Debs Smith; “I started running some years ago in order to improve my fitness, all was going fine until 8 months ago when I suffered an injury to my left knee. I was given a crutch to hobble about on until it healed & a diagnosis that I would never run again. This news just made me utterly miserable until a friend encouraged me to contact Martin with the words “I guarantee you will be running again if you do as Martin says”. He has shown me how to improve my posture, my running technique and core strength. Last month I completed the Tewkesbury Half Marathon in 2 hours 4 mins and am now training for the Cheltenham Half in September. My aim is to improve on my time and hopefully finish under 2 hours, Martin assures me this will happen. If you too have a similar story or simply wish to start running then I would highly recommend you give Martin a go.”
Marcus Bosano; “I have been injured a lot through my running career – boom and bust with training and events. The diagnosis after my last injury was a weak core. This is where Martin got involved. How do you work the core consistently and properly?
He started by analysing my gait and pinpointing the issues then put a programme in place to resolve them. It has taken a lot of work but finally I am back running properly and pain free. Martin understands runners and their needs and how to tackle and resolve issues holistically. This has provided me with an approach to avoid injury rather than having to fix them all the time.”
Jo Cahill; “Back in September last year I had hurt my knee running and was putting up with terrible tension aches and pains in my shoulders. I was sleeping badly and felt completely sluggish and unfit. My running friend kept suggesting I went to see Martin because he had really helped her overcome her knee problem and got her running again. I resisted, presuming that there was little anyone could do for me in the fitness realm. I would just have to accept my aging body was reminding me that the years were knocking on!
After a few months of putting up with my hurts I decided to take the plunge and see Martin. I would tell him that I just wanted to reach 50 being flexible and firm in parts (!), even if I couldn’t shake the aches and pains. Doing something rather than nothing had to be a positive step in the right direction, I told myself.
What happened in a matter of weeks was extraordinary. Martin talked through my knee injury and shoulder pains and discussed what I hoped to achieve by going to see him. To my surprise, he said that before we could do anything else, he would have to fix my knee and back aches. Was this possible? That very first session he got me doing a few exercises and quickly worked out the sorts of things we would need to be doing. The first session went so fast. It was nothing like I imagined being in a gym would be – lots of short, sharp exercises using a variety of equipment and lots of discussion about how the body works and how we need to wake up sleepy muscles (who knew?!).
It turned out that I was lopsided! One shoulder higher than the other and all the time I had been carrying myself awkwardly and putting pressure in all the wrong places. My knee was not the problem at all either – to fix the pain I needed to strengthen my core and my glutes to take the strain away from my knee. After the first 2 sessions and a few exercises in between, my burning shoulder pains began to subside and for the first time in ages I began to sleep better. Bizarrely, I found that my outlook changed and I was actually feeling fitter.
Suddenly I found that I was excited about my weekly hour at the gym. No two sessions of exercises are the same and yet they all work to build me up and strengthen me. Turns out I LOVE boxing and can now hop off a box onto one leg without my whole body collapsing beneath me! I can thwack a heavy rope against the floor, hurl a 4kg ball against the wall and over my head and endure interval sprints on the exercise bike without collapsing. I am no longer lopsided – my shoulders are perfectly aligned. My knee doesn’t hurt and when my back starts twinging I know it is time to think about my posture and revisit the exercises I first did with Martin. In no time the pain is fixed.
So here’s the thing…..not only has this new way of exercising been good for my body, it’s been great for my mind too. Of course I wake on a dark morning and lament the fact that I have to get out of bed and head to the gym but it only takes an hour of exercise to change my whole perspective on life and give me a lift to start the day. Why go to Martin? Why not? What have you got to lose? Nothing ventured, nothing gained. You won’t know unless you try and you might discover that he can fix bits you didn’t know were wonky!”
Jonny Sheldon; “About 8 months ago, my wife and I started seeing Martin in order to try and get back in shape. We had not been doing any regular exercise for a number of years and our fitness levels were pretty low, so the first few sessions were quite hard work! After a few weeks of training I decided that I needed a target to work towards and decided to train for a half-marathon. I have never done any long distance running before, and so asked Martin to see me through the process. He set me a personalised training programme each week, gradually building up my core strength and fitness levels, as well as examining my running style and technique in order to iron out any potential problems. Each week he monitored my development and adjusted the programme accordingly, ensuring that each week was always challenging but manageable. He was very effective at adapting the programme even when I was unable to do my training due to illness. Having just successfully completed the half marathon, in a much better time than I anticipated, I can happily say that Martin’s training programme really enabled me to meet my goals and I would certainly not have been able to do it without his guidance and encouragement. Throughout the whole process he has been extremely encouraging and motivating, and I am looking forward to working with him again to meet my next challenge!”
Harriet (Harry) Daly; “Martin was recommended to me through a colleague who had been training with him for a couple of years already. My initial aim was weight loss – I was out of shape and probably my heaviest. But after a few months, while the weight did begin to drop off, my priorities totally shifted and I was more interested in boosting my fitness and building some muscle! Every session was different, and Martin was great at gauging my mood and adapting the session accordingly. I had never really been exposed to weights before, and am now in a position where I feel I have the experience and technique to be able to use them in a gym on my own. I thoroughly enjoyed training with and chatting to Martin three times a week, and would absolutely recommend him to anyone looking to improve their fitness, whatever their level!”
Alice Gould; “I had been enjoying running but my knee started to hurt. Having to stop that meant that I was feeling unfit (and a bit fat!). I started training with Martin hoping to regain a little fitness and keep toned. Working with Martin achieved that and more. Each week Martin brings something new for me to try, which means that training is never boring and keeps me feeling challenged. In addition Martin looked at what was causing the knee pain and we have been doing lots of different strengthening exercises to straighten everything out. I am over the moon to not only be able to go running again, I have now completed my first half marathon and am about to do my second. Martin has written me weekly running schedules for each day whilst meeting with me once a week to check strength and progress, and to set achievable realistic targets. And its all actually been a lot of fun! Whatever your goals, obstacles or your starting point I cannot recommend enough that you go and see Martin. It doesn’t feel like he’s doing this just because it’s a job either, Martin makes you feel like your goals matter to him too. If it wasn’t for him I’m pretty sure I’d still be sitting on the sofa, wishing I was fitter!”
Sarah Westwood; “Early one Sunday morning back in October 2014, I watched the Yorkshire Marathon on TV and thought “that’s the one for me”, but was extremely nervous and completely doubted myself. Martin suggested that I pre-register and make a decision once the race entries opened – no pressure and plenty of time to think about it. In January 2015 I registered and got my place.
Martin started at the beginning with my fitness, looking at my running style and overall condition. I soon found out my legs were all over the place due to tightness in the hips and glutes and I had very little core/body strength.
Martin spent a few months working on my getting my body into shape. Each week my training session was different, although working the same muscles, there were so many different exercises Martin got me to do, it never got to be routine and you never knew what he had planned for you.
As a family, we had some devastating news at the end of June, my 20 year old nephew Jack, lost his core vision over night and was diagnose with Leber’s Hereditary Optic Neuropathy (LHON) which is an inherited form of vision loss and is now registered blind. Jack is also being tested for MS. I decided to run for 2 charities and this would be my motivation throughout my training and 26.2 miles.
In July, Martin started me on my marathon training. Week 1 consisted of running 2 miles 4 times a week. On my 2nd run my achillies was sore, by the 4th run I was in agony. Quick trip to a chiropractor who diagnosed ‘Acute Achillies Tendinopathy’ – rest for 3-6 months! Running would not snap the achillies, but it would not heal until I rested it. In a flood of tears I told Martin, who was calm and reassuring that he would find a way to get me through this, as he knew this was not just about me running for me, but I was running for my nephew.
To take the pressure of the achillies, but maintain my fitness, Martin set up a training plan of cycling and walking. Each week would consist of 3 rides, Martin started me with 2×10 mile and 1×20 mile ride (my average for a normal week is 4 miles!) and steadily built to 20/10/40 miles. In total I covered 230 miles in 4 weeks. When not cycling I was walking, keeping to 4mph. Again Martin set realistic distances and slowly increased the time/distance. The longest walk was 12 miles in 3 hours. After every activity it was the faithful ice bucket to keep the inflammation down. I still continued a weekly gym session with Martin, who carefully constructed all exercises not to aggravate my achillies.
It’s now August and my marathon is in October – let’s start running!!
Martin set up a fantastic programme of running for a certain period of time and then walking to take the strain off the achillies. He slowly increased my running time and listened to my feedback after every run, until we found a comfortable routine: 16min run and 8min walk. My furthest run/walk was 22 miles in 4hr 20min – this was the realisation that I was actually going to finish my marathon.
This was no normal run of the mill marathon programme and Martin got it spot on – on 11 October 2015 at 9.30am I started the Yorkshire marathon. Without Martin’s vast knowledge of running, body condition and the awesome training programme I would not have made it to the start, but I did and I also finished it with the biggest smile.
Martin is such a positive and highly motivated personal trainer and truly believes in you and your goals.”
Matthew Caine; “I started training with Martin to increase my fitness levels and ultimately lose weight. After only 6 months I have reached my goal weight and increased my fitness. Martin comes up with different exercises all the time and always keeps me motivated. He has a great attitude and makes the sessions fun. I definitely could not have achieved all that I have done without Martin. I fully recommend Martin to anyone, he is a fantastic personal trainer!”
Sarah & Mark Wilson; “Martin trained myself and my husband ahead of Berlin Marathon 2013. Being able to run a marathon has been a lifetime ambition for both of us, however for a long while through the training I don’t think either of us was fully confident in achieving our goal of running the whole way. Martin gave both of us confidence and focused on strength and conditioning training as well as helping us with our running technique. His positive attitude and well planned sessions meant that as we got closer to the big day we felt more prepared and became more convinced that we could do it! We both ran the whole way in 4 hours 28 mins. Thank you Martin!”
Rich Lewis; “Martin is a goal-oriented coach who got me in the best physical shape possible for the challenges I threw at him. My training for the Ironman UK event was perfectly pitched and I went into that race the best prepared I have ever been and this showed through in setting a personal best time and feeling strong both physically and mentally on each of the events stages. Martins experience in his own athletic career and having completed numerous Ironman events, meant his advice was gained through hard-won experience and that showed through in my preparation, training and results.”
Anthony Fairs; “Martin’s experience as a Personal Trainer helped me with my training for Ironman UK 2013. Martin has completed numerous Ironman events himself so his own experiences helped me to get in the best shape possible for each discipline for the event. He took a lot of the pressure off by sorting out bike routes, swim sets and run distance so I could just concentrate on my training. If you are looking to complete an Ironman or just start taking part in triathlons then Martin is definitely the right Personal Trainer for you. Eight months ago I started my Ironman training and with a lot of hard work with Martin’s help on August 4th 2013 I crossed the finish line at Ironman UK in a time of 15hrs 29mins archiving my life time ambition of being able to call myself an Ironman.”
Chris While; “I’ve always planned on running a half marathon. Having never run any distance I came to Martin with the goal of running my first one. Martin planned my training schedule, corrected my running technique, kept me motivated, and created fun and varied training sessions. I finally fulfilled my dream and ran my first half marathon, which I believe I wouldn’t have achieved without Martin coaching me.”
Jill Kearsley; “I am in my late 50s and started to put on weight and felt very unfit. I walk my two Dalmatians daily but these days this is not enough to keep the weight off. I joined a gym but this didn’t work out either – I felt intimidated by all the very fit people working around me. So I contacted Martin and have now worked with him for two years. When I first started I was overweight and not very fit. I used to do the odd run but did not have the motivation to run alone. Martin came every week and I soon built up the confidence and technique I was lacking. So I booked some sessions with Martin and I have to say soon started to feel better and lost the weight. One of the things that Martin taught me is breathing techniques which help me when running up hill. This is a picture of me in France this year after I had just climbed a very steep mountain in the Rhone Alps ! It was 30 degrees at the foot of the mountain and as you can see I am stood on snow looking very pleased with myself! Thanks Martin! and if any one reading this feels they can’t get fit they can! Just contact Martin”.