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From Start to Run to Half Marathon

Aterstoase Jogging

Linsey Raymaeckers initially started running out of curiosity, but she soon caught the running bug.

“Although my husband was bitten by the running bug many years ago, it was my mum who inspired me to start running myself. In the spring of 2015 she, who had never done any sports, decided to follow a Start 2 Run (or Running with Evy) programme. A few months later, on 1 May 2015, she took part in a running competition to officially obtain her certificate. Full of admiration, I encouraged her that day; I was proud of her. I remember well that I thought at the time: if my mom can do this, I should be able to do this too. And so I decided to start running myself. Not according to a specific Start 2 Run schedule, but by following my own intuition.

Initially, I just wanted to “run a bit”. But as a mum of two with a busy job, I started to see this “aimless” training as a sacrifice, something that I was obliged to do.

But why? Then I suddenly came to the realisation: if I am going to do this, I want to be at least good at it. So what I had decided was that I wanted to achieve more from my running, and I realised I needed some guidance to do that. In the meantime, I also came up with a specific objective: I wanted to run a half marathon in the autumn of 2016. And so I ended up at Energy Lab at the end of May 2016.

After my first running test at Energy Lab, it immediately became clear that I was training too hard and that I would make little or no progress if I continued this way.

With a customised schedule in hand, and under the professional eye of Ward van de Capelle, I started my targeted training programme. More work was done on increasing my basic fitness, which initially translated into predominantly slower running at a lower heart rate. With a satisfied feeling, I completed my first half marathon in Eindhoven a few months later. I finished in 1 hr 57 mins, and I immediately knew: I want more! The best thing was the feeling I had after the race. I had always thought that finishing a half marathon would be a bit like dying. Nothing could be further from the truth: a schedule allows you to work towards your objective in a responsible way, without completely ignoring yourself in the process. No, I did not die, I enjoyed every second.

I have since run my second half marathon in 1 hr 53 mins this spring. After this, I shifted my focus a little and started to focus on 10 km races. My goal was to finish “easily” below 50 mins by the end of the summer. Just when the race season began, I was injured. However, I did not sit still and I continued to focus on my personal objectives.

Thanks to Energy Lab, I gained more insight into my own abilities and I managed to set realistic objectives for myself. I find it important to know which heart rate zone I need for each type of training, from which heartbeat I begin to suffer acidification, and what my race predictions are. Not only do I get a better view of my performance potential, it also gives me something to hold onto in that it teaches me to train in a targeted way. I recommend it to everyone.”

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