Running isn’t my Hobby, it’s my Passion



The aim of this Blog is to hopefully paint a picture of the enjoyment I get from running off road. Weekend updates. Inspired by the countryside.

     2016 : Imber Ultra 33 miles, QE Spring Half Marathon,  Wickham Whistler 21 miles, The Ox Ultra 36 miles, Woodland Challenge Half marathon, Meon Valley Half marathon, Winter Frolic 18 miles

2017 : QE Spring Marathon, 3 Forts Challenge 27.2 miles, Race to the King Double Marathon, Purbeck Marathon, Portsmouth Coastal 50K challenge 

2018 : R.E.D. (Run every day) January for MIND, May : Dorchester Marathon, June : South Downs Marathon run, Sept 16th Goodwood marathon entered

“Your legs achieve what your mind believes” pcm2014b

 Me in my element !!

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10 miles & an Air Traffic Control Tower #history

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I only had 90 minutes to play with today so I decided to take in an historic sight which has now been modernised. I do enjoy exploring the past, taking in the surrounding area and imagining what was taking place years ago. One such place locally to me is the Solent airport.

The airport was previously HMS Daedalus and the vast expanse of land is gradually being developed with new businesses, potential housing and an engineering college.

What I was really interested in was the runway that RAF planes had used in WW2 and the iconic control tower which would have masterminded all the comings and goings of British and other nationalities aircraft. In fact on June 6th D Day, 435 sorties were flown, the most by far of any UK airfield.

The recently modernised control tower also now has a café and they have done an excellent job of charting the airfields history and significance. If you are local you’ll need to approach the CEMAST college turn off and then turn left along the perimeter fence, past the new driving test centre and businesses.

Image-12 The helicopter straight ahead was an impressive sight but the boards that commemorated the sites history were even better.

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Image-15I’ve run past the outer perimeter fencing numerous times so now that the site has been opened up commercially it made a great detour but still meant I could gauge my ten mile run. My mile splits were all pretty even so I’m looking forward to pushing up the mileage.

Two cyclists were just arriving as I turned back on my return leg and with the café being open seven days a week as well as it having patio benches outside, a small slice of history can be taken in along with a slice of cake !!

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My aim for today was 10 miles at a steady 9 minute per mile pace which I was spot on. Its good to appreciate what the RAF and many others did for our country in desperate times. You could almost imagine the spitfires taking off.

Running isn’t always about pace and time, it can be about discovery and appreciation too. Thanks for reading 🙂

 

Goodwood Running Grand Prix : Marathon

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Goodwood’s famous motor racing circuit is the venue for a Running Grand Prix held by RunThrough . Yes it’s only 5 weeks away, however, its flat and I’m really excited to be lapping this historic course, even if a little slower than the drivers.

The venue is fairly close to me and I decided that before I amerce myself in Autumn trail running I’d have a pop at a tarmac surface that’s also in the countryside. So, it’s a case of packing in the miles and fine tuning my engine … ha ha … I’m more of a family saloon than a racing car 🙂 ……………and with quite a few miles on the clock !!

 

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I haven’t settled on my next trail race yet but I’m hoping it will be the Beachy Head marathon as its at the other end of the South Downs Way and I’m keen to explore that neck of the woods.

That’s it for this update, thanks for reading and enjoy your running 🙂

Me being interviewed by Alton Sports !!

Thanks very much to Nick from Alton Sports and Gosvegas Running for asking me to sit for one of the #redsofa interviews. The shop that’s located in Gosport caters for all of your running requirements along with Wednesday evening and Saturday morning free runs.

The Alton Sports shop and Nick are at the hub of our local running community.

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I’ve been running for 30 years now so the 7 & 1/2 minutes chat covered quite a few topics as well as my blogging. The shop offers Nick’s years of experience and a wide selection of shoes, clothing and accessories.

Image-10 The Gosport shop is Alton Sports fifth and I’m sure there will be a sixth and seventh in time to come !!

I feel privileged to have been asked and I hope you find it as entertaining as I did making it 🙂 Whether you are an experienced runner or someone setting out on your parkrun journey there’s great advice and stock just waiting for you.

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Have a great weekend and happy running 🙂

P.S. I’m chuffed to say that as of this evening the video has had 400 views on facebook and 80+ on twitter. Thanks for watching today.

 

 

 

Lanzarote Run

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My Strava account may suggest I ran considerably more than five miles but unless there was a hidden treadmill on the plane I can only take credit for the shorter journey. I think we owe it to our families to take breaks from our sport but when my wife said “why don’t you go for a run” I seized the opportunity.

An average week in the UK consists of a 9.5 mile round trip cycle commute Monday to Friday, a long run at the weekend and fitting in a couple of cheeky short runs when I can.

In comparison with an all inclusive week of glorious food and alcohol, on tap (literally) it was a relief to be lacing up my trainers. Don’t get me wrong I’m as good at overindulgence as the next runners …. for example, when you can’t make up your mind between vodka and orange or vodka and lemon …. have them both 🙂

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I left the complex at around 6.30 pm on a balmy evening with the every present Lanzarote breeze in my face and the seafront ahead of me. The breeze can fool you into thinking it’s cooler than it is but the fact that I could wring out my t shirt when I got back just proved how warm it still was.

The volcanic nature of the island made for contrasting views on my run, lush green palm trees on the one hand and dark colour sand in comparison.

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Before taking on the seafront and its hurly burly I couldn’t resist planting my footsteps on the sand nearest to me. If the dark sand looked like it could have come from the moon then my solitary steps must have been like “Neil Armstrongs”.

I weaved my way between the locals and tourists and took note that the two meter wide cycle lane was also a popular alternative. Yes that’s right a cyclist shouted at me to get out of his lane … well I guess that was what he said judging by his hand gestures.

One feature that reoccurred a number of times along my route were these heart shaped padlocks. The various messages were interesting to read but I decided to press on 🙂

20180716_164647 I ran at a comfortable pace and made mental notes of interesting places I’d like to return to, on our walks into town. The coast may have been immediately to my left but a glance over to the right revealed the towering reminders of this volcanic island.

375BB3BE-B5A0-4DC6-A9B2-07B582A37FB0 Suffice to say I could have kept on running and exploring but I hadn’t eaten or drunk anything for well over an hour … ha ha …. so I turned around near the giraffe, yes you read that correctly, the giraffe and headed for home.

18564789-1FBE-4867-964D-B975A62CBF2BRunning literally broadens your horizons and even though I’d only been out for three quarters of an hour I’d thoroughly enjoyed my trot. OK a number of people had looked at me with questioning expressions, like … “running”, on holiday, really ?? but as you’ll know when it’s part of your life its a habit that’s hard to break.

All that was left to do was to concentrate on some hydration ….. holiday style 🙂

Cheers.

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Paul Sinton-Hewitt CBE talks Parkrun

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Solent University’s huge lecture theatre screen gave the 100 + guests attending an evening with Mr Parkrun himself, Paul Sinton-Hewitt CBE the opportunity to watch and hear from a man who has realised his running vision. Hosting the evening was Mathew Fleet (who’d invited me) a lecturer at Solent, a fellow Fareham Crusader and an avid parkrun enthusiast.

Mathew underlined just how parkrun Southsea has had a huge positive effect on his family with photos of him running with his daughters and his brother, a nice personal touch when introducing Paul. The photo below is of our host, our speaker and the funky Solent University.

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The running community were out in force this evening, bloggers, parkrun directors, junior parkrun directors, running event organisers, dedicated parkrun volunteers and park runners. I recognised a good ten people from our local area.

What I liked most about the evening was that Paul Sinton-Hewitt (lets go with PSH) charted the emergence of parkrun right up to its current position of potential world domination with frequent references to the many contributors that make up the slices of  a parkrun pie.

Naturally a large slice is PSH himself, he currently holds the title of Founder which seems to suits him very well in that he can spend time talking to audiences such as ours, while still having an influence on the wider activities of this ever expanding phenomenon.

The parkrun pie first came out of the oven on October 2nd 2004 with 13 runners attending the Bushy Park time trial. This free, timed, 5K run with results and coffee to follow was pretty much the same as it is today. It expanded through the London suburbs, spread to Leeds via Marathon Talks Tom Williams, through the UK and around the world.

The ingredients for the parkrun pie haven’t really changed from the list PSH cooked up in 2014. Community running for absolutely anyone in the community, no charges and an open invite to return whenever it suits you.

From listening to PSH he talked with both affection and pride regarding probably the biggest slice of the parkrun pie, the volunteers. After all the runs quite simply wouldn’t function without these guys. When he said parkruns were free in every sense of the word ultimately I guess volunteers are free to come and go but they appear to have built up their own separate community. Paul used the phrase “giving something back” which sums up the volunteers contribution.

He mentioned the fact that naturally runners volunteered but many of the people who contribute never run themselves.

With PSH developing the registration system from his IT background then this really did enable him to keep everything at the grass roots level. Paul also acknowledged that the post run coffee and conversations were as much a part of the volunteering as the encouragement.

I’ve only volunteered once but I must admit but they certainly were “giving” me all I needed.

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Finally the runners, walkers and joggers slice of the pie comes in all sorts of flavours . PSH noted the positives, female participation is higher in parkruns than club races, families run together, Dads cheer on their wives and kids, both parents look on with pride at the junior parkruns, buggy and dog runners are welcome, disabled runners are catered for and the list goes on and on.

The nature of a weekly event means progress can be measured from walking to jogging to running. Whether this translates into entering races is more of an invitation than an expected consequence.

Most importantly a parkrun is just that, a run, through pleasant surroundings and not a race. PSH clearly felt this was a major key to its success.

With parkruns in prisons, parkruns in less advantaged areas and doctors being urged to prescribe the running social engagement of parkruns rather than pills the future looks bright.

So in summary his audience listened with 100% attention and followed it up with a variety of interesting questions. I intend to post this blog to as many non running social media outlets as running ones because parkrun has so much to offer the people that haven’t discovered it. Thanks for reading.

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Generally speaking pies are frowned upon were healthy living is concerned but the parkrun pie has changed lives, probably extended lives and developed a community that’s free to access at 9am every Saturday.

An inspiring evening from an inspiring man.

PSH …….Mr Parkrun, thank you.

 

 

South Downs Marathon #hills

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When you set your alarm call for 5.15am you know it’s going to be a long day but more importantly you know you’ve committed yourself to a challenging day. What’s life without challenges ….. boring !!

Running along the South Downs Way guarantees you amazing views of the countryside that haven’t changed a great deal for decades. Time stands still on the Downs and that’s why trail runners love it, what you can’t avoid are the hills. Some 3,000 feet of elevation awaited us. This will be my second marathon in three weeks after the great Dorchester marathon.

With Slindon college being our starting point 209 Events had organised coaches to drive us from the finish at Queen Elizabeth Country Park (QECP) to the start. I boarded our coach with Fran and Rachel from Fareham Crusaders who also ran the Dorchester marathon three weeks previously. I offered a few thoughts from running the race in 2015 and as we arrived there were menacing clouds above the college.

We quickly bumped into Hayley from Gosport Road runners and Emma Bird from Pompey Joggers. Emma has reached the dizzy hights of a 100 mile run and Hayley has been accumulations a few marathons recently. Completing the line up was Mark Highland who I’d met for the first time last week.

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Hayley’s GRR yellow kit was a contrast to the black clouds above the college 🙂

The first task of the day is to work your way up onto the top of the Downs, this combines four miles and nearly 500 feet of climbing. I spotted both Hayley and Emma ahead of me on the initial country lane but as we started the climb they eased away. The contrasting open field tracks and oppressive humid woods meant for an interesting introduction to the day.

I’ve learned that if you need to walk three miles into a marathon it doesn’t mean you’ve failed it means you are spreading out your energy.

Once onto the Downs the familiar chalky trail with flint stones poking out at random intervals meant you do need to keep half an eye on where you’re running as well as marvelling at the views for miles.

Talking of views the South Downs don’t need arrows to signpost a hill, you quite simply can’t miss them. This beauty just kept giving and giving at around 7 & half miles.

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I couldn’t resist stopping for a second to take this photo. Runners disappearing over the horizon as far as the eye can see. The camera may not show the gradient quite so well but this is another 300 feet or so. Hill two on the profile below.

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With ten miles fast approaching my drinks strategy of 500ml an hour was going well due to the humidity as much as the sunshine. The half way drinks station offers a bitter sweet mixture of refilling your drinks and the prospect of the third big hill in the distance. I took this photo a little too early but the trail ahead winds its way up the lighter green fields towards the horizon that isn’t forested.

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Setting off on this third hill I knew half of it was tarmac and the remainder harder going rougher trail. Course knowledge can be invaluable on these occasions. I made the most of the tarmac and used fast walking where appropriate.

At this point I think its worth pointing out that walking can actually be quite constructive. I eat my energy bar and collected my thoughts as to what remained, as well as the pace I’d need to finish under five hours.

The next section between 17.5 and 20 miles has a steep grassy hill followed by a shorter chalk hill that’s very rough underfoot. These 2 1/2 miles would go a long way to what my final average time was. These are hills where everyone around you is walking, everyone is grimacing and there’s very little talking. A fast walk can be quite effective and I overtook a few runners.

Leaving the 20 mile National Trust Harting Down feed station I had again used the walk to calculate what I’d needed to do on the undulating smaller “cheeky” hills that remained. Timing wise I was ahead of schedule and there was still the bonus of the last mile being largely downhill.

The last 6,5,4,3 miles did hurt but I was gaining in confidence and emotion because 2015’s 4.58 looked very achievable. At mile 25 we reached the glorious downhill into QECP !!

I crossed the line in 4 hours 52 minutes which I was very pleased with. My SKINS socks had done me proud on my first marathon wearing them. For a full write up on SKINS take a look on the menu of my blog.

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Marathons are a metaphor for life …. it’s testing, you are in it for the long haul but ultimately you get out of it what you put in. Thank you 209 Events for an emotional, hard and rewarding experience.

Thanks to Emma who cheered me in after her amazing 4.19 time and to Nick from Alton Sports who I also chatted to after the finish. A huge well done to Mark with his fabulous 3.43 and Hayley with 4.37 . Equally well done to Fran and Rachel for their heroic 5.48’s on a tough course were on the brave actually entered never mind finished.

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It was all smiles after my second marathon in three weeks. Running off road is scenic, exhilarating and challenging but most of all it’s so rewarding. The sense of achievement to take on mother nature and come out smiling is what its all about.

And finally ……….. free race photos are always a bonus !!

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Happy trail running, I run off road, we run off road 🙂

Weekend Warriors

 

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From my point of view I have a week to go until the South Downs marathon but this short blog is more about the wider sporting community that were out in force for the Centurion South Downs 100 mile race  …… “The Weekend Warriors” !!

I’d planned my last taper run from Queen Elizabeth Country Park to Harting Down and back. Through the power of social media I’d run these twelve miles with Mark Highland (pictured above and also running the marathon next week) and meet Graham Carter (pictured below) at one of the impressive aid stations along the #SDW100 route. I’ve only chatted on twitter / facebook with these chaps so it was great to finally meet them.

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Within the hundred mile runners ( Winchester to Eastbourne) I was keen to cheer on as many as possible and especially Fareham Crusaders men’s captain Paul Pickford (pictured below).

paulAfter meeting Mark in the car park as well as Aaron, James and Paula from Fareham Crusaders who were also out run supporting we set off. The outward six miles will be the final six in next weeks marathon so this was a great familiarisation exercise.

The stunning countyside views coupled with the sunshine meant the undulating terrain was run with good spirits. This following photo amused me with a tree that had fallen across the trail but in typical National Trust fashion it had been made a feature of.

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Graham would be marshalling his Centurion aid station for some hours so hats off to him and all the other volunteers for this commitment to the running community. We chatted about the day ahead and then carried on our running.

All went to plan with the runners heading towards us on our return route. We clapped and cheered the eventual winner and probably a hundred ultra runners that included Stephen from Film My Run and our very own running clubs Paul Pickford at the QECP aid station. At this point the runners had done about a marathon, distance wise !! Paul finished in 25 1/2 hours …. fantastic.

What a commitment, one hundred miles !!! Wow 🙂 Congratulations to everyone that finished. Naturally you don’t need to run 100 miles to be a warrior, but it probably helps, especially if that meant 12,700 feet of elevation and for many running overnight #amazing

With my marathon a week away the prospect of virtually four in a row takes some processing. What a mental and physical challenge these guys took on.

Today’s weekend warriors included racing runners, training runners and aid station volunteers. Added to this mountain bikers, walkers and hikers all out on the Downs.

In summary ………… get outdoors, you’ll feel so much better for it 🙂

#weekend #warriors

The WSR Dorchester Marathon

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First things first I’d like to thank White Star Running (WSR) and all the other organisations that combined to make Sunday the 27th of May such a memorable day.

Running a marathon is a time consuming undertaking but planning and marshalling one inevitably take a lot longer !!

Why do I sound so enthusiastic about the whole thing I hear you ask, well, for a variety of reasons the Dorchester marathon was my first race of the year, “really”, yes really. The reason I chose to run in Dorset was after watching Film My Run’s video from last years inaugural race. The video was screaming WSR !! The organisation, the humour, the facilities, and the trademark lovestation.

With the marathon start time being 8.30 this meant setting my alarm for 5am, “FIVE AM”. Isn’t it funny how getting up for work at a later time seems a pain but getting up not that long after sunrise, for a race, is a positive joy 🙂

During the hour and a half drive from Hampshire to Dorset the skies gradually moved through the colour spectrum between blue and black. Some 20 miles away from Dorchester the heavens opened and my windscreen wipers were going ten to the dozen. However, the running gods were kind to us because within ten minutes of the start I was hurriedly applying sun cream to my arms, legs and face.

aastartI spotted Andy Palmer “Mr WSR” just long enough before his safety brief to be able to introduce myself and in no time we were lined up. As I scanned the start line I said hello to Fran and Rachel from my Fareham Crusaders and as we got going I also said hello to Emma from Gosport Road Runners (GRR).

The first mile was full of banter and chat as we started the gradual incline of the High Street. I’m old enough to remember when there wasn’t a Dorchester bypass so it was a trip down memory lane for me. The historical buildings were equally matched with the

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hysterical fancy dress costumes a number of runners had on. As we turned left out of town I could see Richard Law from Gosport Road Runners. We’d talked earlier this month about running a similar ten minute miles strategy so we ran side by side. I can only put my facial expression down to the quickly applied sun cream getting in my eyes in these initial first few miles … ha ha. Schoolboy error.

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The crowds along the streets were very vocal and there was a real feel good atmosphere. With feed stations every three miles we would be spoilt all day. At around four or five miles the “ever smiling” Phil Hoy from Pompey Joggers overtook Richard and I. Phil had arrived 15 minutes late and was gradually overtaking a large proportion of the field. He eventually came 90th out of 603, hats off to you Phil.

The countryside lanes were starting to warm up as the mornings sun burnt off the clouds and by the time we reached the twelve mile feed station we’d also encountered our first proper hill. This next photo was taken by one of the Bournemouth Joggers and their “Under the Sea” themed pit stop. I thought it summed up the day perfectly ….. hot, hot, hot.

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That’s me in the background taking out one of my 500ml soft flaks. I think most of us wore as much of the water as drank it !! I’m not sure what the temperature was at that point but it was 23 degrees by the end.

From twelve miles until the lovestation at twenty the country lanes wound their way through picturesque villages and crops of various descriptions. Due to me not knowing the area that’s about as much of an explanation as I can give, however, this elevation chart from my Strava does add more to it pictorially (is that a word, spell check thinks it is so I’ll go with it).

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Miles 16 to 20 were harsh, the breeze dropped, the humidity climbed and I have to admit to enjoying the marathon ever so slightly less 🙂 Richard had moved ahead and fellow runners were becoming much less frequent. Two lads entertaining us with their guitar and double base made for a welcome lift in spirits but it was hard work.

I would compare myself to a contestant on a games show at about 19 miles because I was banking on playing all my cards on the famous WSR oasis that their lovestations are. They came up trumps, food – drink – humour – showers – toilets – music and a genuine “how are you finding it, what can we do to help you” , suffice to say I left with added vigour and almost a spring in my stride (almost), plus a litre of fluids.

It’s surprising how stopping can actually be beneficial.

The long gradual climb at around 21/22 miles gave me mixed emotions, it was tough on the legs but I could also see a string of people ahead of me and all of sudden the prospect of improving my overall position on hills that I’ve trained for felt like a game show host had asked me to “come on down”, yes, “the price could be right” or in running terms, I was getting my second wind.

I caught Richard and a number of others, I also had the advantage of wearing my running vest so I was carrying two 500ml soft flasks while most other runners were stopping at feed stations. I could drink and run (who says men can’t do two things at once). Actually I was doing three things, I was overtaking people !!!

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As miles 23,24 and 25 passed with yet more undulations along Slyer’s Lane I passed Jo and two other Pompey Jogger ladies who were running in the half marathon. The final mile was downhill and then it was just a case of squeezing everything I had left out of my proverbial running sponge to cross the line, pick up my medal and t shirt and to be greeted by my cousin Jane who’d kindly come along to support with her husband Peter.

We retired to the shade of the main tent and I apologised a number of times for my sweaty condition. I drank around three litres over the course and didn’t need the bathroom once, that’s a measure of how hot it was.

4 hours 41 minutes and 304th out of 603 were my vital statistics.

The Dorchester Marathon did us proud.

Thanks again to all the people that I’ve mentioned and any that have slipped my mind. Today has given me the confidence to enter the South Downs marathon in 3 weeks.

I love marathons 🙂

 

 

Gophysio Foam Roller workshop

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I’m sure most runners are familiar with the foam roller concept and I’d bet (like me) we’ve even bought one, but do we use it ??? Hats off to the folks that do, mine has been sadly neglected. Excuses like, “I’ll get around to watching some youtube videos” or “I’ve just run for 3 hours, I can’t justify more time rollering” may sound familiar.

However, the overwhelming thought I left the workshop with, had to be, why haven’t I been doing this for years and how did I manage to pick the pair of socks with the hole in the big toe (yes you take your trainers off) !!! I can now ease aches, pains and tension, as well as reduce the likelihood of injury. Considering that I mainly run marathons, feeling supple and not “creaking”, is a win-win.

I saw a Saturday foam roller workshop advertised on instagram and contacted Gophysio to see if they ran any mid week sessions. Friday May the 18th was their reply at 5pm which was perfect for me.

On arrival I was immediately struck by how smart and spotless the reception area was. I particularly liked the words of wisdom that you read, as you walk in … “Look after your body, it’s the only place you have to live” Jim Rohn quote.

The weapons of torture were also on display in reception !! Torture is often a word associated with foam rollers but used properly they’ll save you lots more pain in your running !!

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Tom the sports therapist invited the nine of us to follow him upstairs to the temperature controlled studio and I was again impressed that not only were there nine mats with a variety of rollering gadgets but there was also plenty of space between each mat.

Booking a smaller amount of people with enough space to do justice to the class meant Tom could freely walk around, checking on everyone. This personal attention ahead of profit making goes a long way in my book.

Tom kept the explanations of theory to a sensible minimum and we concentrated on one side of the body while we slowly went through our instructions, then for the last twenty minutes we could repeat the same for the other side of the body applying what we’d learnt. The methodical 35 minutes or so on one side meant we could apply our techniques with confidence in the second shorter session.

Exercise wise I’ll talk through generally what we did rather than attempt to offer instructions because I’m a runner and not a sports therapist !!

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We started with the sole of the foot and a small trigger point ball. Applying a good measure of weight and rolling the ball backwards and forwards. We then swopped to a nano foot roller (3rd from the left in the picture above) which did a similar job but had a broader range rather than the more specific ball (4th from the left in the photo).

Next we used the larger trigger point ball and a large foam roller on our calves (the final 2 items in the photo above). Starting at a mid point and rollering down, then rolling up. While swopping between the roller and ball you could feel the difference and choose whether you could cope with the more intense ball as it pinpoints specific areas. Moving over onto your side also meant you could feel the benefit across a wider area.

I felt I didn’t have as much control with the ball until Tom showed me that shorter movements were required or in some cases bending your knee and then straightening your leg achieved the same result. This instant feedback was the benefit of a smaller class.

We carried out a similar approach for the hamstrings, quads, TFL (the small muscle were your pockets are) and gluts. On each occasion Tom encouraged us to find “hot spots” and hold the ball/ roller at that point until the tightness had eased off. With your gluts being quite a large muscle I took more time to explore ….. ha ha .

The nature of marathon training means repetitive use of certain muscles. I cycle to work most days and even though this flushes out stiffness (active recovery) it doesn’t pinpoint areas. Naturally all runners would benefit from rolling regardless of their distances.

Splitting each area up into upper and lower sections meant I found I only had a small range of movement and I didn’t feel like my legs and arms were shaking due to being over extended. Supporting yourself correctly makes the exercises both safer and more comfortable. Shoulders and back work then followed.

Various questions were asked through the session and it was interesting to hear that the class was made up of regular roller runners and novices like myself.

I haven’t attempted to explain the science of the muscles and the exercises but suffice to say I felt considerably more flexible. With Dorchester marathon only a week away I certainly benefitted from loosening some “knots” and I’ll use my own roller through this last taper week.

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We thanked Tom for an excellent session, completed his feedback form and the chit-chat between us was just how useful the hour had been.

Top marks to Chandlers Ford’s Gophysio and at £15 for the hour long session it really is money well spent. I’d go as far as saying it’s an investment in your running future. I’ll be buying a trigger point ball to accompany my own roller.