It's taken me a long time to come to running, all things considered. I only
really started trying to run at all when I stopped cycling during my time in
the south east of England, but it's now an essential part of my exercise
patterns. Much of this change has been down to the realisation that you need
to change shoes rather more frequently than I had thought!
My favoured style of running is distance running - I have a goal to run the
Portland Marathon, and the runs I have enjoyed most have all been at least
five miles long. I had hoped to participate in the 2003 Portland Marathon, but
I suffered a persistent knee injury which prevented me from continuing my
training. Treatment for this is ongoing, and I am optimistic that I'll be able
to go the distance in 2004.
As I say, shoes... running shoes are not cheap. A good pair will cost $80
to $100 (£50-£60) and to avoid injury you need to change shoes
every 300 miles (at least in my case, but I land hard - softer runners might
get 500 miles out of a pair). Hence a runner might replace their shoes every
three months, but that is still going to be a better deal than the costs of
treatment for injured joints, tendons and muscles.
That's about the only major recurring expense for running, though - shorts
and other running gear are no more expensive than for any other physically
demanding sport, and since you tend to run on public access routes there are
not likely to be large costs involved there. Entry fees for races might mount
up, but you'll never need to buy another T shirt again if you run in many
Running is just a good value sport, as long as you can steer clear of
I used to hate running with a passion born of being forced to stumble 1500m
at school when I could barely run 100m, but now I find running is something I
enjoy a lot when I can run, and miss a great deal when I can't.