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What do you think about when running?

Here is an article a friend has written about running, injuries, pain & the brain


Diet and Nutrition

Okay I need to state that the following information is not my own theories as I have no experience in Nutrition further than GCSE Biology over 15 years ago!

However if you are training, or taking part regularly in Sport you need to ensure you are taking on enough Calories to fuel your exercise. It is a matter of simple Maths, if you eat or drink too much compared to what you are burning you will put on weight and consuming less you will lose weight. Eating too little calories is also bad and you will not be efficient in your training and feel very cranky and tired and not be fun to be around!

When I say calories these need to be good calories.

A Big Mac, Large Fries and Large Coca Cola would be 1160kcal 58% of a Woman’s daily intake without exercise and 46.4% of a Man’s intake. It would be 55% of a Woman’s saturated fat intake and 62% of their Salt intake for the day.

  • Fat intake

There are two main types of fat: saturated and unsaturated. Too much saturated fat can increase the amount of cholesterol in the blood, which increases your risk of developing heart disease. Saturated fat is found in cakes, biscuits, cream and pies (essentially all the nice things!) Try to remove these out of your diet will help and obviously when choosing meat go for leaner cuts. Most of your fat intake should come from unsaturated found in vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, oily fish and avocado. Should next time you want a snack why not go for some Sunflower seeds a portion no larger than your fist.

  • Salt

Even if you don’t add salt to your food, you may still be eating too much. About three-quarters of the salt we eat is already in the food we buy, such as breakfast cereals, soups, breads and sauces. Eating too much salt can raise your blood pressure. People with high blood pressure are more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke. Try and reduce the amount of bread you have in your diet and replace White bread with Granary or Seeded batches. Also however rushed for time you are steer clear of Microwavable meals they are full in fat

  • Sugar

Most people in the UK eat and drink too much sugar. Sugary foods and drinks,
including alcoholic drinks, are often high in calories, and could contribute to
weight gain. They can also cause tooth decay, especially if eaten between meals. Sweet abusers are more at eisk for Nutitional problems than those who have the occasional treat. Eating a little (Dark) chocolate as a fun food for dessert after a nourishing meal is slightly different than eating a packet of chocolate biscuits to replace a meal. A number one culprit is the snack bars company advertise and their cereals. Try and add natural sugars to your Cereal with chopped up Bananas and Apples to a bit of porridge.

Thanks to British Food Standards all food is now traffic lighted on packaging to help make an informed decision on what to eat. A healty diet is a balanced diet ensuring all the major food groups are met. More information on this can be found on the NHS Website change for Life

In Running

  • Before:

When running for more than 30 minutes your hydration will aid your ability to run well. Pre run hydration should therefore be a key factor. In a normal day you should be drinking at least 1.5 litres, make sure you have taken on at least 300ml of water the hour before running and if running in the morning try to eat something at least an hour before you set off.

  • During:

If you are running for less than 1hr your body will provide you with the energy you need from its stores for around 45-75 minutes. Obviously if your running for longer you wiil need to top up your glycogen levels. Bananas are a good source of energy and are high in potassium, also taking water on the run is good most races will have water stations it is worth checking the race plan before setting off. If you are training for a race it is also good to practice taking on fluids so your are used to it. Also we dont want anyone feinting!!

  • Post:

You need to quickly reduce the lost elements. You have a small window of opportunity in which you should try and eat the appropriate snack/meal. You will need food within 2 hours but the first 30 minutes is really important to avoid any dips in blood sugar levels. Check out the recovery smoothie recipe posted last month

Good luck with your training/healthy eating

Another good website


Sound training advice injury prevention – Terrible toos!


Cheap ‘recovery smoothie’ recipe


Mixed Berry Smoothie Recipe

That’s the New Year over and done with and despite the fact resolutions aren’t worth the mental toilet paper they are written on, it is perhaps time for something a little healthier. For those of you currently thinking along similar lines, you’ll not go far wrong with this extraordinarily frugal recipe for mixed berry smoothie.

People don’t seem to realise how inflated the prices of smoothies are these days. The leading smoothie company in the UK, which shall remain nameless, charges around £2 per 250ml drink and while the recipes they use are very tasty, you feel like you’re paying a premium to stay healthy. Fresh berries are similarly overpriced, so I highly recommend making your own smoothies and doing so with frozen berries which often cost less than half the price.

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Watch “Motivational running video” on YouTube

Treadmill versus Outside Running. Inside, Outside – Get Out There

What’s better for me, treadmill or outside?

Okay so this is off the back of my first question for #trainwithlouis

Lets look into this

Benefits of treadmill

  • No worries about waiting for traffic, dogs.

This is annoying stopping your stride to wait to cross a road and having to bounce on the spot. Also if your running around a park as your routine you have always got to be wary of pesky dogs

  • All weather conditions

Sometimes if you look out the window and it is raining heavily, the thought of running outside is the last thing on your mind. Also if it is snowing/icy the conditions may be dangerous and could lead to slipping injuries. Also there is no wind resistance meaning you are more efficient.

  • Guilt free TV

If you can’t go outside and your barrier is “I need to watch the final episode of a crime drama” Right first of all most people can record TV or watch it on catch up online, but if you need to watch this then why not run at the same time. Most gyms have monitors or TVs nearby

  • Easier to carrier drinks on runs

If you doing longer runs than 5k it is always best to take on some fluids and most half marathons provide re-fueling stations . Obviously you need to practice this in your training, people find it difficult/annoying carrying when out running and running machines normally provide a drinks holder.

  • Easy to set your pace and measure your performance

When you are out running, unless you run at your “normal” pace it is difficult to understand what pace you are running unless you have an expensive watch that breaks down lap times like a Garmin (I have the Forerunner 405x) With a treadmill you can set the pace and stick to it, this is great for speed sessions, as I find it difficult to run at my maximum pace pushing myself.

  • Softer, less impact on the knees

The running belt is lot better on the knees as it gives more than the concrete of the roads and pavements, also you can be confident you will not encounter pot holes or lose slabs.

  • Testing your new trainers out before you run

This allows you to go for a 5k run testing your new shoes and if you have any blisters/dont get on with them you can take them back without wearing them….


Benefits of outdoor running

  • You can walk drop pace instantly

If you get too hot when on the treadmill it is difficult to take items off as you can not drop pace quickly especially if you are on a routine on the treadmill. Also you are never relaxed because you have to run in a line and make sure you are not near the edges of the machine, you are also more likely to lean forwards to catch up. All this means your form could be compromised. With outside you can look into the distance and keep your tourso upright maximising your lung capacity ability

  • Soft Tissue conditioning

Sorry to break your bubble if you are training for a race or fun run then you will have to eventually run outside. So when it comes to race day it will be a massive shock to your body. Your joints will not thank you for solely using the treadmill as running outside will condition your legs.

  • Boredom as repetition

Some people get bored running on the treadmill because you are constantly looking at the same wall and the same people next to you. After all variety is the spice of life. Also it can be very boring running at the same pace.  Plus it always good to get fresh air gyms are a breeding ground for germs all that sweat.

  • Cost of treadmill

You need to have a gym membership/signing on fee or be lucky to own a treadmill yourself, sophisticated ones cost over £1000

  • Break free from staring eyes

Okay so people will still see you outside but the lighting will be less extreme, also in the gym people will see you for a long period. This is good if you are just starting out or self conscious, you can always take a left then a quick right whereas on the treadmill you are there for all and sundry to see.

  • Use training to explore your local area

I find it fun to explore and know different areas of Bristol as I have only lived here for 13 years there is still areas I know little of. Also it is good if you run near restuarants to see if there is a deal on at the moment!!

  • You can run at a pace that is comfortable to you

With outdoor running you are listening to your body not the treadmill and with everything related to running you need to listen to how you are reacting to paces because you could end up doing more damage than its worth by running to fast.


My thoughts

I prefer outdoor running and the freedom it provides I can change my course, see the sights of Bristol. However I am pretty hardcore and would go out running in every condition. I am trying to encourage people to get into running so whichever works for you. One word of advice if you are looking to treadmill run it will be easier, so to replicate outdoor running you will need to set the resistance to between 1-1.5%.


Happy (Indoor/Outdoor) Running!!

Thanks for reading all comments on your views are welcomed  


Warm up- To do or not to do this is the question- Listen to your body

Warm up & Stretching in your routine

Right its January its week 2 of the year, there are loads of runners out continuing their New Years resolutions.

I thought I would post a bit about warming up, this is something I have never done properly before as I thought well I am young and fit I do not need to do this. I am now 30+, so I am still young and fit, however my body over the last year has told me different! I have had a lot of problems with calves and knees.

There is much debate about whether you should warm up or not from the experts. With anything people can give advice to you to make an informed decision, whether you decide to take this is entirely down to you. The only advice I can say, based on we are all individuals, is listen to your body this is your master. If your not stretching and your muscles feel tight this is something you may want to add into your routine

So if you would like to reduce the likelihood of injuries it is (up to you) best to include some type of warm up/ warm down stretching into your routine. This would be the same if you were going for a 10 minute run, 30 minutes or even 10 miles.

Important body parts for runners to stretch are: shoulders, triceps, lower back, hip flexors, hips, groin, quadriceps (front of thigh), hamstrings (back of thigh) and calves.

A few tips

  • Do not stretch cold – I would suggest some light activity before stretching as you are then not trying to stretch cold muscles where you are likely to pull something
  • Stretch on both sides – Do not just stretch on the side that is sore, stretch equally across your body
  • Hold the stretches- You will get deep into the muscles if you stretch 15-30 seconds. Sorry you will have to count!
  • Do not bounce- This will not help think of your muscles as an elastic band. You need to stretch gradually
  •  Try to breath!- With everything your body needs oxygen to perform.
  • If it hurts do not try and stretch past it- this is your body telling you to rest

Here is a link to Runner’s World article that has some example stretches, also have a look on youtube there is a number of demonstrations of stretches.

Remember the best expert is your body and listen to this

Happy Running

Thanks for reading Louis

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