Saturday, 10 April 2010


Returning to topic of twice daily training.   Two runs in the day was very much the norm when I was younger.
  I took up the idea of training whilst commuting when I was in the sixth form.  I would run the 7 mile home after school,  then back the next morning, straight through the middle of Manchester. (It wasn't just Kenyan pupils who ran to and from school!)   Certainly became used to bouncing off a car bonnet  and racing buses.
 When I worked in the centre of the city  having left school I would go on the bus on a Monday morning then run to and from for the week very often,  finishing with Friday morning.  Friday night I'd get the bus home complete with shirts etc worn during the week.  Manchester traffic was such that very often it was possible to cover the jurney faster than public transport.  Fully loaded double decker buses complete with a dozens of passngers standing on the lower deck would struggle up the inclines as I powered up past them; much to the annoyance of the bus drivers who I often witnessed going through red lights to keep ahead! Reaching the city centre, buses would fill up with school mates and I would suffer their jibes for much of the rest of the run.
  In the sixties virtually every house in Manchester would burn coal for heating. On occasions the smoke emitted from thousands of homes became trapped in the atmosphere and dense smogs occurred, very often in the morning.   One particular week, conditons were extremely bad every morning and prevented me running back to work, having run home the night before.   Each morning I had to find another suit for work.  By Friday I ended up with 5 sets of clothing which all had to be brought home on the bus.   I still wonder whether the Manchester  smogs brought on my pneumothorax at the end of the decade.
  I continued to run to and from work during the years when I was teaching.  Any books for marking Pat would collect from the school and bring home.   Training twice a day in this fashion was a very good way of clocking up the miles and of course meant that runners were at home with their families in the evening.
  The running to and from work routine generally means one run Monday, run to and from Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, one run Friday.  But having set up The Complete Runner in the early '80s
and being self employed I would twice most days except weekends running 80/90 miles per week. Never more.
  I think that 70 miles to 90 miles per week with tapering for and recovery after key events can be maintained for many years.  But it is not surprising to read that the talented young Welsh runner, Simon Lawson,  has "quit athletics" at the age of 19,  when his mileage peaked at 180 per week!!

Following 8 on the road last night today I'll be nursing the legs on the trail this fine spring   morning.   Enjoy your running!


  1. OH MY GOODNESS! I am so excited to have stumbled onto your have a lot of great knowledge and experience! I am thrilled to be able to follow along!

  2. I am a runner who runs to work and back. It's just over 3 miles to my work, and I sometimes extend the run home to make the total miles for the day about 11. I find it the best option for me to balance the needs of a business, a wife, and a young family. I have tried over the years to find other ways of fitting it in, but find it hard to get out again once I am home. This way I am usually home by 6-30pm with the training over and done with. I realise it's only possible for those people who have a job that can accommodate it. Those who have this I would recommend it.