Steven Quek to raise funds for charity via book on marathon training

Veteran running coach Steven Quek is aiming to raise $30,000 for charity with sales from his book, Marathon: Training Smart. He hopes to provide proper guidance to runners who do not have a coach.
Veteran running coach Steven Quek is aiming to raise $30,000 for charity with sales from his book, Marathon: Training Smart. He hopes to provide proper guidance to runners who do not have a coach.

When veteran running coach Steven Quek joined the ActiveSG athletics club (distance) programme in 2016, he was shocked to learn of the countless misconceptions out there about running.

He had spent most of his 30 years coaching school and national runners like Olympian Neo Jie Shi, Soh Rui Yong and Jeevanesh Soundararajah, so taking charge of casual runners was new to him.

Some had ambitious goals to run 100 miles (161 km) without proper guidance or training.

Then there were those who followed the advice of professional athletes without considering that they lacked the training elite runners have had for years.

Many also undervalued the importance of rest and eating well, placing emphasis only on training.

The 51-year-old said: "There are a lot of misconceptions about marathon training that may have come from the Internet but, sometimes, they come from world-class athletes who are in different climate conditions.

"So I thought, 'Let me put all this together in a book because not everyone has access to a coach'."

The result is his book, Marathon: Training Smart, which merges his experience of mentoring elite athletes like Neo, who represented Singapore at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, with what he learnt from coaching laymen.

But cashing in on the book is not his priority. Instead, he hopes to raise $30,000 for charity with sales from the book. For a minimum donation of $30, anyone can get a copy. All proceeds will go towards HCA Hospice care.

He said: "We are privileged. We get to pursue our interests and take on challenges.

"But some people cannot, so I wondered how I could make this project more helpful to people. I wanted to find a way to contribute to another segment of society."

Marathon: Training Smart can be purchased at bit.ly/2luFRGZ

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 02, 2019, with the headline 'Quek to raise funds for charity via book on marathon training'. Print Edition | Subscribe