Setting the Pace, Scholar Profile – Sophie Cowper

Published: 1 December 2020 at 10:31

Athletes running

Over the next month, we’ll be profiling a different sports scholar each week to find out a bit more about them. These students, who combine their studies with high level sports performance, will be telling us about how they’ve been coping during a challenging year and their plans for the year ahead.

Name: Sophie Cowper

Sport: Athletics

Course: MBChB Primary Medical Qualification

Sophie is a long distance runner who has represented England at senior international level and studies medicine on our Chelmsford campus.

Q. Hi Sophie, what are you doing to keep fit during lockdown?

A. Regular running training and strength and conditioning.

Q. What’s your top piece of advice for staying in good health during the different levels of restrictions and lockdowns that we’ve experienced recently?

Don't neglect the mental aspect. It’s so easy to burn yourself out physically and detach yourself from society; it can be very lonely but try to keep in touch with friends and family. Don't forget to rest, treat yourself, everything in moderation, no food is off limits, don't be too hard on yourself. Never compare yourself to others especially what you see on social media, they aren't going through what you are and people only post a small snapshot of their lives.

Q. What are your sporting highlights of 2020?

A. I have enjoyed watching Georgia Taylor Brown winning the World Triathlon. After competing against her in running races it was great to see her finally getting the glory she deserves having had many years out injured with stress fractures and shows that perseverance is key. She has now been one of the first people selected for the Tokyo Olympics next year for Great Britain. Also, the battle between Natasha Cockram and Naomi Mitchell in the British championships at the London marathon and Ben Connor winning the British championships and gaining the Olympic qualifying standard. It’s great to see people you race against and know doing so well. It pushes you to keep going and that anything is possible. For me personally, there hasn't been much racing [due to COVID] but I was pleased to make the finals at the BUCS Indoor Athletics Championships in the 3000m, having fractured some ribs in the build-up.

Q. Finally, what is your main sporting goal or thing you’re most looking forward to doing in 2021?

A. Simply getting back to normal and regular racing. I’m particularly looking forward to the outdoor track season aiming to compete at the Olympic trials. I’m hoping to find the right balance, which will enable me to get back to my best and beyond.

Stayed tuned to our website and social media channels to hear from some of our other sport scholars over the coming weeks and to keep track of Sophie’s progress.