Could Trail Running Be The Best Way To Get Fit?
Trail running is a fun and exciting way to get fit and healthy.
It takes you away from the monotony of fitness centres and into the great outdoors.
It may look easy but it is actually more challenging than running on the treadmill.
But first, you must make sure you have the right shoes for trail running.
The regular running shoes you use for the treadmill will not suffice for trail running.
Unlike the sleek and smooth conveyor belt, trail running requires you to run through uneven terrain and unpredictable surfaces.
Trail running shoes have the following features:
- Stronger Grip – Trail running shoes have deeper lugs and the tread patterns are designed to maintain stability over rough terrain.
- Better Foot Protection – Unlike conventional running shoes, trail running shoes have stiffer soles and hidden plates to protect your feet from hard surfaces such as rock and tree roots.
Here are 5 fitness benefits of trail running:
1. Tones Your Legs
Trail running is similar to doing an obstacle course. You have to navigate through rocks, trees, boulders and streams.
It will require you to change your cadence, pacing, negotiate sharp angles, drops and slippery terrain.
All of this work will recruit different muscle fibres which mean better toned legs.
2. Shady Trees And Fresh Air
If the treadmills have become unexciting the next recourse would be an outdoor run through the streets or the public park.
You may think you are getting a good, healthy run until you realise you are taking in noxious fumes from cars and other notorious pollutants.
Trail running offers you the best of Mother Nature: trees and fresh air!
3. More Challenging Workouts
Do you see that hill up ahead? Its incline must be higher than the maximum you can get in the treadmill.
Try running up in full speed and see if you don’t get a powerful burn on your quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and glutes. It will definitely give your lungs a great workout.
4. Protects Joints
Orthopedic surgeons have maintained that running has the highest injury rate of all sports. Cross trail running from that list!
According to Personal Trainer Timothy Spooner, trail running has one of the lowest incidents of injuries because the legs tend to recruit more muscle fibres and use more muscle groups to distribute shifts in bodyweight.
5. Improve Speed And Performance
Some of the best long distance runners are from the African nations. They had to run from village to village often on bare feet and unforgivable terrain to get to school, go to market or deliver messages.
No one uses treadmills in Kenya, home of the world’s greatest marathon runners.
By running frequently on trails, you will develop stronger legs and better endurance.
So if the treadmills in your gyms are fully booked, don’t bother waiting for the next available time slot.
Go hit the great outdoors and experience what real running is all about by trail running!