In a previous blog post, we discussed getting ready for the trail running season. We considered the importance of rest days and spacing out races. We highlighted that long distance running is tough on the body and that planning your training and races well is imperative.
This month, we at ARTIEM Sports want to share our expertise on how to train for the upcoming trail running season in Menorca. Specifically, we are going to look at how to best steer clear of injuries. Though avoiding an injury over the course of your lifetime is pretty impossible, there are ways to minimise the risk. Keep reading to discover how to keep injuries at bay and be in top condition for the racing season ahead.
Stretch after your workout
Working on your flexibility will help your body to recover better after a trail running workout. When the body is resting following exercise it adapts and adjusts, making improvements for the next training session. If you stretch well, you favour the recovery process, preparing your muscles for the next day and thereby helping prevent injuries caused by overtraining.
Good flexibility also helps you to avoid twists and sprains, which are not uncommon when training on unstable terrain such as rocky trails. Introducing disciplines such as yoga and pilates into your training routine is the perfect antidote. But beyond stretching well, nutrition is another highly important part of preparing for the trail running season. Don’t forget the importance of small additions to your routine in optimising your performance.
Work on your strength
Though one of the most commonly forgotten elements of trail running training, strength work is essential. We know… you love going out running in the wilderness, feeling free, leaving all your stresses behind; going to a gym to lift weights doesn’t have quite the same appeal. You may think it’s boring, a waste of time and some people even think it will make you gain weight and therefore make you run slower.
But this isn’t true. A short strength work-out can be done in just half an hour. Using weights or bodyweight exercises, you can work it into your running session - either before or after you set off - or do it at home when you’ve got a spare couple of minutes.
Avoid doing a strength work-out on the day you’ve done a challenging run: you don’t want to put your body under too much pressure. With a well-planned strength routine not only will you gain strength, you will also help prevent injuries and become a more efficient trail runner who can run faster with less effort.
Make sure you cross train
Cross training may seem like a complicated term, but it actually just means complementing your main sport with others to help you improve your performance.
For trail runners, cycling is the perfect option. Pedalling for hours is a great way to get your training in without overdoing it on your muscles and joints. The benefits of cycling transfer over to running and you can easily do four to five hours on the bike each week. Save your shorter, quality training for running. But don’t forget to do the occasional long run and race practice as well.
Over the course of a week, it’s a good idea to alternate these different types of training such that you don’t do two similar activities back to back. An example could be:
- Monday: rest day
- Tuesday: running + yoga
- Wednesday: strength training
- Thursday: light 50 minute run + yoga
- Friday: strength training + interval running
- Saturday: 4 hour bike ride
- Sunday: 20km jog-walk trail
Menorca is a trail running destination and here at ARTIEM Sports we are committed to helping you get the best results. If you want to experience some fabulous trail running, come to Menorca and stay at ARTIEM hotels.
Our team of professionals combined with excellent facilities come together to help you become the best runner you can be. After each race, you can head to our spa & wellness centres where you can treat yourself to treatments and massages that are especially designed to help your body recover. Enjoy your favourite sport in the most beautiful of destinations.
Javier Lorente and Paco Arnau