Being devoted – Introducing Karina Kaufmann, our first Brand Ambassador.
“Are you really going to train in this weather?” I asked her.
Her simple reply. “Yep.”
On a cold, rainy January night, a group of devoted runners quickly circle a wet track. Tucked in, mid-pack, one stands out. She is the only person not grimacing against the conditions. In fact, she’s positively beaming. She is also the only one in Team GB running kit, proudly emblazoned with her surname and the iconic acronym, GBR. Lap after lap, Karina Kaufmann puts in the kilometres without hesitation or complaints, each step one closer to International success.
SEVEN FEET APART is delighted to welcome Karina as our first Brand Ambassador. Her’s is an on-going story of devotion, a quintessential behaviour of people who achieve their goals – in life, in business and sport. We will support her however possible and share her experiences with you as she faces the challenge of balancing a very active family and community life, her beliefs and her global races.
Karina has been described as, “some kinda superwoman,” a phrase she is quick to dismiss. She says that what she does, “Is just being a normal mum.” Mother to four young girls, wife to James and a devout member of her Jewish community, Karina is also committed to, “Being the best sportswoman I can be.” She is humble, kind and welcoming, despite her success.
In this brief introductory interview, we discover what her goals are, what motivates her, and how she ‘fits it all in’ – a lesson in efficiency!
LET’S START BY TALKING ABOUT TRIATHLONS, DUALTHONS AND RACING. WHEN DID YOU START RACING?
“I did my first triathlon at Blenheim Palace in 2011. My friend Rob told me about the sport, suggested it was fun and said if he could do it then I should give it a go. I had secretly always wanted to do a tri but it seemed like a sport “out of my reach” and “extreme”. Rob has later admitted that he feels responsible for creating “a triathlon monster”- we are still close friends! 😉 “
WHAT’S THE SPORTS APPEAL?
“I love the variety – of both sports and courses, the sense of adventure, although it’s hard to squeeze all the disciplines in I think it’s a much more balanced way to train than being devoted to one sport. Although really triathlon is one sport – I am increasingly moving away from viewing it a “swim, bike, run and transition” and having strengths and weaknesses.”
WHY THE COMPETITIVE ASPECT OF THE SPORT?
“I am a naturally competitive person, I can’t help it! I enjoy pushing myself. I suppose I grew up in an environment where everything was a race or competition. Grandma still does it to this day, “Who can build the highest lego tower?” I realise that not everyone feels this way… especially the kids. With them, we put a positive spin on it, “Can we be happy and genuinely celebrate other people’s success and strengths?” “Can we be supportive of others?” “Can we learn more from others and grow, change and improve?”
AND THE INTERNATIONAL RACING?
“It’s the next step up 🙂 a wonderful way to see new places and meet new people. I feel like it is a big honour to represent my country – I’m 8th generation, British – so my father tells me!”
ULTIMATE RACING AMBITIONS?
“World Championships? I very much want to race for GB in the 2019 Worlds in Switzerland… and of course, every year going forwards! 2017 was my first international competition and I did much better than I thought I would. I would know like to keep moving up – top 15… then 10…”
“Age Group? I’m gunning for European and World Age Group races… in duathlon, triathlon and now I’m dipping my toes into cross duathlon and cross triathlon as well. It’s all quite new for me, I’m enjoying the BIG step up. I feel like it might take me a bit of time to really find my ground, which is fine – I’m planning on doing this for many decades to come!”
DESCRIBE YOUR TRAINING REGIME
“I am always training, planning my training or looking at races and results. I workout in some form – strength and conditioning, yoga and stretching, swim, bike, run, transition training – 6 days a week. I often will do a two session day… Maybe even three but it’s exhausting on top of all my other commitments. I admit that I must have excess energy that needs spending – I never realised that this wasn’t the norm… If I don’t do some sort of sport, after a few days, I can get low or quite tetchy. It’s not the same if I just go to the gym. Actually, I never go – I don’t have a gym membership. Getting out in the fresh air and being outdoors is essential for me!”
SUPPORT MUST BE CRITICAL?
“Absolutely! Of course, there is coaching and sports communities, like CC London. Why are they important? Being a stay at home mum and working on your own business can be quite solitary. I love people 🙂 so doing sport with friends is so special. I need people to keep me on the straight an narrow – I could overdo it otherwise. When you are so passionate about something, there are always highs and lows; being well supported by friends, sports buddies and coaches is even more important (and necessary).”
And most of all, family. There is a real satisfaction that comes from the feeling that my family are proud of my achievements.”