My first trail running experience

The weekend before last I met up with five amazing women to go on my first trail run.

Trail running is something that’s started to pique my interest in the last six months or so. My Facebook news feed seems to be constantly full of trail running events and I was drawn in by the beautiful surroundings of these runs.

Aside from one trail run in Bluestone whilst on holiday there, I always run on the road. Aside from the occasional park or run to the lake, there’s not much to see except houses, cars and shops.

I think that’s why trail running appeals so much. I love to be outdoors in nature and the breathtaking views and wildlife that you can only get on a trail run makes for an amazing run.

After joining This Mum Runs Cardiff for their social runs on a Wednesday evening one month ago, I’ve met some amazing women. You can read all about This Mum Runs in my blog post here.

One of the ladies put out an open invitation asking if anyone wanted to join her for a trail run. There was no way I could have gone on my own. Even if I’d plotted out the route myself I probably would have still got lost, as let’s be honest, most forest areas, trees and paths look the same!

Thankfully, the lady who invited us had already run the route before so she knew the way around.

In total six of us turned up. We set off and it soon became clear to me that trail running is a lot different from road running, although I kind of knew that anyway, but what I didn’t expect to see was a a very steep hill so early on into our run!

I suffer with tight calves so having a hill so early on didn’t do me any favours as I find it usually takes me 3-4k for a my calves to loosen up!

Undeterred I carried on and I’m so pleased that I did! I could have so easily given up at this first hurdle, but giving up just in my nature!

As we ran there were plenty more hills and they were pretty steep! I kept thinking to myself that I was really looking forward to the downhill part, but that was just as tough as the uphill because of the bumpy ground!

Having to contend with tree roots, stones, plants, wet mud, uneven ground was definitely interesting and I was very cautious, probably overly cautious, but I was so worried about twisting my ankle or falling over!

Even though it was challenging, I absolutely loved it!

The views from the top were amazing, and we even came across a loose ram in the middle of the road. Thankfully, he didn’t seem to mind us too much!

Here are some photos we took along the way.

Yup, that’s me figuring out how to make my way down without falling on my face!
Me in the middle running uphill on that uneven, bumpy ground

My favourite part was definitely running on the flatter parts, but I especially like running through the field with the sheep and lambs! They were lovely and the view was amazing.

According to my TomTom watch we ran 9.58km with an elevation gain of 295m.

I really enjoyed my first experience of trail running. I can certainly understand now why road runners and trail runners need different shoes! I think at some point I may have to invest in a good pair of trail running shoes! If anyone has any recommendations, let me know!

I enjoyed the trail run so much that I went again last weekend!

It’s amazing how running has opened up so many wonderful opportunities to me. It means I go out more, get the chance to meet new people and experience new things.

Have you ever been trail running? I’d love to hear your experiences!

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