April 9


Member Interview: Richard Spencer

By Conor Graham

April 9, 2019

Richard joined Cheltenham Running Club as a Couch to 5k member but soon found his way into 10k training and finishing Cheltenham's Half Marathon later that year. 

Watch this interview to learn more about his background, how he made such impressive progress and what he's achieved since that first year. 

Where Fitness Was Before Cheltenham Running Club

Richard played football in his teens but exercise dropped off the radar in his twenties as partying and work took over. As a lawyer, the typical day does not involve much activity away from the desk and Richard's body really suffered. 

Diagnosed with asthma at just 5 years Richard found exercise harder in Summer. He then took up smoking as work became more intensive and Richard soon found himself unable to run to the end of the street without feeling out of breath. 

Finding Cheltenham Running Club

 Richard was looking for some way to improve his health and fitness around Christmas time. He stumbled upon Cheltenham Running Club's Couch to 5k programme and decided to give it a go. 

He'd failed to complete the NHS Couch to 5k App so wasn't sure how he'd get on with other runners. To his surprise Head Coach, Conor Graham, soon suggested Richard move into a non-stop running group and turn his attention to longer distances. 

Meeting Club Members

Richard appreciated the friendly members who welcomed him into their running groups and soon found things in common he could discuss at each run. 

Training for a 10k Race

As a member of the club's 10k Training Squad Richard progressed his fitness quickly and soon found himself entered in the Swindon Resolution run a 10k race based at Lydiard Park. 

Richard found it useful to have 10k Squad members post about their training especially as many were doing the same distance he was prescribed to run on any given weekend. 

Finishing Cheltenham's Half Marathon

Having worked hard to go from unhealthy smoker to Half Marathon runner in just 9 months left Rich feeling ready for a break. Without any events booked he lost motivation to run between October and January but soon regained the drive after realising he'd gone backwards. 

Richard now books events regularly to ensure he stays motivated to do the training and stay on top of the effects his sedentary job enforce. 

Conor Graham

About the author

Conor is the Head Coach and Founder of Cheltenham Running and Walking Club.

His experience as a Strength & Conditioning Coach, Triathlete and Personal Trainer ensure members are educated on best practice in regards to training progression while also nurtured through the early stages of fitness development.

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