matt-seddon-sportsshoes-sunday-plodcast

Motivation

The Sunday Plodcast: Q&A with presenter Matt Seddon

The Sunday Plodcast, presented by SportsShoes and hosted by Oli Lum & Matt Seddon, is the running podcast dedicated to getting you through that Sunday Plod. 

Whether you’re listening pre, during, or post run; it doesn’t really matter. We aim to raise the profile of elite distance running by providing our listeners with insights into the lives and training of top athletes and coaches, along with discussions around current news and trends within the sport. 

We caught up with presenter Matt Seddon to talk Sunday Plodcast and all things running;

Hey Matt! Congratulations! I know recently you and Oli celebrated 150 episodes and now you're well on your way to 200. Tell us, when and why did you decide to start Sunday Plodcast?

We were frustrated by the lack of coverage that elite athletes received in the sport. People, including us, would make judgement about athletes without first understanding their background or story. Athletes deserve to be celebrated. We both had connections to the elite athletes and realised that a lot of people would really value understanding what actually goes into becoming an elite runner, whilst also giving sub elites and those breaking through the platform to really tell their story.  

Of course, it helped that we were running obsessed, especially regarding the pointy end of the sport. We would have regular phone calls, probably 2-3 times a week for 60-mins, plus just talking about running, training methods, elite athletes and the drama within the sport. 

Covid hit in 2020 and Oli pitched the idea I thought, if we’re having these conversations then  I'm sure we aren’t the only ones. And with that, the podcast was born. Wanting to give listeners something more than just us ranting, we recruited an elite athlete for every episode and we haven’t looked back since.

You must be really happy with how things are going so far?

We really are. When we started we never imagined we would have the credibility or the number of listeners that we have today. This has only come around because of our consistency. Something we really believed in from the start was the need to release a new episode (with a guest) every week, without fail. We stuck to this and I think we built up listener trust that way, whilst always pitching to new listeners too. 

What is your favourite Plodcast episode so far?

Honestly, it is so hard to say. Sometimes we go back and forget how many big players in the sport we’ve had on the podcast. From stars like Helen Obiri and Josh Kerr, to sub-elites who are creating their own story like the recent Georgia Bell. 

There is an episode to suit everyone, but for me it has to be the Coaching episodes. Coaching is my passion and understanding the methods of some of the best in the world really does inspire me. Mark Rowland was a particular favourite of mine. He is still the British Record Holder over 3000m Steeplechase. 

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Pictured: Matt and Oli interviewing adidas athlete Calli Hauger-Thackery for the Sunday Plodcast.

Who has been the most interesting athlete to interview so far?

This has to be Josh Kerr. His methods, mentality and success are enough to get you hooked. To be quite honest this episode could have been 4-hours long, there was that much to unpack. Let’s just say this, the Josh vs Jakob rivalry started here! 

What is the most popular episode so far?

What a lot of people forget is that we have recorded two episodes with Josh. The more well-known episode at the end of 2023 after he won World Championship Gold. But, we had Josh on to celebrate our 50th Episode in 2021 and he had just won bronze at the Tokyo Olympic Games. He spoke about his junior career in a lot more detail and you really understood how he got to where he is today. 

Have there been any athletes you were nervous about interviewing just because you were so starstruck?

Not really, track and field is a small world and I think fans who follow the sport religiously like us appreciate greatness, but also appreciate that athletes are often the humblest most easy going people around, they make our job easy.

Your brother is elite athlete Zak Seddon, have you ever interviewed him? How was that?

Of course! He was one of the first athletes we interviewed. Still one of our funniest podcasts looking back. We were very new to the experience and so was he, but if you want a laugh I think it was Episode 5, almost 3 years ago now! 

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Pictured: Matt Seddon interviewing brother Zak Seddon at SportsShoes HQ

You're a natural in front of the camera, having presented a host of events and campaign videos for SportsShoes. What has been your favourite SportsShoes event so far?

Thank you! And this is an easy question to answer! SportsShoes and Podium events have been getting better and better every single year. The recent Podium Festival in Leicester was industry leading and had to be my favourite. Even a downpour didn’t affect the atmosphere of the racing and that is a sign of a very successful event. Second only to that would be Podium Underground. If you’ve never been to one of these races, let me explain - they are loud, fast and chaotic. And I think what I love about it most is you can rip up the formbook and PB’s. Sprinting around a Go Kart track with 16 turns per lap in a 7 minute race is such a unique event that nobody is prepared for it, but that's exactly what brings the thrill!! 

Do you have any exciting Plodcast interviews lined up?

Yes, we never like to announce guests. We never have and I think it keeps people curious and open minded. 

However, I can hint in the near future we have one of the world’s best Marathon Coaches lined up. 

If you could choose one athlete to interview on the Plod (someone who has never featured before), who would it be?

For me this is easy - Lord Sebastian Coe (Olympic Champion and CEO of World Athletics). First and foremost, I would love to talk about his running hay day and that rivalry with Steve Ovett. 

Secondly, it is no secret that World Athletics are always looking to innovate and change the sport for the better, so I would love to question him about some of the rumoured changes we might be seeing in the future and how these ideas might come to fruition. 

Second to that - Athing Mu and Keely Hodgkinson - this is a rivalry which isn’t talked about enough. We have seen the impact of Josh vs Jakob. These two athletes could be way bigger than they are already. 

You're obviously super-passionate about the sport, what would you like to see change/happen in athletics to make it even more exciting and hopefully inspire the next generation of athletes for the future?

I am a purist, similar to a lot of athletic fans out there. Firstly, I would like to see the fixture list condensed and more importance put on racing. Winning or losing should count for more than it does in my mind. For example, to qualify for major events like a National XC or a British Championships, you should have to prove yourself on numerous occasions with no exceptions to how good you are. From County to Small Region to Regional to National - with athletes being rewarded along the way. 

Another angle would be to make athletics more of a team/club sport. It’s very difficult to follow just one athlete, let alone several, as they all run different races and have different goals. However, if you could follow a team and their success then I think it would really captivate a wider audience, but competitions would have to change in order to put a focus on team results over individual. I think Chris Barnes and Podium Festival are onto something here!! 

Any future plans for Sunday Plodcast?

We want to develop the podcast into a weekly chat show which could also feature on radio. It’s a bold idea, but athletics, as it stands, is a minefield of information every week, even someone like myself finds it difficult to follow. 

Imagine this - a weekly show 60-90 mins long where we condense the weekend results and show highlights of key races. We then feature an athlete interview relevant to what competitions are going on at that time, perhaps, even show clips of them training. We discuss the latest running gossip, products and announcements in the sport. We close the episode by looking ahead to the weekend’s action. 

It might be a little far-fetched but I think you've got an audience in the UK who would be super-interested in this condensed interactive and informative content. 

Just imagine - presenters, statisticians, athletes, brands and coaches - all appearing on one show. 

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Pictured: Matt Seddon testing the new ASICS METASPEED SKY PARIS for SportsShoes.

Click here to listen to all the latest Sunday Plodcast episodes.

Are you feeling inspired? Then join our SportsShoes Strava Run Club and become part of our inclusive community.
And for more inspirational tips to become stronger, better and happier, then check out our Motivation category. Because it’s no fun standing still.

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