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Tribesports Featured User Of The Week: @Climbingpanda!


Posted by Steve R on 19 October 2011 at 12:45 PM

Sarah L is one of our most active, motivated and encouraging users on the site.  Although a maths teacher by day she is involved in a diverse and wide variety of sports including; climbing, skiing, yoga, running, cycling and swimming to name just a few! This queen of multi-tasking will also be taking part in a triathlon in 2012, it appears nothing can stop her! We have caught up with Sarah this week and learned a bit more about her life in sports.

User of the week

Sarah Larkcom

Hi Sarah! So tell us, have you always been a  massive sports keeno?

I've always loved sport and being outdoors. Being active is currently the only thing that keeps me sane in day to day life!

What was your favourite sport as a kid? Were you in any school teams or clubs?

When I was at school and University I was always in sports teams; rugby, hockey, netball, tennis, Tae Kwon Do, squash, you name it - but I think that this was mainly because I always turned up to training and was keen to play, rather than the fact that I had any great sporting talent!

My biggest stroke of luck was one of my teachers introduced me to climbing when I started secondary school. I've been on rock for almost 20 years now, and can't think of anything better than being somewhere hot and sunny with some quality rock to scramble over!

What are your other hobbies and interests outside of sport?

Outside of sport I am a huge geek and proud of it! I'm a maths teacher who truly loves maths and likes to spread that love around. When I'm trying to relax at home I'll be found cooking, drinking good wine, reading a book, playing the cello, knitting, sewing or doing a maths problem.

You are such an inspiration to us here at Tribesports and many of our users! Tell us, what are you currently up to on the site? Do you have any favourite challenges/ tribes?

I love the cycling and rowing challenges on the site. I'm slowly working my way through them and hope to get my 500m row time back down below 2 minutes at some point in the near future. I'm taking some of the running challenges to try and motivate myself to get out there as well- I’ve been a little slack on these however. The yoga challenges are important to me as not only do they nudge me to include different poses in my home practice, and sometimes give me something truly challenging to work towards. They are also a way for me to share yoga poses with people who might not otherwise be exposed to them!

We hear you are also planning a triathlon? What spurred you to take on such a challenge? How’s the training going?

My commitment to doing a triathlon started with a throwaway conversation. One of the trainers at the gym was quizzing me over my sporting past and current training patterns. They asked me what I was training so hard for. A good question which reminded me of one of my favourite quotes, "How can you train if you don't know what you're training for." I'd already decided that I no longer wanted to run long distance and so her suggestion was to do a triathlon. I foolishly agreed and am looking at completing a sprint triathlon next summer. I'm a little nervous but I am putting together a training plan and hope that it'll all be fine. I only have to get over my phobia of front crawl, get back on a real bike again, and build up to running 5km again. Hmmm, sounds like a bit of an epic mission when put like that! HELP!

Tell us a bit about your passion for Yoga, what is your preferred style?

I have always loved yoga. I remember finding a huge coffee table book on yoga on my parent’s bookcase when I was really young and trying to do all of the different poses in the pictures. That's when I discovered my love of shoulder stands and plough! I've been practising yoga regularly for almost twelve years now and Ashtanga is my preferred style. The flows and movements in a practice combined with the breathing calm my racing mind. I started regular practice as an aid to climbing and to combat some running injuries that I kept on picking up, but now it's something that I enjoy just because. I often hear people say that they can't do yoga as they're not flexible enough, but anyone can do it. It's not how deep that you can go into a pose, or how perfect you look, but the breath and the movement that is important. Find a class and give it a try and you'll be hooked (hopefully).

How has Tribesports helped you?

I'm just on the site to pick others brains and get motivated. It is such a great community to be a member off. I'd previously been out of sport and all forms of exercise for almost two years through injury and illness. I'd just gotten the go ahead to start exercising again when a friend posted about Tribesports on Facebook. The support and encouragement that the community has offered combined with the challenges has helped me get back on track. Since joining in July I've lost over two stones, raised my level of cardio fitness and gotten the go-ahead to get back on a bike more than six months faster than my consultant thought it would be. But even more importantly, and the biggest shock to my family and friends is the fact that I've kicked my soda habit. Not bad for someone who used to drink about two litres a day!

What piece of advice do you have for our other users?

My one piece of advice to other users is get involved! Take challenges, post training data, comment on other people’s statuses, ask questions, and create challenges. The community on here is unique and very special. People are genuinely interested in what you have to say and will support you when you need it. Take the plunge!


To learn more about what Sarah is up too and what challenges she is taking this week you can follow her using this link: