Coached Athletes Testimonials
"Brennan's been coaching me for nearly 2 years now. I've been fell running and adventure racing since my mid-30s (I'm now 53) and having a coach for the first time has been a revelation. My focus has been longer events but also mixing in some shorter fell races - and dealing with the injuries, wear & tear that accumulate over the years. Brennan's expertise, insight and thoroughness in creating me a plan that works around a very intense job has been seriously impressive. He inspires trust and under his guidance I'm a fitter, stronger, more balanced and happier runner. In the last year I've run fell races at PB pace (as fast as I've been for 10-15 years), come in the top 20% at the Lakes Traverse and been course fastest finisher at the Great Lakeland 3 Day. I never imagined I'd be able to perform at this level at this age and I've no doubt that the main reason is Brennan's coaching."
As a lifelong running FV55, I was looking for a new challenge and ultras have been my ambition for such a long time. Looking for a coaching team with ultra experience, High Peak fitted the bill.
Kat has revolutionised my rather haphazard training in the last 6 months introducing a periodised plan including strength work, cycling, walking (oh yes!), hills (although I live in Essex and our hills don’t quite match up to Kat’s) and proper rest and recovery. An ultra calendar plan has focused me on the key events I want to do whilst steadily increasing race distance. All balanced around my work and family commitments.
Kat is very accessible and monitors daily sessions with regular feedback, support and when needed the occasional pep talk. So far I have enjoyed my first 50k, lost a stone in weight and knocked 4 minutes of my 10k time and am working towards a 43 miler later this month and 50 mile race later in the season. I’ve also spotted a local 75 miler in the autumn but Kat doesn’t know about that one yet!
“A year ago the idea of finishing UTS 100 was a goal that was simply unachievable for me, injury after injury made my first year or two of running a nightmare. The greatest thing I did was join Kat over at high peak running, she’s taken me from strength to strength and conditioned me to a 7th place finish at a massive mountain race, kept me injury free and pushed me to levels I could not have achieved on my own. Thank you Kat, you’re my strongest asset!”
It has been a pleasure working with Brennan and High Peak Running, I started running in 2021 and being in my 40s I wanted to make sure that I did things "right" especially as I just reduced my weight from over 23 stone and I didnt want to risk any long term layoffs and have my weight yo-yo again. I set some lofty goals and challenges as competition has always been something that has motivated me. Rather than saying these goals were out of reach, Brennan has guided me into make these achievable and has helped with setting the stepping stones to achieve these. Like a lot of runners, races like UTMB and the Dragons back are dreams and for myself I can now see they are achievable in the next few years, which looking at where I have come from is unbelievable.
It is not just training that Brennan and High Peak Running have helped me with, being a complete novice I had no idea about kit and what to do at events etc. and Brennan has provided valuable insight on what I should to to prepare for events in terms of recceing the routes, nutrition to try and kit to use. He has even helped me with what shoes to wear which could suit my strange (wide) foot shape. In addition to this when I have been unsure of anything Brennan has helped, answering questions like does he have an recommendations for a physio, as I found finding a good one isnt just google search away. Other aspects that may seem minor to experienced runners like when to push harder and when to ease off the training have all been answered and nothing has been to much trouble.
I am incredibly pleased to have gone from zero to completing the Copper Skytrail, UTS 50 and the Lap in my first year of trail running and I have not been just completing these events, I have been in the middle of pack, which I still find unbelievable. This year we have more events planned which still seem way above my current capability but I know if I follow the advice and the coaching I am receiving that we will get there.
“A perfect day for a half marathon . Weirdly I was more excited about this race than any I’ve ever done - probably due to the fact this was the first time I’d ever properly trained for one so I put myself under more pressure . I had also lost my running confidence and working with Kat since April has seen this come back in spades.
So was the training worth it? It so was . I was way more confident than I had ever felt , and that’s a great feeling thanks to my fab coach Kat . She’s talked me through the course and how to handle it and that gave me such confidence .
So what’s next ? Can’t wait to get the next race booked in. Next year I want to be doing a 50 miler”
High Peak Running Athlete Hamish 2nd in this years Cheviot Goat Race.
“Well I surprised myself a little in this race. Due to Brennans structured coaching and advice I was able to achieve this position, so thank you. For perspective in 2019 I ran this race (a shorter route with less elevation) and came 16th , this was before working with Brennan. The training has been tailored to suite my work commitments which maximises available time and the terrain at hand.”
"Having started running only a few years ago by completing a Couch to 5k course & then joining a local running club, I completed a season of competitions with my club & found that I loved trail running & soon became drawn to exploring fells & trails.
I decided to find a coach who could help me develop my strength, hill running & general fell experience so that I could continue to improve & be able to start ticking off bucket list races, challenges & experiences.
Being coached by Kat has been a great experience, I have learnt a lot & have definitely become stronger without burning myself out - something that used to happen a lot in the past. The variety of the sessions set for me keep me engaged & stop me switching off or getting bored & I really love that about my training program, I'm the sort of person that needs diversity & challenges & the training always delivers that. It really is personalised around your fitness, ability, goals & also family life/work commitments. I've also enjoyed learning about fuelling & this is an area I feel much more confident in thanks to Kat as I was a complete beginner in this area.
Kat has consistently given me encouragement, feedback & shown confidence in my ability, helping me build my own confidence & belief in myself along the way. I can highly recommend Kat & High Peak Running to help you with whatever goals you have & whatever level you're at."
“After a few months training with Kat at High Peak Running, I had a great race at the Langdale Horse Shoe Fell Race, finishing with a very good time for me. I can see clear improvements in my fitness and pace, and at the same time a massive reduction in injuries, which, let's face it we all want to avoid. Thanks for all the help and guidance.”
''2019 was my first serious year of racing in the UK & Ireland Skyrace Series as well as racing in the Lakeland 50 and Ben Nevis Ultra.
I raced well and had some good results, which were pleasing given that it was my first year and I did not really know what to expect.
At the end of the 2019 season, I decided that I wanted to take my performances to the next level. I needed to improve my training.
I had not really had a structured training programme for the 2019 season. More of a few long runs here and there, the odd interval session, some core and spin classes at the gym and strength work through squatting and dead lifting.
It was time to have a proper training structure in place through a coach. I had followed Brennan on his Instagram account and had met him a couple of times. I decided to contact him in November 2019 hoping that he would remember me.
After our initial telephone conversation, I knew that he was the kind of coach which would work best for me. He was quiet, which I liked, and our conversation was around me and not him - my racing experience, my goals, commitment levels, strengths and more importantly aspects which I felt needed improving. He listened from day one and continues to.
My training programme started in December 2019, continues to this day, and will continue for as long as I run competitively.
The programme was hard to get used to, but it helped enormously that everything was on Training Peaks. This made me accountable for each session. As there were a few weeks training on there in advance I could plan training sessions around my busy work and home life. This also helped my family. They knew what I had to do each day, especially on a weekend and family life was built around it. This meant that I was still able to do things with my family and friends.
Through the first three months of being coached I was getting fitter and my running was becoming stronger. I was in great shape and felt even better. I was thinking that this was the best decision I had made, and this was backed up with my first race of 2020 – the Gaalforce Skyrace in Ireland. This was the first race of the UK & Ireland Skyrace Series. I ran extremely strong and had a good result in terrible weather conditions. I came back home in a very happy place and determined to work harder as I liked the race outcomes.
Unfortunately, due to Covid 19 the 2020 season has not happened. However, Brennan and Kat have kept me motivated with my training and through telephone calls. I have used the time to get stronger and fitter knowing that one day races will start again.
If anyone is serious about improving their running ability whether they are a seasoned pro or someone who runs to lose a few kgs, they need to speak to Brennan or Kat and get them in their corner – you won’t be disappointed.
To conclude it has been a pleasure working with Brennan and Kat and long may it continue.''
"Since i started trail/ultra in 2017 I had always written my own running program, training block and strength sessions which at the time seemed to work but the more I ran and raced everything was just getting repetitive and mundane which in turn made training very boring. That said during that time I managed to achieve some very good results with a win in the Snowdonia Maverick Ultra and few podium finishes in the Pen Llyn Ultra 50 miler and Winter 35mile races. My final race as a self coached athlete was the 2019 Ultra Trail Snowdonia 50 which despite finishing second, i wasnt happy with my result as there were alot of things that went wrong and finishing nearly an hour behind first place prompted me to seek guidance and coaching advice.
So that is when I decided to call on the guys at High Peak Running to hopefully give me that edge to progress and also to give me a variety of structure along with feedback in my training to keep things interesting. From speaking to Brennan over the phone and giving him my goals along with family and work commitments, he came up with a programme that suited both straight away and we got to work with the Snowdon Skyline coming up in a couple of month.The build up was great with a variety of trails, hills, speed and S&C ensuring I was ready fro race day. Despite staring strong and sitting in 3rd with only 1 big climb left I took a tumble and tore the ligaments in my ankle which was no doubt a headache for any coach.
Once the injury had headed, Brennan put together an amazing recovery program for me ensure I didnt rush back to soon and ensure my ligaments and muscles were strong enough to endure the rigours or trail running. With his background in running and cycling he made the training really enjoyable and progressive which made the recovery process enjoyable and specific.
I managed to recovery fully and got the opportunity to test it in the first race in the 2020 UK & Ireland Skyrunning series in the Gaelforce Skyline which was extremely challenging but ultimately the ankle passed and I had a really strong performance which i fully enjoyed.
Post the race in Ireland the whole world went into Lockdown and races were being cancelled left right and centre so having a coach keep you on track during this time was extremely importance and that just what you get from the High Peaks Running team. Bespoke 1 to 1 training with constant feedback and advice when required. During this hard time Brennan managed to bang together at short notice a bespoke programme fro my ambitious Paddy Buckley Round which despite the atrocious conditions I managed to complete that to the training and support from the team.
Now we are focusing on a successful 2021 season. Anybody looking for bespoke coaching with constant support, I cannot recommend these guys enough. Hopefully they will get the whole trained athletes together for a training camp in 2021..
Oh i also manages to get a road 10km PB during this time so very transferable which shows the diversity of training provided."
"I have been working with Brennan and Kat for a year now and the support and confidence they have given me is superb.
I am tackling courses, distances and elevation that i would have thought was out of my reach
this time last year.
I am also planning things i certainly would be contemplating without their guidance.
The training plans I receive are never repetitive and they are flexible with your work and family life. I Also find with them using an online training package and that they receive yr workout data, u feel accountability.
The one 2 one support is superb and when yr injured they are there to adjust yr work load and
get you back on track.
I would and have recommended them
to everyone that i know."
"I had been training by myself for around 6 months, but found I was lacking the knowledge and consistency to really make any noticeable improvement.
I decided this had to change after struggling through my first mountain race. I realised my preparation was lacking on a number of fronts, from race strategy, pacing, diet and technique.
Shortly afterwards I started working with Brennan with the goal of completing four further races this year, ranging from technical mountain runs to longer Ultras.
From the start Brennan explained the process and laid out plans for me to follow. This took all the thinking out of running for me. I was able to stick to the plans without wondering whether I was doing too much or too little.
After monitoring my training for a few weeks he was able to adjust the pacing and plan to be more suitable to me.
As races were approaching I felt far more confident in the issues I was lacking earlier on in the year and was able to back that up feeling much better in races.
Calls regarding race prep and strategy were great confidence boosters and kept me on track.
I highly recommend working with Brennan, it has made my running far more successful, sustainable and enjoyable."
"I've been working with High Peak for about 4 months now and honestly can't recommend them enough. I've always ran, but never really with any committment or focus.
Since starting working with Brennan my running has come on leaps and bounds. The balance in the sessions is perfect, and week to week I'm feeling stronger all the time. Feel like the coaching is really personalised to fit my schedule, and the constant feedback is second to none.
Thanks guys, really looking forward to what 2021 brings."
"I’ve always loved enduring the physical and mental battles that come with long distance challenges. Being drawn to the mountains and being a very casual runner, I decided to book onto my first ultra, ‘The Grand Tour of Skiddaw’, with only 6 months to train. Kat was brilliant. I found the structure a little difficult in the first few weeks as I’d not had that before but once I begun seeing results, I knew I’d done the right thing by getting some tailored coaching. I’ve loved every step of the journey and had an amazing experience on the event. A massive testament to the training I’d been receiving. I can’t wait for the next event and to continue working with Kat."
"I run because it keeps me healthy, happy and sane. I like to think I’m a better human when I’ve been for a run. More aware of my surroundings, more connected to nature and more considerate because (hopefully), the run will have balanced my mental health chakras.
I know everyone will have had a lot of life experiences of very different sorts; some of my best ones have been running. Usually this experience has been on a summit that I’ve gasped to the top of, somewhere in the eclectic Lake District/Cumbria. Sometimes this has been alone and sometimes with friends.
I’ve also had some awful life experiences, and these don’t really ever go away, but I manage them through my running, or try my best to.
I contacted High Peak Training because I signed up for the Lakes in a Day Challenge, and I really wanted to make sure I was the best prepared I could be.
Because I am Type 1 Diabetic, running long distances is peppered with extra considerations around refuelling and coping with hypos; I figured if coaching could help me with the running detail, I could focus on my nutrition so that I am in as close to perfect working order as possible!
The training plan is very clear to follow and the feedback is the extra support I need; whereas before I would just have to wonder whether I was over or under-training, without a real detailed examination of what I was doing day to day. I really appreciate the considered structure, and I appreciate Kat checking in with me on how I am feeling!
I think one of the most valuable things I have learned so far is that rest and recovery are very important, and finding a slower pace for certain runs will actually aid you in the long run (no pun intended!)."