I am an academic. I also run – a lot.

For anyone who has or still works in academia, then you know how demanding the job can be. It can impact your personal life to such a large extent. Very often your own health and family can suffer. It is not uncommon to work in excess of 70 hours per week. So how, as an academic, do you achieve a work-life balance that allows you to pursue two passions: teaching and running?

I am still trying to find the answer but hopefully this blog will give you an insight on how I try to manage both teaching and running, how my training progresses, how my educational projects are progressing, and everything in between.

Educational and employment background

After obtaining degrees in Biochemistry and Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry, I completed my PhD in Chemistry specialising in Organometallics, in particular the chemistry of gold. Following on from this, I began employment at Keele University as technical support and in 2009 I transferred to Loughborough University. I currently hold a lectureship within the Department of Chemistry and I have recently been appointed at the Programme Director for Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry.

My primary duties include teaching Undergraduate and Master Degree students within all chemistry programmes, in particular Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry. Part of my role is to undertake research and my chosen areas of interest include biomarker identification (identifying compounds released from the human body in response to disease) and Genetics (bacterial and plant).

Running background

I started my running journey in October 2013. I had never run before. however, I had attended several bootcamp courses. After some convincing by my bootcamp instructor, (thanks Rach!) I undertook the challenge of taking part in a sporting event every month for a year. The challenges ranged from half marathons to obstacle races. All in the aim of raising money for CRUK and The British Heart Foundation.

Following 2015, I joined Trentham Running Club. Since joining, I have discovered my love of cross-country running and long distance running. I have yet to discover my love of running in the morning, including Parkrun!

Race PBs

  • 5k – 25:50 (xc)
  • 10k – 53:43
  • HM – 1:53:47
  • Marathon – :4:23:17
  • 50K – 5:36

 

Summary

Being part of Lougborough University, one of the leading sport Universities in the UK, has fuelled my passion for reviewing and assessing the latest sporting research advances. As part of my role within UKRunChat I hope to be able to provide an unbiased product and race reviews as well as some random thoughts on running and training.

In addition to running, my other passion is teaching pedagogy. I hope to share some of my thoughts and current projects with you all. Let’s share best practice and become world leaders in education.

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