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As a coach all I can ever hope for is to guide my athletes to attain their own personal success at whatever level that may be. I work developing my athletes both physically as well as mentally, because it is here in our minds, one of the strongest muscles we have in our bodies, that will make us not just good but great!
This was proven by two of my athletes over this past weekend. My first athlete Laura 50yrs came to RGActive several years ago as just a swimmer, she wasn't very interested in triathlon or running but enjoyed being in the water. Since then she has gone on to complete in long distance swims, long distance cycle events, triathlons, 5 & 10ks and half marathons. But always swore she hated running.....yeah whatever!
So when she came to me an asked if I would train her for London Marathon, as she was one of the lucky few who received a spot in the lottery, I was a bit surprised. It would be a tough challenge for her as well as for me, but I said yes and our training began last October 2014.
She had a few obstacles along the way, as most athletes will have in their training, but we didn't let these stop her. She eventually got to the start line uninjured with a mentally and physically prepared body which was ready to run/walk 26.2 miles. Anyone who has done a marathon before knows that getting to the start line uninjured is one of the hardest bits about the marathon not to mention all the cold and dark early morning and late evening runs.
Laura successfully crossed the line at London Marathon 2015 in just over 6hours. Her race went to plan , she listened to her coach...me... and she mentally dug deep when it got difficult. No race is ever perfect but this one came pretty close, as well as taking a few cheeky selfies in front of Tower Bridge, Big Ben and Buckingham Palace, Laura had an amazing race!
My next inspiring athlete is Christine who also at 50yrs came to RGActive wanting to train for London Marathon as a personal challenge. But due to an unforeseen stress fracture several months into her training that was never possible. I suggested she turn her attention to swimming as a way of keeping some of her fitness which she had gained from all the marathon miles of running she had done.
This lead into a curiosity about triathlon and multi sport races. Christine started to enjoy looking and feeling better with her new found sports of swimming and cycling while she waited for her injury to heal. She then decided to try her hand at a Human Race triathlon relay, swimming part of course, and just fell in love with it.
Once she had recovered from her injury she started training with me more seriously. Taking herself out of her comfort zone regularly was something new to Christine but she started to find out how much she could push herself AND enjoy it at the same time!
After 4 years of coaching Christine she has gone on to qualify at The Age Group World Duathlon Championships in Adelaide, Austraila representing her country Great Britain. All through hard work and a coach who has been able to structure her training and carefully choose her races.
As a coach I am SO proud of both my athletes! Two very different ladies with 2 completely different goals but with one thing in common, determination! They are inspirations to everyone who embraces an active and healthy lifestyle at any age and puts hard work and focus to a goal.
Congratulations ladies ...WE DID IT!