Our new Ambassador for 2022

Meet Jamie Millar
Jamie Millar

Where are you from?
A wee miner’s town called Mayfield in Midlothian.

What’s your job?
Fitness Instructor/Fitness Course tutor/Nutritionist. I have a degree in BSc Hons Nutrition from Queen Margaret University in Musselburgh.

Any other sports you love?
Rock Climbing, road cycling, swimming, weightlifting, and basketball would be the closest to my heart at the moment. Basically, I’m a dog at heart and I just enjoy moving. When you add in an aim and an objective, I’m game for anything. I could find love and passion for almost any sport under the sun.

Tell us your running story:
When lockdown began, I was so worried I was going to lose everything I had worked so hard for in regards to building my fitness. I set myself a 10-year goal when I was 23. At that time I was in a dead-end job and in a really bad state of health. Deciding to turn my life around I invested all my efforts in doing and learning all about health and exercise. At the point when covid hit the UK, I was 6-7 years in, had been consistently training whilst not missing a day, and from a fitness point of view was absolutely cruising and was just starting to set my sights on the sport of Triathlon. Then all of a sudden, all the tools and the environment that helped me grow strong and deal with life’s challenges were no longer available; they were gone. At the end of the first week of lockdown, I had just finished watching Lord of the Rings. There is a scene where Aragon, Gimli, and Legolas are running over vast distances in one of the most epic “let’s go save people” montages. I decided I wanted to feel that free and inspired when running. I made up a 6km trail run near where I lived and decided I’d run that trail every second day regardless of the conditions. On that first run I got to the top of the hill and for some reason just cried.  I think the whole state of the world and uncertainty hit me. I was looking over Edinburgh from my new trail route, it was just after 8pm and the sun was going down. Shortly after the spontaneous tears, the wind stopped, and everything went dead still around me. I could feel my heart beating high up in my neck, and my mind went still, only following the beat of my heart, then out of nowhere a sense of euphoria I had never felt before rushed over me and this can-do attitude just overwhelmed me. I decided there and then, that if I’m going down or the world is going to end, I’m going out running, heart pumping, happy, and full of life. This was my first experience of the phenomenon known as the “runners high”. I’ve never looked back!

Favourite running brands:
I would have to say New Balance. They have a good selection of shoes, not too narrow at the toes and come in really cool colours, and are an excellent option for a fast-performance shoe (5-10k distance in my own experience). Got a couple of great NB shorts that have performed really well on fast 5k -10k runs.

Favourite pre & post workout foods:
Pre: Fresh fruit bowl – Best combo – Watermelon and Strawberries
Post: My Vegan Baked Chocolate Cookie

Any guilty pleasures?
Big sci-fi geek, Battlestar Galactica, old Star Trek, and modern Star Trek (nothing after Picard). The first Rugrats movie still makes me tear up.

Do you have any advice for people who are nervous about going on their first run:
It’s a never-ending journey and can be frustrating. I still get nervous, but I realise now that the nerves are there because I’m excited about what I’m about to do, not because there is an inherent threat. This realisation only comes with experience. Capitalise on those nerves, they quickly disappear once you get moving, like water off a duck’s back!  You will get niggles, you might get an injury here and there. Just understand we are built to run, you are built to run. However, it’s a skill and there is learning involved. Start off small, and focus on posture, and learn from any mistakes. You should consider this deeply.

Lastly and most importantly run tall and run beautifully. Smooth is fast, fast is smooth.