A young woman from landlocked Herefordshire is about to head off on the challenge of a lifetime: a 3000-mile row across the Atlantic Ocean.

Eleanor Reynolds (25) is one of There She Rows, a team of four women rowing from La Gomera to Antigua, hoping to inspire girls and women to take part in sport.

A former student of Fairfield High School and Hereford Sixth Form College, Ellie says she was never the sportiest person growing up. It was at Cardiff University that she took up triathlon and says she credits the experiences she had through sport for a lot of her success.

“I came to uni as a shy and unhappy teenager with an eating disorder; I left happy and healthy with several podium races , a slot in the Ironman World Championship, and a bunch of lifelong friends. I have so much gratitude for the people I crossed paths with there – I truly believe that my time in the triathlon club shaped me into who I am.”

But Ellie believes the importance of sport is more than just the physical and mental health benefits.

‚ÄúIt goes far beyond the obvious. You can’t underestimate how much employers value the skills you develop through sport, whether that’s teamwork, resilience, confidence, or the diverse experiences of being on a club committee.‚ÄĚ

The four team members will be rowing in shifts of 2 hours on 2 hours off, living on dehydrated meals and desalinated seawater, facing sleep deprivation, ocean wildlife, and navigating all the storms the Atlantic might throw at them.

Christmas and New Year will be looking a bit different, stripped of all luxuries.

“We’ve each packed a chocolate reindeer and maybe we’ll have a sing of Auld Lang Syne, but that’s as far as celebrations will go!” Ellie laughs.

She is leaving Hereford next week for two weeks of final preparation in Tenerife before pushing off land¬†on 12th December. They’re hoping to finish in less than 40 days.

Having never rowed prior to joining the team and with no experience of the ocean, Ellie says it’s been a “monumental commitment and a steep learning curve!”.

The team have spent over 400 hours rowing off the UK coast and more than 3000 hours training in the gym. She hopes their journey will encourage others to take on their own challenges and reap the opportunities that sport brings.

‚ÄúDon’t be afraid to try things that scare you… who knows where you might end up!”

You can follow the team on Instagram @theresherows .