Lindsay Webster, has quickly made a name for herself in the obstacle racing world. This 26-year old from Caledon, Ontario first known in the OCR world as the other half to the famed obstacle racer Ryan Atkins. However, Webster has quickly shown the OCR world she is not just Atkin’s fiancée but also an obstacle racing powerhouse on her own. Since she switched gears from mountain bikes to obstacles she has quickly found her way onto the podium and is one of the top women in the sport today. Learn more about Lindsay in her own words.
How did you get involved in your sport?
I’ve always loved trail running and have competed in cross-country running my whole life. My fiancé Ryan Atkins started obstacle racing and talked me into doing a few races with him. I love it! I still get to trail run, and the obstacles add that extra element which makes it even more fun and challenging.
Were you always an athlete?
Yes, I love sports, especially the team camaraderie that comes with them. Before high school I competed in figure skating, then transitioned to cross-country skiing. The past two years I raced the Canadian mountain bike circuit, but this year I’ll be concentrating on OCR.
What are some of your athletic achievements?
- OCR: 2015 Gold medal at Battlefrog Miami and Orlando, 2014 4th place finish Spartan World Championships
- Cross-country running: 2014 All-Canadian and Ontario college team, placed 3rd at College Nationals
- Mountain Biking: 2014 Gold medal at Mansfield and Woodnewton Ontario Cup races
- Cross country skiing: 2015 4th place finish at the 50km Gatineau Loppet, qualified for 2007 Ontario Development Team
What are your goals for the upcoming season?
Oh boy, there are lots of them! To sum it all up, my long-term goal is to make a name for myself in the sport and become heavily involved in it. I really love it, and want to represent Canada as a female ambassador for OCR. Short-term goals are to compete and podium in at least four BattleFrog events, so that I can participate in their Championship series this season. I’m also training like crazy towards a top-three finish at Spartan and OCR World’s!
Who is/are your inspiration?
My fiancé, Ryan Atkins! He has taught me an incredible amount about the strength of will power. I’ve been able to put in more miles during races and training than ever before. Our bodies are incredible machines, and as long as I’ve physically and mentally prepared myself properly, I’ve learned that my body will do basically anything I ask it to.
What is your most proud moment in sport?
There are a few of them! I love it when I can introduce someone to a sport, and I’m always incredibly happy when I hear they’ve continued doing it and love it as much as I do. I’m also always proud of myself when I push myself to a whole new level. One of those moments was Spartan World Championships; as far as athletics go, that was the hardest thing I’ve ever done.
What is your most proud moment in life?
Getting engaged to Ryan! He’s a keeper. In all seriousness, marriage is a huge life-long commitment and I’ve heard through the grapevine that it’s not always a walk in the park 😉 I’m grateful and honored to share that journey with Ryan, to love, respect and lead each other. It’s the biggest commitment I’ve ever made.
How do you overcome a bad race or training day?
It’s never fun having a bad race or training day, but someone told me a long time ago that “you learn more from the bad days than you do from the good ones.” If I have a bad day, I take some time to reflect on the reasons for it, and how I could have prepared or raced differently for a better performance. It always helps me for future training and races.
What is your training routine like?
Throughout the course of a week, I usually do 2-3 speed workouts, 2-3 strength sessions, one long cardio workout (2-4 hours) and I always have a rest day. I think it’s really important to listen to your body. If I have a really hard workout planned one day, but I’m feeling really tired, I’ll take a rest day or do something fun and easy and postpone the hard workout for when I’m feeling better. It keeps training fun and my body from becoming over-tired.
What advice would you give to someone starting out in your sport?
OCR is all about testing yourself mentally and physically in an area that you probably aren’t used to. Train for the event, but also understand that there will be unknowns in the event that might throw you off! That’s the beauty of the sport. It’s unpredictable, fun and an all-body challenge that will push you to the next level. Have fun!
What is your favorite pre-race and post-race food?
I always have oatmeal for breakfast the morning of a race. I find it doesn’t make me too full and it sustains me really well. I also really like beet juice for the antioxidants almond all it’s other health benefits. After a race or a hard workout I always love fruit smoothies… and, admittedly, chocolate-peanut butter ice cream.
When not training and competing what do you do with your down time?
Cook! I love cooking and baking, and I’m currently in College pursuing my Culinary Management diploma. Most of my spare time is spoken for between school and my job.
What is your favorite quote to motivate you?
“Obstacles are put in our way to see if what we want is worth fighting for.” I also love quotes by Steve Prefontaine. If you’ve never seen his biographical movie “Without Limits,” seriously, go home and watch it tonight!
What is the best advice a coach ever gave you?
“Race your own race.” I used to go into a lot of races worrying about the competitors in front of or behind me, or focused on beating one person. My sister, Brittany, is an Olympian in cross-country skiing, and she taught me to always race my own race. You should always focus on preparing and racing to do your best. If I do the best that I can, then I’m always happy with my result, and I’m a lot more relaxed if I’m not worrying about my competitors.
If you could share some advice to the next generation of athletes, what would it be?
Don’t take yourself or your training too seriously. Always remember to have fun, and to do it for yourself. It’s better to have a lifelong passion, than to have a one-year explosion, then lose your love of sport.
What is/are the races you are most looking forward to this year?
The whole BattleFrog series! I love the brand and everything they represent. Their obstacles are challenging but also fun, the 16km race is my favorite distance, and they even have a kids’ race. It’s an event that has something for everyone, no matter what your fitness level is.
Check out our podcast with Lindsay Webster…