5 Quick questions with Matt.
Matt has been running competitively for 17 years, where he has competed at a state and national level.
He started specialising in marathon running in 2014, where in his debut at the Melbourne Marathon finished 12th in a time of 2hours 24 minutes. From there he has competed and gained invaluable experience in the Chicago Marathon, Lake Biwa Marathon and Rotterdam Marathon. In 2017 he won the Auckland Marathon.
His career highlights to date are:
1st Auckland Marathon, with a PB of 2hrs 24min, 2017
2nd Arthurs Seat Challenge, 2017
28th Rotterdam Marathon, 2017
1st Australia Day Fun Run 10km, 2016
1st Australia Day Fun Run 10km, 2015
12th Melbourne Marathon, 2014
9th National Cross Country Championships, 2014
1st Warburton Half Marathon, 2014
How long have you been running, and how did you get started?
My parents were/are avid runners. I would often watch them after a full day’s solid work under the bonnet of a car or catering for thousands of people, get out and hammer some 800m reps on a rural dirt road. Or roll around laps of the local footy oval, dodging flying Sherrins. Or even after fixing a customer’s car, swap the overalls for the running shorts and singlet, kindly drop the car off at their place and then run the 15km or more home in the pitch black. So it’s fair to say then, I was born into a running family.
What has been your greatest running achievement?
I had a bit of an up and down year in 2017, but managed to string together a really solid block before flying over to New Zealand to race the Auckland Marathon. It was a great experience, hitting the lead at 5km and feeling very strong, relaxed and in control. Throughout the next 20km or so I built up a solid gap to the chasing pack, but with around 6km left to race I begun getting some hamstring cramps. Stopping and walking a few times meant some serious mental demons caught up with me. Stressed, worried and fatigued I had to change my mindset and focus on my purpose for the race and think deeply about all those who had helped me to that point. I wasn’t running for me anymore, I was running for them. With around 800m to go, another runner caught me, but somehow the fight or flight system kicked in and I managed to change pace and come away with a very emotional win and a PB.
What is your biggest tip to becoming a successful runner?
Be consistent and be patient. It takes time for your body to adapt to work load, but if you are constantly stressing your body with specific exercise and then giving adequate rest the changes you can bring about are amazing!
Favourite Training Session?
Fartlek sessions are definitely a favourite of mine. With the top of the list being 1 minute on/30 seconds float, for anywhere between 20 and 30 minutes. The paces of the efforts and floats changes dependent on what race I’m building towards and terrain. For example, if it’s a marathon, the goal is to hit the 1 minute efforts at around half marathon pace and the 30 second floats at marathon pace. The focus here is really on the floats, where I aim to train my body to relax at marathon pace, even when fatigued.
What excites you most about Run2PB?
I see running as being beneficial in so many ways. Not only can you look at it as a means for improving physical health, but as a platform for social interaction, mental health and goal setting. Running can also allow you to explore the vast wonders the landscape has to offer. Setting a target for running a personal best can incorporate all of these, which is what I’m really excited to help people with and see them achieve!