the dinosaurs; etc. That would be very cool. Of course, who wouldn’t want to be able to fly?

mt-tallac-tahoe-snowboard-summit-approach

Siobhan approaching Mount Tallac's summit

What pumps you up before you get into the water?

Being with good friends.  I love go out with a group of friends to swim, surf , boogie board, whatever, then hang out after.

Advice for someone just starting out in swimming:

Join a Master’s swimming program at a local pool. Having a coach will help you improve your stroke, making friends will keep you showing up, and a planned workout will warm you up, cool you down, and get you swimming more laps than you thought you could.

The more confident you are in a pool, the more you will enjoy ocean swimming. Find people to swim in the ocean by joining a Triathlon club or a swim club. Find out where in your community people open water swim and hang out there; there are usually  morning time, lunch time and afterwork regulars you can hook up with. Swimmers are very approachable people, so don’t be afraid to ask someone if you can tag along.

danube-river-austria-bike-tour-2009

Bicycle Touring along the Danube River in
Austria

Anything else you’d like to tell us?

Just get out and do it.  Don’t worry if you’re not a star.  It’s about who shows up.  If you show up, you’re a winner.

—————

Thanks for sharing your photos, time and insight with us, Siobhan! We appreciate it.

You can read more about Siobhan and more stories like hers in the Girls4Sport Community pages. What inspired you about this story? Do you have one you’d like to share? Tell us in the comments!

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2 Comments

  1. sheila mccann says:

    Great story about a courageous woman even without all the sports.

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