Season 4, Episode 6: I met Leon Chevalier when sat next to him on the flight back from Kona, Hawaii, after he had finished 7th in the Ironman World Championships (in a year where he had also completed his Masters in Chemical Engineering).
Leon has been racing long distance triathlons across the world since 2021, and has already won Ironman Mallorca and Embrunman, came 3rd at Ironman UK and rose from 420th to 22nd in the PTO World Rankings.
He is most definitely one to watch among the rising stars of the long course, so Claire and I wanted to chat to him about the incredible start to his professional career, what Chemical Engineering can teach us in triathlon, the unexpected pressures of turning pro and how he can use the sport to create positive change in the world.
What I’ve Been Reading
They say that ‘facts tell, while stories sell’, and we know deep down it is true, so when I started to read Building a Story Brand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen I expected it to be about telling stories to our clients, but it’s about much more than that. There are so many good nuggets for building a success business through marketing, that I can see myself going back to this time and again. If you run your own business, I would strongly encourage you to read this little gem.
What I’ve Been Watching
You could have written the little I knew about the culinary icon, Anthony Bourdain, on a postcard; so when the Netflix documentary Roadrunner, about his life was recommended to me, I wasn’t initially drawn to it. That said, it was a convincing argument from a trusted source, so I decided to give it a shot; and I was certainly not disappointed.
This documentary explores Bourdain’s larger than life personality and his adventurous spirit whilst also highlighting the lows and search for happiness that he clearly struggled with. A touching and thought-provoking watch by the Oscar-winning filmmaker, Morgan Neville, that presents Bourdain as both the hero and the villain of his own story.
TED Talk I’ve Found Interesting
Scaremongers play on the idea that robots will simply replace people on the job when, in fact, they can become our essential collaborators, freeing us up to spend time on less mundane and mechanical challenges. In his TED talk Why we will rely on robots, Rodney Brooks points out how valuable this could be as the number of working-age adults drops and the number of retirees swells. He introduces us to Baxter, the robot with eyes that move and arms that react to touch, which could work alongside an aging population and learn to help them at home too.
App I’ve Found Useful
For Caryl and me our happy place is St Agnes in Cornwall; set along the most stunning stretch of UK coastline I have seen, it is classed as an area of outstanding natural beauty, as well as being home to a wide variety of sea life.
Recently, the most awful sewage release there hit the news and gone viral on social media and it got me researching more about the issue. The water companies are being regulated less than ever and, as a result, are releasing more and more into our oceans. If you would like to know where the damage is being done, be kept up to date with where is not safe to swim or help keep the water companies accountable, please download the Surfers Against Sewage App and even better, support them.
I cannot comprehend how, in this day and age, treating our waterways like this is acceptable.
Quote of the Week
“Normal is not something to aspire to, it’s something to get away from.”
- Jodie Foster
Finance Theme I’ve Been Considering
The Autumn statement saw another smoke and mirrors nibble by the tax man. Stealth taxation increases like decreasing the Capital Gains Tax allowance by half, the annual dividend allowance by half and reducing the top rate Income Tax threshold all have much less dramatic affect when it comes to raising money, simply because most people will miss it. Some more tax might disappear through their payroll, and other through their tax return, but little by little it all adds up without causing a media storm.
Noticeable absentees to the new Chancellors reforms were changes to ISAs, pensions, and other tax allowances, so be sensible and make the most of the allowances you have. We all need to do our bit for helping the country but doing more than your share is best achieved by action rather than inaction!