Michelle Maxwell - Coach

Background and Coaching Experience

My athletics career began from the very early age of 11. Between the ages of 11-18 I competed for school and athletics club (Torbay AC) in both cross country and track. I also played hockey for the county and school team and swam at club and county level. From the age of 18 I started University cross-country and athletics, discovered road running and haven’t looked back. Leeds University, Oxford University, Leeds City AC, Torbay AC, Oxford City AC, Bedford and County AC, Royston Runners and now settling in my 40s at Chippenham Harriers in Wiltshire. I have been coached, advised and inspired by some amazing people (Leeds City - Pete Atkinson, Oxford Uni – Harry Wilson, Bedford and County – Alex Stanton).

My breakthrough into road running came when coached by Pete Atkinson at Leeds City. Pete was an amazing and inspirational man, who battled with his diabetes in order to compete and coach, and left a legacy after his death. With his guidance my running jumped to the next level. Over the next 15 years I ran over 30 half marathons, 5 marathons and competed for club, university and county in road, x-country and track.

Coaching Experience

I actually began advising and coaching in 2009, helping out members of the Chippenham Harriers, just from my own experience, writing schedules and coaching speed sessions. I gained my CiRF from UK Athletics in 2011 and was invited to join the South West Endurance Network of Performance Coaches by Mark Brace and Martin Rush. I attend regular coaching network and development workshops to improve my coaching skills.

I am now Coaching Coordinator at Chippenham Harriers, with athletes I advise year round, others I advise on and off for various events as well as setting the speed sessions each week. I have also been invited to join the Wiltshire Athletic Association Committee as Coaching Secretary and will be working closely with WASP and the Wiltshire Athletics Network (WAN). At the club I have helped to set up new beginners nights, physical preparation sessions and have regular attendance at weekly speed sessions and organized weekend sessions, as well as workshops and other coaching based evenings.

I am still a regular runner, (competing more for fitness now I am an old bird!) but do have the challenge of ultra-marathons on my calendar for the next year.

My running experiences at club and county level and knowledge of running training, nutrition, injury prevention, injury recovery, strength training and periodisation give me a unique mix for any aspiring athlete from the ages of 12 up. My unique experience is gained from being coached myself by some influential and inspiring coaches, competing at a high level as an athlete on the track cross country.

Relevant Qualifications

Coach in Running Fitness (UKA)
South West Endurance Performance Coach (UKA)
Valid Qualifications in First Aid