I started Online Training in March 2018.  The kick starter was the annual weight loss challenge in our department at work! Not really the right reason, but it was a reason. Long term it was to get running again after a 6 month lay-off due to injury.  At the beginning, other than winning the weight loss competition (which I didn’t), my goals were to complete my local 10k race in July 2018 in under 60 minutes, which I did in 56 minutes.

Right now, my goal is to complete the Brighton marathon 2019 in under 4 hours. Then, depending on how Brighton goes, do a sub 3:30 marathon in 2020. Eventually do the London to Brighton 100k run.

I did the Herts half in November 2018 in 1:54, which was my first half marathon event since doing Reading in 2016, which was my first half, completed in 2:08. A fair bit quicker. Other achievements would probably be breaking 50 mins for 10k in a November training run, and now sub 50 mins for 10k being normal, and maintaining that pace over distances up to 18k so far.

The starting point is the regular training plans, which have kept pushing me enough to be challenging yet achievable. But much more than that it is the ongoing support, encouragement, challenges, feedback and advice I get from my Online Trainer. That is was keeps me engaged and motivated to achieve my targets on my next workout, rather than just having the workouts there to tick off. It’s the analysis of each workout and looking forwards, setting new goals with an expert.

In the beginning I struggle with getting started. It’s really difficult when you’re unfit, especially when you used to be reasonably fit. I had some persistent knee issues which were preventing me from running, which I’d hoped would just go away with rest, but they didn’t. Current struggles are not thinking too far ahead!!

Richard advised me to see an Osteopath for the knee issues, which it turns out Richard diagnosed correctly following a 10 minute telephone conversation before I’d seen the Osteopath! Two sessions later and with daily stretching, so far, I’ve been pain free! Since then Richard has helped me to manage my recovery from training, which I never did before. Now I’m able to train more often, longer and harder without pain, and I’ve made progress I never thought would be possible.

On an individual workout basis, it’s looking at the target and analysing how I’m going to achieve it, executing the workout, then doing the post workout analysis and reflection with Richard. Being outdoors, seeing the world and exploring new routes goes without saying, of course! On a bigger scale though, it’s the feeling that each workout is part of a journey towards bigger goals and a healthier lifestyle. Setting PBs is great, the feeling you get is fantastic, but it’s more than that, it’s enjoying the health benefits it brings and the enjoyment of new experiences.

If I had any advice to offer to anyone considering Online Training it would be to know what you want to achieve, and more importantly, why you want to achieve it. The value in this service comes from engaging with Richard and the two-way feedback. If you don’t engage it’s going to be more difficult to achieve your goals. Lastly, trust him! He’s the professional.



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