Our Staff

Pete Smith, Director, Chartered Physiotherapist, Personal Trainer

Pete’s interest in fitness started when he was in the Army. During this time he took part in the Cyprus Mountain Marathon, cross country and downhill mountain biking and S.A.S. selection training.  On leaving the Army he helped set up the Brecon Multisport Club before co-founding aspire fitness.  Pete has been training clients since 2003, and specialises in rehabilitation, and improving function in the general population.  He completed his Physiotherapy degree in 2011 and since then combines his knowledge of injury with exercise. Pete’s interests include weight training and specifically Olympic weightlifting and road cycling.

Joe Timmins, Director, Personal Trainer, Sports Massage Therapist

Joe's previous sports include Rugby for Colstons School in Bristol and American Football at university. His current training interests are based around endurance training for ultra-distance.  He has competed in Tough Guy, the Great London Swim, Hellrunner, 70 Wild Miles, numerous sprint triathlons, the Big Woody ultra-distance Triathlon, the Montane 50 mile Ultra-marathon and the Montane 100 mile Ultra.  He is currently training for the 100 mile Ultra Tour of the Lake District in 2014.  His other interests include surfing (he has surfed in Portugal, Peru, Fuertaventura and Ireland), hill walking and rock climbing.


Ben Morris, Director, Personal Trainer, Sports Scientist and Sports Therapist

Ben is a sports science graduate. He has previously played both rugby union and rugby league at professional a level.  On retiring from playing rugby Ben has focused on his fitness and conditioning to train himself for Ultra-distance marathons. He has completed a multitude of the hardest ultra-marathons in Britain including four 100 mile mountain races, and the iconic Dragons Back Race. He is working towards taking ever higher finishing places at these events. Ben and his wife have also taken part in several multisport adventure races.  His other interests include sports conditioning, surfing, hillwalking, mountain and rock climbing.  He is also a qualified and experienced Mountain Leader, a Single Pitch rock climbing instructor.

Mark 'George' Drew, Gym Manager, Senior Personal Trainer and Sports Therapist

George’s interest in fitness also started in the Army.  After his army career he re-trained as a personal trainer and started working as a manager for Total Fitness in Lincoln, he joined aspire fitness in 2007.  Since joining aspire fitness George has trained a wide variety of clients with wide ranging goals and regularly see’s 80-100 appointments a week. Georges own interest mainly lies in long course triathlon. He has competed in 70 Wild Miles, Hellrunner, the Snowdon marathon, numerous sprint triathlons, many middle distance triathlons, Welsh Etape in North Wales and the Tenby Ironman.  

Liam Chambers, Nantgarw Gym Manager, Personal trainer, group exercise specialist

Liam has worked in the fitness industry for the last fifteen years with a breadth of experience both internationally and here at home. Along the way has worked extensively with a wide selection of the general public but has specialised in the fitness and strength training of both amateur and professional boxers. Liam has a variety of personal fitness and health interests in particular have competed in a variety of normal and ultra-distance running races.  

Emma Brydon, Personal Trainer

Emma joined our team in 2011 after being a long-term aspire fitness client. She went on to complete her own Personal Training qualifications and with a combination of real-world experience as a client herself has a great understanding for the worries and needs of her personal training clients and groups alike. Emma’s personal interests include cardiovascular fitness and strength training which she balances with being a busy mum.

Tom Ruska, Personal Trainer and Sports Scientist

Tom is a sports science graduate who is currently working on his Sports Science Phd.  He has played rugby to a high level, but is now focused on sports coaching where he has a variety of outlets for his talents amongst others at Cardiff City FC.  He has a huge knowledge of training methods, biomechanics, energy systems and pretty much anything to do with developing sports performance professionally, and personally enjoys a good strength or conditioning session too! Got a question about fitness - ask Tom!


Alexis ‘Flex’ Nugent, Personal trainer, sports massage therapist

Alexis has been with us since 2007 when we opened our first gym in Canton. She had previously been an aspire fitness client  but loved us so much that she completed all her gym qualifications and came to work for us. Since then she has trained a wide variety of clients and gained a wealth of experience and knowledge.

She has always had a keen interest in sport playing lacrosse to a high level and generally enjoys the outdoors; hiking, rock climbing, running,  skiing or just appreciating  the view.  Her interests also include weight and strength training. 

Jo Ward, Personal Trainer

Jo has worked in the leisure industry for over 12 years as a Trainer Assessor and Level 2 Aquatics Instructor. Her experience with aspire fitness started in 2008, since then she has found a passion for weight and strength training. Subsequently Jo completed her gym qualifications and has been working for aspire fitness since early 2014. Her interests include weight training, hill walking, road cycling and swimming. 

John Mitchell, Personal trainer, Martial artist

Jon started out in competitive bodybuilding in his teens and after placing in several shows he retired from the sport. He came to realise that being a one-dimensional athlete hampered general performance in real-life. Turning his attention to martial arts he trained and competed in Kyokushin Karate (Full-Contact Fighting) placing third in the Heavyweight category at Welsh Championships (Novice). This enabled him to gain a wealth of experience in training for strength and toughness, adding to the knowledge developed in more than 10 years of training both himself and others. Today his interest remains in being functional in real situations - strong, fit and durable.