A Comprehensive Guide to Trail Running


When running on a track, it is not necessary that it should always be a concrete road or in the city. Running in the mountains or on dirt roads can also prove to have many health benefits that can prove to be beneficial for you in the long run.

This act of running on dirt roads is known as trail running, and it does not necessarily entail running in the mountains (though running on a mountain trail can be a great experience).

A common misconception that many people tend to have when it comes to trail running is that it only involves running on the mountainside. However, this is definitely not the case. Any run that is not done on a paved surfaced or asphalt pathway can essentially be defined as a “trail run.”

Let us discuss this in a bit more detail. We should consider what kind of gear you may need when going out for a trail run. We should also talk about some of the benefits associated with trail running as well.

Trail Running Essentials To Consider

1.      A Cell phone

Out of all the equipment that you need to make sure to be equipped with when prepping to go for a trail run, a cell phone is probably an essential one.

A group of people running on a rocky trail in the mountains.

This is due to the fact that the cell phone contains a lot of applications that can greatly help you during your trail run.

Technology has advanced to the point that newer models of mobile phones are now equipped with accurate GPS tools. These can help you gauge the direction that you are embarking on while you are on your trail run.

There are also many other applications on a mobile phone that can greatly help plan your run. For example you can fins an app that will help plan an effective route. Other apps that have the availability of helpful maps at all times.  And finally, an app which can also help you track the distance that you have traveled as well.

2.      Proper Clothing

Depending on the state that you are living in, there is the possibility that you may be facing increasingly warm or even hot temperatures while you are on the run. If you are living in a state that is known to be particularly hot at times, then it is advised to wear clothing that has a breathable fabric.

On the other hand, if you anticipate that you may be facing cold weather where you live, then it is recommended to wear additional layers. You may also need to bring some additional gear, such as gloves or a jacket when going on a run in the cold.

In addition to the cold or heat, you should check likelihood of rain occurring might during your run.  If inclement occurs while you are going on your trail run, it is recommended to keep a rain shell or a windbreaker along with you.

This is a better option compared to keeping a waterproof rain jacket. They can be less breathable, causing you to sweat more. That moisture can be retained within the jacket as you are trail running.

3.      Shoes

When going out on a trail run, it is important to be properly equipped. You should definitely consider investing in trail running shoes when you are looking to go on a trail run.

What makes trail running shoes different from your run-of-the-mill running shoes is that their soles are designed to provide you with better traction.

Furthermore, another for using the proper trail running shoes is that they are developed to provide you with added foot protection and increased stability. Your average road running shoes just aren’t suited to trail running.

Train running shoes are especially useful when out on a trail dirt road because it is likely you will encounter uneven pathways and debris in the form of rocks and large pebbles. These can prove to be challenging obstacles unless you are wearing trail running shoes.

Benefits of Trail Running

·         Improves Your Balance

A noteworthy benefit of going trail running is that it increases your footing, helping you maintain your balance on uneven terrain.

Mountain trails and dirt roads are riddled with considerably complex tracks and ruts, exposed roots, and other types of debris, such as pebbles and noticeably large rocks.  When you run on trails your body starts to adapt to the increased balance that you must maintain while out on the run.

This enables your core muscles to naturally engage themselves. This results in the activation of many minor muscles that are not quite utilized while you are running on the flat pavement.

Due to this, your body starts to fine-tune itself to build up those muscles.  Over time, this will strengthen your overall body awareness and all of the muscles that contribute to maintaining balance.

·         Great for Mental Health

A study done by Stanford University stated that time spent when being out in nature is said to calm the section of your brain that is connected to the development of mental illness.

Furthermore, it also makes you less prone to develop negative thought patterns as well. Due to this, there have also been many cases in which people suffering from mental disorders such as depression also tend to get recommended to go trail running.

·         You Will Never Be Bored

If your planned route consists of asphalt roads, or if it is in the city, then it is highly likely that it will be the same every day.

However, out in the mountains or on the uneven dirt pathways across the forest, you will never be bored because of all of the things that you will get to experience while you are out on your trail run.

The beautiful thing about trail running is that even though the path might be the same, it is highly possible for you to discover something unique and new.


To sum everything up, trail running is quite a unique adventure. It is great not only for the health and mental benefits, but also for the beautiful outdoor experience. Running on trails will definitely be an interesting one.

Benefits of Running

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