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Juggling a job, two young kids and bidding to make a splash at Challenge Roth

Debbie Greig will show on Sunday that it's possible to race at the highest level of the sport while working full-time and bringing up a young family.

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Redefining triathlon

While many eyes will be on the top of a stacked women’s pro field at Challenge Roth, there’s also a significant story around the athlete in bib #123.

For that’s Scotland’s Debbie Greig who will be taking on the likes of defending champion Anne Haug, five-time IRONMAN World Champion Daniela Ryf, Chelsea Sodaro and co despite having to balance her training with a full-time job as well as being a mother of a one and a three-year-old!

‘In the shape of my life’

Sodaro’s stunning Kona win last October showed it is possible to be at the top of the sport while bringing up a young family but Greig has the added responsibility of being a Contracts Manager for DWF.

And Sunday marks a significant step back into the big league as she explained: “This is my first professional long-distance triathlon race since before the birth of my first son, Logan, when I came fourth at Challenge Almere in 2018.”

Debbie Greig Challenge Almere 2018
Debbie Greig takes fourth place at Challenge Almere in 2018

She clocked a PB of 9:20 that day and has also won numerous Scottish triathlon titles over the last few years but she revealed: “The road back to racing triathlon hasn’t been easy after having constant pelvic pain, going back to work full-time and looking after my amazing boys.

“My first major race back after my two kids was IRONMAN Marbella last year and I came fifth despite suffering from long COVID. Now, I feel in the shape of my life and excited to see what I can do at Challenge Roth.”

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Inspiring others

In terms of finding time to get to that level, she admitted: “It’s definitely been a challenge to train like most pros do but I make it work as best I can.

“Things that help me include having a flexible employer, getting up super early, doing most of my bike/run training in the garage and having a supportive family who are able to look after the kids when I have to do a longer ride or run.

“I know I am not the most conventional pro triathlete out there, and I don’t think it is fair to sacrifice all the other riches in life to be a pro triathlete. I love my kids and my day job but I want to inspire Mums and fellow pros out there that you can compete at the highest level of our sport despite what others may say.”

The numbers suggest all the hard work is paying off as Debbie ran a five-minute PB of 2:54 at the Tallahassee Marathon in February, where she finished in second place.

Jonathan Turner
Written by
Jonathan Turner
Jonathan Turner is News Director for both TRI247 and RUN247, and is accustomed to big-name interviews, breaking news stories and providing unrivalled coverage for endurance sports.  
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