Welcome to the latest episode of the podcast. This week I am talking to Alison Mowbray, former Olympic medal winning rower in the British Rowing Team, and current leadership development consultant and coach. Alison initially pursued an academic career in microbiology, got her PhD, became a science teacher… and then tried out for national selection in the British Rowing Team. She’s competed at the Olympics twice and won silver as part of the quad sculls team in 2004.
After retiring Alison continued to set and achieve her goals that included ultra-marathons, an autobiography, becoming a rowing coach, hiking, dancing tango, and more! Phewf! Join us to hear more about how Alison pursues her goals and what she has learnt about ikigai and her life’s purpose along the way.
If you enjoyed this episode and it inspired you in some way, we’d love to hear about it and know your biggest takeaway.
In this episode you’ll hear:
- How Alison pursued an academic path in Science, getting her PhD and becoming a science teacher before making the British Rowing Team at the age of 27
- How Alison decided what to do next after retiring from international rowing
- What marathon running taught Alison about how we can limit ourselves by the goals we set
- About the importance of doing things for yourself rather than always waiting for an external motivation
- Alison’s advice on not judging what gives your life purpose, or comparing it to other people’s
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Alison was on the British Rowing team for seven years and competed in five World Championships and two Olympic Games. Not being particularly sporty at school and having not even stepped in a boat until she went to Liverpool University at the age of 18, Alison then kept rowing on the back burner for many years while she pursued an academic career. Having achieved a 1st Class degree in Microbiology from Liverpool and a PhD in Molecular Microbiology from Cambridge University, Alison moved to London to train as a science teacher and attempt National selection. She made the British Rowing team that year at the age of 27. Two years later, she achieved last minute qualification for the Sydney 2000 Olympics, where she finished 10th in the single sculls event.
Alison worked part-time as a science teacher while training full-time towards the Athens Olympics and in 2004, at the age of 33 and in the last race of her career achieved an Olympic silver medal in the final of the quad sculls.
Retiring from international sport, Alison was a science teacher for several years alongside a developing career in Inspirational Speaking. She now works as a Leadership Development Consultant and Coach, hikes long-distance trails, runs marathons and ultra-marathons, dances tango and sings in a local choir. Alison also still coaches rowing, including to local children in Zambia in 2022.Alison wrote and published her autobiography: Gold Medal Flapjack. Silver Medal Life in 2013 and is currently finishing a Science/Lifestyle book called The 10 Healthy Habits.
Things mentioned in the episode:
Photo of Alison running Ironman
Connect with Alison:
Autobiography: Gold Medal Flapjack. Silver Medal Life
Connect with Jennifer:
Linked In: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jennifershinkai/