Would you swap your car keys and rail pass for your trainers in a bid to get to work? Incorporating running into your commute is an excellent way to fit training into a busy schedule. Not only does it save both precious time and money, it saves the pain and frustration of sitting in rush hour traffic, and can be quite frankly, liberating.

Essential gear

If you’re going to travel to work on foot then it’s highly likely that you’ll be travelling with a small amount of baggage. A good backpack is essential. It needs to be light and comfortable to wear (i.e. no chaffing straps), yet big enough to carry your essentials to work.

Sealed containers are also a must if you’re going to be transporting food and drink, otherwise you could end up wearing the pasta salad that you’d planned for lunch!

It’s certainly worth investing in a good head torch and reflective clothing for those dark mornings and evenings during the winter months, especially if you have to run through poorly lit areas.

Get organised!

The logistics involved in travelling to work on foot will require some forward planning. If possible try to leave as much as you can at work – toiletries, clothing, food and snacks.

If you are partly driving or using public transport to commute to work then it’s certainly worth packing some lightweight casual clothes in your backpack. That way you can leave work in these, and leave your smarter clothes at work. Nobody likes a scrunched up suit or skirt!

Find the combination that works for you

Depending on the distance that you live from work, and how often you’d like to run, there are a number of different combinations that you can use for a run commute. If the distance to work isn’t too great then you may wish to run to and from work. You could however, drive or use public transport part of the way to work and run the remaining distance or drive to work in the morning and run home in the evening and the next day run in the morning and drive home in the evening.

Hygiene help

If you’re lucky enough to have a shower at your workplace then post-run hygiene is pretty straight forward. However, if not, are there any leisure centres/gyms nearby where you can finish your run and shower there? I’m sure that as any commuting runner will tell you, dry shampoo is a fantastic invention!

Research your route

It’s perfectly feasible that your running route to work may be different to the route that you’d take in the car or on public transport. There may be numerous ways to get to your workplace so it’s worth getting out the map and doing some research. Are there pavements to run on and is the route sufficiently lit?

Think about fuelling

Your fuelling stratergy  largely depends on how far you’ll be running and personal preference. If you are running in the morning and don’t want to run on an empty stomach then you’ll need some easily digestible fuel before you leave, such as a banana or some toast. Otherwise it’s wise to keep some breakfast foods at work. Aim to refuel with a combo of carbs and protein.