Keith Anderson

My passion is your running …. helping you enjoy and understand your training and helping you to run new personal bests. I want to help make you a fitter, stronger, faster and more complete runner….guaranteed! 

 

My running career has been quite a journey!  It started when I was 30, I was stuck in a rut, overweight,smoked and had a very stressful job as a chef.  I only took up running to lose weight and get fitter, but in fact it turned out to be the start of a unique journey that would ultimately see me finish 10th in the 1998 Commonwealth Games and run a 2.17.08 marathon aged 40 …. so be careful what you wish for!

 

I made many mistakes along the way and I want to make sure that you don’t do the same thing on your journey. By working closely together we can identify your goals, make sure you understand your training and that you’re training effectively  so that you improve and progress. 

 

I still remember what it was like when I first started running; I was really self-conscious of being fat and slow!  It didn’t help that I had the wrong kit, did the wrong training, trained too hard, didn’t eat properly and often got ill or picked up an injury………I just loved every part it! There was nothing to beat the freedom of running on the trails and hills in the Lake District and the positive feelings, both physically and mentally, that this gave me. It was just fantastic!

 

I started my running life as a fell runner. Although it was a tough way to start, I was determined and soon started to see some good improvements in my fitness and racing ability. I had some wonderful experiences, won some great races (got lost in a couple too!) but eventually became British Fell Running Champion and set a number of course records, some of which still stand today. I then started racing at a high level on the road and cross-country. My performances allowed me to be a full time athlete and train at altitude in both Kenya and the Pyrenees. I also competed against some of the world’s best athletes across Europe and in the USA, ultimately becoming the No.1 Masters Runner in the World.

As an athlete I trained hard and raced hard. My coach (leading physiologist Tony Trowbridge), guided me so that my training was scientific and specific to me. I enjoyed competing and winning, but I have never forgotten how difficult my misinformed first attempts at training, fitness and weight loss were. What I did learn, however, was that it’s more than just running and crucially it’s not just about hard training!

I have coached hundreds of runners, from complete beginners through to international athletes. I’ve writtencoaching articles that have featured in Runner’s World, Running Fitness, Peak Performance and many other magazines and newspapers as well as a number of running books and websites. During my coaching career I’ve created and delivered a variety of training camps, races and running events.

I still run most days and believe that my unique blend of athlete journey, coaching knowledge and my competitive racing experience provides me with a unique insight to help you achieve your running and fitness goals. 

I would love to help you improve and become the runner you want to be and believe that by working together you can become stronger, faster, fitter and ultimately achieve your goals and improve your racing performances.

 

My personal bests were achieved when I was 36-40 years old:
 

5 Km: 13.46

10Km: 29.04

10-Mile: 48.15

Half Marathon: 64.20

Marathon: 2.17.08  

Get in touch with Keith directly - Keith@fullpotential.co.uk

Keith's Testimonials

Phil

Why did you decide to get a coach?

I started running in October 2011 when i managed to get a charity place for the 2012 London Marathon. I attended a training day run by Full Potential in early 2012 and - as brilliant and informative as the day was - it made me realise that I really had no clue about how to train properly!

How long have you been coached?

I’ve been with Keith for 9 years now.

What have you achieved?

I started being coached by Keith and with only a few weeks to prepare for VLM I was just hoping to get round the course in one piece - but amazingly I did it in under 4hrs.

I'm proud to say that I've run personal bests at every distance and now run 7 marathons with 2 of those at sub 3hrs, which I never would have achieved if I didn't have Keith as my coach.

What do you enjoy most about the coaching?

We've work together setting goals that challenge me and long may it continue! The coaching, motivation and advice I've received from day one right up to the present has been crucial to my development as a runner.

What would you say to someone thinking about signing up to coaching?

I could not wish for a better coach in Keith nor a more excellent organisation to work with than Full Potential, who are all lovely people, absolutely dedicated to this wonderful sport. So I would just say give coaching a go and you won’t regret a moment.

Lee

Why did you decide to get a coach?

I was training on my own and my level plateaued, I couldn't reach the targets I set myself. So I started working with Keith.

How long have you been coached?

I have been coached by Keith since March 2017

What have you achieved?

Within the first few months we took over 3 minutes off my half marathon time from 1.20.22 to 1.17.19. We have continue to work together setting new goals and have seen improvements at all my other distances and my general fitness greatly improved.

What do you enjoy most about the coaching?

By working with Keith I now understand how to train, when to train and why I train. It’s great that he is not only an excellent coach but that has also trained and raced at an elite athlete level and I benefit from this knowledge and experience.

What would you say to someone thinking about signing up to coaching?

We waste a lot of time and energy training in the wrong way and never reaching our potential and getting injured. If you really want to improve, get fitter and stronger and run some good personal bests then invest and get a coach.

Louisa-Kate

Why did you decide to get a coach?

I first signed up with Keith in Autumn 2014 in a bid to improve my speed and endurance as a runner following my participation at a full potential training camp in the Algarve.

How long have you been coached?

I’ve been with Keith for 6 years now

What have you achieved?

Before I started training with Keith I was a keen swimmer, road cyclist and weekend run warrior but had no real background in running other than completing a couple of 5k’s & London Marathons for fun/charity. Keith has successfully turned me into a competitive runner who now spends less time training on a bike and in the pool and more time out running in order to compete and do well in my age group category at 10km/ 1/2 Marathon distances as well as Duathlon & Olympic Distance Triathlon events.

What do you enjoy most about the coaching?

Keith’s wealth of tried and tested running experience & passion for running/ endurance sport gives you such confidence. He does a superb job at providing sound training/racing advice as well as a balanced bespoke training programme which has helped to keep me on track to achieve my running goals. I wouldn’t be half the runner/ duathlete I am today if it wasn’t for Keith’s coaching imput.

What would you say to someone thinking about signing up to coaching?

Keith is such a fantastic running coach because he really understands me as a person and patiently makes sure that I understand exactly why I am doing a particular training session. I can be a little impetuous and can be easily distracted but with Keith guidance I have become a consistent athlete who has confidence in her training and racing.

I’m currently expecting my first child & myself & my partner cant wait to get up & running with Keith next year post birth.

Dominic

Why did you decide to get a coach?

I was lucky enough to be introduced to Full Potential by my employer as part of a London Marathon training package. Whilst I’d been running for a number of years, I felt I needed to understand my training better and that having to explain how my training was going to someone else was a big motivator to do the tough sessions!

How long have you been coached?

I’ve been with Keith for nearly 2 years now

What have you achieved?

PBs at pretty much every distance. 6 minutes off the marathon, 6 minutes at Half Marathon and 3 minutes at 10k. I’ve also had my first podium ever in a race at the end of last year!

What do you enjoy most about the coaching?

The structure it gives my training is really important to me, but also the opportunity to really learn more about both running and training from a true expert has really helped me to improve. I also like the way it holds me accountable, it’s often the thing that gets me out running when it’s cold, dark and raining!

What would you say to someone thinking about signing up to coaching?

If you’re really serious about getting more out of your running whatever your standard then go for it!

Fran

Why did you decide to get a coach?

When I started running in January 2019, I could barely run 3k and I had picked up a chronic illness six months before that was uncurable and unbearable to live with. At the end of 2018 I was at my lowest point as the cocktails of medicines the doctors had tried me on weren’t working. I was exhausted, depressed and unwell. I knew I couldn’t carry on like this. I needed to change my life. Before getting ill, I’d seen the start of a race in the Pyrenees – the Aneto Trail – and it had felt very exciting to me. I’d looked up trail running and feeling inspired I’d decided I would start running and try trail running for myself, but then I fell ill and so I didn’t act until six months later.

After being prescribed different medication in the new year (2019) I felt less fatigued. I changed my diet, becoming mostly plant based, which made a massive difference to the impact my chronic illness had on me, and decided to start running. At first I couldn’t run the 3k route by my house, it was hard to run, but I did feel so much brighter afterwards and it improved my self-confidence. Incredibly it also reduced the symptoms and the amount of meds I needed to take and so I became determined not to give up.

At first I used Runkeeper and downloaded various online training plans as I’d decided I wanted to do the Aneto Trail race myself in the Pyrenees that summer (the 10k version of the one I had seen, which was the start of a mountain ultra-running dream). I then planned to train for a marathon in the autumn. The problem was that the “one size fits all” print-off training plan approach didn’t work for me. What was the best way to train for a 10k mountain trail race followed by a 42k marathon? That kind of plan didn’t seem to exist. And how could I fit in training around my busy job, which involved regular travel (pre-Covid in 2019), and looking after three young children (3, 4 and 7 years old)? And should I just be running, or should there be other exercise involved too? These were just some of the questions I needed help finding answers to.

I needed a plan tailored to me that I could and would stick to, that would take my fitness levels and health situation into account, and that would train me for these specific events.

It honestly felt like a wild move to look for a coach. I had never undertaken any kind of physical training plan before in my life, although I have enjoyed running and going to the gym at various points. But it if I was going to do this, not waste my time and become the best I could be in the short timeline of a few months before that 10k I needed help, so I set about looking to find someone who could be a good match for me.

How long have you been coached?

I have been coached by Keith since April 2019.

What have you achieved?

A level of fitness I didn’t think was possible for “someone like me”. Having seen the results of the coaching so far I realise it’s all about mindset. I can be that someone, that ultra runner, I just need to believe that I can do it as Keith’s training plan takes care of the rest.

I completed the 10k (500m+ elevation) in the Pyrenees three months after signing up and ran my first marathon – Millau (also 500m+ elevation) Marathon – in September 2019. That’s 0k to 42k in 9 months, I could hardly believe it! The plan was to run my first ultra marathon (50k) 12 months later in the French Alps, however, I fell unexpectedly pregnant at the end of March 2020 and so that dream is on hold until 2021. I was able to run a half marathon at 28 weeks (even though I was really trying for 50k it wasn’t possible for me at that stage of pregnancy) and 27k at 4 months pregnant and they are both achievements I’ve been proud to accomplish as a pregnant runner.

What do you enjoy most about the coaching?

It takes away the stress and endless internet research trying to figure out what is best for me. I love knowing that an expert in coaching and running (I am so lucky to have found Keith!) is creating my training plan. All I have to do is show up – which at times is hard enough! – but it means I can just focus on getting the training done without worry. I love that he is there for me to talk to if I need advice or I am unsure of something and the mere fact that he took me on has really boosted my self-confidence and self-belief.

Finally, the fact that we are training at the right intensity for my fitness levels enables me to keep going, and the fact that we train by effort and not pace really works for me as I don’t become disheartened by not reaching pace goals (which I probably would).

What would you say to someone thinking about signing up to coaching?

I would say go for it, I can’t see that you’d regret it and if you did all you have to do is cancel so you’ve nothing to lose from trying. It’s one of the boldest and best decisions I’ve ever made. Finding Keith changed my life because he was the right coach for me, and has been able to bring out the best in me. Too pushy and I may have walked away; too intense and I might have decided it was too much – somehow he is able to provide a perfect balance which helps me to love my training and juggle it around my work and kids.

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