Trail runners look and sound different than other runners. They have funny outfits, live in the back of their car, and you’re convinced they helicopter to the top of peaks. The good news is, you don’t need much to start trail running. Here are some myths and misconceptions about the strange sport to help get you started.
You need new gear
Despite the fancy water bottles, packs, and trucker hats you see on Instagram, trail running requires minimal gear. Unless you are out in the wilderness for hours, you don’t need to go shopping. Chances are you can use your regular running gear and still hit the trails.
You need to keep your average pace
Your average pace will look different when you are on trails. Usually this means slower because of the hills and natural obstacles. Forget keeping pace and simply enjoy running in the forest.
You need to run really far
Not all trail runners run ultramarathons longer than 42.2K. Sometimes a daily training run in the trails will cover fewer kilometres due to the terrain.
You need to run up a mountain
Trail runners often use the word ‘run’ when they really mean ‘power hike.’ Trail runners are not always running, and if the terrain is steep, they are definitely power hiking.
You need to sign up for a race
Just like road running, you can be a passionate runner without racing to a finish line. Races are opportunities to meet new runners in the trail running community, but many runners enjoy exploring the trails by themselves or in small groups.
You need to like drinking beer
You can still have your glass of wine after a hard run. We won’t judge.
You need to love being a dirtbag
You don’t need to live in a van, neglect personal hygiene, or grow dreadlocks to be a trail runner. Just get outside and explore some dirt.
You need to look good in a trucker hat
You can still wear your sweat band from your 80s track and field days. No trucker hat required.
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We want to be @fraserkoroluk when we grow up. Three cheers to our good friend and OG dirtbag Fraser for completing the brutal Fuego y Agua 50K in Nicaragua this past weekend. This epic photo was captured by one of our other favorite dirtbags, @luis_escobar 🙌🏼 Doesn’t get much more rugged than this. Fun fact: Fraser leads grizzly bear water rafting tours in Canada 3/4 of the year and travels the world the other quarter. We are lucky to get lots of time with him in the fall! Looking forward to visiting with him in another few months. #dirtbagrunners #allwedoisrun
You need trail shoes
Unless you are running over technical trails for many hours, your regular running shoes will suffice.
You don’t need much to start trail running. If you want to be a trail runner, all you need to do is run in the trails. Trucker hat and beard are optional.