So, really, who on earth wants to exercise indoors when the sun is shining? Come to think of it, who wants to exercise indoors at any time? I mean, which view would you rather have? This?
Okay, so I’m very lucky. I live in the most stunning place, but surely anywhere has to be better than a sweaty old gym?
I’m back for another shot at learning to run (the last couple of attempts ended ingloriously with injury and a lot of sulking) and this time I’m determined to crack it. But I didn’t want to run indoors on the treadmill – I have this image (yes, yes, I know it’s never the way we imagine in our heads but still) of myself running free over the moorland, over the fields, by the river, up the hills (oh, okay, let’s save that one for a few months down the line, eh?). But Exmoor is tricksy – no neat running trails here; it’s all uneven terrain. So, I figured, what I needed was some trail trainers. Sportsshoes.com heard my wish and went all fairy godmother on me, saying I could pick a pair to try out – seems they’re all for encouraging people to jettison the gym and get fit outdoors (see, I’m on trend for once).
Slight problem. Too much choice. I’m a simple soul – I tend to go with the tried and trusted, so started looking at ASICS. ‘Nooo,’ shouted a friend who’s a keen trail runner. ‘You have to get Inov-8.’
‘Hell no,’ said another, equally keen. ‘Saucony, you need Saucony.’
So I looked, and looked, and seriously, there is way too much choice. In the end, I figured this is Exmoor and although I loved these…
And even quite liked these…well, I like the day-glo green bits but the pinky bits are mank...
...I really needed something waterproof to cope with bog, stream and puddle. So chose some Goretex beauties. And they’re fab. I took them to Spain on my Body Retreat weight loss and fitness break and they laughed at rocky trails, sniggered at perilous descents and managed to stay looking cool, calm and collected at the end of every outing.
Now then…these are all well and good if you’re going off-road like me but, be warned, they’re not suitable for road-running and absolutely not advised for treadmill bashing. You want nice normal running shoes for those (and, yeah, Sportsshoes do a shedload of those too). Why? Because there’s just too much grip on the trail runners and you run the risk of injury if you wear the wrong shoe in the wrong environment.
Incidentally, you probably know this but I hadn’t realised that, if you are running on a treadmill, you should always set it to a slight incline – once again, it’s all about preventing injury.
So, wanna join me? Let's go...