Before doing trail running, you must first prepare yourself physically and mentally.
1. Physical and mental preparation
A. In terms of physical fitness, it is recommended to have at least the ability to run a half marathon. The reason is that trail running has a longer duration and higher requirements for leg muscle strength and endurance. Trail running is based on cardiorespiratory endurance and requires more comprehensive physical fitness. In addition to the flexibility above and coordination, good strength, superb balance ability, and excellent physical flexibility are also necessary for trail running.
B. Psychologically, you must be prepared to accept your physical condition because beginner trail runners are prone to leg cramps, physical exhaustion, scratches on limbs, etc... It will have a lot of psychological and emotional problems.
2. Equipment preparation
"The lighter the burden when running, the better," this is the way people have been advocating for running. But trail running is essentially running in nature, between mountaineering and running. Under the same environment, it is faster than mountaineering, but unlike road running, it can follow a fixed rhythm. So to protect your safety, there is still some equipment that needs to be prepared. The complete equipment serves only one purpose: to run farther and see more beautiful scenery. How much do you runners know about trail running equipment? What kind of equipment should I bring when participating in a trail running competition?
Trail running shoes: The trail running track environment is more complicated; trail runners often encounter very challenging road conditions. Therefore, the choice of trail running shoes is critical! It can protect our feet from bumps or bruises, and more importantly, it can help us run and jump flexibly on the mountain, reducing the risk of many slips or falls.
Trail running socks:
- Trail running time is extended.
- The terrain is complex.
- Foot pressure and friction are greater than road running.
If it rains and crosses the river, hot days will cause wet feet, and wet feet will soften the skin and blisters. In addition, when stones or small sawdust enter the shoes, blisters are also easy to form, and running with blisters is painful. Therefore, it is essential to wear a pair of comfortable running socks during trail running.
Trail running backpack: Because the trail running trails are complex and changeable, there are specific safety hazards, and long-term trail running must carry food and water, so some items must prepared to improve safety. Carrying too many items will cause certain obstacles to running, and it is also not conducive to carrying. At this time, you can use off-road backpacks to store items.
Empty top hat: Compared with road running, an empty top hat is more practical in trail running. The primary function of wearing a hat is to use the hat's brim to absorb sweat and prevent sweat from flowing into the eyes during running. On the other hand, wearing a hat also plays a role in shading, ensuring that you have a clear vision in summer.
Quick-drying equipment: In long-distance trail running training or competitions, you should try to choose lightweight, fast-drying, close-fitting, and at the same time clothing that can withstand bush scratching. On the one hand, more close-fitting clothes are convenient for activities; on the other hand, close-fitting clothes will dry faster due to body temperature, which will be better than loose clothes.
Gloves: He accidentally grabbed the wrong plant, scratched the palm, or injured his hand on the ground when he fell. For safety reasons, gloves are an essential equipment option that can convenient your climbing.
Headlamps: Some long-distance trail running involves night running, so you must prepare night lighting. The headlamp is more convenient to wear and can free your hands for easy movement. For the choice of headlamps, one must have sufficient brightness, and second, remember to bring spare batteries. At this time, if you bring headlamps, flashlights and other lighting equipment, you don't have to panic when you act. Headlamps are compulsory equipment for many middle and long-distance competitions. You can prepare a reliable quality headlight of more than 100 lumens as the main force and prepare a lighter one as a backup.
Trekking poles: Trekking poles are an efficient tool for cross-country climbing, especially high-altitude cross-country. It can use the strength of the upper limbs to reduce the fatigue load of the lower limbs. In road conditions with significant elevations, trekking poles can provide extra balance and stability. The current trekking poles use very advanced materials, which are light and robust, can be folded, and occupy less space, and the weight burden can ignore. But many runners choose not to bring trekking poles, depending on personal needs and competition regulations.
Supplies: Compared to marathon supplies, trail running requires more kinds of supplies, in addition to energy gels, energy bars, small bags of nuts, salt pills, and even some small snacks. The amount of food depends on the individual's condition while considering the route and weather conditions. When it is cold, it is mainly to replenish energy, and when it is hot, it is necessary to replenish water and electrolytes. If there is no replenishment point midway, the amount of water brought should be carefully considered.
Others: There are many other small items needed for trail running, such as petroleum jelly to prevent skin friction, sunglasses, maps, compasses and first aid kits. With the gradual enrichment of trail running experience, runners will be more aware of the equipment they need.
Suitable trail running equipment is vital to your overall running performance. This equipment can follow you up the mountain and the sea, accompany you to see all the beautiful scenery and allow you to wander in the embrace of nature without any worries. When preparing trail running equipment, you must decide which equipment you should bring to the competition based on the actual race track and difficulty. At the same time, you must correctly measure your abilities. Even if you are experienced, you cannot underestimate the power of nature.