This was my second RunWell plan; the first went so well I signed up for a second to achieve a PB in my Niagara Falls half marathon, which was very successful.The plan was very easy to understand and came with clear instructions, explaining the different sessions in detail. Jo always takes in to consideration any commitments such as holidays and races already booked and tailors your plan accordingly. I received messages of encouragement and feedback on all my runs. Jo is a remarkable person, she was so excited and thrilled with all my achievements and the support I received was amazing without which I don’t think I would have been as successful as I have been. Jo’s joy of running is so infectious it makes you believe anything is possible. I have gone from a non-runner to now considering a marathon.
Andie and Jo have made a massive difference to my running, with both the track sessions and the strength and conditioning classes. The track sessions are extremely well planned out, and have played a massive part in improving my strength and stamina to help take 7 minutes off my half marathon PB in the space of less than 6 months. I can now run under 84 minutes, which was completely unthinkable twelve months ago.
They were also able to completely get rid of a long standing muscular issue that I had with the strength and conditioning classes. Highly recommended.
Since being involved with Jo and Andie their passion and enthusiasm for running has massively rubbed off on me and really sucked me in. I cannot begin to explain the positive effect they have had on my life through running. It has been a very tough year for me where running has been my sanctuary and Jo and Andie have managed to keep me focused and have made training fun instead of a chore. This has had a massive effect on my progression. In the 6 months I have been running again I have brought my half marathon PB down from 2.04 to 1.23, i have also brought my 10k PB down from 54 mins to 39mins and my 5k PB down from 25mins to 19mins. The RunWell track sessions are also an absolute must!! They have really improved my running form in such a short space of time. (I now actually quite like looking at my race pictures) I’m really looking forward to seeing how much more I can develop with Jo and Andie’s help in the next 12 months and with the help of a marathon plan I’m really looking forward to taking on my very first marathon.
In 2016 I took up running after a challenge from a friend to run the Rock’n’Roll Half Marathon in Las Vegas having absolutely no running experience other than reluctantly doing cross country (which always seemed to be in the cold) at school 26 years previously.
Being moderately fit I decided I didn’t need any specific training since I could already just about do a 10k run and needless to say it was a disaster. I managed to achieve all of the rookie mistakes – set off too fast, pacing was appalling, stamina clearly lacking, didn’t fuel properly and properly hit the wall after 9 miles.
Fortunately I didn’t give up, instead choosing to put the effort in and train properly for the next one using a training plan that Jo created for me which was excellent. She was extremely helpful throughout my training, encouraging and supporting me to improve and building the plan into the weekly club running sessions and parkruns.
As a result I achieved a PB Half Marathon of 1 hour 50 and have the confidence to keep training and entering more races!
So – Thank You Jo for everything you’ve done to help me get into running (which I never thought I’d do) and helping me reach my goals – long may it continue!
If anyone else thinks they can’t do it – take it from me – YOU ABSOLUTELY CAN with Jo’s help!
Jo worked closely with me before devising a personalised training plan based on my goals for the half marathon. Jo’s enthusiasm and support was invaluable and infectious. Sometimes as a slow social runner I have lacked confidence but Jo treats all runners as individuals and celebrates all achievements with you. Thanks to Jo’s belief in me I went on to become a qualified Run Leader and I hope I inspire as many as Jo does.
I started running in my early fifties convinced I would be a five-km-at-most-woman-who jogged-a-bit. I’m now the proud finisher of several 10k races and this year the Worcester Half Marathon. I might have got myself to the finish line but Andie got me to the start. She’s a delight to work with. We worked out a training plan perfectly attuned to my life style, abilities and goals. I was happy just to fall over the finish line but I exceeded my dreams and ran with confidence and joy. Andie’s coaching fulfilled my hopes, diminished my anxieties, transformed my doubts and then made me feel I’d done it all by myself!
My aim for 2017 was to improve my fitness, do a sub 30 minute 5k, and get a 10k PB. I asked one of the wonderful running coaches, Jo Watson, to help me with a training plan. After giving Jo information regarding my goals and current PB times, I was given 4 weekly training plans. I was nervous at first thinking I would have to up my game in running, but I was surprised that to improve, I actually had to slow down and run longer to develop my endurance. Running slower came very easy to me and I found I could run for longer distances without having to walk. Hill training and speed work was also easy to master as it was only for a short distance and gave me time to recover before the next session. As a result of Jo writing my training plan and giving me encouragement and guidance, I achieved a sub 30 local park run PB and I knocked nearly 2 minutes off my 10k time. I would 100% recommend this training plan and cannot thank Jo enough.
Inspired by club members that had completed marathons, I decided that I wanted to do a marathon, but also that I wanted to achieve the best time that I could. Andie asked me questions, and created a personalised training plan for me that fit in with my life. I never ran for more than 2 1/2 hours at a time and this was at a much slower pace than I usually ran. If I had any questions Andie was quick to respond and she supported me along the way. She was always there to advise and reassure me if I had concerns regarding anything. As part of my plan, I did a half marathon and got a PB of 1:36:17! This gave me a real confidence boost and I continued with the plan until the big day arrived. I had a fantastic experience during the race and felt strong at the end too – my plan had worked wonders and I smashed my GFA with a time of 3:28:10. I can’t tell enough of how happy I was and still am. Andie was always there to check I was ok and advised about other things like fuelling, race preparation and race mentality too. I really am happy with the whole experience.
Rebecca Davey ‘A Marathon Finisher‘
Jo’s passion, dedication and coaching expertise has changed me from a casual jogger to a runner! No matter what your ability, Jo is the coach you need. She has first hand knowledge in training and competing from 10k to endurance racing. Before I started we discussed my previous running history along with any goals and target races. Jo’s customised running plans were clear and tailored to my ability and lifestyle. She was so supportive and always
there to give advice and answer any questions I had. She is an amazing coach and I definitely wouldn’t be the runner I am without her
In April 2017, when I made the decision to enter Birmingham International Marathon, the thought of running 26.20 miles terrified me! I spoke in depth with Coach Andie about how the training plan would work; that it would be based around time and not mileage, which to start with, honestly made me a bit nervous! But Andie reassured me and put my mind completely at ease. We discussed my goals and a training plan was created. It was very easy to follow and if I had any questions Andie was always on hand to answer them.
During the days leading up to my marathon I felt confident, excited and completely ready. Andie gave me lots of advice about race strategy and fuelling. In the end I crossed the finishing line in 3:55:10, absolutely smashing my goal and best of all, I ran the whole 26.20 miles without stopping and with a smile on my face.
Running the Birmingham Marathon is one of the best experiences in my life, and something I will never forget. I am eternally grateful to Andie for helping me to achieve my dream and for being the amazing & encouraging coach that she is.
Jo has put a lot of time and effort into producing my personalised plans, taking into account my previous running history and where I aimed to be. As well as devising this to suit me, she guided me throughout the whole process, being a real support and advisor. The plan itself was based on time which I easily got used to and now find much easier to work with than distance. I surprised myself by finding that it really helped me to stick to it and I went out on days I would never have normally done. The variety yet clear structure to the plan improved my running, both in distance and speed. A true support – thank you Jo!
Andie’s comprehensive plan successfully got me from nowhere to half marathon. The help, support and encouragement I received made me believe I could achieve my goal. Great coaching.
Kim Hood (age 58 1/2)
Thanks to Jo, I am now a runner! She has expertly guided me through from beginner, to 5k, then 10k running. I’m now moving on to training for a half marathon, something I would not have thought possible a year ago. Jo is genuinely one of the most positive and encouraging people I know. Her training plans are challenging yet achievable, and I have faith that when she says I can do something, I will do it! Jo’s passion for running, and seeing others achieve their goals, shines through all she does. I feel very lucky to have her as a coach.
Andie wrote a plan for my second marathon, Chester 2017. She explained the principles of the plan and gave me a clear explanation of each type of run that I would do. Andie worked the plan around my usual runs, so I was able to still attend my club sessions and parkrun. At the end of each week, Andie looked at my strava and gave me feedback and praise. She advised me whether to speed up or slow down. Sometimes I had a lot of questions and she was very knowledgeable, always answering quickly and clearly.
The whole plan and training style was completely new to me. I trusted in the plan and followed all of Andie’s advice and it paid off! I took nearly half an hour off my marathon time and felt fantastic throughout. I kept my target pace evenly throughout the whole marathon and felt the same at the end as I did at the beginning, only a lot happier!!
On the strike of midnight, 31st December 2016, I entered my first marathon, Snowdonia, one of the toughest marathons in Europe. I approached Andie about a training plan, and after answering a questionnaire about me, how often I was prepared to train and what my goals were, she created a personalized plan for me. The plans were easy to follow and if there was something that didn’t quite work out for me, Andie would always listen and adapt it to suit me. Andie was always supportive and gave clear easy to understand explanations. I fully expected it to take me 6 hours, so imagine my delight when the result of following Andie’s plan was a time of 5 hours 20 minutes for my first ever Marathon, and I loved every minute of it! Would I do it again? Definitely. Would I recommend this plan? 100% yes
We all lead busy lives, sometimes it feels as though there are not enough hours in the day when it comes to training! What with work, family life, other hobbies and commitments…..it’s not easy sometimes to find the time (or energy!) to train effectively. Having a programme can help you utilise your time more efficiently.
New mum Charlotte is a fabulous example of how a personalised plan can help you maximise your limited free time and make sure you are doing goal specific training.
Charlotte is a friend and an incredibly talented triathlete who completed an Ironman in 2016 and is certainly no stranger to following a training plan and working hard to achieve her goals. In the past Charlotte had followed a marathon training plan which required long runs of well over 3 hours in duration (and perhaps running much harder) but approached me as she knew I’d achieved my goals using a different approach and was interested to find out more.
Here she takes up the story…
“When I found out I was pregnant in 2016 I was determined to not hang up my running shoes completely. With the support of friends I plodded my way through to 37 weeks roughly but eventually enough was enough so I spent the last 3 weeks swimming and cycling (indoors). Lily eventually arrived at 40+1. During my last 3 weeks and having had my running shoes taken from me I decided to start planning my 2018 goals.
This is where Andie came on board. When I decided I was going for a GFA marathon time in 2018 I thought of Andie straight away. I knew she’d succeeded before and I wanted that success too. I knew how supportive she was and would be and also how much she understood my passion and drive for success. Not only that but she’s a mummy too and I just knew she’d understand the balance of work and home life.
Andie helped me devise a plan which supported my return to work after maternity. Not only that but also my combined training with not only a marathon but also my Triathlons.
Andie was always on hand and encouraging throughout the plan. At times I doubted it but remained on board! I had a number of face to face catch ups, Emails, texts and I’m sure if I’d called she’d be happy to answer the phone too. I cannot fault her support and assistance throughout my journey.
I finished Manchester marathon in a time of 3:44:12 and by a whisker got my GFA. Despite being disappointed in myself I am pleased. (I am my own worst critic!) especially as my Lily was still only 11 months old.
From the bottom on my heart I thank you Andie. Without your help I doubt I’d have come back as soon as I have …..”
Any new mum will tell you that fitting in time for yourself isn’t always possible. For Charlotte’s plan I didn’t specify which days she would train but gave her 4 runs per week in order of priority. When planning her week she could then fit them in around her busy life. She also found time for her cycling and swimming.
Charlotte was an absolute superstar to work with, a real committed athlete. She stuck to her plan in all weathers, asked if she wasn’t sure about something and trusted the process ….eventually!
On race day itself Charlotte achieved her goal of a London Marathon GFA time and also knocked over 7 minutes off her marathon PB, which when you consider that her daughter wasn’t even one year old, is quite an achievement.
A fabulous result from an amazing woman – well done Charlotte!!