7 ways to improve your running using your environment

The benefits of using different environments as part of your running training

Runners sitting on stairs
John Yeong and Cheryl Tay, Singapore runners and content creators


Are you tired of running the same routes over and over again?

In this episode of The Better Show, host Cheryl Tay (@cheryltaysg) and sports presenter John Yeong (@thejohnyeong) take you through seven ways in which you can use your environment to improve your running training.

1. Trail Running

Not only is trail running a good change of scenery if you've only been doing city runs thus far, it is also a great way to develop balance and build strength.

Did we also mention that you will feel like you are going on a mini adventure and are less likely to get bored? It is also the perfect way and time for you to reconnect with nature, and trail runs are also not as hard on the body as pavement:

Where in Singapore?

MacRitchie Reservoir, Tampines Eco Green, Green Corridor


2. Slopes

Running up slopes, otherwise known as hill training, builds muscular endurance and muscle strength, simply because of the muscles in the body that this activity engages in order to propel your body up the slope.

Just think of this as resistance training to become a more powerful runner, as you will need to engage core muscle groups, and particularly your quads when running uphill.

Where in Singapore?

Benjamin Sheares Bridge, Southern Ridges, Mount Faber, Fort Canning Park, Bukit Batok Nature Park, MacRitchie Reservoir


3. Stairs

Stairwork greatly improves your heart health if done correctly. Some have also made this a regular part of their weight loss programs as it is one of the most effective ways to increase your heart rate, and also improve your aerobic capacity.

If you are doing longer flights of stairs or taller buildings, this could also be a good way of training your mental game as well.

Where in Singapore?

Benjamin Sheares Bridge, HDB Blocks, Marina Bay Financial Centre


4. Grass

Arguably the greatest benefit of running on grass is that it is a soft surface which helps to greatly reduce injury risk while running.

Low impact running is also good for muscle and joint strengthening, allows you to focus on what truly matters which is your running form, and the uneven terrain also improves balance.

Most elite runners spend a huge time running on grass than on roads, so as to keep their bodies in tip top condition for races.

Where in Singapore?

Any Stadiums or Parks


5. Gravel

Running on gravel engages your quads, glutes, calves and core and helps to stabilise muscle groups not often worked while reducing the force of impact for your running stride.

These are also great terrains for recovery runs as they are lower impact than running on roads and concrete. Where in Singapore?

Bedok Reservoir, Windsor Nature Park

6. Aqua Running

Aqua running or aqua jogging is regularly used in rehabilitative work with athletes, and also in increasing resistance during training.

Not only does it help with your cardio output and improve your running posture, many believe it is a more effective way of training as it offers better results for less work.

It is also ankle friendly and knee friendly, for those who are looking to return to running after a period out with injury.

Where in Singapore?

Any swimming pool


7. Treadmill Running

Treadmill running reduces impact and also allows you greater control of your run, particularly if you are not an experienced runner.

Many have also used it for race simulations, as well as in weight loss programs, as it has been proven to be an effective mode of training, and keeps motivation levels high. It is also a great running option in times of bad weather.

Where in Singapore?

Singapore Sports Hub, Fitness First Gym, Virgin Active Gym, Condominium facilities

The Better Show is a series brought to you by Orange Room and hosted by Cheryl Tay to help enrich your active lifestyle and empower you with the right skills to help you in your cycling, running and swimming.

#SportPlusSG #OrangeRoom #Running #SgRunners