Nike Trainer Marie Purvis shares her tips on running

As the Nike She Runs 10k event nears, I thought it would be a great idea to grab some last-minute tips off Marie Purvis in order for all of us to smash our personal bests down at Centennial Park next weekend. Marie who is an international trainer of trainers and designs custom workouts for Nike Women, is exceptionally talented and holds a science degree and has over 10 years of professional and personal training experience. Marie’s work varies from motivating and working with professional athletes such as Serena Williams and Nick Symonds to developing programs and helping non-athletes lose weight and tone up. Here are some great tips that we should all take on board when prepping for our big run next weekend.

Running stitches, they seem to creep up on us when we are just settling into a run. How do we best avoid them or make them disappear when they have arrived?

This may be caused by dehydration, so make sure you have plenty of water before every run. You could also try slowing down your pace until the cramp subsides and make sure to breathe through the cramp (sometimes I will press against my stomach where the stitch is and that helps a bit).

Aching hips and shin splints are quite common after a long run – What are the best stretches and exercises to strengthen these areas.

My favorite stretches are the Kara Goucher stretch on the Nike Training Club app, but I love the Pigeon Stretch, IT Band stretch, Pretzel, Quad and hip flexor stretch and I always foam roll before and after every run. This helps the most I think.

Running technique – What is the best running and breathing technique for a 10km run that limits your energy exertion?

This is going to be different for every runner, all people breathe differently and have different paces, gates, and stride lengths so this will vary. My advice would be to have a running expert to analyze your running form, once that is efficient then I would work on your breathing to match your stride. Otherwise for a beginner runner this can be overwhelming and then the focus on a run becomes too much.

Diet is highly important when we are exercising every day – What is a typical day for you in foods and drink? And can you recommend key foods to eat for energy leading up to the Nike She Runs 10k event?

Great foods for energy leading up to race day would be: chicken, fish, veggies and fruits such as apples, berries, plums, pears, mango and a banana on race day.

Currently I am very strict with my diet, (I’m not in season for running) so I eat loads of lean protein (fish, chicken, turkey, eggs) veggies (ALL) and legumes (lots of lintels) I am not drinking anything but water so much I feel like I go to the bathroom every hour haha!! But great foods of energy leading up to race day would be: chicken, fish, veggies, fruits (apples, berries, plums, pears, mango, banana (on race day)). My favorite meal before race day is grilled chicken with steamed green beans, sweet potato and a big spinach salad with olive oil and balsamic dressing.

Some people find it really hard to run, can you recommend some tips on helping them to run longer or achieve personal bests every time? 

Well a personal best, you need to do some speed work (track workouts) to get your pace faster and getting stronger in the weight room will also help you reach that PR. As for those who are just starting, I tell all my clients to start with a walk/run, walk as long as you need and run do this for 1 mile then work your way up in mileage and running more than walking. Very soon you will be running and can call yourself a runner. Staying consistent its vital to being in running shape on both accounts. So it won’t work if you run once a week, try to run 3 time per week.

Thanks Marie, and just some everyday questions…what is your favourite shoe to run in?


My favorite running shoe is the Nike Lunar Eclipse.

And what is your favourite outfit to wear when your running?

Favourite running outfit, this is my favorite part bc I can’t get fancy with my shoes I get to express my style w my outfit. On race day I do a classic Nike Running Capri (now they have awesome prints and colors) and Nike Pro sports bra solid bright color and a Nike Women’s Training Hyper cool tank, again lots of colors to match my tights. haha!!

What exercise applications do you use? I use the Nike Watch application.

I always run with my phone bc my music is on it so I use the Nike + GPS app

Do you have a favourite brand of sports water you like to drink?

I don’t drink sport drinks because of all the sugar, I don’t eat sugar so my source of hydration is good old fashion aqua!! If I had to recommend one I would say G2 series.

I’m sure everyone knows that running burns the calories, but can you suggest key exercises to help tone up and lose weight?

Yes running is a great way to lose weight as long as your nutrition is on point. You need to get your calories in but it’s not an excuse to eat all the bad foods, you should plan on eating 1500-2200kcal per day depending on your size, how much you are running. But again I can not stress enough the importance of a clean diet. My favorite exercises to lose weight are lunges, squat jumps, mt climbers, split jumps, anything that builds the legs (most muscle and biggest muscles) and gets your heart rate up. high intensity (interval) style workouts will get the fastest results of weight loss. But make sure its full body as well. NTC is a great example of both full body and high intensity training.

And last question, will you be joining us at the Nike She Runs 10k event this year in Sydney? 

Sadly no 🙁 breaks my heart as I loved the race and being in Sydney your energy and support is unreal there. I wish you the best if you are running. You’ll love the race and experience.

Thanks Marie for all your tips! And good luck with your training. 

PS – Love the NTC app, I just downloaded it.

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