The simplicity of running is one of its great attractions as a sport. We are literally born to run and it's something that most of us can do by the time we are barely out of nappies! Put on a decent pair of running shoes, shorts or leggings, top etc., then out of the door and the world is your running track. You need to kit yourself out with the right basic equipment, but it is less materialistic than any other sport.
Everybody has to start somewhere, so whether your aim is lose a bit of weight or do Race for Life for instance, it is important to have the right equipment. Of course we at Up & Running are here to help you every step of the way from choosing the right shoe with the right amount of support to suit the way you run with our in-store gait analysis, to choosing the right clothing like superb moisture wicking garments, water proofs and accessories such as gloves, hats, heart rate monitors and GPS units - we are here to help you make the right choices.
Road running is a high impact sport and it is extremely important to keep on top of your running shoes, in terms of wear and tear: they don't last forever, and around 500 miles of wear is about as much as they will last before you should get some new ones or you will increase the risk of injury. If the latter happens DON'T PANIC!
We are here to help you through the frustrating times too, with lists of physiotherapist recommendations in-store and via our web links. We also sell a host of rehabilitation supports for knees and ankles, special insoles and fitness equipment to help you back to full recovery.
You can be as varied as you like in road running, distances from 1 mile to 26.2 miles and beyond can be tackled by all of us. Speaking from a personal point of view, I have tackled most distances mentioned above with a degree of success achieved through hard work using structured training plans to enable me to perform at my best at the distance I'm training for. Having been a top track and cross country runner as a junior I had a sabbatical! and got back into running in my 20s where I gained some reasonably fast times over various distances (30:50 for 10km and 52 mins for 10 miles). After another sabbatical I got back into running in 2004 and started to look to the longer distances and in 2009 won the Blackpool marathon, and most recently gained 13th place overall (2nd veteran over 40) in the 2011 Edinburgh marathon in 2h38:34, as well as running the occasional short race!! Shorter races are very much in my plans to try and get some speed back! And I consequently would like to run a sub 2:30 marathon, we shall see!
There is no doubt that to achieve progression it is very useful to have a good structured routine and you don't have to run every day to gain dramatic results. For the beginner the jog-walk principal is a great way to start, and our zero to hero training plans which we have in-store will enable you to complete your 1st 5km or 10km. Once you've cracked your first one and set your benchmark or PB (personal best!), you can progress to something more advanced, and whether it is a half marathon or even further we are here to help you all the way. Obviously it goes without saying that with a gradual increase of workload inter-layered with a good amount of stretching and a good sensible diet you can almost guarantee great progress.
Clubs and running partners
It can be also great encouragement to train with other runners, so our web site has links to a host of running clubs. It is always good to train with more experienced athletes and learn from them as I have done, as have thousands of others.
Races and events
Up & Running are involved in hundreds of events of various distances so feel free to pop in-store for up and coming events. Our staff members have great knowledge of local routes and races.
Get out there!
The beauty of road running is that you are never too old (or young) to start. My top tips would be to progress gradually, follow a structured programme and incorporate stretching into your programme, no matter what the level you are at as this will get the best out of you.