THE DAYS WHEN THE ONLY REASON RUNNERS toed a start line was to clock a fast time have long gone – and nowhere is that more evident than in the carnival of humanity that is the Virgin Money London Marathon. A veteran of many, I am always moved by the names of lost or loved ones emblazoned on the back of so many vests. That PB suddenly doesn’t seem so important. And for all those with reasons clearly visible, thousands more run for thousands of other reasons of their own. We offer a snapshot of those diverse and inspiring backstories in our 26 reasons to run feature on page 36. I’m running London this year as part of the Runner’s world pace team. We’ll be pacing finish times in 15-minute increments from sub-3 to run/ walk (5:14). See runnersworld.co.uk/pacing for more info or visit our stand at the VMLM Expo.
Elsewhere in this issue, there’s more inspiration on offer from the masters athletes redefining perceptions of what older runners can achieve, in The golden age, on page 64. Once inspired, we offer you the know-how to improve your running, from the 10 best 5K and 10K training workouts ( p80), to finding the mental strength to push through pain (p44); and from gym-free moves for rock-solid joints (p91), to getting more from the friendly bacteria in your gut (p58). Plus, in a move presumably not being too closely monitored by WADA, on page 85 we unleash the awesome, performance-enhancing power of the muffin.