For­mer elite ath­lete and coach Nick Beer gives his trail-run­ning tech­nique in­sights…

220 Triathlon Magazine - - KIT ZONE -

To con­quer trail run­ning and rac­ing suc­cess­fully, you must be pre­pared, adapt­able and con­di­tioned. It’s key that you spend a good part of your train­ing run­ning on trails, in­clud­ing as­cents and des­cents, as un­even ter­rains will fa­tigue your body quicker if you’re not used to them. Ne­go­ti­at­ing these vari­ables is a skill in it­self and is a great way to gain an ad­van­tage.

Hill climb­ing is no­to­ri­ously hard and is easy to get wrong. The key is much smaller steps – long strides are hard to main­tain. Fo­cus on rais­ing your knees higher, shift­ing your weight to the balls of your feet and mov­ing your legs from your hips.

The trails chal­lenge you to con­stantly adapt your stride pat­tern and length. Re­lax­ing while do­ing this is es­sen­tial to run­ning suc­cess­fully off road. So, to nav­i­gate ef­fort­lessly off road, you must con­stantly shorten, lengthen, strate­gi­cally po­si­tion your feet and co-or­di­nate your arm ac­tion to main­tain ef­fi­ciency. It’s al­ways im­por­tant to stay alert, look fur­ther ahead down the trail and to con­stantly plan the next move.

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