live with purpose


Sitting in the middle of the Atlantic ocean, with the closest humans to me located in space, it was easy to the hell did I get here?

In 2009 I was diagnosed with Cushings Disease, a rare and life-threatening condition which causes tumours on the pituitary gland - the gland that controls the body's hormone production.

I'd always been motivated by challenge and adventure and in narrowly avoiding death, I got incredibly clear on how I wanted to spend the rest of my life. I wanted to live a life of purpose. Doing things that helped people and planet and challenging myself as I did.

So I changed track.

I went part-time in my day job as a science teacher. I qualified as a paddleboard instructor and set-up my own business. I even started a charity.

Through this I grew in confidence. Failures were huge opportunities to learn. I met some awesome people along the way. In 2014, then Atlantic men's solo row world record holder Charlie Pitcher suggested I go for the women's record.

I'd initially baulked at the idea of rowing the Atlantic alone. I'd never even rowed! But fast forward 2 years, after testing myself in business and life, I knew I had both the personal resilience and the support network to take it on.


Midway through my training, I realised something wasn't right. I went to the docs and quickly got diagnosed. The Cushings was back and I needed a brain op to get rid of it. Thanks to the amazing team at King's, the tumour was removed and I was out training again in a month.

You can read more about my Atlantic crossing here. I am currently the World Record holder for fastest womens' solo row but I'm encouraged to see other women starting to train to beat it.

What's next? I'm passionate about the environment and that we can all make positive change if we work together, as a community. My next challenge will combine those passions and hopefully, inspire others to challenge themselves. 

Want to be part of my next challenge?

Work with me to get positive exposure for your brand?

Inspire (and entertain) a group with one of my talks? 

I'd love to hear from you. Let's talk...


World record breaker, Kiko Matthews

World record breaker, Kiko Matthews