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Being the best version of yourself as told by one of the most influential travellers in the world



Being the best version of yourself as told by one of the most influential travellers in the world

26 April 2022

Speaking about her experience with intrepid expeditions, adventurer, bestselling author and self-confessed mischief-maker Anna McNuff celebrated the spirit of exploration in the School’s Joint Brock and John Locke Lecture.

Named by the Guardian as one of the top female adventurers of our time and in Condé Nast Traveller’s 50 most influential travellers list, Anna inspired Upper School pupils to step out of their comfort zone with tales of her courageous feats. Talking about her driving force, she reflected on her experience growing up as the daughter of Olympic rowers and feeling the pressure to become an Olympic rower herself. Her dream of rowing for Great Britain was for Anna a huge motivation but, despite representing her country in major international competitions, it was not to be. Anna explained, however, that in overcoming the initial disappointment of missing out on her dream, she was able to question her purpose, set new goals and become the best version of herself, leading her to embark on a series of extraordinary expeditions such as:

Barefoot Britain – walking 2,352 miles (the distance of 90 marathons) through Britain, barefoot.

Cycling the Andes – ascending over 100,000 metres, the equivalent to 11 times the height of Everest, on a bicycle.

The US 50 States by Bicycle – an 11,000-mile cycle through North America, passing through every state and one Canadian province.

Anna’s steely determination and resilience has established her as an inspirational role model for women and budding explorers; she is now the UK ambassador for Girl Guiding, the UK’s largest girl-only youth organisation.

Kaden (Sixth Form, WW) said “Anna McNuff gave an inspiring talk, full of positive and thoughtful sentiments. The talk was fun, engaging, and full of joy and hope. I expect many of us will be driven to exit our comfort zone more often now!”

Susanna (Sixth Form, RR) added “Anna was an engaging speaker who talked about her adventures. She spoke about the circumstances with which she truly decided to pursue her passion and she taught me that life doesn’t always go to plan, and when some doors close, others open. She taught me to not fixate on a ‘perfect life’, but instead, try find ourselves in our life journey and pursue fulfilment, and happiness.”

Being the best version of yourself as told by one of the most influential travellers in the world

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