SOME TIPS FOR A NOVICE ROAD RUNNER FROM CORNWALL ATHLETIC CLUB’S WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP AND COMMONWEALTH GAMES MARATHON REPRESENTATIVE DAVE BUZZA
Try to avoid running on roads/pavement all the time - the harder surface often causes more injuries and ‘posing’ before an audience often pushes you to run faster
Don't do too much too soon - a common problem is to get enthused for a week or two and run too often and/or too hard and then be either injured or just over-tired and give up. Try to build up gradually both in number and length of runs. Consistency and gradual progression are key training principles! Only add one extra run to your schedule each week.
After a month or two of running, try to run further than usual once a week (but slower). This helps to improve your body's ability to transport oxygen to the muscles and the muscles' ability to use it. Also, once a week try to run faster than usual, which will both enhance your ability to do so, plus make your normal training pace seem that much easier.
It can be very useful to join a club - people to run with, information on entering and getting to races and lots of free advice from runners who have faced the same problems. Most clubs have at least one organised session a week for all abilities.
You only need to take a drink with you if it's very hot and you're running hard for a long way - just drink well before you go. Whatever you drink in the last 5-10 minutes won't be ‘peed out’ before you start! Water is great and has the added advantage that you can chuck it over your head without getting very sticky! Unless you're at a very high level you don't need isotonic/carbo-loading drinks and even at the top level a lot of runners just use water. And tap water is just as good as bottled!
Likewise don't get too worried about your food - a welcome benefit of running is that as well as burning up a lot of calories running, your metabolic rate goes up as well, so you burn up more at rest as well as when exercising. If you've got anything like a balanced diet, you will cope well, tone up and lose some excess weight, that is if you have any.
Although the latest evidence points to running actually lessening the chance of arthritis in later life, it is still important to buy a good pair of running shoes.
It is a good idea to go to a shop where the people know about running. At Your Pace in Helston have the latest video gait analysis equipment, which allows them to give accurate recommendations of the best running shoes to suit you and your running style. Go to At Your Pace for more info. (Appointments must be made for the gait analysis). CAC members receive a10% discount at At Your Pace.
Further afield the Cornwall Runner, in Wadebridge, have a good selection of shoes, as have Frank Elford Sports in Plymouth and Ironbridge Runner in Exeter. Be prepared to pay at least £60 RRP or so for a decent pair, though a sale might knock some money off this. Paying nearer £100 doesn't guarantee a better shoe!!
22 May - Carn Brea Leisure Centre
26 May - Jubilee Pool, Penzance Promenade
27 May - St Jame's Park, London
4 June - Cubert near Newquay
12 June - Bude
15 June - Sticker, near St Austell
19 June - Truro RFC
22 June - St Dominic, near Callington