Last ‘National Running Day’ – I think I missed the boat on that one! It was clearly a big week for running because Thursday was also the first official #run2workday in London. If you were not one of the many people who ran to work for the first time on Thursday then read on to see why you should think about starting:
Although I am no longer working in the City and therefore have nowhere to commute to, I wanted to highlight the benefits of running to work and why more people should be doing it. After all, running to work was the main reason my marathon training really kicked off. But whether you are training for a race or not, there are so many reasons to role out of bed and slip on your trainers instead of your work shoes…
Why should you run to work?
Firstly, the most obvious fact: running keeps you fit. Many people struggle to fit exercise in around their busy working day, and the time you spend commuting to work is already wasted time…so why not make the most of that time and fit your exercise in by running to/from work? This brings me on to my next point:
By fitting in your exercise during your commute you can then free up time later in the day, when you may have previously gone to the gym. More time to do something you enjoy (if you don’t enjoy exercise that is…)
How much money do you currently spend on your monthly train/tube/bus tickets or petrol?? Stop complaining about the constant increase in travel cost and make a long-term investment in a decent pair of running shoes, some running kit and a bag to use for your running commute!
Great to start the day
How many times have you got in to work and complained about your terrible commute? (“the train was late”, “the tube was packed”, “I can’t stand driving in traffic”, “I hate public transport”)…sound familiar? By running to work you avoid all of that stress and start the day with a clear head. Traffic is on the roads, leaving a majority of pavements, parks etc. clear for you (especially if you plan your route well to go through quite roads rather than main roads). Furthermore, exercise in the morning is a great way to wake up for the day, and you can feel smug in the office knowing that you have done more exercise than a majority of your colleagues…and avoided the expense of public transport.
Great end to the day
An evening run home is a great way to unwind after a stressful day at work.
A majority of people commute in to cities with heavy traffic, and these tend to be quite polluted. However, don’t let this put you off. Surely running along the back-streets in a busy city beats having your face shoved against a sweaty guys armpit during the rush hour crush on the tube, or having people cough over you with nowhere to escape to? I don’t know about you but I do not consider public transport to be very clean or healthy…I would much rather be outside. Most of us spend our entire working day inside an air conditioned office, some of us sitting nowhere near a window. There were days at work when I could not tell you if it was raining, snowing, or if there was a heat-wave outside. I could not see a window and the air conditioning was so strong most of the time I would be wrapped up in a scarf with a coat over my knees in the middle of summer!
Running to work can give you valuable time outside and, depending on the route of your commute, give you some much needed fresh air. If you plan your route well you could also incorporate a park on the way…
No excuses …
I live too far away – you could consider getting a train part of the way and running the remaining distance…
There are no showers at work – is there a gym nearby that you could join? Alternatively, you could use public transport to get to work and run home.
I’m not fit enough – start with a short distance and work your way up. For example, begin by getting off the tube/train one stop before work and build up to longer distances.
I’ll be too tired the rest of the day – I find that exercise in the morning actually energizes me for working day and makes me more productive.
I can’t carry everything to work if I run – plan ahead and leave clothes at work if you are going to run to work the next day.
If I have persuaded you to give a run-commute a go then have a look at the official run2work site, and join in with the new craze! By signing up you will get:
15% off your running shoes at Sweatshop
Complimentary Virgin Active guest pass for you and a friend
Free Audible Audiobook download
Free issue of Outdoor Fitness
A chance to win one of 50 pairs of New Balance running shoes
New routes from the run2work community
If you think the cost of Running to Work should be tax-free, like Cycling to Work, then you can sign the petition here.