Getting to know Silvia Kramska Think owning your own business takes grit? Multiply that by two, add the gruelling training demanded by fitness competitions and you have an idea of life for Silvia Kramska, founder of Open to Play clean protein and Real Food Organic Nutrition. A qualified nutritionist and strength and conditioning coach, Kramska shares her formula for keeping a balance amid apparent chaos.I have always been part of an active environment centred on wellness. I started to play tennis when I was five years old and continued to play professionally until I was 17. I lost my way health-wise for a while after that, so when I moved to Melbourne I promised myself that I would work in an area that truly makes me happy.My Open To Play protein business came about when I was prepping for my first fitness competition; I couldn’t find a clean, simple and healthy protein anywhere.
Imagine training as part of a real squad, just think about those body and mind benefits. We sat down with Team Ford EcoBoost riders Sophie Fennell, Julie Erskine, Nikki Juniper and Charlotte Broughton to find out about their goals and gains.
How does training as part of the team help your training? Sophie: ‘I think you benefit a lot from training with others especially on the road because it allows you to understand how other riders ride. It develops your own skills as you pick up techniques from the other riders; it both pushes and motivates you; and it allows less experienced riders to gain experience from those with more.’
What’s the best piece of advice you can give to women who are inspired to get into cycling now? Julie: ‘Invest in a decent pair of cycling shorts. Lots of women are put off when it gets sore and uncomfortable sitting in the saddle, so a good pair of cycling shorts is key! Don’t worry about how far or how fast you go, just go for it and have fun!’
What do you enjoy the most about training/racing? Nikki: ‘I love the feeling when I’m finished that I’ve pushed myself as hard as I can. I just love riding my bike and in a sick kind of way I love the pain it inflicts on my body because then I know that I’ve given everything I possibly can.’
When it comes to race nutrition, what really counts for you? Julie: ‘Team Ford EcoBoost are really lucky to have HIGH5 as our nutrition sponsor this season. I love its EnergySource 4:1 drink especially for back-to-back races or hard blocks of training. It has whey protein and carbohydrate in it so as well as providing you with energy to keep going, it also helps to start your recovery process.’
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received when it comes to training? Charlotte: ‘If your body starts giving you red flags, address them. Now I’m older and understand my body better it keeps me healthy and my training consistent.’
What drives you to train, other than winning? Nikki: ‘I’m not just training for myself now, I’m training for the team and the fear of failure that if I don’t train then I won’t back up all the hard work the girls do for me.’
Essential kit picks ► Giant Envie Advanced Pro bike, £3,299, echeloncycles.co.uk
► Kask Bambino TT Helmet, £299, echeloncycles.co.uk
► Kalas LADY A-5 Titan X6 cycling Shorts, £65, kalas.co.uk
► HIGH5 EnergySource 4:1, from £16.99, highfive.co.uk
For more information on cars in the Ford EcoBoost range, visit ford.co.uk/ecoboost