Our second team member is Naomi Collins. We spoke to Naomi to find out a little bit more about herand discover why she decided to take on the #MarathonChallenge and what she hopes to achieve from doing so…
What made you want to run the London marathon?
Fitness is my passion; from weightlifting to running. Fitness plays a huge part of my life; I attend the gym 5-6 times a week and teach a Static Cycling session each Sunday. I have always loved running but have never made running a regular part of my training routine; a strategic move to minimise cardio to help to build muscle mass. That being said, I will participate in a couple of runs each year consisting of 10k events or half marathons; I have trained minimally for these events in the past. This year, I really wanted to up my fitness game and incorporate more athletic training into my routine; I needed a goal. What better goal than the London Marathon. Each time I've completed a half marathon, having done Liverpool, Manchester and Wigan halves, I have always thought 'I could never do a marathon, this is far enough'; but I decided it's time to put that negative thought to test. Let's see what I'm capable of.
NaomiFitness is my passion; from weightlifting to running. Fitness plays a huge part of my life.
What is your usual training?
My usual training consists predominantly of weight based training sessions with intermittent cardio depending on my current goal. My training has always been about strength and aesthetics. However, this year I want to incorporate something new. It's time to get mega fit! I want to look at incorporating more Crossfit based styles alongside lots of endurance cardio like marathon training!
How will your training differ?
I will try to keep the number of weights sessions (5x weekly) the same as maintaining a certain level of strength and muscularity in my physique is important to me. Now I will look at following a structured marathon training plan for the next couple of months leading up to the event. I will run 4-5 x weekly running initially for 'time' goals and then I will adapt my training for 'distance' goals as the training plan progresses.
Do you keep track of what you eat/follow a specific diet?
Yes, I am for the most part very stringent with my diet. I constantly keep track of calories in / calories out to adhere to whatever goal I have. My macronutrient sources tend to be pretty basic food options like sweet potato, potato, rice and oats for carbohydrates; eggs, meat and fish for proteins and nuts; egg yolk and avocado for my fats.
How will your diet change during training for the LM?
I need to drastically increase my calorie intake to compensate for the calories used in running. I will look at keeping my protein and carbohydrates high for recovery purposes and I will ensure that my fats also remain at a healthy level. I will look at starting out with around 3500 calories per day and I will ensure that I monitor my weight to make sure that I am getting enough fuel!
What will you find most challenging?
I think a big part of running is based on mental strength; having done lots of running events before I believe I have built a good level of mental endurance. I think eating more calories may come as a little bit of a challenge. I may have to rely on a few shakes and quick meal replacement supplements to keep on track. Sometimes my job can involve long hours of commute so I will need to ensure to plan ahead for times like this so I don't fall short on calories.
NaomiFor most avid runners, a time goal is fitting for such an event. But for me, my primary goal is completion without stopping for rest.
What do you hope to achieve from this challenge?
MARATHON COMPLETION! For most avid runners, a time goal is fitting for such an event. But for me, my primary goal is completion without stopping for rest. Obviously, my ego is telling me that I must complete in under 4 and a half hours (which will probably play a subconscious part on the day) but I would be elated if I could cross that finish line knowing that all the hours of training, all of the food and all of the preparation was worth it! I am also hoping to raise as much possible for Mind.JUST GIVING