Image John McFadyen Photography
The organisers advise all competitors to seek medical advice before embarking on any training schedule.

Machrihanish Dunes Golf Club kindly gives permission to MOKRUN to allow access for the half marathon route to the beach.  However, it must be noted that runners should not use the Golf Club grounds during training and should use the public access to the beach.

Training Advice

For local runners, both Jog Scotland and Campbeltown Running Club can offer advice and a training programme for the MOKRUN. Jog Scotland meet on a Monday evening at the Aqualibrium.  For more information contact Aqualibrium.

Campbeltown Running Club meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6.30pm at the Aqualibrium.  For more information check out 

General training tips for everyone

Compiled by Steve Brace Former Olympic & Commonwealth Marathon Runner



The most important piece of equipment is your running shoes. Always look for a good degree of cushioning and support to protect your joints from the impact caused by repetitive shock loading. Take your time, selecting your shoes to make sure they really fit well and wear them in gradually.


In warm weather choose either a nylon vest and shorts, which allow the sweat to evaporate, or a cotton T-shirt and shorts. Be sure to apply sun cream and petroleum jelly to any delicate areas which are likely to rub and chafe on a long run.

In cold weather, long tights or training bottoms and a long sleeved top are essential. When it gets really nippy, you’ll need to invest in a hat and a pair of gloves too.

NOTE: Don’t forget plenty of reflective gear when your evening training runs are shrouded in darkness.

Warming Up

Before rushing out of the door in a fit of enthusiasm, take time to thoroughly stretch and loosen up. You will save hours of recovery from injury later, and the quality of your running will almost certainly be improved.

A few limbering movements to stretch the hamstrings and calf’s, rotating the hips and generally gearing yourself up for sustained physical activity can actually save time if they precipitate a superior run.

Equally you should not finish your run by coming to a sudden halt. Gradually wind down by running more slowly near home and finish by cooling down with a short walk and some stretching.

Time of Day

Experiment with the time of day when you run, to see which suits you best. These will probably be dictated by mealtimes, according to the structure of your day.

  • A morning run and shower can leave you invigorated for the day ahead

  • Lunchtime depends upon the availability of a shower and changing facilities

  • An evening run is something to look forward to, but is most vulnerable to interference or cancellation

Whichever time of day you run, remember to leave a 2 hour gap before running. Apart from the obvious discomfort, you won’t have as much energy, as a lot of your blood will flow to your stomach and less to your muscles. You also heighten the risk of a dreaded stitch. The reasons it may come on vary from weak or tense stomach muscles, diet, running too soon after a meal, drinking very cold water, or too many fizzy drinks, not enough pre-run stretching and running too fast.

You can usually relieve a stitch by slowing down, walking or inhaling deeply.

How far at first?

The distance you run in each session is difficult for a new-comer to running to evaluate. It is probably best to think in terms of time spent running rather than the distance covered.

In a 15 minute session one beginner may run further than another, while still deriving essential physiological benefits from that quarter of an hour’s effort.

Running should be at a pace where you can chat comfortably. If you are unable to run continuously for the recommended length of time, then mix some walking in with your running.

As your fitness improves you will be able to maintain continuous running for longer.

Perseverance is THE key.


Your starting line should be your doorstep - but don’t plod around the same route every day. Instead, add variety to your training – choose routes with different features – and include some hills. A regular change of scenery will maintain your interest and a mixture of hard and soft surfaces will reduce the risk of injury. Vary your road routes too, so that you’re not always running on the same camber.

Avoid traffic and people as much as possible. Treat your longer runs as adventures and once you have established your courses, regularly time yourself over them to monitor your progress.

Work, Rest and Play

Even the fittest athletes need a recovery period after hard training and many alternate hard days with easy days.

If you ran the same distance every day, you would find it difficult to go much further in a race, and you would never feel refreshed and lively. Staleness and boredom would also set in. This can be avoided if you have an easy day following a hard one – you then feel refreshed and ready to tackle something more ambitious again the next day.

It usually takes 48 hours for your body to recover from hard runs and 72 hours or more from races.

Light running the day after a race, circulate blood to fatigued muscles, getting them ready to work again.

Log your Progress

Whether you started running yesterday, or whether you have run 20 marathons, keeping a daily record of your training will prove to be invaluable.

By spending just a few minutes each day recording details of your days running activities, your training log will provide you with vital information later on.

Not only will you be able to see how many miles you have run, but you will also be able to analyse the quality of your runs. Your training over the preceding weeks will also reveal why you ran well or badly in your race, so that you could eliminate mistakes, or tailor your training more accurately for the races in the future.

Think Positively

Use your training to relax and unwind from your day-to-day pressures. Many runners find their long run is the best time for sorting out their problems. They leave the hub-bub of the town behind them and head off into the countryside for some uninterrupted time alone.

N.B. It is important that all runners, especially first timers, check with their G.P. before embarking on any training programme.