UWTSD graduate competing at IRONMAN Wales is hoping to inspire others


University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) graduate Sarah Arthurs will take part in her first IRONMAN Wales event on September 11.

University of Wales Trinity Saint David graduate Sarah Arthurs will take part in her first IRONMAN Wales event on September 11.

Sarah, studied for her PGCE at UWTSD’s Carmarthen campus, and is deputy head at Tavernspite and Templeton Schools in Pembrokeshire.

The 42-year-old has an impressive training programme and is also being supported by Geraint Forster, Programme Director for BSc Sport and Exercise Science at UWTSD. The University is sponsoring this year’s Volunteer Programme at IRONMAN Wales and the IRONKIDS Wales event on September 10 as part of its collaborative partnership with IRONMAN Wales.

Sarah said it’s the biggest physical and mental challenge she has undertaken to date but is keen to inspire others to train and compete in the event, which is renowned as much for its toughness as for its spectacular location with athletes competing in an endurance triathlon involving a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile cycle race around South Pembrokeshire and 26.2 mile run around Tenby.

“If I can do it, anyone can,” said the 42-year-old. “I want people to know it is achievable even if extremely challenging. I also want to inspire more women to take part.”

Sarah’s husband and brother-in-law have all completed IRONMAN Wales & her daughter has entered IRONKIDS Wales.

“I have been building my training programme and I have to admit, it's the biggest challenge that I have ever (and probably will ever!) take on but feel that it's something that I want to achieve.”

Sarah said working closely with Geraint and his team had helped to improve her understanding of her training programme. At the start of the summer, she visited the University’s Physiology Laboratory for a VO2max test, an underwater swim stroke analysis and a discussion about nutrition strategies for both training and racing.

“Geraint has helped improve my technique and enabled me to understand the science behind it,” she added.

“I have taken his advice on board, and I can see the difference already.”

Training with friend and fellow PGCE graduate Lauren Arthur has also helped. “It’s been great training together, which keeps us both motivated,” she added.

“Knowing Lauren will be there on the day, either ahead or behind me, is a comfort too! It’s been really hard some mornings to get up and out and start training and she’s been brilliant at helping me with that.

“It’s been challenging, trying to fit in training around an already busy home and work life, and family and friends have been so supportive, helping out to enable me to do this.”

Sarah said she is hoping to inspire pupils at her schools too.

She said: “I see a lot of my pupils and their parents when I’m out training and they are so encouraging which has been lovely. I hope the children are inspired by what I’m doing, particularly the girls. It’s important they recognise that women can achieve too.”

UWTSD’s partnership with IRONMAN Wales provides opportunities for students and staff to collaborate with IRONMAN on areas related to the University’s portfolio including sports, health and wellbeing, tourism, hospitality, events management as well as film and media.  It also provides opportunities for applied research including the possibility of undertaking impact studies and reports to inform IRONMAN Wales in its business planning and future strategy.  

Further Information

Rebecca Davies

Swyddog Gweithredol Cysylltiadau â’r Wasg a’r Cyfryngau

Executive Press and Media Relations Officer

Cyfathrebu Corfforaethol a Chysylltiadau Cyhoeddus

Corporate Communications and PR

Mobile: 07384 467071

Email: Rebecca.Davies@uwtsd.ac.uk