We asked the creator of  www.ironchicks.com.au – a forum for athletic women, Catherine Thiele, to whip up a book review on Chrissie Wellington’s autobiography, “A Life Without Limits” – an easy job for this passionate triathlete who may just have been the first person in Australia to get her hands on the book. We’d also like to take this opportunity to personally thank Chrissie for signing a copy of the book for our ambassador, Kacey Willoughby (orchestrated by Kacey’s brother, Mark).


This was one book I couldn’t wait to buy.   It was preordered at the bookstore and I was eagerly waiting its arrival.  As an Ironman athlete and a woman about to line up for another race, I was looking for insights and inspiration.  Chrissie’s autobiography, written with Michael Aylwin, delivered… And then some.


This honest and sincere memoir explores many aspects of Chrissie’s life and personality.  From her “clumsy” childhood days in Norfolk, England, to winning the Hawaiian Ironman World Championships, Chrissie gives us a glimpse of what makes her tick.  The words within the book clearly depict the always smiling images we see of Chrissie, showing us her true passions in life – helping others, training, smiling and her love of the sport.


The book also delves into some of her sadder times, where self-doubt, anger and sadness dominated her young mind and body.  As a young “control freak”, Chrissie found her outlet in controlling what she ate, resulting in an eating disorder.  These parts of her life only help the reader to truly understand the champion’s mindset, what makes her strong and what possibly separates her from the rest.


Kacey with her signed copy of Chrissie’s book

From adventures with her friends in Nepal, her early swimming and running events, to her career path (working for the British Government) you can see how Chrissie is an intelligent, hard working, go-getter who appears to enjoy getting out of her comfort zone.  Rudyard Kipling’s poem “IF” was referred to as the one constant in her life, giving her strength and solace wherever life lead her.  Try to seek out this poem – it is so deep and meaningful with many powerful messages about strength, dreams and your mindset.


Probably my favourite part of the book was when Chrissie signed up to train with “the” coach, Brett Sutton.  It was her mental transformation while training under his strict regime that was fascinating.  Her internal mental battles and dealings with fatigue and exhaustion were something that all athletes can relate to, however, her methods (with Sutton and the other athletes alongside her) for eliminating them were an insight into the world of professional athletes. Glimpses into the types of sessions they all did, and possibly still do, were mind blowing. I couldn’t get enough!


The self-proclaimed, “goof-ball”, aka, “Muppet” explains how her full steam ahead attitude at times lead to injuries.  Injuries that were still very evident, from a bike accident, in her 2011 Hawaiian Ironman Championships victory.


Wellington’s honest and heart felt recall of the 2010 Hawaiian Ironman Championship withdrawal was so real, reminding us that after all, she is just a person!


To sum up, this book is an easy read, with a few pictures too, that will leave you feeling like you know Chrissie. If you have ever done a triathlon, especially an Ironman, you will LOVE how Wellington shares her training techniques and tips, motivations, inspirations and her heart.  The woman is a true legend and I believe the book will leave you wanting more.


– Thanks to Catherine Thiele for the review




Want tips from the 4x World Champion?

Chrissie has also worked with the crew from Audio Fuel to create a variety of motivational/training downloads called Tri Harder.  The Tri Harder range helps you train for triathlon – from a sprint to an Ironman. It’s designed to motivate and inspire you to perform better and achieve more than you think is possible whilst giving you technical advice and coaching from Chrissie. Go for a run with the 4x World Champion in your ear!


About The Author

Stef Hanson. Chief.

Chief and founder of WITSUP

Serious about what I do, but don’t take myself too seriously

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