A world-record–holding professional triathlete enthusiastically shares a life devoted to sports, her “drug of choice.”
Early on in her amiable memoir, Wellington admits to being “accident-prone and low on common sense.” That fact hardly prevented her from pursuing a career in the high-octane arena of competitive sports. Enjoying a happy childhood in eastern England, Wellington was raised by parents who, while they loved the outdoors, displayed none of the athletic prowess she’d nurtured throughout her adolescence, a time plagued with anorexia, bulimia and alcohol binging. Her burgeoning interest in corporate law took a backseat to environmental-development work and concurrent marathon runs, which served to fuel an interest in triathlon training in Nepal and assorted adventures honing her craft in Switzerland. She began training with noted Australian coach Brett Sutton and continued onward to triathlon competitions worldwide. Wellington traces her personal history through memories and diary entries. But most compelling are the urgent details on the meticulous preparatory routines and rituals necessary to become physically (and mentally) ready to compete in these grueling contests. Later candid chapters on her morphing relationship with Sutton, revelations on life and love and her record-setting racing record effectively gel to illustrate the strife and struggle as well as the victorious exhilaration inherent with training, competing in and winning the Kona Ironman Triathlon. She concludes with comments on the completion of her 13th Ironman race in 2011.
Empowering and suitably commemorative.