In the summer of 2011 I took up running to try lose some weight, at the time I was in excess of 20 stone and feeling very unfit and unhealthy. As 2011 progressed I got my weight down to 18 stone and participated in some local races. In October 2011 I completed the Solas Run for Life (photo on left) in 1 hr 40 mins. Five weeks later at a Waterford Triathlon Club open day I first met Martin and I can honestly say it’s the day my life started changing for the better. As part of the open day Martin gave a talk about training for triathlons, duathlons, running, cycling and strength and conditioning. His knowledge and enthusiasm for training were clearly apparent and I knew he was the person to contact if I was going to start this triathlon journey.
As 2012 began I knew I wanted to give triathlon a shot, there was however one small problem…I had no experience with multi discipline sports and no back ground in swimming, cycling or running. Not knowing where to even begin I contacted Martin to get a training program and advice. My initial goal being to lose weight and work on overall fitness and enjoy getting involved in triathlon but as anyone involved in triathlon knows things can escalate quickly. So all of a sudden I found myself signed up for Ironman 70.3 Galway in September. With the race only a few months away and no triathlon experience I knew I needed some kind of structured programme or I would not even get to the start line in Galway. From day one Martin brought a perfect mix of knowledge, expertise, professionalism, individualism but also an aspect of enjoyment to the training programs and the training sessions.
After training with Martin for a few months and having completed some short distance triathlons I had a mad thought of signing up for Ironman Lanzarote the following May. When I approached Martin to suss out what he thought, he thankfully ,took it in his usual calm stride and said if I wanted it and was prepared to put in the work there was no reason why I couldn’t do it.
That really was the start of it all, since then I have developed a strange love for long distance events. Over the last five years I have completed numerous events with a strong focus on long distance endurance events.
Below are the main races that Martin has coached me for over the last 5 years.
2012 – Ironman 70.3 Galway
2013 – Ironman Lanzarote, Dublin Marathon
2014 – Ironman Nice, Shadowman Half Distance
2015 – Tri an Mhi Half Ironman, Ironman Copenhagen
2016 – Paris Marathon, Ironman 70.3 Dublin, Ironman Barcelona
2017 plan – The Race, Ironman 70.3 Dublin, Ironman Barcelona
From day one Martin has given me the confidence to believe I can achieve anything . I know that with Martin’s support and guidance once I put in the work anything is possible. When I go into a long distance event I like to know that I have left no stone unturned in my preparation. Having Martin as my coach gives me the confidence to know that after months of training I am in the best possible physical and mental condition as I stand on that start line. Martin’s approach to training ensures that every session I do is tailored uniquely to my needs and is focused on my goal race and having me fully prepared. I know that if i just follow the plan and complete the sessions that I will achieve anything I set my mind to.
One thing you might notice is that year after year I’ve been able to race long distance events continuously. I’ve also been able to participate in a range of shorter races mixed in throughout the season as part of my preparation for the longer events. I’ve been able to do this because I’ve been largely able to stay injury free. Martin is a huge factor in keeping me injury free and in good condition. With the volume of training I do it is essential that I have a coach that understands the demands being placed on my body and can help me avoid injuries. Martin’s programme keeps me strong all year round and ensures I am looking after my body so that I can consistently train without any problems. Some of the main sessions we do and that are a main stay in Martin’s programmes are track sessions (including running technique), turbo classes (including bike technique), functional movement, strength and conditioning. The variety in my programme and Martin’s knowledge and expertise ensure that I remain in good condition year on year.
I cannot recommend Martin highly enough, he is like no other trainer I’ve come across. His experience, knowledge and his commitment to each of his clients is second to none. Whether you are looking to lose weight, do your first race, aiming for an Ironman or looking to bring your performance to the next level just give Martin a call. I’ve gone through all of these from losing weight, short distance, long distance to wanting to bring my performance to the next level so I can safely say there is no better coach out there to help you with your goals.
Check back in March after I hopefully complete The Race for my blog “From Fat, To Fit, To Fanatic”