Road Running - is it really that bad?

I've been running for almost a year but never run on any other surface than road and pavement.

Although I have, so far had no problems with my legs, I am increasingly getting told that I shouldn't be running on pavement alone.

The whole reason I got into running in the first place is my love of the outdoors.

Is running on pavement really that bad?

PS. I cannot afford a gym membership so please don't go there!


  • Pavement is not the ideal surface but running on pavement is better than not running at all.

    Ive started going in the woods recently now the evening have got lighter but apart from that im pretty much restricted to pavement, unless i want to run round the park 20 times (which i did for a while) but got VERY boring.

    You will hear all those non runners telling you how you will ruin your joints, but my view is that i'd rather be alive with dodgy knees than dead from heart disease or another inactivity related illness
  • I like your style!

    My shoes were recommended to me for use on roads so I'll just stop whining and get on with it!

    Cheers :)
  • NessieNessie ✭✭✭
    If you can, find pavements with tarmac rather than concrete paving, as it actually has more "give" than what is pretty close to solid stone. If you have had no problems, then you should be fine. If you are injury prone, sticking to softer surfaces can help a lot to cut down on the amount of time you are off with injuries.

    You don't say what your mileage is - you may find that if you increase your mileage significantly that you recover better if you do long runs off road rather than on. In saying that, I know plenty of people who train for and run marathons all on road/pavement, and do just fine.

    As DBSA says, better running on pavements than not running at all. I would only contemplate gym/treadmill running if it was snowy/icy enough to make outside running dangerous.
  • There are ways of minimising the damage running does to your knees, eg. proper running trainers fitted by a specialised running shop, there have been quite a few messages on here recently about different styles of running being better for the joints, but to be honest, you can get a bit to carried away with it all, if you are enjoying yourself and are injury free then i dont see any reason that you should HAVE to change anything
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