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Outdoor'S ARCHIVE

  • At the start of each of the last few years I have targeted improving my personal bests in running pursuits. Each year this becomes my goal. Over the last couple of years, it’s been listed, but more out of stubbornness than true belief that I would do it. On the car journey from Eldoret airport […]

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  • Final lessons from Kenya

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Health, Marathon training, Outdoor | on December 21, 2018

    So as I wait at Doha airport for my final flight home, it’s the ideal time to pen my thoughts and highlight the lessons learned from the whole Kenya experience. Whilst it was a running joke with my clients that this trip was a jolly, it’s purpose was two-fold. Firstly, I wanted to learn how […]

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  • Home of Champions: part two

    By Darren O'Toole | In Marathon training, Outdoor | on December 15, 2018

    Sunday was rest day. By rest, this meant a 4am start for safari day. Having been stopped for speeding enroute to Lake Nakuru and our bus breaking down when returning, this truly was a ‘Kenyan Experience’. Alas our sightings of lions or leopards didn’t materialise however multiple zebras, giraffes, water buffaloes, rhinos and baboons were […]

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  • Home of Champions: part one

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Marathon training, Outdoor, Workout | on December 8, 2018

    Following an insanely long journey which involved choosing to stay awake on the first 7 hour flight (when I had three seats to myself) so that I can sleep on the second six hour flight (where I was stuck with two parents and their one year old boy, crying for the duration), I then had […]

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  • Rotterdamned! Review of the Rotterdam marathon

    By Darren O'Toole | In Marathon training, Outdoor | on April 17, 2018

    I wrote this marathon blog whilst waiting for my delayed flight out of Rotterdam airport – so my body was still sore, and to a degree, so was my pride! For Rotterdam marathon, my fourth, I wanted to change up my training in order to achieve a personal best time – my current being 3:19. […]

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  • Getting back to exercise after summer holiday

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Gym, Health, Outdoor | on August 8, 2017

    Following a little rest, relaxation, perhaps some over-indulgence and, predictably, limited exercise, the focus will soon be returning to getting back into shape for the next continental hiatus. To assist in this process, here a few top tips in getting your fitness mojo back: Start slow – but not too slow You’ve had a holiday, […]

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  • Tips for staying fit this summer

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Health, Outdoor, Workout | on July 15, 2017

    Summer is a time for a little rest and relaxation, perhaps even a little indulgence. However, this doesn’t mean that all of your fitness needs to fall by the wayside. Tip 1: Start a day with a pint of water and a power walk Working out on an empty stomach will require the body to […]

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  • Lessons for marathon runners

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Health, Marathon training, Outdoor | on May 12, 2017

    It’s the end of another marathon training programme. After the elation of completion, with the pain beginning to subside, for me, the most important element is learning – what went well, what went wrong, how can things be improved. This is my fourth marathon training programme. I have completed races in Dublin, Edinburgh and now […]

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  • Ab attack workout

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Gym, Health, Outdoor, Workout | on April 15, 2017

    Abs are made in the kitchen – so they say – but without also doing a variety of different abdominal exercises to target the rectus abdominis and oblique muscles from different angles, then you’ll never see that elusive six-pack. This ab attack workout, to be performed twice per week, will help you to develop a firmer torso, […]

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  • I was recently delivering a teaching session on a YMCA Fitness Industry Training course to a group of budding personal trainers on the topic of small portable equipment. I posed the question: ‘If you could take just one piece of kit with you everywhere as a PT, what would it be?’ A few suggestions were […]

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  • How to search for a personal trainer

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Gym, Health, Marathon training, Outdoor | on June 28, 2015

    In addition to personal training with my fantastic clients at Dynamic Fitness Training, I also spend time tutoring and assessing on fitness industry courses for YMCAfit. The more vigilant amongst you will recognise that I am essentially developing my competition in years to come – probably not the wisest move I guess! However, in reality, […]

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  • As I write the second blog of my marathon week, I am sitting on a train returning from Edinburgh, knees sore but feeling smug. I had achieved a personal best time and exceeded my earlier predictions. Without question I am learning from every race. Foolishly, prior to my first marathon in Dublin in October 2013, […]

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  • Training for running events can be an arduous task but training for two in the same week is bordering on madness. That’s exactly the challenge that I set myself and over the next two blog posts, I will outline: how I trained; how I tapered; and how I got on. Realising that I haven’t updated […]

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  • Resistance band workout

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Health, Outdoor, Workout | on March 18, 2015

    The lighter evenings and warmer weather are no doubt encouraging thoughts of the summer ahead. Envisaging the sun, tanned skin and, of course, the beach body. However most of us strive for the beach body in a panic with just a few weeks to go until the big exposure. Instead, let’s change our approach this […]

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  • Outdoor fitness in north London

    By Darren O'Toole | In Fitness, Health, Outdoor | on February 23, 2015

    As I write this blog on a rainy Sunday evening, it would seem strange to be talking about the joy of training clients outdoors – but that is definitely the case. I’m not going to pretend that I love being out in the rain – I don’t – and invariably I’d conduct personal training sessions […]

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  • Get out to get fit

    By Darren O'Toole | In Outdoor | on April 6, 2014

    The weather is now turning and we’re enjoying lighter evenings and generally drier and warmer days (I appreciate if you read this a couple of days after posting, I may look foolish – it is Britain after all), so it seems the perfect time to exercise by embracing the great outdoors. One area that is […]

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  • A marathon task

    By Darren O'Toole | In Outdoor | on November 20, 2013

    For as long as I can remember I’ve wanted to run a marathon. I’m not entirely sure what triggered it, whether it is the boost to self-esteem and mood that results from overcoming long runs, the visible changes that occur within the body following an effective bout of endurance training, or possibly just the naturally […]

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