What do ‘Runners Need’?

Posted: April 29, 2019 at 12:35 pm Author: Simon Hough - Westonbirt Runner

With the 10k just next week, I’ve decided to step it up a gear and take the running more seriously.

With friends and colleagues I am running more regularly and for longer now - doing two runs a week of around 5k to 6k. This has been great for me, as pacing myself with others has allowed me to not burn out too quickly and it also has allowed us to run the outer path around the perimeter of Silk Wood in the lovely Easter weather. This path is little used - known only to a few very regular dog walkers and those who go in search of the best display of bluebells and other woodland flowers. It is absolutely stunning there at the moment and well worth a look.

The running shoes I have been using - a pair of fairly basic trainers which are several years old and well past their best! - were beginning to cause me some comfort issues. I’d heard that as a Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum member, I could get a discount at the Runners Need shop in Bristol, and get shoes properly fitted for me by an expert. Having never done that before - previously I’d gone to a sports discount warehouse and bought the cheapest trainers whose colours offended me the least! - I arrived at their shop in Broadmead, in the centre of Bristol keen and eager for the 9am opening on Saturday morning.

The sales assistant that served me was great, giving a really good explanation of the potential issues with different gaits when running and how different types of shoe can help you run better, and reduce the likelihood of injuries, both in the shorter and the longer term. The process included not just a full measure of my feet but running on an in-store treadmill while being filmed. This meant I could then watch the images with the sales assistant and see how I ran with a pair of baseline shoes and then how different types helped improve my gait.

I was also impressed that the sales assistant thought to ask if I was a member of anything that could get a discount and was aware of the discount available to Friends members. Great service and I’d really recommend it.

The process took around 30 minutes in all, but was really worth it. I have been for a couple of runs since in the new shoes and they definitely feel more comfortable and more supportive. Now that’s one less excuse for not doing a good time in the 10k!

Get our Westonbirt Runner’s over the finish line with a small donation – only just over a week to go!


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