Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Aaron Scott Training - 15th March to 21st March

The plan was to not ease down to much for the 10k as it was probably more important to get some good training in. However, still decided to take the Saturday as a rest day as I felt tired after work and didn't want the race to be a complete waste of time.

Monday 15th March
7:31AM - 30:58 (5.0mi, 6:12/mi)
17:57PM - 49:38 (8.0mi, 6:12/mi)

Tuesday 16th March
9:30AM - 30:10 (5.0mi, 6:02/mi)
18:14PM - 24:33 w/u (3.0mi, 8:11/mi)
18:57PM - session 3 x 5 mins grass (3 mins rec) then 4 x 150m strides on track. (4.63mi total). 5.00 (0.99mi), 5:00 (1.01mi), 5:00 (1.01mi). 23, 23, 23, 22.
19:37PM - 13:07 c/d (1.51mi, 8:42/mi)
Ran the first few reps on the grass with Sam, but pushed the last minute or so on the last rep. Just an easy session with the 10k on Sunday, just nice to keep the legs moving well.

Wednesday 17th March
8:02AM - 62:37 (10.0mi, 6:16/mi)
20:36PM - 31:56 (5.0mi, 6:23/mi)

Thursday 18th March
7:38AM - 30:51 (5.0mi, 6:10/mi)
18:30PM - 55:02 (7.05mi, 7:48/mi)
Did the evening run with Matt, Tom, Les and John around the 10k route. Just a very easy jog, realised the route isn't that fast as there are two sections which could be into the wind and are on a slow incline.

Friday 19th March
6:26AM - 35:26 (5.0mi, 7:05/mi)
18:00PM - 35:58 (5.0mi, 7:12/mi)
Two very easy five milers, did the morning run early as I went to have a massage before work. My shins have been very sore recently and Gary noted that this had in turn affected my left calf which was very tight. I think that I need to change my shoes next week and stop wearing so many lightweight shoes for my steady runs. I wish I could have a massage every week as they make such a difference to my legs, they just feel so relaxed in the days just after.

Saturday 20th March

Sunday 21st March
10:08AM - 16:31 w/u (2.0mi, 8:15/mi)
11:04AM - 31:36 Lincoln 10k (6.23mi, 5:04mi) 4:42, 4:59, 5:13, 5:06, 5:08, 5:17, 1:09
11:52AM - 29:05 c/d (2.90mi, 10:02/mi)
Race didn't particularly go to plan, as went off a bit too hard in chase of Bowser, Doe and Raeside. Ian Kimpton was alongside me to 2 miles and then he worked hard to push on and catch Valentine of Bolton who was falling off the lead three. I just didn't have the power in my legs to go with him and after also passing Valentine at 5k was in no mans land for the rest of the race. The course also didn't help with the time as the long inclines were mind numbingly boring and seemed to go on forever.

Total Weekly Mileage - 75.32 - Was hoping to get a bit more mileage in this week but had Saturday off to make sure I wasn't to tired for the race. Hopefully before the track season begins I can get a few decent mileage weeks in to get some strength back in my legs.

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Garmin - the Runners Marmite?

The Garmin it seems is either loved by runners or hated by them. Within the running community there is a distinct divide between those who religiously rely on their beloved Garmin and those who passionately dismiss them as inaccurate pieces of junk. To be honest I fall into the first of the two categories and would now be lost without my Garmin and I will explain why.

As an athlete I like to know exactly what pace I am running at to ascertain my level of performance, so why not use technology to establish this? I am fully aware that in days gone by that much better runners than myself have lived without a Garmin and they did just fine. But, if they had access to modern day technology I am sure that many of them would have made use of it. I also accept that knowing what pace you are running at for every mile will not make you a better runner. But, in turn running at the correct pace that you have pre-determined in your schedule will only be of benefit.

Those on the other side of the fence will argue that a runner should simply listen to his body and run accordingly. I agree, but there are definitely runs when you head out of the door feeling awful but often if you push through the first mile then things suddenly are not so bad. Then again there are those days when your body just refuses to function, but at least the Garmin will be on hand to alert you to this fact and the runner can adjust their run if necessary. I accept it is hard to try and not push yourself too hard when you notice things are not going to plan, but that is the challenge of the sport we love and not the fault of the Garmin.

One thing that I do agree with the Garmin 'haters' on is the use it for measuring the accuracy of a race over a set distance. If your Garmin shows that a 10k is actually 9.96k then it does not mean the race is short. If a runner slightly cuts a corner or in turn weaves through a field of other runners of course your Garmin is going to give a slightly different recording to the distance of the race, so please stop the whinging.

Another argument in the anti-Garmin army's weaponry is that the Garmin is too bulky to run with - this is no longer the case. Fans of previous models of the Garmin will notice a significant difference in the new model as it is now much sleeker and lighter. Similarly those that argue that the Garmin loses signal when running through trees or near tall buildings are also fighting a losing battle. This is due to the fact that the latest Garmin has a highly-sensitive GPS receiver that makes the signal received much stronger than other GPS units on the market.

Admittedly the Garmin does have its faults with its price tag, the bezel that is too-sensitive and the masses of complicated settings that will never be used. But, it is an extremely successful piece of kit for runners who want to keep an eye on how they are performing. But, whether you love it or hate it, the Garmin will be around on the running scene for a long time to come.

Marathon Racing Shoes Part II

In part two of the marathon racing shoes series Aaron Scott looks at the Adidas Adizero Tempo II and Adidas Adizero Boston II. With just 39 days until London, both would make ideal racing shoes for the runner who wants an element of performance but does not want to compromise too much on the cushioning and support of their regular training shoes.

Adidas Adizero Tempo II - The Adizero Tempo II is in truth much more than a racing shoe. However, for the runner who is looking to buy his first lightweight shoe and needs an element of stability it is ideal. It may not be as light as some of the out and out racing shoes on the market like the Adios, but this is simply because it offers a lot more cushioning and support. The pro-moderator support unit in the mid-foot provides the stability to the shoe to prevent a small degree of pronation. While the adiprene cushioning in the heel combined with a full wedge of adiprene+ cushioning in the forefoot provides ample shock absorption - the previous incarceration of the Tempo just had a smaller adiprene+ insert.

The fit of the Tempo has also been improved and the snugness around the mid-foot adds to the racy feel of the shoe. The number of overlays on the upper has been reduced to prevent rubbing - which can be a particular problem for many runners competing over marathon distance. Despite being more cushioned than racing shoes it is still extremely responsive and the Formotion unit adapts to the ground to ensure a smooth ride. The only concern with the shoe is that the firmness of the cushioning might not be to every runner's taste. Overall, if you are looking for a shoe for the marathon that is still cushioned and supportive but still highly responsive then the Tempo 2 would be a very sensible acquisition.

Weight - 305 grams (size UK9)
Price - £70
Rating - 8/10

Adidas Adizero Boston II - The Boston II is very similar to the Tempo in its fit and general all round feel. However, it is designed for the runner who has a neutral gait and therefore does not require the pro-moderator support making the shoe slightly lighter than the Tempo. The 3D formotion heel again provides a very smooth transition from heel to forefoot and you can expect a fast out of the box feel from the Boston. The shoe is then suitable for those seeking more cushioning than a traditional racing flat that will not compromise the racing shoe fit. The only slight problem with this shoe is the bright highlighter green colour which is not to everybody's liking.

Weight - 293 grams (size UK9)
Price - £70
Rating - 8/10

The next part of the series will look at the shoes within the Nike series of running shoes suitable for the marathon. So check back soon for more reviews.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Aaron Scott Training - 8th March to 14th March

The weather in England has taken a bit of getting used to again after a few weeks running in the heat and humidity of Australia. But, finally the cold snap seems to be subsiding and with the days starting to get longer, the British summer time is hopefully on its way. I have decided to run the Lincoln 10k on 21st March so have another couple of weeks to cram in some last minute training to hopefully do myself justice. Before my trip away I would have hoped for a sub-31 minute 10k but anything under 31 and a half minutes will be a satisfactory result. Anyway, back to the training and the aim of the week was to run between 70 and 75 miles with a bit more quality than was evident in my training in the winter months.

Monday 8th March
Rest Day - legs a bit tight from the race on Sunday.

Tuesday 9th March
11:31AM - 30:47 steady (5.00mi, 6:09/mi)
6:25PM - 11:58 w/u (1.42mi, 8:27/mi)
7:01PM - 8 x 3 mins grass session, 2 mins rec, (6.46mi total). Splits 3:02 (0.6mi, 5:07/mi), 3.00 (0.59mi, 5:06/mi), 2:59 (0.61mi, 4:55/mi), 3:00 (0.61mi, 4:56/mi), 3:00 (0.6mi, 5:02/mi), 2:59 (0.62mi, 4:48/mi), 3:00 (0.59mi, 5:03/mi), 3:00 (0.6mi, 5:01/mi).
Ran the first five with Sam, but had to manage the last three on my own. The last three felt slower, however on reflection they are just as quick as the earlier reps.
7:46PM - 12:11 c/d (1.52mi, 8:03/mi)

Wednesday 10th March
9:00AM - 61:31 (10.0mi, 6:09/mi) Splits 6:08, 6:11, 6:19, 6:14, 6:11, 6:02, 6:08, 6:09, 5:58, 6:10.

Thursday 11th March
6:29PM - 15:48 w/u (1.99mi, 7:56/mi)
6:57PM - 10 x West Parade Loop (0.47mi), (6.05mi total). Splits 2:24, 2:28, 2:26, 2:27, 2:26, 2:25, 2:23, 2:25, 2:26, 2:18.
Good session as ran solo with many doing inter counties at the weekend. The loop has a hill in it and the last time I did it, ten days before running 31:20 for 10k, I averaged 2:27. So a big improvement and good sign that I can go sub 31:30 at Lincoln.
7:39PM - 16:54 c/d (2.0mi, 8:28/mi)

Friday 12th March
7:38AM - 31:14 steady (5.0mi, 6:15/mi)
6:08PM - 62:01 steady (10.0mi, 6:12/mi). Splits 6:18, 6:08, 6:16, 6:15, 6:19, 6:14, 6:06, 6:09, 6:06, 6:08.

Saturday 13th March
7:38AM - 30:55 steady (5.0mi, 6:11/mi)
5:24PM - 16:25 w/u (2.16mi, 7:36/mi)
5:53PM - 20:44 tempo (4.0mi, 5:11/mi). Splits 5:01, 5:14, 5:16, 5:13.
Very windy around the 3k loop and it just happened to be on the stretch that was uphill making matters even more difficult. Good solid run though.
6:14PM - 15:24 c/d (1.9mi, 8:06/mi)

Sunday 14th March
9:08AM - 77:24 Long Run (11.38mi, 6:48/mi).
Came back to Lincoln to do long run with Tom and Bowser. Much of it was off road and the time reflects that. Legs didn't feel great so decided to cut the 90 minute run a bit short.

Total Weekly Mileage - 73.88mi. Another good solid week and three decent sessions. Hopefully get another week at around 85 miles next week and have a meeting with my coach on Monday to discuss the track season. So, next week I hope to have my summer racing schedule all in place and have some definite events to target.


Sunday, 14 March 2010

Aaron Scott Training - 1st March to 7th March.

This is the first installment of my training diary which I will try to upload at the end of every training week. An overview of my running history can be seen at This brief glance into my running achievements to date, fundamentally shows a lack of basic speed. Therefore, from April onwards I am looking to move away from road running and give the track season my full attention. The aims for the season are a sub 4:00 1500m, a sub 8:30 3k and a sub 14:45 5k. While these goals may seem a tad optimistic to many, I believe they are achievable with a hard, consistent, progressive training.

After two and a bit weeks of enjoying some Australian sunshine it was back to the mileage. However, the week consisted of slightly less miles than usual, in order to ease back into it again.

Monday 1st March
7:00AM - 37:55 easy (5.16mi, 7:21/mi)

Tuesday 2nd
10:40AM - 31:11 steady (5.00mi, 6:14/mi)
6:20PM - 16:30 w/u (2.00mi, 8:15/mi)
7:00PM - 5 x 1 mile (400 rec),(6.17mi total). Splits 4.44, 4.49, 4.50, 4.48, 4.50.
7:46PM - 8:40 c/d (1.02mi, 8:31/mi)

Wednesday 3rd
8:58AM - 60:52 steady (10.00mi, 6:05/mi). Splits 6.12, 6.07, 6.14, 6.03, 6.13, 5.59, 6.05, 6.06, 5.56, 5.57.

Thursday 4th
7:36AM - 31:56 steady (5.00mi, 6:23/mi)
6:18PM - 18:37 w/u (2.43mi, 7:48/mi)
6:47PM - 10 mins tempo (1.91mi), 8 x millman hill, 10 mins tempo (1.86mi), (6.00mi total).
7:31PM - 12:46 c/d (1.42mi, 9:01/mi)

Friday 5th
6:44PM - 53:25 steady (8.54mi, 6:15/mi). Splits 6.19, 6.08, 6.22, 6.25, 6.06, 6.21, 6.17, 6.01, 3.25 (0.54mi).

Saturday 6th
Planned Rest Day

Sunday 7th
9:39AM - 7:19 w/u (1.01mi, 7:16/mi).
10:35AM - 70:38 Grantham Half Marathon (2nd) (13.14mi, 5:23/mi). Splits 5.02, 5.16, 5.10, 5.16, 5.17, 5.41 (1st BIG hill), 5.35, 5.15, 5.26, 5.20, 5.59 (2nd MASSIVE Hill), 5.16, 5.17, 0.44.
12:25PM - 7:03 c/d (0.83mi, 8:33/mi)

Total Weekly Mileage 67.72mi. Steadier week just to get back into it. Ran the half just to assess current fitness and believe the time was worth about 69 minutes because of the hills. Slightly disappointed to come second after leading for 8 miles but just didn't have the strength in the legs after the hills.

Few pictures from the Half Marathon:

Saturday, 13 March 2010

Marathon Racing Shoes - Part I

In the weeks leading up to the Spring marathon season, Aaron Scott will be reviewing the best racing shoes on the market to cope with ultimate test of endurance.

Adidas Adizero Adios - A very light, responsive shoe that will suit those with an efficient neutral gait. Adidas have worked hard on their lightweight shoes in recent years and the Adios is perhaps their greatest accomplishment. The Adizero last offers a fast, smooth ride and the flexibility of the forefoot combined with the Adiprene+ cushioning provides a great feel every footstrike. The fit of the shoe will suit people at the narrower end of the foot width spectrum. However, this slimline fit helps with the racing feel of this shoe. Haile Gebrselassie used the Adios for his world record breaking 2:03.59 Berlin marathon. And if it is good enough for him it surely sufficient for the rest of us.

Weight - 220 grams (size UK9).
Price - £75
Rating - 9/10

Tuesday, 9 March 2010



The winter months mean one thing for distance runners - it is time to embrace the cold and put in the miles. In years gone by this would be done in an “off the shelf” specialist running shoe. However, for many runners -whose running style varies between their left and right feet - this often involved a sort of compromise being drawn, between too much or too little support. With the Somnio shoes this is no longer the case. They can be tailored to suit individual foot differences – a bespoke running shoe if ever there was one.

Ever since the Somnio range of shoes burst onto the UK market much has indeed been written about how these shoes can be adapted to fit the varying needs of a whole host of runners. But, the question still begs can the shoes really withstand the test of time of hard mileage on the roads like many of its traditional competitors?

Despite some early scepticism the Somnio shoes have quickly won me over. The Somnio Exact Change – Somnio’s moderate control shoe – with its mix of cushioning and support allows for an extremely smooth ride. Its cushioning may be slightly firmer than other leading brands but this provides an extremely responsive feel. It also offers excellent forefoot support - making it the ideal winter training shoe for putting in those extra miles.

The Somnio Exact Change has helped me stay injury free and therefore able to gain the consistency in training to improve as an athlete. Somnio as a brand wants runners to ‘achieve its dreams’ and I can certainly see it playing a key role in helping me achieve my potential in the sport.

Striking a Pose


If you told a friend that you were having a golf lesson at the weekend they wouldn’t bat an eyelid. Tell them you are going for a lesson on how to run and you can be sure that you will be laughed at.

This seems strange when considering injuries and niggles are a proverbial pain in the backside for runners – sometimes literally. So, you would have thought that surely every runner would put time and energy into their technique, but sadly this is not the case.

This means runners spend hours on the treatment table. Or waste time scratching their heads wondering what is so wrong with their body for it to fall apart after a couple of miles. Thankfully, help is out there.

“Learning the POSE running technique can dramatically improve training and racing performance, help prevent injuries and give a competitive edge,” says Mark Hainsworth, a general practitioner and certified coach of POSE. “The technique can take as little as two hours to learn for some. Although funnily enough women tend to be better at it than men – who often over analyse matters.”

Hainsworth teaches the POSE technique to runners across the country. With the help of lectures and internet forums on websites such as FetchEveryone – a fountain of knowledge if ever there was one - the word of POSE is slowly spreading. The feedback so far has been positive from converts to the technique.

“I tried returning to running under my own steam several times,” said Steve Baxter, who in the past ran with poor technique and always got injured straight away. “A couple of months after starting to learn the POSE method I have improved enough to follow a schedule without getting injured. It looks like I’m going to be able to run again thanks to POSE.”

Other testimonies have reiterated this notion. With runners claiming that the technique has rejuvenated their training and put old injuries to bed. Could running injuries be a thing of the past?

The technique is the brainchild of the two-time Olympic coach Nicholas Romanov. His research into the technique suggests that with coaching some runners can in the space of six months get rid of the orthotics and stability shoes. The POSE revolution has really taken off in the US and parts of Europe and the UK looks likely to follow.

“The UK at the moment currently has the third highest percentage of POSE runners in the world,” says Hainsworth. “The French love it. It has been adopted by the Parkour runners and if you want to see an example of POSE just take a look at the Citroen add. The man who modelled that is a POSE runner.”

Running in its essence is a system of movement that is a series of falls and catches. The impact we put through our joints and muscles when we run is significant - in excess of our body weight in fact. So it is easy to see why so many runners with poor technique get injured so frequently.

“A runner leaves the ground for a part of the gait cycle. This means the ground reaction force has to be proportional to more than the bodyweight of the runner,” says Hainsworth. Remember Newton’s law – every action has an equal and opposite reaction. If a runner spends half a gait cycle on the ground and half in the air then the ground reaction force has to be proportional to twice the body weight.”

At its core the POSE technique teaches runners to rethink the way in which they run. It focuses on making runners aware of what their body is actually doing while they are running – called proprioreception. In doing so the traditional method of running heel to toe is forgotten.

“The POSE method teaches the runner to align his body to maximize the use of gravity. It teaches you to use the lean and to land under the body rather than in front,” he says. “It teaches you to land on the ball of the foot to minimize impact on the joints and use the body’s natural cushioning.”

To learn this technique Hainsworth recommends the use of drills and form intervals to reinforce the POSE ideals. “These drills which can be practiced for a few minutes everyday reinforce the perception and allow the technique to become second nature.”

It would not be fair to say that POSE is the only technique out there gaining a rapport- with Chi and CORE running gathering a large following. However, there does seem to be a great deal of common ground between such teachings.

“Of course POSE is not the only method that one can learn to run efficiently. After all many runners run very efficiently without the benefit of being taught pose,” says Hainsworth. “They run to pose standards as a result of efficiency born of long hours training or learning another method.”

Within the running world there is a definitely a shift towards technique within running. Efficient running form is therefore not restricted to only talented ‘naturals’ like Haile Gebreselassie. As Hainsworth says “there are specific characteristics of elite runners that you can learn and practice. You can learn the secrets of efficient runners and make them your own.”

Monday, 8 March 2010

Running Related Quote of the Month

This will hopefully be a continuing theme on this page, here's the first of many:

"Some people create with words or with music or with a brush and paints. I like to make something beautiful when I run. I like to make people stop and say, 'I've never seen anyone run like that before.' It's more than just a race, it's a style. It's doing something better than anyone else. It's being creative."

First things first...

So here goes, Running UK's is diving into the unchartered waters of blogging. This page will provide up to date news and reviews from the running scene in the UK. Primarily it will aim to provide impartial reviews on running shoes, apparel and nutrition. But will also comment on topical information from the running scene and pretty much anything running orientated that springs to mind.

The site is almost up and running (excuse the pun!) now after a few teething problems with the design of the page. I can already predict that this page will change rapidly over the coming weeks, hopefully all for the better. However, one thing that will certainly remain constant is Running UK's passion for running and quality journalism.

Finally, Running UK is now on twitter so be sure to follow us!

Please check back shortly for our first review on marathon racing shoes.