Coaches

Lead Coaches

Running – Jane Grey

Role: Running coach coordinator

Qualification:  Sports Physiotherapist with extensive experience in programme design, injury prevention and management, running technique, Triathlon Australia Club and Community Coach.

Coaching for FIT since:  2009

How did you become a FIT coach:  Approached by Beth Peedom and introduced the Rookie Running Programme in 2010, have been coaching running from novice to experienced ever since.

What do you like about FIT coaching What I enjoy most about coaching is helping ladies love their fitness and enjoyment in being active and helping it become a lifestyle.

Biggest buzz in coaching for me is watching someone not able to run the length of themselves being able to finish 5km.  It’s not about time or distances but rather the improvement  in themselves in all aspects of their life.

What is your running background:  I have run in and coached all distances from 5km to Marathon.  My background is primarily in team sport representing at national level in netball softball and rugby union, but now focussed on running and cycling.

Cycling- Emma Wensing

Role: Cycle Coach and Cycling Coach Coordinator

Qualification: AustCycle Skills Coach/Cycling Australia Road and Track Skills Coach

Coaching for FIT since: 2009, but I have been coming to various cycling activities (and maybe one WTTP) in between uni and travel since 1997.

How did you become a FIT coach: I believe MaryAnn encouraged me to come along as a demonstrator….it was so much fun to share my knowledge I went out and got qualified.

What do you like about FIT coaching: It is so rewarding to see the progression that riders make, whether it is a rider who has an ‘ah ha’ moment in a skills session, right through to someone who makes a commitment to come every week. I especially love teaching cycling skills, because it sets the foundations for riders to pursue their own cycling goals, be that riding around the lake on the weekend, riding on the road, or even riding up some of Canberra’s famous hills!

What is your cycling background: I took up cycling as a teenager and have dabbled in track cycling, road cycling, mountain biking and 4-Cross in Australia Canada and New Zealand. I was an enthusiastic (though rarely successful) competitor! After a non-cycling accident in 2013, I’ve given up training for events, but you’ll often see me out and about coaching on my ‘fun-bike-of-fun’.

Is there life outside FIT: I can talk incessantly about my dog Augie, and I have a life-long love of horseriding. I put all my competitive energy into cake baking and decorating competitions. Taste testers are often required!

Swimming – Cath Spratley

Role: Swim coaching coordinator, swimming coach and cycle coach

Qualification: Swimming Australia Teacher of Competitive Strokes; Cycling Australia Road and Track Skills Coach.

Coaching for FIT since: 2017 – I’m pretty new!

How did you become a FIT coach: I became a fixture at Monday night swimming, and was approached to undertake a coaching course when one was offered. I did some cycle ‘helping’ for the WTTP and loved it, so undertaking a formal coaching course seemed a natural progression from that. 

What do you like about FIT coaching: I love getting to work and train with women of all types and abilities – from those who may never have swum/ridden before or who might be getting back into exercise after many years, to women training for world championships – and so often the former become the latter. Everyone trains side by side, and then we trade tales over coffee. Physical activity has so, so many benefits for both physical and psychological health, and FIT does such amazing things to facilitate and maintain women’s participation; it’s a huge pleasure to be a part of that. 

What is your cycling, running or swimming background: I grew up swimming, although gave up competition when I reached high school (as so many girls do). I’ve always ridden a bike and have done a bit of long-distance cycle touring, although until doing a FIT program I had never cycled in any particularly structured way. I did a triathlon novice program in 2010 and caught the bug, and did quite a lot of racing both in Australia and Europe (where I lived for a bit) before being forced to slow down with an injury. When I returned to Australia and made some progress with rehab, I eventually got back in the pool. After getting sick of following a black line on my own, I joined FIT. After seeing how great the club was, I joined one of the cycling programs, and haven’t looked back!

Is there life outside FIT: Not one that’s particularly interesting! Like everyone else I work, and I’m also studying on the side (public health and sports science). I have a terrible cat named Sam. At the moment I’m trying to become a better mountain biker, but it’s slow going.

Water Running – Di Evans

Role: Water Running Coach and Long Distance Running Coach

Qualification: Aqua Instructor/ Level 2 Intermediate Run Coach/ Cycling Australia Road and Track Skills Coach

Coaching for FIT since: 2009

How did you become a FIT coach: I have been a coach for 40 years beginning as a Level 1 accredited netball coach, coaching at National Level. This was as far as the pathway went then and I wrote the ACT pathway accredited course manual. I guess becoming a FIT coach was just a natural progression even if it was in another sport.

What do you like about FIT coaching: FIT is definitely a special club! I think the fact that we are all volunteer coaches, encourages other FIT members to volunteer too. This is the foundation of FIT and this is definitely why I like coaching with FIT.

What is your water running background: I began water running when I was training for my first marathon in 2003. I was injured and my physio recommended trying water running to get me through the training without further injuring myself. It worked and I was hooked! I started coaching my first marathon runner, Michele Boyle in 2010 and persuaded her to give water running a go and only run outdoors for three days a week, with water running her cross training days. I have coached Linda Mackay with an injury to run a marathon with NO outside running, only water running & strength work in the gym. She did the marathon in an amazing time too!

Is there life outside FIT:  I am a dedicated grandmother of five. I have always been hands on with them all, teaching them to cook, support their respective sport, and encourage them in their other interests. I am known as sporty nanny whilst the other grandmother is known as craft nanny (not my expertise!).

Other Coaching Roles

Coaching Coordinator – Chel Haynes

Role: Coaching Coordinator, Tuesday running coach, and help with other programs as required.

Qualification: Level 1 Run Coach

Coaching for FIT since: 2017.

How did you become a FIT coach:  I joined FIT to make friends and down roots in Canberra. Halfway through my marathon training season, Di Evans says, “you know what you’re doing, once you’ve done your marathon come assistant coach”.  So seven days after my marathon I completed a course and I now coach a group on Tuesday mornings.  I am working towards my Level 2 accreditation in 2018.

What do you like about FIT coaching:  No matter our backgrounds or circumstance, when we all come together on Tuesdays, we are all runners.  My goal each week is to get the ladies to finish the session. My goal each season, is to see the back of the pack runners progress one or two steps up.

What is your cycling, running or swimming background: Cycling? Unless it’s bolted to the ground I don’t, it’s not for me.  I started running in 2012 to get through the grief of losing someone I loved.  Now I run half and full marathons, to keep a healthy mind.  Road running, trail running – also not for me thanks.  Swimming is a great cross training method for runners.  Being from QLD I love the water.  I do whatever it takes to not drown.  I have completed a Triathlon (PinkTRI), and Aquathlon (Aqua Series Canberra), but my love is running.

Is there life outside FIT:  Of course not! Just kidding.  Yes, I work full time, study part time Masters at UNSW, complete my own training, coaching, and coordinate 40 FIT coaches.  I love country music, NRL, live theatre and road trips, but not camping.

Simone Annis

Role: Coaching Coordinator,  Tuesday running coach, Wednesday morning swimming coach, occasional cycling coach and I help out  with our programs such as rookie running and swimming where needed.

Qualification: Triathlon Australia Club & Community Coach,  ASCTA Teacher of Competitive Swim Strokes.

Coaching for FIT since: 2013, involved in the club since 2010.

How did you become a FIT coach:

I got involved for a few reasons:

  • I was inspired by all the wonderful FIT coaches such as Di Evans and Mary Ann Simpson.
  • I am passionate about getting people moving, and because of my business, have experience in doing this, so I felt that I had something to contribute.
  • I was such a bad swimmer and have done sooo much swim correction over the years, that doing a swim coaching course was just a logical progression.  I have the attitude that if I can swim, anyone can. Because of FIT,  I am now an improving swimmer.
  • I had, participated in, helped out with and coordinated FIT’s Novice Triathlon program and that lead me to doing the triathlon coaching course.

What do you like about FIT coaching:  I love watching people grow and improve. I love the range of different age groups that we have in FIT and it’s always a two way opportunity and a learning process for me as well.

What is your cycling, running or swimming background: I’ve always been active and enjoyed swimming, cycling and running as a child. As a teenager I did a lot of cross country running and quite a lot of cycle touring and cycle commuting. I then stopped swimming and running (started belly dancing and rock climbing), but I kept up the cycling. After I had kids, I started doing triathlons, but didn’t really have any idea what I was doing…. and then I joined FIT.

Is there life outside FIT:  I have three kids, a business and two Great Danes. So life outside FIT is often very busy, but FIT gives me the motivation to keep training and being active. Being busy is no excuse for not being active!

Would you like to coach for FIT?

FIT members have a wide variety of experience, knowledge and other talents. If you have benefited from FIT training programs and/or coaching and would like to help out participants at FIT we’d love to hear from you.

It is always great to have new people help out who have some knowledge of swimming, cycling or running (you don’t need to be an expert to be able to help out), and a keenness to encourage others to improve. You don’t need to be a great athlete yourself, because it is great to have ‘average’ people who have managed to learn to swim, cycle or run, and have reached their goals. You can be a great motivator and role model for other novices!

We won’t drop you in the deep end — you can start by observing and helping an experienced coach. You can then gradually learn how the training is conducted. If you have already been training with FIT then you may already know more than you think! If you are keen, you can always progress to getting more formal coaching qualifications.

Coaching Pathways At FIT

Most FIT coaches are either Triathlon coaches or specialist coaches in a particular discipline such as Water Running. If you are interested in coaching for FIT, it’s a good idea to talk to either a a Lead Discipline Coach or FIT’s Coaching Coordinator to determine what courses are coming up and/ or where coaches are needed. From time to time, we also advertise for new coaches on an as needs basis. FIT Coaching Pathways and coaching snapshot 2018 available to download here

Coaches Reimbursement Policy

The full policy is available here, the main points are highlighted below:

  •  If you are becoming a coach, FIT will reimburse you for your initial coaching accreditation, including your membership of the relevant association.
  •  If you are already a coach, FIT will reimburse you for your ongoing coaching accreditation and membership fees (up to $150 per year).
  •  If you require a professional level accreditation and membership in order to act in your role as a coach with FIT, we will reimburse you for these fees.
  • For all coaches, FIT will reimburse you for your initial First Aid training and subsequent yearly CPR refresher.

If you are interested in helping out in one or more of the disciplines, please contact Coaching Coordinator.