A Beginners Guide To Trail Running

May 4, 2012 in Trail Running by Dark

Trail Running 101 – Getting Started

Trail Running is very different from road running, the surface is usually uneven and spotted with roots and rocks and trail running can improve your balance and agility while burning a vast more calories. So the average person could burn more and do more in less time trail running than if you were simply pounding the pavement! The bonus to all this is you get to interact with your environment on a level that won’t leave you bored and unproductive.

5 Key Benefits of Trail Running

  • Easy to Learn: You already know how to walk and hike so this will come natural.
  • Get out of The Gym: Get off that boring treadmill and get outdoors on a trail where you want to be.
  • Fresh Oxygen & Sunshine: The higher O2 leavels and sun will do wonders for your skin & body.
  • Super Real Results: Improve your balance, agility and coordination all at once.
  • Do More Faster: Burn more calories faster in less time than running on the road or gym.

Get The Right Trail Running Shoes
The right shoe can make a big difference, running shoes will work fine but I would recommend a good AT running shoe that offers better grip and protection from those unseen slips & rocks.

Take It Slow & Easy
 Start with a trail that is flat or rolling hills, your joints and ankles will need time to adapted to the new stress. Warm up slowly and walk the hills if you have too and power walk back into a slow jog as you crest hills, make sure you don’t over do it and listen to your body it will tell you what it needs.

Pick Your Feet Up
To avoid tripping over roots, rocks or other trail hazards make sure you run with a higher step raising the toe higher than you would if you where running on pavement. Stretch lightly before you start running and more moderate at the end to keep the body limber and injury free.

Keep Your Eye On The Trail
Always keep a forward gaze on the trail about 10 feet in front of you, never look down at your feet or around you, as you trail run more your brain will start to adjust to your new environment and intake things faster and with more focus.

Never Be Afraid To Walk
If you start to loose motivation or maybe you have come to a tricky crossing or log don’t be afraid to walk it out and give your body time to catch up with your pace. Walking can give you time to catch your breath and get re-motivated with a fresh start on the trail.

Share The Trail With Others
Always stay to the right of the trail when passing others, slow down and be courteous, when approaching people from behind let them know you are there call out passing on your left or right. When approaching horses always step off the trail and give them plenty of room to pass, they have the right away.