Having a target time is in no way necessary to enjoy taking part in a half marathon, but for many people the joy of covering 22.1km with hundreds or thousands of others is magnified by simultaneously smashing a personal goal. If your target time for the distance is...
You know as well as we do that the hardest part of running doesn’t involve running at all. It’s the slow walk. The slow walk to your trainers. The moments leading up to your slow walk to your trainers, in fact. Yep, forget those first few strides, or...
Completing a marathon is a wonderful achievement, and one that is generally the culmination of many months of training and planning. A marathon is also just about as physically demanding and painful a feat as many people will attempt in their lifetime (mothers excluded), so it is worth...
Wet Sand Running Why “Running on compacted wet sand allows you to run fast and hard without the same jarring impact on your joints you get from concrete,” says elite runner and coach Shaun Dixon (letsgetrunning.com). How Unless you’re on a huge stretch of coastline you’re not going to be chalking...
For Charlie Lewis, running is about far more than keeping fit or clearing his head. It’s about the freedom to explore the world around him and challenging his body to achieve ever greater feats. Lewis knows better than most the benefits of running; he had to endure ten...
Photograph: bazzadarambler via Flickr (Creative Commons 2.0) There are many great places to run – mountains, valleys, along winding city streets. In fact, it’s much quicker to list places where it isn’t good to run – by the side of swimming pools, anywhere with scissors, from a bear (keep eye...
If you’ve pulled on a pair of Adidas UltraBoost running shoes in the past few years – and given how popular they are with runners there’s a decent chance you have – one question you may have asked yourself is: why bother with the laces? The snug fit of...
A pair of headphones can make or break a run. If they’re fiddly, uncomfortable, don’t fit or run out of juice before you’ve broken sweat, they can send your stress hormones skyrocketing and bring your outing to an abrupt, angry halt. But get them right, equipped to provide...
The Hoka One One Clifton line of low-offset running shoes has attracted a dedicated fanbase on the basis of offering maximum cushioning without adding too much weight. Starry-eyed advocates of the Clifton describe its ride as “pillowy soft” or “like running on clouds”. This is a shoe that...

Fartlek: HIIT for Runners

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) might be all the rage in fitness circles nowadays, but Swedish runners have been practising a form of HIIT ever since the ’30s, when the Fartlek system of running was developed. Fartlek means “speed-play” in Swedish, and once you get over any amusement at...