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How to progress in trail running

How to progress in trail running?

Trail running is attracting more and more fans. Every year, a number of runners switch from road to trail running. It must be said that in the great outdoors, the feeling of freedom is enormous and the sensations are heightened. But we also discover new difficulties because a trail is not run like a competition on asphalt . On uneven terrain, the body must constantly adapt and concentration never fails. How to progress in trail running? Follow our advice!

A little bit of technique

You don't run a trail the same way you walk a road. Going faster on trails requires that you know how to take into account the diversity of terrain and that you perfectly understand when you need to slow down and when you need to accelerate. For that, nothing better than a little technique!

  • Is this your first Trail ? Choose a pace that is 75% of your pace on the road.
  • Keep your back straight . The slope tends to pull you forward. Fighting this process allows you to fill your lungs with air and therefore be more efficient in your strides.
  • Anticipate the terrain. Observe the ground and surroundings, especially when going downhill. The secret ? Look about five steps in front of you and trust your brain. He knows where you should place your feet to avoid falls.
  • Shorten your stride and avoid jumping. You get less tired, whether going up or down.

A hint of room

Fitness, Crossfit, bodybuilding, all these physical activities are beneficial for the trail runner. They allow him to strengthen his muscles and optimize balance and coordination . Training focused on the legs is an excellent way to prevent the risk of injury.

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Which exercises to favor? Lunges and squats are obvious, but it can be interesting to add cycling or planks to develop the core. The stability ball, an essential accessory for practicing Pilates, is perfect for strengthening the ankles, knees and preventing loss of balance and bad reflexes.

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New shoes

Having well-shod feet is essential when traveling on sometimes difficult trails. Don't forget about this equipment if you want to progress! How to choose the pair of shoes that will best accompany you on all your outings?

  • Make sure it is adapted to your practice and the paths you take. You will feel more confident if you know that your shoes have good grip and will not cause you to slip.
  • Consider the shape of your foot . Supinators and pronators do not have the same needs. Do not hesitate to seek professional advice, if necessary.
  • Choose good cushioning . The variations in the terrain on the paths will put your feet, ankles and knees to the test. If you want to avoid too much physiological stress and the resulting injuries, opt for specific shoes.

Time for a break

It's impossible to progress if you don't recover, that's obvious. In trail running, as in all sporting disciplines, a break is essential! Force yourself to take a day off, even if it's harder for you than training.

Recovery is a key element of progression. You must therefore ensure that your sleep is long enough to allow your body to repair itself and include less intense activities in your training program.

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Take advantage of this day off to go for a walk or sign up for a yoga or Pilates class. These disciplines offer you the opportunity to develop your flexibility and concentration while promoting complete recovery through appropriate use of breathing techniques and gentle, prolonged stretching.

A careful diet

Eating well is essential to make progress, in trail running as in any other sporting discipline. It is not a question of diet here, but rather of adapting your diet to the sport you practice and some common sense advice.

Do not hesitate to seek medical advice : a complete check-up can help you identify unexpected deficiencies or reorient your way of eating. The advice of a nutritionist can also be valuable if you want to take a complete look at your eating habits.

Snacks are important. Don't plan a training outing without bringing your supplies. Even if, on most organized trails, refreshment stations are provided, plan your own. You can, at any time, miss one of these stations (an itinerary error can quickly happen). In addition, it is preferable to rely, as a priority, on foods that you have tested during your training and which you are sure do not risk disrupting your digestion - and therefore your performance.

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Help the entire Stimium community progress in trail running: share your own advice on our social networks!