Former Norwich City sporting director Stuart Webber has revealed multiple ways the Canaries helped him on his mission to climb Mount Everest next summer.

The much-maligned time off majority shareholders Delia Smith and Michael Wynn Jones gave Webber to climb smaller mountains is well known by City fans, but there were numerous other factors that helped the Welshman on his fitness journey.

One of them was the opportunity to play on NR1's hallowed turf, with club chaplain Jon Norman a key figure in that milestone.

“I came to Norwich and had a really tough first year," Webber said. "It was actually Jon Norman, who I remember chatting to and saying that I looked a bit tired and had put a bit of weight on. Jon actually had a game at Carrow Road with the Soul Church, and in the lead up to that I wanted to get fitter.

“I wanted to play and I wanted to play alright. I was playing at Carrow Road, it’s a proud thing. That’s the fan in me; I go there every week and could have gone and laid on the pitch when I wanted, but it was still an honour and a real treat.

“Ever since then I’ve run minimum four times a week.”

The Pink Un: Webber left Norwich City earlier this month after nearly seven years at the clubWebber left Norwich City earlier this month after nearly seven years at the club (Image: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd)

Webber had already begun the process of losing weight five years earlier, having been unhappy with pictures from his wedding to now-City executive director Zoe Webber.

“My trigger point was when I saw a couple of the wedding pictures," he said, speaking as a guest on the Optimal Health podcast. "I was like: ‘Is that what I look like?’ It was like ‘wow’. Straight after the wedding my wife had to go into hospital for an operation which meant she was going to be bed bound for two weeks.

“So I booked two weeks off work and the people at Wolves were fantastic. I said to her: ‘I’m going to use this two weeks where I can’t go in my car and watch games, to do the best diet possible and exercise twice a day.

“For two weeks I did a long walk with my dog in the morning and in the afternoons I’d go out for a run. It’s so hard, I was running like 1k and I had to stop. But in two weeks I lost a stone, and then I was like ‘I’ve got to carry this on’."

That wasn't the last time the 39-year-old's wife helped him with his wellness, with Zoe's presence vital to her husband's ability to live efficiently on the road.

“I don’t sleep great in hotels on my own," he continued. "I’m alright if my wife’s there, but on my own I’m just not a good sleeper. If she’s with me I can sleep anywhere, but if I’m on my own it can be the best hotel ever and I still really struggle to get to sleep."

Webber also benefitted from the environment he was in, with the performance-driven environment of the Norfolk club's Colney training base inspiring his attitude to preparation for climbing.

“I did a lot of pre-acclimatisation stuff because there’s a lot of altitude chambers now where basically you wear an oxygen mask and it pumps in the air which is the same as altitude," he said. "So I did a lot of training with that, we were lucky with that at Norwich to have those facilities.

"We used them for our rehabilitation, because it improves the amount of red blood cells in your body, which helps recover injury quicker. So the lads who are injured or on recovery sessions do it.

“That’s what’s helped me working in elite sport my whole life. It’s a very different sport, but you’re around elite athletes all the time, and seeing how elite they are helps you know that you’ve got to prepare like an elite athlete.

“They control everything they’re in control of, so I’m in control of what I eat, what I drink, how and where I sleep, how I train. I’m not in control of the weather window when we get there. It’s about making sure you’re in the best condition you can be to then adapt once you’re up there.”