In our latest Meet the Team piece we catch up with Running Works store manager David.
David has worked in running retail for 15 years. He has a wealth of experience in the industry and also in running biomechanics. He shares our over-arching passion for building a running community and is a well traveled runner.
Why did you start running?
From a young age my father was keen to instill the importance of being fit and active. He took me out for my first ‘run’ when I was eight years old and I have been hooked ever since. I still visit the area of Richmond Park, The Isabella Plantation, where we went on our first run together. I would recommend it, it is stunning!
What distances have you raced over and do you have a favourite?
I’ve raced just about every distance at some stage or another. I don’t really have a preferred distance although the fact that I have almost 200 parkruns under my belt would suggest I like the odd 5k. I would say I like the less mainstream, quirkier events.
My favourite race (if you can call it that) was called The Cheese Run 10k in a small town in New Zealand called Tokoroa. I was working in the cheese factory there whilst travelling. Every year the workers compete in the race together and follow it by eating a load of cheese. That was a good day.
If you could go back in time to when you started running and give yourself advice, what would it be?
A few things. Firstly I would definitely tell myself that if you aren’t enjoying running there is something wrong. In my opinion a run should be energising and not leave you feeling like you need to go to bed for a week! I would also tell myself that running is subjective and there are no right or wrongs.
What has been your biggest achievement in running?
From a personal point of view, completing San Francisco Iron Man is up there. When I get to 200 parkruns that will be special, but I think the thing I am most proud of is the people I have been able to help over the years! I have worked in specialist running for almost 16 years and take as much enjoyment now doing a gait analysis as I did back when I started.
There is nothing better than talking to someone who is about to begin their own love affair with running. If I am able to contribute to their journey even in the smallest way that makes me happy.
What has been the best / strangest thing you’ve ever discovered in a race goody bag?
The best was a Kit Kat Chunky that was entirely chocolate and no wafer at last year’s Fairlop Half Marathon! The strangest was an “I Love Chester” key ring from a 10k race I ran a couple of years ago.
What are your favourite running shoes and why?
Best shoe ever for me was a Saucony Grid Triumph 4, circa 2009. As a forefoot striker I always struggle to find something cushioned enough with the right level of flexibility and it was hands down the best shoe I have ever ran in. I am currently running in the Nike Zoom Elite, which is also a really good shoe.
And your favourite item of kit?
My Nike Flash Jacket; comfortable, functional and really sexy!
Do you use any mental techniques to get yourself through a tough race or training session?
For longer sessions I just continually tell myself not to die! In all seriousness, I have a pretty natural ability to be clear of any real thoughts when I am running. That is one of the reasons I love it so much, I am not thinking about anything else other than the next step.
What are your future goals or bucket list races?
If you’d like to ask David a question about the shop, training or absolutely anything running related post in the comments section and we’ll get his answer for you!