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Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Virgin London Marathan Results

Following last week’s ENS blog James Clayton told us he completed the marathon in 5 hours 40 mins and 38 seconds. He raised over £2000 for Vision Aid Overseas – well done James, great work!

Friday, 15 April 2011

Virgin London Marathon - It's a Long Journey

The ENS blog has provided many tips and thoughts from professional sportsmen recently but with the Virgin London Marathon happening this weekend, we thought we would ask an inexperienced runner about his race prep. James Clayton, brother of Rachel, one of our Account Managers, gave us an insight into the last 6 months…

“Like the other 40,000 people who signed up to do the race, you have visions of crossing the line with an overwhelming sense of pride and satisfaction but a huge amount of unavoidable work is needed to even come close to that point.

It would be foolish to run the marathon without a good six months of training behind you meaning the majority of your training is completed over the winter. The dark and cold really can dampen any initial enthusiasm - it takes a huge amount of will power to wake up especially early in December in order to do a 5 mile run before work. The alternative is to go after work in the same conditions; some would say it’s the lesser of two evils but I’m not sure which one that is.

With the arrival of the New Year I thought things would get easier; I envisaged a morning run with the sun rising or an evening run with the sun setting reigniting my enthusiasm but that joy was nullified by the realization that I had to start increasing the number of miles I was running and fast.

As I began to increase my distances above five miles my body inevitably started to hurt. I was constantly exhausted and as the race drew nearer, it was simply a case of ticking off the days. I don’t think I realized just how time consuming it would be and how much it would affect my life. It is not just the time spent running, my whole social life was dictated by training, diet, alcohol consumption and the knowledge that I had to be up early the next morning to go running. On top of which I had to take into account the time required for stretching and post-run nutrition, if I neglected these things, I (and my physio) knew that my body would pay the price.

The main thing that I have learned is not to underestimate how damn hard it is. Eating correctly, keeping well hydrated and stretching helps enormously and investing in a good pair of running shoes is not negotiable. Do it, your feet, ankles and knees will be forever grateful. The other tip I was given and would pass on is to run every run as if it is the real thing, it is pointless to waste a session by not giving it your best. Finally, when you reach February in your training schedule run in the morning – the race begins early so get your body used to being at its optimum at this time.

There have been many occasions when I have queried the decision to run. I am going to the Manchester FA Cup Semi-Final at Wembley on Saturday. As an avid City supporter I am desperate for them to make the final and if they do, my friends and family will be toasting a first Cup Final appearance since 1981 whilst I go home and prepare for the race.

The promise of the sense of achievement has kept me going although the ‘fringe benefits’ are that my fitness, health and wellbeing has improved. I suppose the question everyone, including myself, wants to know the answer to is ‘was it worth it?’ I will let you know on Sunday evening!”

James is running on behalf of Vision Aid Overseas (www.vao.org.uk) who send professional volunteers to the poorest countries in the world and help bring sight to some of the millions of people who are affected by poor vision. To sponsor James visit his Just Giving page at www.justgiving.com/James-Clayton-Marathon

Friday, 8 April 2011

ENSO Behind the scenes at London Irish

<a href="http://www.linkedtube.com/1A-Zym5SCfYf9f9b58806b60d7529eb9ab31c9ae7d4.htm">LinkedTube</a>

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Training Tips From Sports Stars

Here at ENS, we know that preparation and attention to detail are crucial to success both on and off the pitch, so we decided to ask our world-class clients for their best training tips. These individuals have competed and succeeded at the very highest level so it is certainly worth heeding their advice. We have also added our own tips to the list - take them or leave them!

Martin Bayfield:

If you feel that a particular part of your body is underdeveloped relative to the rest of your body, make a point of covering up everything but that particular part when looking in the mirror. That way you will focus only on the areas for improvement.

Ben Kay:
Make sure you get your breakfast right, it should be high in protein. Many people don’t know that, as far as most cereals are concerned, eating them is as about as good for you as eating the box they come in.

Pete Richards:
Train the way you play. Stick to the stuff that you would do in a game and attempt to simulate that intensity in training sessions.

Geordan Murphy:
Don’t neglect the importance of your recovery. Get your recovery shakes in quickly, making sure they are a 2:1 ratio of carbohydrate to protein. Carbohydrates quickly replace your energy stores and protein supports muscle growth.

Ieuan Evans:
I used to do a lot of plyometrics – things like bounding, hopping and two-footed hurdle jumps. They are great for increasing your top running speed which was very important for me playing on the wing.

Rob Henderson:
If training starts at 9, don’t sprint through the gym doors or onto the field at the last minute. Instead arrive in plenty of time to do your own pre session prep so that you can utilize session time more efficiently.

Rebecca Hopkins:
Know how and when to stretch. Do dynamic stretches after you are properly warmed up (that way you will stay warm) and spend at least 10 minutes doing static stretches properly at the end of your intense training. Your body will look better and hurt less!

Steve Munford:
Get plenty of rest, at least 8 hours a night, and don’t over train. Rest is just as important to your fitness circuit as the sessions themselves. An increase in stress hormones caused by lack of sleep can be detrimental to muscle growth and fat loss. Also, avoid heavy contact with your nose.

Rachel Clayton:
Train first thing in the morning so that you have less time to talk yourself out of it. I find that my enthusiasm levels dip after a long day in the office and the chances of ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’ syndrome increase.

Emma Gorton:
Don’t drink milk before exercise, particularly before swimming.

Bryn Lee:
Plan your fixture list – work out your must win fixtures and your gimmes and structure your team selection around that.

What is your best training tip? Tell us by commenting below.