Episode 154

Andrea Mason: Endurance sports and endometriosis

Andrea Mason is an endurance athlete doing amazing things, both in the world of endurance and in the world of female health. Andrea has struggled with gynecological issues since she was a youngster. She was diagnosed with endometriosis as a young woman and in 2017 she had a hysterectomy. But with the right support around her, she has not just qualified for Kona, but gone on to tackle extreme sea to summit challenges. All while trying to break the taboo surrounding female reproductive health following her own struggles. Her message is don't be hard on yourself when you're having a bad day.

You'll hear:

05:00 Andrea explains her background in swimming as a youngster.

09:00 Andrea talks about when she first started having gynecological issues and how that impacted on her passion for sport in her late teens. "I had had enough of feeling like I was letting myself and others done and not fulfilling my potential. I didn't really do anything other than go to the gym very occasional but I still had the same issues." She was referred to a gynecologist at 25.

15:00 What is endometriosis? Andrea explains what it is and how it makes her feel and how a flare up can impact on every aspect of your life. "There is no getting away from it, it can stop you from undertaking every day activities."

19:00 What triggered Andrea to want to get back into some kind of sport?

23:00 Her first triathlon...which was Ironman Wales and how she qualified for Kona, despite 3 punctures.

27:00 The step from doing a load of Ironman triathlons to epic endurance challenges. Including swimming the channel, cycling through France and going up Mont Blanc. It was 2017 having to have a full hysterectomy and then finding out that she had stage 1 cervical cancer. "I was in the hospital bed and we were talking through and I wanted to do something that nobody else has ever done."

37:00 What satisfaction does Andrea get from her endurance challenges, because of all of the female health issues she has been through? "I tend to use my sport and the way I deal with things is through sport. So I associate all of the pain and feelings I have from endometriosis to sport."

39:00 Balancing training with endometriosis and good days and bad days. "It's been a long learning process to not be heard on myself.

43:00 Andrea's hopes to do a sea to summit challenge on every continent.

Find out more about this week's guest:

Andrea Mason: Instagram

Andrea Mason: Sea to Summit Extreme website

Andrea Mason: Lady Talk Matters website - removing the taboo around menstrual health

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About the Podcast

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Inside Tri Show
Helen Murray brings you awesome interviews from triathlon and beyond

About your host

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Helen Murray

Helen has been working in triathlon for a decade as an athlete, coach and broadcaster.

Helen hosts the Inside Tri Show podcast bringing you awesome interviews from triathlon and beyond