The celebrated trail runner Jez Bragg on how to get the most from your off-road adventures…
1. Make it a journey with a purpose: run to the top of a hill, a section of long distance footpath, or commute from work.
2. Route plan: get your map and compass out and create a unique and interesting route.
3. Do some lower leg strength work: injury prevention is key; strengthen ankles and feet to withstand the uneven terrain.
4. Be safe: tell someone where you’re going and what time you’ll be back.
5. Trail race! Meet fellow trail runners and enjoy the wonderful community.
6. Maintain some road running efforts: leg speed is still important for trail running. The two types of running complement each other well.
7. Enjoy your surroundings: trail running is about the experience and your surroundings, right? So take them in and enjoy and you go.
8. Don’t be afraid to walk: the hills can be daunting, but power hike up, and you’ll still get a great workout.
9. Kit yourself out: trainers with good grip for the terrain, a waterproof jacket and a rucksack to hold your bit and pieces.
10. Ditch your watch: trail running is different in the sense you really can switch off and enjoy your adventure. Ignore your time splits and pace – just focus on your journey.