Intro to Trail Running


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Whether you're a lifetime runner or a newbie, trail running is fun and can be better for your body than running on the road. In this presentation you'll learn how to safely hit the trails, where to run locally, what gear is best for you and how to get the most out of your off-road experience. You'll also be treated to a great slideshow, tales from the trail and Q&A with San Diego based ultra marathon runner Toby Guillette. So come in and get all your questions answered about this exciting growing sport.

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  • Welcome, my love for the trails, why REI asked me to give the clinic, invitation for audience to enjoy the trails
  • B. Events: i. ultras: 8 ultras, 2x 100M (500+ trail running race miles) ii. triathlon: 140.6 iii. mountaineering: 2x 14ers iv. yoga, mtb, strength and conditioning, SUP, rock climbing, etc.
  • C. Website: i. blogging ii. photos/video iii. sponsorship/brand ambassador iv. contact info: [email_address]
  • 3. Training: Trail running is a great way to get in superior shape and see the beauty of nature all in one outing. The goal is to run effortlessly along the trails, taking in the sights and sounds of nature around you. With a few simple training strategies, you'll be able to train successfully for trail running and enjoy many hours safely on the trails. A. New runners i. Off the couch after years of inactivity, be sure to consult with your doctor before you embark on this journey. ii. You should preferably have a good base of running mileage. If you are new to running, do a combination of running and walking on the trails until you can comfortable run continuously. iii. Run at an easy pace. You should be able to carry on a conversation with your running partner if you're running with others. iv. As with any new type of training stress, it's important to implement it gradually. You may want to start off with one workout per week of limited mileage, and steadily increase the duration. B. Intermediate i. Start a strength training regimen. Agility and strength are an important part of trail running. Begin with simple squats, core body exercises and some upper body work like push-ups. It doesn't have to be fancy, just effective. ii. grow your LSD run (10% rule) iii. Add in hill training (and/or repeats) C. Advanced i. training for events with long-term plan in place ii. simulating conditions (terrain, weather, time)
  • 4. Goal setting: A. Think time, not distance: Tough terrain and hills can double the time you need to cover a mile. So consider how long you want to be out. i. while running (on hills, time, distance, pace) ii. for after running (ie. beer, food, gear)   B. Experienced trail runners can cover about six miles an hour, while less-fit runners should target four. I do 5
  • 4. Form: On the trail, proper running form can be the difference between enjoying the scenery and face-planting in the dirt. Get used to running on easy paths, then move on to more gnarly trails. A. Basic: i. relaxed shoulders, arms bent at 90 degrees, feet landing right under your hips. ii. Slightly raise your arms: like wings, for balance while relaxing your shoulders and hands to avoid tension. iii. Know what's ahead: On flat terrain, look up, but on more technical ground, always look two steps ahead B. Technical: i. Steep Climb: walk steep grades if you can walk faster than you can run to conserves energy in the same amount of time ii. Downhill: Shorten your stride lower your stance, engage your core and take short, quick steps (high cadence) so you can to maintain your center of gravity to react while staying light on your feet.
  • 5. Injury: A. Prevention: Muscle stick, foam roller, tennis ball B. Diagnosing (overuse, acute) C. Sports Massage D. PT process
  • A. Do your homework: i. Check the weather ii. Know when sunset/sunrise is iii. Know how long the route is and how long it will take iv. Where you’ll park: do you need parking pass?
  • B. Run with a partner: You'll be less likely to get lost if you have two or more people running the same trail, and you may find the run more enjoyable.
  • C. Group outing: Know what to expect. Social run: Everyone stays together. Social run at personal pace: Everyone runs their own pace and meets up at intersections. On-your-own run: Everyone meets up at the end.
  • D. Let someone know: where you’ll be running and when you expect to be back. If possible, check in at a ranger station.
  • E. Keep in touch: When trying a new trail, go with someone who knows it--and bring a map, compass, cell phone, and whistle. If you do go solo, give someone a map of your intended route. Go to for maps of national park trails, or plot your route at .
  • F. Headphones: Don’t use them when first starting until you get to know what you’re doing and develop. If/when you do use them, only in the right ear.
  • G. Water Crossings: i. Narrow stream: Hurdle it. ii. Wide creek: Look for natural crossings, like a log or a series of rocks to walk or scoot across on your butt. iii. River: Scout for the shallowest, smoothest section (white water indicates rocks below the surface). Face slightly upstream and cross at an angle. If the current is strong, find a branch to use as a walking stick. And if the current takes you, face downstream with your feet up (so they don't get caught on rocks). Steer to the edge where you can climb out.
  • H. Night running: i. All of the above. ii. headlamp and handheld with new batteries (new rechargeable) iii. bright reflective clothing
  • A. Leave no trace : Leave the trail in the same condition you found it or better. One of the most enjoyable aspects of trail running is the natural beauty surrounding you while you run. Please leave the area just as you found it for the others who may follow in your steps.
  • B. Right of way : Trail courtesy signs indicate that hikers yield to horses, and mountain bikers yield to hikers and horses. As a trail runner, consider yourself a hiker. Runners heading uphill generally have the right of way over runners heading downhill.
  • C. Wildlife : Back away and give the natives time to move on. Snakes can strike when provoked. If one doesn't move (and isn't coiled), walk around it with a wide birth.
  • D. Passing : “On your left" is commonly said on roads. It's also acceptable on trails, but hikers are less used to the phrase and the notion of runners coming up from behind. "The most important thing is to be courteous," by adding "Hi," or "Good morning," and then "Thank you." i. Other athletes: Keep an eye out for mountain bikers that pick up quite a bit of speed. ii. Hills and turns: Be cautious when approaching Oncoming traffic may not be looking for you. This is where the bright clothing or light comes in handy and not listening to music
  • E. Your Dog : If you are running with a dog, know the rules. Some trails require dogs to be on leash. Always clean up after your pet.
  • A. San Diego county overview i. South Bay (Otay County Open Space Preserve) ii. East County (PCT, Mt. Laguna, Anza Borrego) iii. Coastal (Torrey Pines, San Elijo Lagoonn) iv. Central (Penasquitos, Tecelote, Marion Bear, Rose Canyon) vi. North County (Lake Hodges, Elfin Forest, Calavera Hills, Daley Ranch)
  • i. Books at REI (show on display) a. Jerry Schad’s books: Afoot and Afield: San Diego County, Trail Runner’s Guide: San Diego ii. Maps (show on display) a. Tom Harrison: Recreation Map of the San Diego Backcountry b. Print waterproof maps using NatGeo machine instore at REI
  • C. Websites (show screenshots of a route, profile, and aid stations) i. ii. iii. gmaps and google earth mapping iv. D. Running Groups i. SDRI Dirt Devils ii. TCSD and SDTC iii. MeetUp Groups iv. Team InknBurn E. Events ( i. mudruns, gladiator runs, spartan races ii. Dirt Devils event series through REI iii. Xterra trail race series iv. SoCal Ultra Series
  • A. Footwear and care: i. Shoes (road or trail) Road shoes work, but trail shoes have more traction and protect your feet from rocks and roots. a. fit is most important b. rotate multiple pairs c. typical lifetime of a shoe is (300 to 500 miles) depending on weight, usage and type ii. insoles (Superfeet) iii. socks (injinji or double-layer)
  • B. Emergency gear: i. cell phone (waterproof case/bag) ii. License iii. Road I.D. bracelet iv. whistle, pepper spray   C. Shorts: i. compression shorts ii. running shorts with built-in liner D. Shirts: i. singlet or sleeveless ii. s/s or ls/ t-shirt iii. vest iv. wind or rain jacket E. Basics: i. hat a. brimmed, visor, beanie ii. gloves a. running gloves and mitts, convertables iii. Arm warmers iv. compression sleeves or socks F. Accessories: i. GPS watch ii. sunglasses iii. spybelt or running belt iii. Mp3 player (ipod shuffle) G. How-to prevent chafing: i. compression gear ii. ointments: a. Anti-chaffing cream b. sunscreen (oil and alcohol-free) it can clog pores and cause you to overheat. c. lip balm iii. introduce one new thing at a time
  • A. Fueling: bring the right amount for the effort (time, distance, weather) i. Hydration: a. carry in handheld water bottle, wastepack or hydration pack b. small, frequent sips aim for 6 to 8 ounces of fluid for every 20 minutes ii. Nutrition: carbohydrates help you run and concentrate: gels, bars, drink mix
  • Intro to Trail Running

    1. 1.   Intro to Trail Running   IN THIS PRESENTATION YOU'LL LEARN:  <ul><ul><li>How to safely hit the trails </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where to run locally </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What gear is best for you </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How to have fun </li></ul></ul>
    2. 2.   About Me: Career <ul><ul><li>REI </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Active Network </li></ul></ul>
    3. 3.   About Me: Events <ul><ul><li>King of the Hill: Mt. Woodson </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Grand Canyon R2R2R </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surf Monkey Run/Swim/SUP </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>YMCA Bay2Bay Regatta 5M SUP </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Whiskey Off Road 25M MTB </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lake Hodges 5K </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>North Face Endurance 50K </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Noble Canyon 50K </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Vermont 100M Endurance Run </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>San Diego Rock & Roll Marathon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avia OC Marathon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Black Mountain Summit 7K </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Carlsbad 5000 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Orange Curtain 50K </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sedona Marathon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Diamond Valley Lake Marathon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Silverman 140.6M Triathlon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accenture Chicago Triathlon </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>San Diego 100M Endurance Run </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ironman 70.3 California    </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avalon Benefit 50M </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mt. Disappointment 50M </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lake Hodges 50K   </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Super Run 10K </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>La Jolla Half Marathon    </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Carlsbad Half Marathon </li></ul></ul>
    4. 4.   About Me: Website
    5. 5.   Training <ul><ul><li>Beginner </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intermediate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advanced </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6.   Training   Goal Setting: 
    7. 7.   Training   Form: 
    8. 8.   Training   Injury: 
    9. 9.   Safety First   Do your homework: 
    10. 10.   Safety First   Run with a partner: 
    11. 11.   Safety First   Group outing: 
    12. 12.   Safety First   Let someone know: 
    13. 13.   Safety First   Keep in touch: 
    14. 14.   Safety First   No headphones: 
    15. 15.   Safety First   Water Crossing: 
    16. 16.   Safety First   Night running: 
    17. 17.   Courtesy   Leave no trace: 
    18. 18.   Courtesy:   Right of way: 
    19. 19.   Courtesy   Wildlife: 
    20. 20.   Courtesy   Passing: 
    21. 21. <ul><li>  </li></ul>  Courtesy   Your pet: 
    22. 22.   Where to run in SD   San Diego County Overview:  <ul><ul><li>South Bay (Otay County Open Space Preserve) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>East County (PCT, Mt. Laguna, Anza Borrego) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Coastal (Torrey Pines, San Elijo Lagoon) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Central (Penasquitos, Tecelote, Marion Bear, Rose Canyon) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>North County (Lake Hodges, Elfin Forest, Calavera Hills, Daley Ranch) </li></ul></ul>
    23. 23.   How to find trails   Maps:    Jerry Schad's Books:  <ul><ul><li>Tom Harrison: Recreation Map of the San Diego Backcountry </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>NatGeo machine in REI </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Afoot and Afield: San Diego County </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Trail Runner’s Guide: San Diego </li></ul></ul>
    24. 24.   How to find trails   Running Groups:  <ul><ul><li>SDRI Dirt Devils </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>TCSD and SDTC </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>MeetUp Groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Running stores </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gmaps and Google Earth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Competitor Magazine </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Race Place </li></ul></ul>  Websites:    Events: 
    25. 25.   Gearing Up   Footwear and Care: 
    26. 26.   Gearing Up   Emergency Gear:  <ul><ul><li>Cell phone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>License </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Road I.D. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Whistle, Pepper Spray </li></ul></ul>  Shorts:    Shirts:    Basics:    Accessories:    First-Aid: 
    27. 27.   Gearing Up   Fueling:  <ul><ul><li>Nutrition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hydration </li></ul></ul>
    28. 28.   Questions and Answers   Ask me:  <ul><li>About me </li></ul><ul><li>Training </li></ul><ul><li>Form </li></ul><ul><li>Safety </li></ul><ul><li>Courtesy </li></ul><ul><li>Where to run </li></ul><ul><li>Gearing up </li></ul><ul><li>Fueling </li></ul>Email me: [email_address]