In this post we asked our homieHenrik some nice questions about his great love – running. Have fun!
Henrik, how long have you discovered running for yourself?
I’ve probably always run a bit like that. I played soccer for almost 12 years and was quite ambitious. At some point after graduation I only did fitness and noticed during my studies that I could become a little more active again. I ran smaller distances 1-2 times a week. It wasn’t until I found a running group in Berlin in 2012 that I continued to increase it until today.
What is the fascinating thing about running for you?
Running is pretty much the easiest sport in the world, you don’t need great equipment, you don’t have to spend a lot of time to learn the technique and you can do it anytime, anywhere. In addition, it is a great balance to everyday university or office work, so that even in the worst weather I can get out at least an hour and get some fresh air, even if I would hardly be able to set foot on the day without running .
How do you prepare for a marathon?
Like probably everyone else who runs his first marathon, I diligently printed out a 3-month training plan before my first marathon, hung it on the wall and always wrote it down meticulously. Then you have a mix of shorter fast and longer slow runs and gradually build up distance.
I was running too much at the time, I wanted to keep improving myself and I had a lot of little aches and pains so that I almost couldn’t have run the marathon in Copenhagen at the time. But then I ran it with a knee bandage.
This training plan somehow put me under pressure and stress, so I have been training without a training plan ever since. I always run 2-3x / week, Tuesdays always 10km, then a little further on weekends and in preparation for competitions then a day intervals or short quick units. Another day a week I still go to the gym, but I train my entire body there with much smaller weights than before. I also ride all everyday routes (to work, to shop, etc.) by bike and on weekends I also like to go on longer trips by road bike, which probably doesn’t hurt the training either. Especially in the preparation of the marathon there are then 2-3 long runs around the 30km and several runs over 20km, which I spread over the 3 months before the marathon but as I said, without a strict plan. I think the greatest art here is always the desire to keep running, which can quickly start to flute in preparation.
What do you eat before / during a competition / marathon?
When it comes to nutrition, I’m probably anything but a typical runner. I mainly do sports so that I can eat everything and even if I feel like drinking beer or partying. A friendly running crew from Copenhagen NBRO Running uses the hashtag #runpartyrepeat, which is very sympathetic to me.
It is already the case that the week before the marathon I drink as little alcohol and a lot of water as possible, eat more pasta a few days before the marathon and also eat as early as possible before the start, but there are a thousand theories and in the end everyone has to do a little himself find out what he’s comfortable with.
Which shoes / which shoe concept do you wear?
I have to be careful what I say because we are committed to the Run Pack not to commit ourselves to any brand and to remain as independent as possible, but I have been running Nike running shoes for years, short distances and interval training the Lunar Racer (flat and without support) and for everything else the Lunarglide (with some support). I will run in adidas at the Berlin Half Marathon in April and I am really looking forward to it.
What kind of run-specific exercises do you do at home?
An exercise that I do very regularly at home or that we do more often as a group after running is planking or forearm support. You train above all the abdomen but also the lower back, areas that are very important for stability while running. I hope that no sports doctor reads now and says that’s all nonsense but I like the exercise very much and try to do it at least 3 times a week. Then I do squats and calf raises, both of which can be done very easily with and without weights. I do both to counteract injuries.
What was your best time in a marathon and do you want to improve it?
03:15 from the last Berlin Marathon is currently my best time and yes, you usually want to improve a little every year. I am currently running 4 marathons, I am still running 2 this year, whereby I will pace a friend in Hamburg at 3:30 am. If everything goes well, I can get another 2-3 minutes out of last year in Berlin in September, so that we work towards the magical 3-hour limit year after year.
Have you ever had to fight injuries? Or. how do you prevent injuries?
I always had knee problems when I was 16-17, which is why I eventually lost the desire to play football. Before the first marathon I had knee problems again, which was more of an overload. In my opinion it is important to take breaks. Even if you start to get up very quickly and are hot, your body has to get used to running. I try to pause at least one day between races, even longer before competitions. For me it is then still important to practice alternative sports, such as racing bikes, fitness, possibly swimming. This protects against overloads and also ensures that the pleasure of running is maintained. If I don’t feel like running, I don’t need to start.
You founded the Run Pack crew in Berlin a few years ago with friends. What is this about?
We started this with some friends three years ago. We knew each other because we had met at Nike races before. But then everything was branded and dictated too much for us, so that we met more and more separately. Of course, it was still about running, but the social part was soon more important to us, so that afterwards you still enjoy sitting together, knowing and appreciating each other. That gradually grew and got the name “Run Pack Berlin” .
We are almost 100 runners today, but we have limited growth and continue to assume that we are more likely to accept friends from friends, that everyone in the group should know each other somehow and that you can be seen regularly. Today we are also very well connected with other international running crews such as NBRO from Copenhagen, Running Junkies from Amsterdam, Run Dem Crew from London, Black Roses from New York or Parkdale Roadrunners from Toronto. This means that we host events around the Berlin Marathon, for example, organize a warm-up run, a pasta party and an after party, but also provide sleeping places for international guests.
In return, we also travel abroad as a run pack. Next, in May, we’re going with 30-40 people to Hackney Half in London, which is hosted by Run Dem Crew.
Which marathon have you run so far – which do you want to run?
I’ve run the Copenhagen Marathon, Hamburg Marathon and Berlin twice. I’m running Hamburg and Berlin again this year, but I’m also really looking forward to Hackney Half in London. Next year I will definitely travel for a marathon and hopefully run the New York Marathon at some point. That would be such a secret dream.