29 May, 2013
Arcadi Alibés is one of the most popular faces of sports journalism in Catalonia. Although we will always remember him for his live broadcasts by TV3 of the celebrations of Barça at Canaletes, Arcadi is also known for one of his great hobbies: running out. He has already published two books with the marathon as the protagonist: Running to be happy (Ara Llibres, 2010) and Les traces dels herois (Now Books, 2012), a work that has also been translated into Spanish. With a great deal of predicament in the runner world in Catalonia, we took advantage of a talk he made at CEM Claror last February to talk with him and analyze the boom of the running phenomenon.
«People have understood that it can not lead a sedentary life and that there is a need to do leisure physical activity to improve physical and mental health»
When did you start to run more or less continuously and when did you start to compete?
At the beginning of the eighties, coinciding with the beginning of the popular races in Catalonia, I started to become fond of and soon I also entered the marathon world, seeing that it was an ideal way to travel.
What drove you to write your book Run to be happy?
Taking advantage of the fact that it reached the hundred marathons and that in Catalonia an important boom was being lived on the theme of the run, it seemed to me that I could make a book that talked about this hobby, mixing my experience for so many years.
Why are there so many people who are aiming to run?
People have understood that it can not lead a sedentary life and that it is necessary to do leisure physical activity to improve physical and mental health. Running is the easiest and most economical sport, and it also allows you to participate in races and feel a bit "professional".
What advice would you give to a person who wants to start running?
Especially, be patient and do it progressively. You can not pretend to run a marathon after a month of starting to train.
How often do you have to run to be able to take on the challenge of a marathon?
It depends on the basis and conditions of each person. Before, it was advised to train six days a week to do a marathon. There are now trainers who argue that "popular" should not train so much, and that for four days there is enough for the Marathon. Everyone must look for their balance between quality and quantity.
Popular races are also experiencing a boom. What do you think it is?
Yes, it seems that it has been reached to the maximum and the records of registrations are always surpassed, and there are more and more races. This means that it is popular sports par excellence and that we have not yet reached the limit of popularity.
The success of popular running currently contrasts with elite athletics. Because?
They are two worlds that, although they interact, go separately, since the philosophies of the practitioners are very different. Elite athletics is in crisis, like other professional sports, because of the economic crisis, because the base is not taken care of, because of bad federations planning or because spontaneous figures are not coming out. On the other hand, the popular sport is another thing.
Barcelona is a suitable city to go running?
There are several interesting places, such as the Aigües highway, the seafront, Montjuïc, the Ciutadella, the Cervantes Park ... But obviously, we do not have as many parks as other cities, not a Central Park or Hide lung Park There are many people running through the streets, stopping at the traffic lights, which shows that not all neighborhoods have ideal places to run. There are people who do not like having to take the car to run to more suitable places and have to adapt to less favorable circumstances.
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