Shawn Wee is the perfect candidate to guide children as head coach at FWCC. His credentials include a successful coaching career in the UK with South West Athletics Academy, a degree in Exercise and Sports Science at the University of Exeter and certifications from UKA, IAAF and TAS.
What’s the secret to his success? It’s more than excelling at jumps, sprints, and hurdles. Shawn is committed to a science-based approach to coaching and he knows a high-performing athletic shoe when he sees one, too.
When Reebok announced the newest addition to its library of top-flight running products with the Forever Floatride Energy shoe in 2019, athletes took notice, but it’s Coach Shawn’s practical approach to excellence that has turned him into a role model worthy of your notice.
Coach Shawn’s 5 steps to success
1. Prioritise strength and conditioning.
Stop focusing on the clock or you’ll find yourself fatigued after only 60 or 90 minutes of running while compromising your posture and form. Get in front of this energy drain by strength-building when you warm up. Coach Shawn recommends front, side and back planking plus lunges, squats and push-ups.
Athletes may also want to use weights, resistance bands and medicine balls to up their resistance training.
2. Running drills.
These are mandatory for athletes eager to perform at their best and they can be part of the warm-up process, too. During drills, the body converts strength to momentum so as you move forward, your footfalls are more dynamic. You don’t have to be a physics genius to know that while running moves you forward, your legs must learn to push backwards.
Coach Shawn says that skipping, galloping, high knees, straight leg shuffle, hopping, bounding and jumping can help enhance the effectiveness of drills.
3. Make your training window long enough to build distance safely.
Speed will come. Set realistic goals based on your ability, schedule and training programme. If marathons are your goal, try to run 55km weekly until you can handle 90km. Elite athletes, will hit up to 145km per week.
A practical formula for building stamina is to progress at about 10-percent over the previous week’s distance. And no rushing your preparation. Train at least 3 months for marathons to factor in recoveries that are essential to making progress without getting hurt.
Switch it up.
If you train at the same intensity week after week, how do you expect to make progress? Your body responds more positively if you vary your workout, like interspersing long runs at slow speeds with less recovery time and short runs at fast speeds with added recovery time. Be realistic. Start conservatively and build up interval trainings so each stage feels comfortable.
Running at faster speeds is important as it improves your anaerobic capacity while still working your aerobic fitness. Scheduling-wise, doing interval training is also more time-efficient as it takes less time to complete than long runs.
If you are a beginner runner, remember to start conservatively on your first few interval trainings. An example workout would be to run 400m (1 round around the track) at 2 mins – 2min 15sec, take a 2min rest before doing it again, completing 4-8 sets. Advanced runners would do 400m at 1min 30sec (strong runners can hold 1min 10sec) or less with 1 min rest. You can also try doing a roll on recovery where you do a recovery jog instead of a static rest between your sets.
Skip recovery time and run at your own peril.
Coach Shawn explains that ice baths, massages, compression garments and other recovery tools are helpful, but sleep and nutrition are the keys to recovery. “Your training will mean nothing if you do not have ample recovery, namely sleep,” he advises. Sleep translates as 8-9 hours, not 6. “Elite athletes need up to 12 hours,” adds Shawn as he moves on to the diet an athlete needs to excel. He says that there is no substitute for a balanced diet of carbs, protein and fiber and nothing keeps an athlete more productive than hydration.
A shoe for a new generation of track stars
The Forever Floatride Energy shoe is no footwear to stick in the closet, especially if you intend to make your mark on Singapore’s exciting athletic scene. The shoe is attractive, comes in a choice of Crushed Cobalt and black and it offers so many benefits to athletes of all ages, this shoe has the potential to up one’s performance.
In fact, it takes no time at all for runners to realize that cutting-edge TPE foam engineered into the shoe’s midsole delivers incredible energy return. Further, the lightweight mesh upper keeps feet comfortable while the wearer enjoys an idyllic balance of flexibility and response.
“The Reebok Forever Floatride Energy represents the introduction of a new generation of running shoes for athletes around the globe,” said Scott Daley, General Manager of Running at Reebok. Daley helped launch this shoe’s debut. “We were even able to produce this next step in the evolution of Reebok running at a price point that is affordable for the average runner. This shoe is getting a great reception from athletes,”
Daley can’t promise that adding a pair of Forever Floatride Energy running shoes to your gear will imbue you with all of the skills, credits and kudos Coach Shawn has amassed during his young career, but he stands behind the shoe he sees as one of Reebok’s most exciting introductions of 2019.
The Reebok Forever Floatride Energy is now available for S$139 at Reebok and selected Royal Sporting House stores below in two colourways – Crushed Cobalt and Black. Additional collections and colorways will launch throughout 2019.
- Reebok: Velocity City @ Novena #02-58/59, Suntec City #02-468, Vivo City #02-111/11
- Royal Sporting House: Tanglin Mall #01-21/24, ION Orchard #B4-26, Causeway Point #02-02, Tampines Mall #02-17, Junction 8 #02-15/16, North Point #02-43/45, Compass One #02-22, Parkway Parade #01-58/59/62, Jurong Point #03-24/25, Bukit Panjang #01-33/34, JEM #03-37/39/40.