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Vicky Penn in Meersbrook Park (picture: David Bocking)
Vicky Penn in Meersbrook Park (picture: David Bocking)

Beat the morning commute by running to work

heffield’s running boom is leading more and more workers to leave the car and bus behind and commute in their trainers instead. Local runners say the Outdoor City is ideal for ‘run commuting’ or ‘rummuting,’ because they can choose commuter routes through parks, off-road trails or even along riversides.

Matt Barton sometimes fits in an extra long run early in the morning from Chapeltown to the city centre.

“This is such a fantastic city, and to see the sun rising while everyone else is asleep makes you feel king or queen of your own little part of Sheffield,” he said.

Keen runners like Matt say they can fit in their training during the journey to work and get home to see their families instead of pounding the streets in the evening.

If you’re a runner, why wouldn’t you rummute, said Amy Earnshaw. “It’s so easy. You’ve done some exercise and all you’ve done is come to work.”

Laurie Harvey reckons there’s no cheaper way to travel into the city centre. “You just need footwear and a bit of gear you might have anyway.”

Runners rommute regularly

Members of the booming Steel City Striders running club said they’re seeing more runners commuting anything from 3 to over 50 miles a week, and said run commuting makes them alert when they get to work and de-stressed when they get home.

And once you’ve put on your shoes and stepped out the door, rummuting is simple, they say, as long as you plan ahead by dropping off your work gear on a cycle or bus journey earlier in the week, for example.

“Attitudes are changing as more and more people embrace the idea” said Jeni Harvey. “Running is cheap and practical. You set off and know nothing can get in your way, not a traffic jam or a broken down tram. You’re in charge.”

For more local running info see: www.theoutdoorcity.co.uk/run/

Tips for Runners
Plan Ahead – cycle or take the bus with your gear once or twice a week, and change at work on running days. Keep shoes, coat, shirts, make up and washing gear at work.
Plan Your Routes – check footpaths and parks, but think about streetlights too in winter.
Run Home – if there are no washing facilities at work, try running home instead.
Training – you can fit in training like intervals or speed sessions or even clock up Strava segments en route.

Ideas for Employers

Set Up Lockers – for clothes, make up, washing kit and footwear.
Provide Showers and Drying Facilities – showers or other facilities to freshen up and somewhere to dry kit on rainy days.
Be Supportive – don’t shake your head at muddy colleagues! What about getting vouchers from a running shop instead, or invite a trainer in to help people get started?