To answer the question at least a couple of you have asked. Well having subscribed for the last five or so years and my Mrs for a lot longer then I can safely say that I have actually gone beyond the cover more times than I care to remember and the recent issues just don't want to make me open it up and delve inside.
I agree that there is only so much that can be said about running but then again is that true or is there just not a lack of imagination and research on the part of the contributors ?
My gripe is not so much with the content of the articles (although i'm beginning to find those a little tired) but with the design and typography of the magazine. It's just tired, boring, unimaginative and to my mind needs a complete review. Take a look over issues going back a number of years and see what I mean. What is the difference between the covers of the last three issues as an example ? Just a model photographed in a studio and then photoshop'd onto a sunshine backdrop.....rubbish !!
I know for a fact that there are some really talented creatives ( designers and photographers ) out there who could transform the layout of this magazine such that it would jump out from the shelf or subscribers would delight when it dropped through the letterbox.
Well folks I've cancelled my subscription to Runners World ( i reckon I'm paid up to October ). Both the February and March Issue are still in their cellophane wrappers and the January issue was only opened last week. It's not that i've stopped running. On the contrary I'm running as much as ever.
It's just that I'm sick and tired of the same old cover shots and extremely poor design. Let's face it the cover of January, February and March issues look no different whatsoever. As a piece of design work with the objective of enticing new readership and delighting current readership they leave me cold. The photography and typography are tired and wearisome and the internals are no better either. The articles are re-hashed and offer nothing new by the way of inspiration or interest. Go to your local newsagent or supermarket and check out if RW jumps out of the shelf at you amongst the hundreds of other mags on sale. It does not. An overhaul is needed and badly !
As a comparison I received a catalogue the other day for a well known range of outdoor gear. The design of this catalogue while being a sales brochure is far more interesting than RW. The photography is superb and the layout well thoughtout, clear and concise.