It's no secret that our company was founded by endurance athletes. Thunderbird was initially created as fuel made by athletes for athletes. As we grow and expand, we're looking for unique individuals to partner with, to provide fuel for their epic adventures. This past month, I found one unique individual who embodies the Thunderbird ethos. Tribe, meet Colin O'Brady.
Upon meeting Colin, I realized that he met the first requirement of Thunderbird stardom: One must have quads of Thunder. Those quads brought him to victory in his first ever triathlon, which he completed only 18 months after he was severely burned in a fire in Thailand. Colin's win after this life-changing event shows a perserverance that is unmatched by other athletes.
While I was able to sit down with Colin and his amazing lady love, Jenna, I also had him answer some interview questions that would show a greater insight into Colin's life and values. His food philosophy is directly in line with the Thunderbird values of producing sustainable, whole foods, that nourish the body and mind. We couldn't be happier to have him as a sponsored athlete and hope he meets his current goal of reaching the 2016 Olympics!
Check out his interview:
Why do you want to represent Thunderbird?
Not only do I love the Thunderbird product, but the ethos of the company are right inline with my own values. The mission of delivering tasty, healthy and raw foods to consumers, while leveling a minimal impact on the environment is a mission I can proudly embrace.
What Athletic activities do you participate in? How did this passion develop?
I have always been involved with sports. As a kid I was a national ranked and 10 time Oregon Champion in Swimming, as well as a Oregon State Champion in Soccer. I went on to swim at Yale University. I thought after college my athletic career was over, but there was still a little boy inside of my dreaming of the Olympics.
In 2008 I was severely burned in a fire i- Thailand. It landed me in several Thai hospitals where I was unable to walk for months. Having life flipped upside down, not knowing if I would ever fully recover I my triathlon dream was born. I vowed to mom Mom I would complete a triathlon after I got out of the hospital. Not only did I complete a triathlon, but surprising myself I won the Chicago Triathlon just 18 months after my accident. reigniting my Olympic passion, I turned professional, have spent the last 4 years chasing the Olympic dream in triathlon.
Please explain your personal food manifesto:
My family has been in the natural food industry long before Whole Foods was a household name, and the natural foods industry was a fringe movement of hippie collective and co-ops. I was raised with that as the backdrop to my childhood, my mother and stepdad founding a New Seasons Market, a regional natural foods chain based out of Portland, OR, and my father being an organic farmer on the North Shore of Kauai. My food manifesto naturally grew (pun-intended) from there. I believe in the importance of eating organic, sustainable and local. Eating simple unprocessed foods, leads to a healthy life and a healthy earth.
What short term and long term goals in terms of nutrition and fitness?
My biggest goal is to qualify to represent the USA at the 2016 Olympics. Not only do I want to represent my country in the greatest sporting event in the world, but I want to have a forum to show people to never give up. I faced a tremendous setback when I was burned, and I got back on feet and may stronger then ever before. It was have been very easy to give up. I think goal setting whether big or small is an important process for anyone
Who or what inspires you everyday?
Jenna Besaw my beautiful girlfriend inspires me everyday. She has sacrificed a lot to my number one support on this journey. We approach each day and each race together. Without her I would be lost.
How does Thunderbird font into my lifestyle?
Although energy gels and powders do have their role in endurance sports, I love to eat as much real food as possible. Thunderbird bars provide just that in a easy and ready to eat form. It is perfect for a quick snack after a workout, or in the middle of a long ride.
For more information on Colin, check out his website, here.