How to make an athlete

Run time: Sunday 10 September 15.00 – 16.00
How do athletes prepare for some of the biggest races and events in the world? 

Join the University of Exeter’s Andy Jones, Professor of Applied Physiology, with special guests Jo Pavey, Gav Pavey, and Jake Smith to explore how advances in training, technology, nutrition and our understanding of physiology help athletes compete at the highest levels.
Jo Pavey MBE is Commonwealth, European and World
medallist. She is Britain’s only runner to have competed in five
Olympic Games and also Britain’s oldest runner at an Olympic
Games. During her career she set European and
Commonwealth records. In 2014 Jo won the European
Championships at age 40, just ten months after giving birth to
her second child, becoming the oldest female gold medallist in
history. Jo has also set multiple masters world records.

Gavin Pavey is an Olympic level coach with almost three
decades of experience. In 2014 he was awarded the
British Milers Club National Coach of the Year. He has
previously worked as a coaching consultant to UK
Athletics, supporting coaches and athletes on the senior
national team.
Gavin helped his wife, Jo Pavey, resurrect her career
after long term injury and coached her to five Olympic
Games and medal winning performances in the
Commonwealth Games, European Championships, and
World Championships.
Jake Smith is the European under 23 half marathon record holder. His time of sixty minutes and
thirty one seconds ranks him as Britain’s third fastest half marathon runner of all time. In 2019
Jake finished eighth over 10,000m at the European U23 Championships. The following year he
made an impact internationally by finishing 18th (1:00:31) at the World Half Marathon
Championships in Gdynia. Since childhood Jake struggled with his eating and is currently recovering
from Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S). Jake has deiced to be public with his struggles
in order to raise awareness and help other athletes.
Innes FitzGerald is a prodigious young talent and was the third fastest under 17 year old 3000m
runner in the world in 2022 and the fastest under 20 in Europe when still only 16 years old.
Remarkably Innes was also the fifth fastest under 23 in Europe at only 16. She set a British under
17 record over 3000m in 2022 becoming the first British under 17 to run under 9 minutes with
8:59.67. During the cross country season she won the English Schools, National championship,
UK Inter Countries Championship, UK Cross Challenge Series, and at 16 she finished fourth in the
European Championships. This summer she repeated her national titles in the English Schools
and National Championships. She has continued to make progress in 2023 with new personal
best times at 1500m.

Andrew Jones PhD DSc is Professor of Applied Physiology in the Department of Sport and Health Sciences. Andrew is internationally recognized for his research in  metabolism; causes of exercise intolerance in health and disease; respiratory physiology; and sports performance physiology and nutrition, particularly in relation to endurance athletics. Andrew has acted as a consultant to a number of governing bodies of sport or commercial companies including UK Athletics, the English Institute of Sport, Gatorade Sports Science Institute and Nike Inc. Andrew is a former international distance runner himself and has advised dozens of elite athletes over the last 30 years, including marathon world record holders, Paula Radcliffe and Eliud Kipchoge.

For access information and directions to this venue, and all British Science Festival venues, please click this link

10 September 2023 - 15:00
Exeter Cathedral, Exeter City Centre

Event image for How to make an athlete