“I’m feeling as healthy as I ever have!”: Interview with Martin McCallion

Martin McCallion, a previous participant of the National Exercise Referral Scheme (NERS) and regular participant of Wellbeing Fitness Classes as well as the gym, kindly told us more about his fitness journey over the past year and how he is feeling healthier than ever! Here is what he had to say:

 
When did you start on the National Exercise Referral Scheme?
I started in January 2018.

 
How many classes do you attend a week?
I do one class a week – the wellbeing circuit class – but in February I had a gym induction and since then I have attended the gym at least twice a week. There’s a really friendly atmosphere, I’m very comfortable here in Deeside Leisure Centre. I was referred to the scheme because I had arthritis and was really struggling. When I had the gym induction with Jo Beevers, she showed me the pieces of equipment to use that would be most helpful. I’ve been going from strength to strength since then; I’m feeling as healthy as I ever have!

 
In 2018 you completed the Flintshire 10k, a fantastic achievement, has attending the scheme helped towards achieving that goal?
I completed the Flintshire 10K on October 21st 2018. I didn’t think I was ready for it! During one of the circuit classes Jo asked me if I wanted to enter; I was only managing 5K at that time but I hadn’t pushed myself any further than that. I thought: what have I got to lose? So I entered and shocked the living daylights out of myself! I finished in 57 minutes. The scheme has very much contributed to achieving that goal. A couple of years ago I was in an awful lot of pain on a daily basis, but since I have joined the scheme I’ve gone from strength to strength.

 
What has been your favourite thing about attending the scheme?
There are all sorts! The main thing is my physical wellbeing now compared to what it was; it’s so different. Nothing’s a challenge anymore, not like the way it used to be. I’ve met some lovely people as well. At the moment I’m really enjoying running. Completing the Flintshire 10K has boosted my confidence tremendously. I’ll take on any challenge that comes my way now!

 
Do you have any fitness goals in mind for 2019?
I intend to run the Chester half marathon in May 2019. It has been a long term ambition of mine. I’ll work my way up to doing the half marathon, starting in February with the Ruthin 10K, then the Chester 10K in March, in April I’ll find another 10K run, and hopefully by May I’ll be ready!

 
Do you have any advice for anyone who is debating joining the Wellbeing Classes?
Just do it! It changes your life for the better! As far as I am concerned it is the best thing that has happened for me in a long, long time. You’ll never look back!

 
The co-ordinator of NERS, Joanne Beevers (pictured with Martin below), is “so very proud” of Martin’s achievements and said: “he is loving running and he even beat me in the Flintshire 10K with his time of 57 minutes! He has been consistently training since January with a mixture of my classes and gym sessions. He is one of our many clients who turn up every week to achieve their goals!”.
Aura Leisure and Libraries would like to thank Martin for taking the time to share his experience and wish him the best of luck for his future fitness goals!

Martin McCallion and Jo Beevers

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