Chris Ford, founder of FORDY RUNS is a fountain of positive energy. He loves what he does and inspires thousands of people to put their trainers on every day.
Chris’s inclusive, no fuss and honest approach draws hordes of fellow runners of all levels.
Watch Chris’s review of Starfish flip-flops here. And do sign up to his video blog – it is full of great tips and honest advice!
Q: Chris, how did it all start?
I can’t remember exactly when it all started but I remember signing up for a race and turning up on my own and feeling very anxious and nervous. I looked around and no one was talking to each other or interacting with each other which I thought was nuts! So I started a Facebook group to try and bring runners together so they were not alone on race day. From that grew our online Communities which are now around 15,000 runners!
Q: Your Community attracts runners of all levels and all ages. How do you maintain engagement and relate to such a diverse audience?
The Community blows me away! It’s not just another Facebook running group, there are so many inspiring and supporting people in our Community it is extremely humbling. There are so many examples of the love and support within our Community that I could talk about it all day! From selfless acts of kindness, supporting individuals who may be struggling not just with running but life and then there are all the crazy things they all do to have fun! Our ethos is ultra-inclusive and we will not tolerate anything other than that. We have 2:50hr Marathon finishers to people who are just starting their Couch to 5k journey. The engagement comes naturally because every single person feels that Community spirit the minute they join. From the Community we formed the FORDY RUNS Running Club which is the fastest UK Athletics Affiliated Running Club in the Country! We also now have a thriving Junior Running initiative which helps kids aged 4-12 to get fit through running. All of this plus the thousands of pounds we raise for Charity every year! The FORDY RUNS Running Community is really special!
Q: You have recently survived Covid-19 and documented your recovery on social media in a very open and honest way. How was that journey for you? What was the response from your followers?
That was one of the toughest things ever! I really really felt awful. I count myself as pretty fit but to get hit with COVID-19 it was like being run over! I wanted to get the message out there early (I caught it at the start of March) that if I can get it and it made me real bad then everyone please take note and do as the Government says. It was hard but I got through it. I had amazing support from everyone which again shows you the love and support from my Community!
Q: What’s next? Are you training with a specific event in mind?
I am currently training for the Edinburgh and London Marathons. I appreciate that both of these may not go ahead but I will go through my training block as normal because every time you do, there is something more you learn. The experience I gain from this block will help me become a better runner and achieve the goals which I set myself in the future.
Q: We are a “Foot Soothing Blog” so we always ask seasoned runners the same question: what is your top post-exercise recovery tip? How do you avoid injury?
Active recovery and consistency are key! Don’t finish your run then go lay on the sofa all day! Get up and get active! The most important factor though I believe to staying injury free is consistency. Maintaining a pattern and not doing too much too soon and not running too fast all the time. Structure and consistency will make you stronger and hopefully less prone to injury!
To our readers: if you want to get hooked on running, be a part of a fun and supportive community and be the best version of yourself, Chris Ford is your man.