How Do They Do That?
As an average recreational runner one might never imagine running on a rugged rocky dirt trail in the middle of the desert or on a high elevation mountaintop, yet dozens of runners do exactly that every weekend. Have you ever been hiking along at what you considered to be a decent pace on a steep incline and suddenly be approached by someone running up or down the trail? No these runners are not insane. They have not lost their marbles and they are not supper human androids from another planet. They are “Trail Runners”.
Trail running is a sport that attracts the novice and the expert alike. It provides an outdoor experience like few others. From the low desert to above tree line elevations, over extremely rugged/rocky terrain, to snow covered/muddy surfaces. Trail running is not only a great strength/endurance builder it is also a great way to get into and out of an area that would take much longer to hike.
Yes trail running does require a different technique. Trail shoes are designed differently. They protect and support. They provide better traction. Some even prevent moister from entering. The running technique is also different in that you must adjust to the trail conditions. Always being aware of your terrain is critical to prevent catching a toe, twisting an ankle or stepping on things that bite. You must constantly adjust your effort also. As the angle of the trail increases you most adjust your effort, as it decrease or begins down hill you must readjust again. Running pace will be effected by all of these conditions and takes a little getting use to before you are able to attack both the uphill and the downhill.
If you enjoy the outdoors, solitude, forests, streams, wild life and fresh air you must give trail running a try. Hook up with a trail running group or someone you know who runs trails and learn from them. Who knows? You might turn into one of those insane runners.
Want more information? Contact ESTANDA and or Fleet Feet Sports. Get involved and support the Arizona Trail.
Fleet Feet Sports http://www.fleetfeettucson.com
Arizona Trail http://www.aztrail-build.org/index.html