Last year I went on a “Marathon Masterclass” with coach and all-round running guru Sam Murphy. At one stage during the proceedings she had us doing intervals around the track at Crystal Palace and joined each of us in turn to provide a bit of feedback on our running form.
Having once seen a YouTube video of me in “action” at the Hastings Half Marathon, I suspected I ran more like a slightly unorthodox road walker but Sam thought my style was pretty good, although I was “certainly a heel striker”.
Although I don’t remember making a conscious decision about this, post-marathon I shifted to what I think is now more of a mid foot strike and at my last visit to Sweatshop, the gait analysis confirmed this (unless I put it on just for the camera).
What I do know is that I don’t run like Runner’s World’s ultimate running role model on the cover of this particular edition. At some point, presumably the editorial team sat around and chose this image as the best way to attract the attention of shoppers down the Newsagent’s. Our cover star looks happy, is not sweating, doesn’t have scabs on her knees from a recent fall on the trails, as well as not having hands caked with sticky stuff following a mid-race gel malfunction. And in the end, it seems that such factors are a whole lot more important than the strong suggestion that, with a heel strike that severe, surely she’s not actually running?