Written by Perri Polson
5 years ago, at age 19, Coran Longwood was diagnosed with chronic fatigue. This condition would impact his way of life, and the way he would train. Currently studying teaching at Edith Cowan University, and working as a junior coach and education assistant, Coran has his plate full, so his health was paramount.
“Chronic fatigue has made me train smarter not harder,” says Longwood. For every training session or exercise routine, Coran has to ensure he gets a balanced amount of rest and recovery, or he’ll risk getting sick, putting him out of action for weeks on end.
“All my training is done based off heart rate. Starting 4 years ago I could never get my heart rate above my low aerobic zone without getting sick”. In training, Coran has been able to increase the intensity of his training and therefore his heart rate to a level that is still safe, with some room to push the boundaries just a little bit. “At this stage my body can take two fairly hard sessions per week with the others being a light to moderate intensity insuring plenty of rest.”
Coran reflects on his experience in the Avon Descent positively and encourages people to participate for the social side of the competition. Paddling with friends or family and tackling the challenges together is a great chance for people to come together and make long lasting memories.
The more prepared you are for the race, the better you will feel about overcoming the tricky bits and will make you enjoy the race more, says Coran. So get out there and practice!
And Coran’s favourite part of the race? “My favourite part of the descent would have to be the trees. Honestly not sure why, but I always enjoy them.”