Article written by: Chantel Rall – http://www.theworldaccordingtoaprincess.co.za
Every now and again you come across a REAL person. Someone with so much humality and a beautiful personality. Humble to the max, loves life and just overall a macnificent human all together. Enter Robyn Williams. All in Triathlon knows and loves this young lady. I always go on about women still being able to be soft and feminine even though they take part in hardcore sports. This is an example for all our young warrior princesses out there. She knows how to treat her sponsors, other athletes and the fans. She knows how to make sure she looks good for functions and she presents herself as a real gem. She comes from Triathlon pedigree so it’s no surprise this little lady’s got a serious future ahead of her!
We sat down with Robs to ask her a couple of questions:
Are you a PRINCESS or are you more of a WARRIOR PRINCESS?
Most definitely a warrior princess!
Why do you say that?
I’ve been covered in mud, blood, sweat and tears, which I’ve only seen on Xena. Cinderella was only ever covered in dust. So I suppose that makes me a warrior princess. After all, no race can hurt as much as getting kicked out of ballet class at age 6, after only 3 weeks. That childhood trauma toughened me up for all of this!
For us it is about being able to transform ourselves into whatever life needs from us – Being able to get down and dirty in sport, but still able to dress up in heels when we need to. Do you find this transformation easy?
Not particularly easy, just because I don’t get too much opportunity to practice doing the whole hair and make up thing. Having a tri-mom meant bonding while doing a cycle and not in front of a mirror discussing lipstick. That being said I am pretty comfortable in a little black number. My local bike shop is actually busy fitting cleats to a pair of Jimmy Choo’s as we speak.
Do you prefer getting down and dirty or dressing up? Why?
I enjoy both actually. Dressing up is always fun and people are usually surprised to see me all dolled up. But trust me, I can 🙂 A combination of the two has its own special allure. That’s why Cinderella, all covered in dust, drove the prince wild. Imagine if he met Xena!
Tell us about your sport and why you love it.
Everything in life comes in “twos”: east-west, yin-yang, sunrise-sunset, hot-cold. It’s sort of the way the universe works. As soon a third party enters the equation, things get a bit crazy, out of control and frowned upon by society. That craziness makes up a triathlete (yes, we are all crazy). Trying to perfect three disciplines will always be a crazy, stupid challenge. And killing myself in a race is the cherry on top!
Having recently moved to off-road triathlon I am thoroughly enjoying trying to improve on the technical aspects of mountain biking. I am a bit of a klutz and as such often find myself over the bars or off a cliff, but nothing compares to the thrill of conquering something you previously couldn’t ride. It’s like the first time you escaped your cot as a toddler.
Your favourite sport (fashion) brand?
Adidas and Speedo
Take us through a “Day in the life of….”
I am doing my Masters in Financial Risk Management at Stellenbosch University, although some friends suggested I should rather have enrolled for a Masters in Single Track Risk Management. I find that I am most productive at night. So I tend to go to bed very late and then wake up later than your normal athlete.
I will generally get up and do chores and admin and then head out to train. I usually try and get all my training done so I can be at varsity by 14.00/ 15.00 and then I’ll work until quite late.
How do you keep healthy?
Tough one. I find it particularly hard to organise meals when I spend so much time at varsity, but I will try and take a cooked meal with me (which I end up eating cold for dinner).
Otherwise I try and stay away from processed food as much as possible and eat lots of fruit and vegetables.
Training a lot means that my immune system is often under strain and I really need to look after myself.
Staying healthy also asks of me to diminish the frequency of bike crashes and tripping over roots when trail running.
Eating healthy is 70% of the war against the little muffin tops that us Princesses guard against – what is your nutrition secret?
No secret really. Again, stay away from processed foods and cook as many of your own meals as possible. I also try and eat regularly as infrequent meals seem to cause me to pick up weight. Something about not eating regularly/enough calories makes my body freak out and store everything.
Could you share one of your favourite recipes with us?
My favourite meal of the day is breakfast and currently I am enjoying “mushing” one banana in a mixing bowl, stirring in an egg and cooking them up in a pan as flap jacks. Simple as that. Healthy and delicious.
Lets talk about your beauty regime. Share your secrets and some of your favourite beauty products with us.
Something I am not particularly good at. I try and use Dermastine on my numerous scars from mountainbiking. Body Butter from The Body Shop is the only thing that I find helps with chlorine-fried skin and I try and remember to use a daily moisturiser on my face.
And sunblock. Lots of sunblock!
I loooove going for coffee, and Stellenbosch is packed with awesome places that serve great coffee. Among my favourites are Ride Inn Cafe for a post-ride coffee and Oude Bank Bakkerij for great sourdough and flat whites.
Fat Cactus in Cape Town serves the best Mexican food, while Beluga is my favourite for cocktails and sushi.
How do you earn your coffee money?
Good question seeing as race winnings don’t get one very far 🙂 I coach swimming in the summer months.
Charities you support?
I support Children’s Campaign – It is a social enterprise donating profits to Connect Network, which networks with organisations aimed at women and children at risk. Connect Network currently networks with 115 projects that have a combined reach of 280 000 children and 43 000 women in a year. Check it out at www.childrenscampaign.org.za
I did my first long distance off road endurance race on 27 September – Enduroman. Facing a 2.5km swim, 80km MTB and 21km trail run leaves you feeling rather daunted! I haven’t even done a half ironman on the road before! Then I am doing my first MTB stage race in November in the form of Origin of Trails. Super excited about this.
Massive shout out to all the guys who back me! You guys rock! Bicycle Power Trading, 32GI, Virgin Active, EnduroHub and G-Form!