Cardiff Blog

Running In The City - Tips And Advice

Running In The City

stretching before running - running tips

Running Tips and Advice

Are you new to running? Or are you still thinking about it? We will look at a few classic running tips to help you get on the road and start pounding pavement.

If you’re still teetering on the edge of the urban racetrack, the simple benefits of running are something you should know about.

There’s something about running that brings an enormous sense of well-being.
Work driving you crazy? Studies have shown that a run of just 20-30 minutes a day can leave you feeling refreshed, energised and de-stressed. The health benefits are huge, keep it up and you will be fitter, stronger and will shed weight.

Now, it’s important both for safety and if you want to improve to consider a few running tips:

Start slow..

First of all, let’s look at the lengths of runs. Ok, you’re not Forest Gump, so don’t start off trying to run 10 kilometres (k) and giving up when you collapse in a red-faced heap. Start slow, you can build yourself up to do the big stuff and it helps massively with progress to say, ok I can do that, let’s do more next time.

Watch where you’re running..

Another thing to consider is where you’re going to run. More specifically, the surfaces you’ll be crossing.  You want to run on grass or packed dirt trails as much as possible, this will put a lot less pressure on your joints and feet. I know cities don’t offer much in the form of wooded glens, but there are plenty of parks and trails if you look for them.

Try to avoid running next to the curb for long, the curvature in most roads will unbalance the muscle use in the legs.

Help your body..

Energy drinks are a great way to replace lost salts on long runs. A less pricey way I use is a 50/50 mix of water and fruit juice with a pinch of salt.

Stitches & Cramps..

Next, we look at the curse of the running people: the stitch. Stitches are caused when lack of blood supply to the diaphragm causes it to cramp. What can you do? 

Well, to prevent this annoying pain, try not to eat just before going for a run and remember to warm up properly.

If you’re mid-run when the stitch appears, apply pressure to the part that hurts and just keep going to “run out” the stitch.

Adding weights?..

Lastly, we’ve all seen the runners who attach weights to their arms and legs to get a more “hardcore” running fix. I don’t suggest doing this right away, you need to get used to the way your body moves first. If you are dead set on it, see a trainer first. Otherwise you can strain muscles and ruin your posture.


Nothing left to do now but get out there and get going!




Last Updated on Sunday, 26 August 2012 22:21

Keep Calm Be Welsh Do It Now In A Minute

Keep Calm Be Welsh Do It Now In A Minute

Keep Calm Be Welsh Do It Now In A Minute

Last Updated on Sunday, 12 August 2012 21:01

Cardiff Design festival 2012

Cardiff Design festival 2012

The Best of Welsh Design Awards - submissions now open

Submissions are now open for the Best of Welsh Design Awards and the organisers, the Cardiff Design Festival, are delighted to announce that this year’s sponsors are Comisiwn Dylunio Cymru/Design Commission for Wales.

The Awards are open to professionals and new graduates working in every design discipline, from urban and landscape design and architecture, to branding, interactive and graphics, furniture, product and fashion, design thinking and social design.  They celebrate the wealth of talented designers and design-thinkers in the city and across Wales and help ensure that their skills and passion are recognised.

‘The beauty of the Best of Welsh Design Awards 2012 is that it doesn’t have to be about buildings or contract values or big projects’, explained the Chief Executive of Comisiwn Dylunio Cymru/Design Commission for Wales, Carole-Anne Davies.  ‘It can be about your creative thinking, about ideas and approaches that stimulate the imagination, make us think and whet the national appetite for great design. Good design matters to Wales and in the places where we live, learn, heal and have fun - it matters a great deal. ‘

The Awards are open to professionals working in Wales or from Welsh based clients and to graduates from Wales or from Welsh based courses.  Work completed for a paying client should be entered as professional. Entries can also be sent in by delighted clients.

The Awards are part of the Cardiff Design Festival which kicks off on 28 September 2012 and runs for two full weeks of events, exhibitions, talks, challenges, happenings and socials highlighting the wealth of design talent that can be found, not just in the city of Cardiff but across the whole of Wales.

Now in their seventh year the Awards have become a key part of the Festival and this year’s judging panel is the most exciting ever. Consisting of design leaders and past winners the judges include Richard Seymour, from world renowned design agency SeymourPowell, Glenn Tutssel of The Brand Union, Carole-Anne Davies of the Design Commission for Wales and Mike Cleague, BAFTA award winner and owner of the Cardiff based, digital interactive agency, Carbon Studio.

The Festival Director, Olwen Moseley said, “Design permeates every aspect of our lives from the way our breakfast is packaged to the design of the beds we sleep in. The emphasis for the awards is on results - not just what looks great but on what impact has been made.  They are a showcase of the greatest innovations Wales has to offer, so the more entrants we get the better! The Festival itself always has new partners joining in, each bringing new ideas and themes that give the Festival a distinctive and fresh flavour everytime.”

For details on how to enter or for more information about the Festival and events visit The deadline for submissions is midnight on 17 August 2012.

Last Updated on Thursday, 09 August 2012 16:55

World of Boats at Cardiff Bay

World of Boats at Cardiff Bay

World of Boats at Cardiff Bay

World of Boats is a brand new attraction which opens this month on the waterfront at Discovery Quay, Porth Teigr in Cardiff Bay, featuring a unique collection of boats from around the globe. It also tells visitors of the history of evolution, navigation, use and restoration of boats. Using hi-tech displays and old fashioned craft, World of Boats highlights the best of boats and the skills used to keep them afloat. Interactive areas and fascinating displays mean there’s plenty for the whole family to ‘Sea, Discover and Explore at World of Boats’!

There are over 40 historic craft on display, from primitive dug outs and reed boats to current examples of familiar vessels. Many of the boats are the last surviving example of their kind anywhere in the world. The selection on display comes from the UK’s largest collection of historic craft run by the charity EISCA. Their collection of almost 400 vessels will mean that the display will be regularly changed and updated.

World of Boats will also feature the Boat Lab. Inside the Boat Lab, you can learn about the fundamentals of boat design and how it works. In addition, you have the chance to see current restoration techniques. New projects will be regularly undertaken by skilled craftsmen. Currently housed in the Boat Lab is the 70 foot ‘Tall Ship’ the Elena Maria Barbara. She is a version of an 18th century topsail schooner being lovingly brought back to sea-worthy condition.

Martin Wilkie of Experience Design, the company creating the attraction, says: “It’s a rare opportunity to see at first-hand the skills used in restoring such a huge vessel, and I mean huge!”

Dick Strawbridge, popular presenter of hit TV shows such as BBC’s Coast, ITV’s The Hungry Sailors and Channel 4’s Scrapheap Challenge, hosts the exhibition on-screen and takes us through the evolution of boats, the story of their propulsion, navigation and much more.

Supported by Visit Wales, World of Boats promises to be a major new attraction in Cardiff Bay and is the result of a new venture between the boat charity EISCA (Eyemouth International Sailing Craft Association) and exhibition designers, Experience Design & Management EISCA has an incredible collection containing hundreds of boats at their store and visitor attraction at Eyemouth in Scotland and their new dingy and river boat display at Beale Park near Reading.

Martin Wilkie, of Experience Design, says: “This collection is a fascinating glimpse into maritime history with vessels from almost every corner of the globe. I’m guessing that this must be the first time a Venetian Gondola will have been spotted in Cardiff Bay.”

Stephen Walters, EISCA spokesman, says: “We will endeavour to tell the story of man’s use of lumps of wood to cross the water; how this was then turned into a hollowed out log with a paddle, developed into a sea-going boat with sails, which then became both cargo boat and warship to take him across the world.  By 1860, mankind had developed a steam engine, fitted it into a boat to drive paddle wheels or propellers.”

World of Boats also features The Look Out Café Bar where visitors can take time out to enjoy a range of refreshments, meals, snacks and ice creams, while overlooking the water during their visit to the attraction. The 600 sq m exhibition, shop and café are located right next to the new Doctor Who Experience in the bay.

Martin says, “The venue is just so amazing, we couldn’t have asked to be nearer the water and what a fabulous view of Cardiff Bay. And it’s been great to have Dick Strawbridge involved; he’s such an enthusiast for these sorts of projects and really helps to tell the stories to the visitors.”

Martin continues: “I think there’s something for everyone here, it’s quite a unique exhibition and has certainly opened my eyes to the role boats have played in man’s evolution. The World of Boats really is a great new addition to Cardiff Bay, kids get in for free and there’s the best waterside café in the city - what more could you ask for?”

World of Boats opens to the general public on Saturday August 25 and then will remain open every day from 10.30am. However please check website for seasonal variations.

World of Boats Admission Prices:

Remember, children under 16 are admitted FREE with each paying adult!
All entry wristbands allow unlimited visits and re-entry on day of issue.
Adults: £7.50
Concessions: £6.50
Additional Child £3.50
Family 2+2: £14.00
Group and school rates are available, so please contact us for further details.

How to find World of Boats:
World of Boats
Discovery Quay
Porth Teigr, Cardiff Bay, CF10 4GA
Contact: 07971 055 811


World of Boats is right next door to the new Doctor Who Experience. There is extensive car parking available in Cardiff Bay, and plenty of rail and bus links, including the No 6 bus.

Last Updated on Monday, 06 August 2012 21:56

Wales’ biggest reggae festival celebrates Jamaica 50th anniversary - in Barry this weekend

Wales’ biggest reggae festival celebrates Jamaica 50th anniversary - in Barry this weekend

A festival of Jamaican music, food, lifestyle, and children’s activities is taking place this weekend (August 3- 5) in Barry to mark Wales’ biggest event for the Jamaica 50th anniversary of independence celebrations.

The open air festival features top ska, reggae, and rappers reflecting 50 years of cultural exports from the Caribbean island.

The event, supported by the Jamaican High Commission, is attracting the Caribbean community from all over the UK to see-top line acts including Janet Kaye and rapper Junior Macee.

Visitors can enjoy during three days (August 3-5th) a trip through 50 years of music with Friday featuring early reggae and ska, Saturday during the day showcasing lovers rock and reggae sounds from the ‘70’s and 80’s with dancehall music into the evening, culminating on Sunday with a celebration of reggae and rap to the present day.

For the family there are traditional Jamaican food stall, cakes, beauty products, and even a Caribbean psychic reader, along with award-winning children’s activities.

The role of Rastafarians in Jamaican culture is highlighted in a special Rasta Village area, where story-telling, workshops and demonstrations of religious ceremonies will be held.

Making sure the triumphs of Jamaica’s top athletes are not missed, the festival will be following the Olympic performances of Usain Bolt and his team mates on large screen televisions.

The festival has been widely featured on Jamaican television, including a feature on Barry Island on the equivalent of the country’s breakfast television.

The festival has been organised by Strickly Roots, run by South-Wales businesswoman Hilary Brown, with the backing of the South Wales Jamaica Society and the London-based Jamaican Diaspora.

The festival follows a successful sold-out young people’s Summer Camp of Jamaican culture held in Barry last weekend.

Looking ahead to the festival weekend Hilary Brown said: “This is the biggest celebration in Wales of Jamaica’s 50th anniversary. We are welcoming everyone to join in the celebrations and share our pride of Jamaica’s rich cultural contribution to our world.”

The festival is being held at the Goods Shed site at Barry Waterfront. Tickets are priced £11 in advance or £12 on the day for each of the festival days and are available from Barry Memorial Hall telephone 01446  738622.

Further details about are available from

Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 August 2012 21:22