Claudio Grassi

Claudio Grassi

Runner and driver

What got you into running? And what keeps you doing it?
I began running to loose weight; I am now in somewhat better shape, but keep on running to reach and overcome my limits. Running makes me feel better, in peace with myself and it’s a moment to think about myself; but when I compete I try to enjoy the atmosphere and, why not?

What is your typical weekly training routine?
I usually train three times a week, and manage to squeeze in an additional fourth session (usually on a Friday).

Do you run with a club or a group?
I’m affiliated with a running team based in Milan and also with the Italian Athletics Federation (this is mandatory in Italy to compete in races). I’m also one of the founders of the group “Podisti da Marte” (Runners from Mars) a non-profit team who help other organizations reach their goals. We usually run once a month, downtown Milan to fundraise and spread the joy of running; we’re the charity coordinators of the Milan Marathon and Monza Half Marathon. We also partner with The Color Run Italy and help other races as volunteers. Here’s a video of one of our missions in 2013

Where’s the strangest place you’ve run?
That’s not an easy question to answer, it depends on what you mean by “strange”. I’ve run at midnight with just a front light in a park and that’s quite weird. But I’ve also run in the tallest skyscraper of Milan, 39 floors up and down.

What song, if any, is guaranteed to make you run faster? 
I don’t have a single powersong, I change it almost every month. Rock songs give me the best energy and now the two songs I use, as power boosts are “Wonderful world” by Joey Ramone and “Miss & Mr. Hyde” by J-Ax.

Is it just for the fun of it? Or for the results?
It was just for the chrono, now it’s only for the fun and joy.

What is the best bit of advice you’ve had from another runner?
I had the opportunity to train with some of the best trainers, like Jeff Galloway, Fulvio Massini, Carl Lewis, Alberto Salazar and, last but not least my actual trainer Andrea Gornati. They all told me to focus on what I’d like to reach and then try to get it. No matter if it’s the new PB or just enjoying the run.

What simple advice would you give to a new or novice runner?
Buy a really good pair of shoes. You can run with a cotton shirt, or without a GPS watch or your smartphone; but the right shoe will prevent injuries and lets you run better. Go to a specialist shop, talk with the assistant and try every pair of shoes. When you’ve found the right one wear them and go out for that perfect run!

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