1 - How long have you been running for?
I've been running for about 4 years now so in running terms, I'd consider myself a newbie. Recently I've started doing more weights at the gym, but deep down I'm a cardio boy. The treadmill is the 1st machine I head to when I'm in the gym as it's a great way to totally switch off from the stresses of the day. It's the only place I can't pick my phone up and head back into work mode.
2 - What got you in to running?
Initially I started to lose weight as I knew running was a great way to lose calories. At my heaviest in 2011, I weighed 19 stone 9lbs and when I started running about 4 years ago, I was about 16 stone 7lbs. I'm now 11 stone 9lbs and running has played a massive part in that.
3 - What’s been your greatest achievement to date?
For year and years I've told myself that 5k is my peak running activity. Last year I entered a virtual run called Run Like a Time Lord 5k for The National Autistic Society. The idea was you had to do a minimum of 5k over a week long period, but the leader board was based on total distance ran. So I ran 61k in a week. It put me 18th of 1136 runners. I never thought I'd be able to say I was in that good a position.
4 - Do you have any rituals before or after a race that must be stuck to?
I'm a bit of a data geek - so when I'm running outside it's essential to put Strava on! I usually plan my outdoor runs to run somewhere new - there are so many roads and routes on people's doorsteps that you just never explore. I definitely know the outskirts of my home town a lot better through running!
5 - What’s your favourite post run meal?
I'm fairly consistent with what I eat at home or outdoors. I'm vegetarian (and trying to turn vegan) so if I'm running in a race I'll seek out a good pub that does great vegetarian options. Hummus pretty much goes with everything doesn't it?
6 - What’s the best thing you’ve witnessed at an event?
Every event just has a good vibe with the right mix of competitive attitude and support. I don't run in it, but the Manchester Marathon is a really great example of the community coming together. Our home town of Altrincham has won the Best Community Prize for the past few years. The atmosphere in town during this event is electric.
7 - Of the races you’ve run in, what’s been your favourite and why?
My favourite race is an annual charity event for The Christie in Manchester. I set up Altrincham VS Cancer 4 years ago and it's 28 businesses running 5k each for a total of 140k. The concept was based around the fact we're all tweeters and the original limit for twitter was 140 characters. It brings the community together and it's turned ultra competitive for the fastest times each year and it's raised £10,000 for The Christie to date. I don't think there's a greater feeling than helping others.
8 - When you’re not running, what’s your favourite past time?
I have two massive passions. Since day one I've been a massive music fan and I spent 14 years working in the music industry, so most days I have spotify on listening to new music. I go to about 10 gigs a month still do to date.
And my other passion is my business. I run a social media company so my life is connected to my phone on apps such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. It is a business and it is how I earn my money, but I do really enjoy it. I only ever work in what I'm passionate about.
9 - If you could run in a race anywhere in the world, where and why?
Before I started running, I went on some great holidays - New York, Sydney (Bondi Beach) & Ayia Napa. I'd like to go back to those places and run the likes of Central Park or Sydney Harbour early in the morning before the crowds come out - really mixing up the greenery with an urban run.
10 - If you could host a dinner party with 3 other runners (famous or otherwise) who would they be and why? And most importantly, what would be on the menu?
- Liam Gallagher - I only found out recently he's a runner.
- Johnny Marr - Spotting the theme here with the running rock & rollers?
- Daley Thompson - I'm singing the Lucozade theme now. He was the runner everyone grew up with.
What would be on the menu? We'd either go super healthy with a veggie box of bulgar wheat, avocado, spinach, hummus, beans and so on. Or we'd go super dirty with fries and vegan burger topped with facon and cheeze!!
Thanks to Alex for sharing his running adventure and how running has helped him lose weigh and keep fit. We're off to listen to some rock 'n' roll running music!
Keep an eye out for the next in our Be Inspired series coming soon.