So what’s it like being a SportsAid athlete? #MyMiles With is a series aimed at giving YOU an insight into the lives of the next generation of British sporting heroes, and encouraging you to keep them company by taking part in the #MyMiles Challenge during SportsAid Week. This time it’s the turn of Josh Landmann, a para triathlete with his sights set on the Paralympics, to take you into his world.
“On a Monday, I would generally wake up at 5am. I have a cup of tea, and then around 5.30am I make my way to the swimming pool in Fleetwood, where I train with a swim squad for an hour. I usually get back home around 7.30am and then I would probably go back to bed and have an hour’s kip - Monday’s are usually quite busy so it’s needed! After that I’d make myself a good breakfast ahead of my next session at the gym around midday. From then, I would spend around an hour in the gym, and then come back home for lunch. I would then be on my bike in the evening. Usually I would do around 90 minutes aerobically but this Monday I had an online time trial to do!”
“I only usually have one session on a Tuesday, so it’s a pretty hard bike session. I wouldn’t rush to get up but I’d still probably get up around 8am, and have a good breakfast, make sure I’m hydrating enough because there was a lot of training the day before. I would do some stretching for about 15 minutes, catch up on emails, and almost have a chilled day until around 5pm where I start my bike session. It’s high intensity intervals, for about an hour and ten minutes. There will be about 20 efforts done in that session. I’ll be making sure I’m fuelling throughout the day. As a wheelchair athlete, we do all these hours but because we’re using half our body we’ve got to be careful with what we do put in.”
“Wednesday will be an early start again, the same routine as a Monday. I’ll start swimming at 6am. All my swims with the squad are generally quite hard, fast sessions. I have a half an hour nap around 11, and then I go to Manchester to the running track, to do a 5km time trial in the race chair. It’s always a pretty brutal session as running tracks are generally a lot slower for race chairs than on the road. I don’t always like it because you’re not going as fast, but the good thing is that they’re very repeatable and accurate, rather than trying to find the same piece of road. Before that, I’ll do some stretching and mobility. There are two hours of driving as well, so food is also important for recovery.”
“Thursday is a gym and bike session. I wake up at a similar time and I’m ready to go around 10am on the bike. That’s for an hour, and I’ll be training in the sweet spot zone. As soon as I’ve done that I’ll do some mobility work, to open and relax my chest and back. In the evening I take myself off to the gym for around 90 minutes. It will be a heavy session usually.”
“I’m trying to be a personal trainer on the side of what I’m doing, so I’ll have a client in on Friday at around 7am. I usually go to the pool slightly earlier around 5.30am, to make sure I’m back at home in time. In the evening I’ll have a bike session. This is another high intensity session with six five-minute efforts at an aerobic threshold pace. It’s a hard zone to be working in, and then I’ll be back in mobility.”
“Saturday is pretty much more of a recovery day. I’ll start off in the morning and get myself to the pool for an easy active recovery swim. It’s usually around 2,000m swimming but it’ll be a very easy effort, just to make sure that I’ve recovered during the week and ready to go on Sunday and Monday with some more hard sessions. In the afternoon I’ll be in the gym for a little bit as well, doing some compound movement focus, so it’ll be a lot of pull-ups and functional exercises like press-ups and dips. On Sunday all I will have is a 90-minute ride on the bike on my turbo trainer. I also do some content creation and social media work. I’m an ambassador for the Spinal Injuries Association, so I’m generally trying to organise events with them and how I can assist newly-injured people. There are other projects I try to work on for after-sport life as well.”
Quickfire Q&A with Josh
How many hours do you train in total during an average week?
“Around 13-17 hours.”
What are the first three words/phrases that come into your head when training has gone well?
“Progression, success and perseverance.”
What are the first three words/phrases which come into your head when you think about a bad day?
“Motivated, long-term and pushing on.”
What motivates you the most?
“Probably the impact I have on other people who view my life on social media and have taken something from that, and how I may have helped them in any way. I think also knowing that I’ve made my family and friends proud.”
How best do you measure your progress?
“Just becoming more knowledgeable on how to look after yourself and finding the best ways to recover and be able to perform. Making mistakes as well, as without making mistakes you don’t learn.”
How do you balance the demands of training at busy times in your life?
“My training in a lot of circumstances comes first, but I give myself certain times of the year where I can be a little more free with what I do, and the places I go to, when I don’t have to train. I just make sure I keep in contact with friends and family as well, that’s always important.”
What are the biggest sacrifices you feel you have to make?
“Paralympic legend Tanni Grey-Thompson once said something about how you’re not making a sacrifice, you’re making a choice. I’ve lived by that. I don’t have to do this, but it’s a choice - I’m not sacrificing anything, I’m choosing my way of doing things.”
What food and drink products do you always wish you could have?
“I love a pizza and I love a burger, I generally have one of those once a week. I do love a Guinness as well - but that’s only for certain times of year!”
What is a work-out or session you enjoy doing?
“Probably my favourites are the harder bike sessions. I love the satisfaction that I get from it, feeling strong.”
Which social media accounts can people follow you on?
SportsAid Week 2023 takes place from Monday 6 March to Sunday 12 March! Join us for a dedicated week of fun and awareness-raising based around theme of accessibility and inclusion. Please visit www.sportsaid.org.uk.