Introducing Sophie Everard

Introducing Sophie Everard

Surfer, snowboarder, world adventurer and founder of Mad To Live Retreats, Sophie Everard is on a constant mission to empower women to feel like the best version of themselves.

behind the scenes winter 18

Describe yourself in three words?

Adventurous, fiery, empowering.

Where do you live in the world?

Out of my suitcase.

Do you have a life mantra?

I named my business after my mantra and it’s also tattooed on me, Mad to Live. It epitomises how I like to approach life, it’s having a fearlessness and going after what’s true to you. It’s about pursuing what sets you on fire, it’s incredibly empowering. I like to try and have that energy with everything I do.

Tell us more about Mad To Live?

Mad To Live is all about women coming together, supporting each other to overcome their fears and feel amazing. My dream for Mad To Live was to provide an incredible adventure in a completely supportive setting. I run all-female retreats in places around the world I have lived myself and have a close connection to. I want guests to have a true local’s taste and experience. It’s about exploring the best adventures and culture in the area, from surfing to horse riding, mountain biking, trail riding and climbing.

What does it mean to you?

I have the opportunity to expose adventure in its many forms, big and small, to groups of women and girls who may takeaway something impactful. And I am doing it for myself, too. I feel the most alive playing in the mountains, the ocean, my face and heart burning with energy and nature. Nothing makes me happier than seeing guests bonding, stoking out on surfing together, high on the power of epic adventure and wild exploration.

Can you tell us why your retreats are women only?

My decision to make my retreats just for women came from my personal experience when I was younger. I found that when women are united and in a positive zone of strength and encouragement, this can foster a better learning environment for sports and the ability to forge epic female friendships. I had always travelled on my own, leaving home as a teenager to live in the Alps and surfing around the world. When I went to some female-only retreats as a younger woman myself, my surfing, and the other sports I pursued not just progressed massively, but I was given so many rewarding and powerful life experiences which taught me to live boldly.

How do you know Victoria?

Victoria and I met in 2011. She was an athlete for a brand I used to work for, and as soon as we met I immediately thought this is a kindred spirit, someone on my wave length. We have so much in common, I’m a bit of a nerd and I loved meeting someone with the same crazy interests as me. To have a friend that you can go through the highs and lows of life with, it’s just magic. Our friendship was fused by adventures, which took on more poignant meanings as we took on life’s adventures itself.

What do you love about her?

This balance of strong, powerful athletic female who also has this incredibly human side. She’s so strong, kind and generous.

What does female friendship mean to you?

I am, more than ever, intensely convinced of the utterly limitless possibilities of what can be achieved when women are supporting each other. It’s all about those friendships that can lift you higher than the sky, higher than you ever thought possible.

How did you get into fitness?

I grew up in Greece and since I can remember I’ve been interested in sports and the outdoors, I was that kid running around chasing tortoises up the mountains and swimming in the ocean.

What’s your favourite way of staying active?

I love workouts that leave me feeling totally energised and like I’ve done something for my body and mind. This can be playing outdoors and connecting with the ocean or going to the gym with my favourite rock playlist. I love feeling strong and powerful so strength training is my go-to. The way I’ve managed to progress through other sports is having a great foundation of strength.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Always follow your gut instinct when making decisions for yourself. When I’ve listened to my gut, it’s been like a guiding light that’s lead to the most fulfilling moments of my life.

What makes you feel powerful?

Moments I share with fellow friends, pushing ourselves, laughing till we cry (which is quite frequently) and buoying each other up with good vibes and epic moments.

What would make the world a better place?

I would change the world by cutting all the crap and judgements. You can achieve anything when you’re bonded and lift each other higher.

What’s been your favourite moment on the shoot?

The fact it felt like a legitimate adventure! We had the best crew and some incredible women.

Favourite piece from the shoot?

I’m obsessed with the new Garudasana Pants as they felt buttery soft and made my bum look super good. I also loved the swimwear and it made me feel very feminine, sexy and strong and Bond girly, I’m taking the Retro Bikini on my next retreat.

One thing you’d tell your younger self?

I would tell myself to explore anything your young heart is interested in: Honestly, every “crazy” skill I was interested in and pursued has had a place of importance in my life. I was a professional fire dancer when I was younger, and it led me to performing at snowboard competitions in the Alps. This then lead me to my first job in marketing.

What’s your death row dinner?

I love the flavours of the Med, so I’d start with a huge seafood platter with buttery brown bread followed by my Mum’s roast chicken which is insane. Then I’m a huge chocoholic, so I’d finish with a Portuguese chocolate mousse.

Green juice or cocktails?

A green juice in the morning and a margarita picante in the evening.