Many runners know now that static stretches are not recommended during warm up. Then what do we do to prepare our muscles for a race or a training run? We used the following sequence many times and it had a positive impact on performance and how the body reacted to long distances. Here’s our running warm up, that we used even if we’re outside, next to the start line, in a hotel before a race or just preparing to leave our house for a training run. Running warm up sequence 1. 3 Sun Salutations (if we’re inside or have a mat) – full body warm-upRead More →

After setting our goals for 2018 and signing up for the Kauai Half Marathon and Marathon event, we started training. Both in the gym and on the road. Luckily at the beginning of the year, I was allowed to work from home for two weeks, so I was able to join Alin on 2 of his weekly running workouts: hills and running intervals. Here’s what we did and how we modified for my level. 1. Hills workout This is one of Alin’s favourite type of running workout, and he wrote a few times about the benefits. 1. Warm up with a few squats, lunges and hipRead More →

It’s that time again. Time to look back at the year that went by even faster than the previous one. To be honest, I’m surprised that I could find a few things worth mentioning because 2017 wasn’t our best year. We changed home, I changed my job and developing a new routine has been challenging. Plus, the constant uncertainty of what’s going to happen once the UK leaves the EU added some stress. But still, life goes on. And there’s one thing that didn’t change. We kept running. Races in 2017 1. [Alin] Southern Cross Country Championships Alin started the year with his first XC race.Read More →

You finished your couch to 5k programme; you ran your first parkruns, maybe a 10k or a half marathon here and there, but you want to be faster. And of the handful of running workouts you can do to achieve that, there is one that’s at the core of speed improvement: intervals. The deal with intervals What is the role of the intervals? Let’s take a single mile as an example. You are currently running a mile in 8 minutes. You can split a single mile (~1.6km) in fairly even quarters of 400m each. When you run a whole mile, your split times for eachRead More →

I ran the Chester Marathon in 2h 56min. The race review has its own blog post, but let’s also talk about preparation. And today in particular, about having a clear mind and warmed up muscles. Sleep well It’s not only your muscles that need to be in a good form, but also your mind. A good night sleep during the last few nights before the race is essential to keep your recovery on track. Don’t let those days pass and leave it only for the night before the race, you might not be able to sleep as well because of all of the scenarios going onRead More →

I ran the Chester Marathon in 2h 56min. The race review has its own blog post, but let’s also talk about preparation. And today in particular, about nutrition. As I already mentioned, there are many things that can go wrong while running a marathon. Some of those you can’t do anything about (weather for example). But for a few, you can minimize or even eliminate the risk. Hydration I used the loo before the start at Chester, not because I needed to go, but the queue was reasonably fast, and I wanted to zero the risk of having to wee. But I could have skippedRead More →

Finish time 2h 56min 32sec Splits 10K – 41:39 20K – 41:11 30K – 41:32 40K – 42:31 I don’t know if I heard this somewhere else, or my brain became too philosophical during the marathon, but it ran in my mind continuously during the race. And it’s true. The faster you are, the more pain you will have to deal with, and your brain will try to convince you to slow down by all means possible. And in the end, performance is all about how you cope with all this. I started to train at the beginning of the summer and followed a self-designedRead More →

Remember my rules of running better races and mistakes I no longer make? Well, I made two of those in beautiful Stockholm :). Finish time: 1h 21m 42sec Elevation First, it was the course elevation profile. For some reason, my early research on Strava about the Stockholm Half Marathon only revealed about 70m of elevation overall. I still don’t understand how can the same course ran at the same time can show such different elevation results? 70m was nothing, so I viewed this race as an easy one. No longer felt easy when I read the official race leaflets which revealed no less than 370mRead More →

As a minimalist, I’m committed to only making purchases when I really need them and not when there are clearances, or the products look nice or when a new version is out for sale. But it hasn’t always been like this. A tale of two pairs Back in 2015, both myself and Andreea started to train with our buddies at the Marathon Store in Bishopsgate. They had a running club there sponsored by adidas. One of the nicest offerings was the fact that they were giving free running trainers to try during group runs. The trainers were top of line adidas Ultra Boost and IRead More →

Two years ago I discovered that I could run a lot faster. But the kick was the fact that I spent the first months of 2015 not running but training to improve my fitness. Well, if you have to know, it was also to lose my belly fat and man boobs :). So I found myself being able to run a 10k in just under 50 minutes, whereas previously, I could squeeze a 7k in 40 minutes with the cost of a couple of day’s worth of leg pain. Like any runner who went up a level, you start reading about how to train. AndRead More →