Listed below are the fully training coaches within Steel City Striders.
Feel free to contact any of them with any training questions you may have; training plans, session plans etc
You can find each of them on the Contact us section of the website
Peter Brown has been a UK Athletics Level 2 Endurance Coach for over twenty years whilst he has been a member of Steel City Striders since 2000.
In 1984, wanting to get fit enough to go winter hill walking in the Cairngorms, he began by making the common error of many starting in the sport by trying to run a marathon. But this was the era of Coe, Cram and Ovett and he then tried middle distance which was perhaps unwise for somebody with a fundamental lack of speed; he ended up mainly running the steeplechase as no-one else at his club wanted to do it at the time.
Nevertheless this track orientated background has proved to be extremely valuable and its discipline underpins Peter’s coaching philosophy: if you want to run a good marathon, then you need to run a good half and if you want to run a good half then a decent 10k time is essential. Scornful of short cuts, this is all based on hard work and his personal training regime is defined by a regular pattern of Hills or Long Reps on Tuesday, Track on Thursday and a Long Run at the weekend. He regularly uses the word consistency.
Peter looks after track sessions for the club at Woodbourn Road every Thursday evening. These are aimed at those wanting to improve their 10k times but are also invaluable to those competing at 5k or longer distances.
Away from the track, Peter’s alter ego is that of archaeologist. Specialising in the post-medieval landscape he also has a penchant for urban archaeology with a particular attraction to sewer lamps. So beware if you ever go on a long run with him.
Ian Stinson has been a member of Steel City Striders since 2006. He began running socially while working in London but, really took running more seriously on return to his native Yorkshire. Ian has raced in many of the local road races over the years as well as a few international marathons – ‘a great way to see a city’. Recently he has moved to doing more off road races and particularly enjoys the fells of the Dark Peak. Ian completed his first two day mountain marathon with other Striders in 2015.
He has recently completed the Coach in Running Fitness qualification (CIRF) and is grateful to the club for giving him the opportunity and supporting him through the course. The club is looking at developing its coaching structure and encourages and supports run leaders with their coaching development.
Ian looks after the Tuesday night speed sessions for the club at Millhouses Park. These are aimed at runners who are new to speed work but want to improve their times in 5k, 10k and half marathon events.
Ian organised the cross country teams for Steel City for many years and still enjoys turning out at the cross country league events which he believes are great races for developing both strength and speed during the winter.
Bob Pringle rekindled an interest in running in the early 80’s whilst living in London, but it wasn’t until he entered his first triathlon in 1985 that he started to take running more seriously. Having moved back to Sheffield he became a founder member of Sheffield Triathlon Club in 1986 and a couple of years after that he joined Steel City Striders. In the early 90’s, Bob started to organize weekly running sessions, initially on the old running track in Hillsborough Park but then moving to the traffic-free service roads of the old Middlewood hospital. In 1997 he decided to ‘legitimise’ these activities by becoming properly qualified. He is a Level 3 triathlon coach as well as a Level 1 UK Athletics coach. He has coached track sessions at Don Valley, Woodbourn Road and Chaucer and has led local runs for many years. Bob lectures in Sport and Exercise Science at Huddersfield University and he is a Coach Educator for British Triathlon.
One of the highlights of Bob’s ‘running career’ during the mid-90’s was setting a new veterans course record for the Round Leeds Relay with an exceptionally strong Striders male team, a record which was broken by the same team the following year. Another highlight was running the Chicago Marathon with Striders legend Julian Paul in 2001.
Bob took a short break from Striders to concentrate on racing triathlon but has recently rejoined and is looking forward to helping with coaching within the club. Despite 30 plus years in sport and whatever they might say about old dogs, Bob says he is still learning new tricks and has never lost his enthusiasm for both running and triathlon.
Jill Davies has always enjoyed a wide variety of sports and took up doing triathlon in the late 1980’s and completed her latest (maybe not last) triathlon some 20 years later.
During this period Jill found that her training evolved into mainly the ‘running’ element of the event, and she found herself entering an increasing number of road racing events. Jill has completed a number of international marathons which include New York, Berlin & Amsterdam as well as London & ‘of course’ Sheffield. She has also completed countless amounts of half marathons, 10k’s and other road race distances.
Jill enjoys competing, and although claims she is not competitive, her family have been observed to look at each other and roll their eyes at this comment and state that she is the most competitive person they know!
Non the least, Jill reluctantly accepts that a PB for her at any distance (at her age!) is a challenge and now focuses her training on remaining fit, strong and injury free and of course enjoying her running. (But still looking for that PB!)
Jill enjoys the isolation of ‘The long distance runner’ and also the company of running with a group. She enjoys the challenge and the determination of running hard and getting a good time in a race as well as the relaxed easy jogs with friends.
As Jill’s running evolves she finds the pull and challenges of off road running and fell running difficult to resist and she so enjoys the wonderful hills and fells that we have on our doorstep in Sheffield.
Jill’s running interest are still wide and varied and you may find her at road races (although she states she doesn’t like them) fell races (which she loves) cross country races (another love, maybe due to the amount of mud).
You will also find Jill at Heeley on Monday nights where she will often lead the ‘slower group’.
As a coach, Jill feels that her strengths are offering support and encouragement to enable and help people to achieve what it is they want to achieve for themselves and at a pace that is right for them and most importantly to enjoy running and have fun and laugh a lot. So come and find me and say ‘hello’, I’m usually wearing a headband so easy to spot – my photo might help too!
Mick Wall is a johnny come lately to running having only starting to run in straight lines once his long, but uneventful Sunday morning football career came to an end. He joined Striders in 2013 and was soon elevated to club geek having offered to assist in turning around the club’s online presence; website, twitter, online membership, mailing list etc. A role that he looks back on with pride.
This love of spreadsheets, data and all things IT lead him to question his own fledgling training. He would be found frequently asking questions about training on the Striders Facebook page, why?, how? what if? His geeky ways meant that he wanted to know about heart rates, training paces etc and understand them.
Ultimately, he never gets enough time to train properly and has probably taken his 10k and Half Marathon time as low as a 40 something body can do on 20 miles a week. Although his proudest Striders moment is his 2nd place in the V40 Road Race Championship of 2015. A feat he doubts he’ll ever get near again.
His training curiosity continued to grow and rather than using Dr.Google he turned to the printed books of renowned coaches like Browning, Daniels, Lydiard and Pfitzinger. This lead to him writing ‘Building a Training Plan‘ for the club website, summarising much of what he’d read and sparked the interest in becoming a coach.
He has also spent a lot of time recently chewing the coaching fat with Stuart Hale at Accelerate Performance Centre, specifically about strength training where both men agree that strength training is the often overlooked, but critical part of training. Quite simply, to run fast and to run fast for a long time you need to be strong for running. Cue another article for the website; Strength, Stability, Exercises and Drills
Mick believes that everything starts with base aerobic work and strength, then you can build faster sessions on top starting with race pace before thinking about getting faster. Whilst not forgetting the golden rule of and 80/20 split in training that advocates 80% of your running be ‘easy’ and the remaining 20% be ‘hard. All of which is detailed in the Building a Training Plan document.
He’d be happy to answer any questions about training plans, training sessions or just advice on what to do next in your training. Just drop him an email.
You can usually find Mick promoting strength and drills at his Hillsborough Strength and Speed session on Thursday.
I completed the England Athletics Coach in Running Fitness (CiRF) course in July 2016 and I am very grateful to Striders for putting me forward for the course and to Stuart Hale from Accelerate who was my Support Coach and from whom I have learnt so much.
I started running in 2005 when I did Race for Life then I got the running bug and joined Striders later that year. I ran London marathon for the first time when I was 50. Since then I have run it 5 times, improving my times on each occasion and gaining good for age entry status. I have also run Chicago, Edinburgh and Loch Ness marathons although now my preferred distance is half marathon and I am running Valencia half marathon in October 2016. I have also applied to be a volunteer at the 2017 Athletics World Championships.
I like to see running used to highlight causes and I ran with Amy Hughes in 2014 when she completed her world record 53 marathons in 53 days for charity and in 2016 with Ben Smith who is running 401 marathons to highlight bullying and supporting charities Stonewall and Kidscape.
It is great to see so many more women in Striders over recent years. I want to see age group gender discrimination ended in race categories and challenge this when I come across it as all ages and genders should have their achievements acknowledged.
I retired in 2015 and this gave me the opportunity to get my priorities right and put running and fitness first and fit other things around it. Myself and my partner Ian started the Tuesday daytime Striders session at Millhouses that year which is a friendly relaxed run exploring a variety of routes and ending with a social get together in the park café. I have also led a 5k to 10k course and Strength and Technique sessions for Striders. I go to the weekly Wood Run sessions lead by Stuart Hale which focuses on technique.
- Some of the things I have learnt are:
- Have a goal whether it’s entering a race, getting a time or distance to provide motivation.
- Get a training plan in place to reach your goal. One size does not fit all with training plans; they need to be built around the person.
- Long slow runs are not “junk miles” these form the basis of endurance strength and efficient fat burning that we need for long distance running.
- Supporting your running by developing strength and technique is essential to be an efficient runner and remain injury free.
- I have recently started heart rate training and have been amazed at how this has improved my times with less effort.
- Running is as much about how you deal with setbacks such as illness and injury and I have had my share of these so strive to keep a positive mental attitude.
Now I have completed the CiRF this is the beginning of my journey as a coach and will be looking at more specialist training opportunities. Areas I want to learn more about are sport psychology and how running affects mental wellbeing. If you feel I could help you with your running then please drop me a line or pop along to Millhouses on a Tuesday morning and I would be pleased to meet you.
From doing a bit of running and football at school and college and realising I would not make it as a pro I decided to go down the coaching root. I went on to qualify as a football coach and to work for several Football in the Community programmes, as I still do now.
I got back into running in 2012 doing a 10k in 1 hour 20 with mates from work. The same year I entered the Sheffield Half and got the running bug.
I have completed events from 5k to 50 miles on road, trail and fell.
I joined the Striders in 2015 with the same thoughts as most, I’d be at the back holding people up. It turned out that did not happen. They were very welcoming and I soon realised it did not matter if you are at the front or back, everyone still gave their all and was supported whatever they were doing.
After finding out about leading and coaching opportunities I asked about doing a Leadership course and the club were supportive with this.
Following on from gaining my Leadership in running award, I put myself forward to help on the clubs 5K-10K courses. These have been really successful in the past helping people to achieve their own running goals, so I started leading these feeling a bit of pressure. The courses went really well and all leaders got nice feedback from the participants.
After the course I realised I already had some of the skills needed to coach the groups using my football coaching knowledge but I wanted to have more running specific knowledge. Once again, the club were really supportive and put me through the Coach in Running Fitness qualification. This has helped me gain greater understanding of specific running training and the reasons behind the different session we all do. I have already used the information on the latest 5k-10K course and have had more confidence knowing why we are doing the certain session.
I feel that running should be enjoyable for all and everyone has their own specific goals, whether that’s complete a 5k or 100 miles. I’d be happy to help if anyone would like ideas of sessions or plans to achieve their goals, or just to chat about running as we are all obsessed by it.
Alasdair Menmiur is a UKA LiRF and CiRF qualified fell and trail running specialist coach.
He has worked with numerous athletes and groups, and helps organise the fell running introduction events with the Striders, and hopes to continue to enhance the club’s fell running, training and racing.
Alasdair is open to enquiries about all aspects of off-road running, so feel free to get in touch, or find him at the odd Hillsborough Wednesday night session and at local fell races.