Andy Baddeley is the part-time lecturer, full time world class distance runner from Birkenhead who won the Olympics in Beijing with New Balance.
Harrow-Based middle-distance shuffler Andy Baddeley is Team GB’s latest and currently greatest 1500m runner, and the former winner of the 5th Avenue Dream Mile, as well as the proud owner of a double first in engineering from Cambridge. Not bad at all when you consider he’s an asthmatic with a debilitating heart condition who joined an after-school cross-country club only to keep a friend company.
Running 100 miles per week (!) Baddeley uses a diverse range of New Balance apparel both for punishing speedwork on the track and on his favoured, relaxed, low-tempo trail runs in places as remote and diverse as The Pacific Crest Trail, Iten Stadium in Kenya, and – Hampshire. Read on to discover what makes a world class distance runner. Porridge is definitely going to be on i-D online’s shopping list this week…
What is the mentality of a distance runner? To always get out there and work hard, no matter the weather or time of year. You know that no-one else can do it for you, and that there’s always someone out there training hard and going for it. That’s what gets you out there on Christmas Day!
How do you cope under pressure? I’m always trying to do the best I can possibly do, and I try to focus on that, and how to go about it, rather than the pressure of a situation. Similarly, I train hard so that I can get the opportunity to be performing in pressure situations.
Is there additional pressure with 2012 coming up? Yes, I suppose so, but the overwhelming feeling is excitement, and an incredible sense of support behind all the athletes.
What has been your proudest achievement to date? Wearing the Team GB vest in the Olympic Final in the Birds Nest Stadium, Beijing.
How do you psyche yourself up before a competition? Listen to a bit of music, maybe Friendly Fires or Chemical Brothers. Then think about the race, and what I plan to do.
What inspires you? Having the opportunity to travel to some of the most beautiful places in the world to train and to race. Living and training in Kenya for a month was particularly inspiring – seeing hundreds of aspiring athletes on a dirt track at the same time every week in particular!
What is your training routine and what mileage do you rack up over the course of a week? I usually train twice a day, sometimes with a gym session too. I alternate steady running days with “session” days, and in the winter will run around 95-100 miles per week.
What are your thoughts on the new talent coming through: young guns Colin McCourt, James Shane etc… The best way for 1500m running in the UK to get back to the success of Cram, Coe and Ovett is to have as much competition as possible. We all want to win, so we all train harder and hopefully run faster!
Why is New Balance your running shoe of choice? Huge amount of choice, the width fittings (as I have very narrow feet), and the fact that New Balance are a running focused brand, designed by people who are really passionate (and incredibly knowledgeable) about running.
Top tasty bites to keep to you nourished and on top of your game? I’m a relatively new porridge-convert, and throw all sorts in there – golden syrup, seeds and nuts, fruit and berries.
Top five most beautiful running trails in the world?
1. The Kamariny Stadium, Iten, Kenya
2. The Pacific Crest Trail, Mt Laguna, USA
3. The New Forest, UK
4. The Aquaduct, Falls Creek, Australia
5. Croyde Coastline, UK