TRAIL RUNNING TRAINING IN THE CITY
Live in the city but belong on the trails? We know the feeling. But all's not lost when you've got big goals or a tough event but can't get out there - check out these great tips from our friends at Salomon for working your training plan around city life.
The best time to work on your body is in the morning before breakfast and your working day, and it's better to go for short runs several times a week than to do one long trail run at the weekend. During the week, your training sessions can be short (1 to 1 1/2 hours). However, they must be intense. This means that your heart rate must rise significantly. This is what is known as anaerobic effort. You are therefore going to work on power and muscle strengthening.
Choose a route that is as hilly as possible. Run fast uphill and recover in the descents, similar to an interval or fartlek exercise. It increases the intensity of your session, and puts a climb or two under your belt!
Here's a sample session. Feel free to vary the lengths, routes, and exercises so that you don't lose the pleasure of running.
Warm-up: (15 to 20 minutes) jogging and a few light stretches
Intensity: (30 to 45 minutes) do a series of fast ascents and descents. Also do exercises on the stairs. Keep up a fast pace!
End of session: stretch while you are warm. Keep hydrated to prevent sore muscles.
Finding it hard to plan your race training? Here's how many sessions to plan depending on your goals:
Short trail, 10 km to 25 km: 2 sessions during the week + 2 to 3 hours at the weekend
Long trail of around 50 km: 3 sessions + 4 to 5 hours at the weekend
Ultra-Trail: plan 3 to 4 sessions during the week and a long to very long distance at the weekend.
Running on the stairs is a good way to work on strength. We recommend the following exercises:
Run up, touching every step. Use a forefoot strike. Use a more bouncy stride and lift your knees.
Repeat the exercise, touching every other step. You are going to work on your strength.
Jump up the steps 3 by 3 with your feet together, landing on your forefeet.
Alternate power hiking (fast walking) and running
During these exercises, you should run faster than during competitions, while remaining in your comfort zone. Remember to come back down slowly to recover.
Take advantage of the weekends to get away from the city and rediscover running in nature. If you can, head out on a long-distance trail run to consolidate everything you've done during the week - it can be from 2 to 5 hour, or even longer if you're an ultra-runner. Work on your endurance with anaerobic effort as a priority, aiming to run comparatively slowly without being out of breath.