Explore the fascination of trail running. More and more runners are being drawn away from the tarmac on the roads and on to forest tracks, meadow paths and hiking trails in the open terrain.

A touch of adventure accompanies you along the way. Up the mountain, down to the stream, into the forest, across the suspension bridge, behind the waterfalltrail running means experiencing nature in all its variety in SalzburgerLand. It is a holistic practice in mindfulness. This is because running quickly up hill and down dale, moving on unsurfaced ground – are things that cause all the senses to be activated.  In this way trail running invigorates the entire body, from tip to toe, and kick-starts the brain.

It’s true that hiking and yoga also do this. But everything happens much faster when running. The speed itself is secondary when compared to running on the road. It’s much more important not to risk putting a foot wrong. Concentration and coordination are particularly required. “The running pace should always be suited to the surface and the condition of the individual,” advises Michael Mayrhofer*, a running and fitness professional from Salzburg.

It’s also not about the number of kilometres that are completed when trail running. It is the route profile that makes the trail into the experience. Because no route is comparable with another, and all territory is different. The constant uniqueness of the surroundings is also motivating; it automatically lifts the mood.

Fun and enjoyment whilst trail running also depend on having the right technique, which in turn minimises exertion. The steps should be shorter when going uphill. If it gets too steep, it may even be more efficient to switch to walking. When going downhill, it’s important to properly “read” the terrain, in order to be able to react in an anticipatory manner and adapt your running accordingly. In concrete terms, this means that to take pressure away from the knee and hip joints, you shouldn’t step down with the heel but “slide in” to the step with the forefoot.

(c) M. Marktl adidas infinite trails

Then there’s also the matter of equipment. “Appropriate trailrunning shoes with a good grip and corresponding sole structure are very important in order to reduce the risk of falling and hurting yourself,” Michael Mayrhofer advises. It can’t hurt to take a map of the area with you to make orientation easier. That’s not only the case when you’re out on your own, but also when you’re taking part in one of the many trail-running events in SalzburgerLand. There is a varied range on offer that spans from smaller and shorter runs to extreme challenges such as the adidas Infinite Trails, a two-day event for single ultrarunners and teams. There is something for all runners there. You will find an overview below.

Regardless of whether it’s during a competition, whilst training or you’re simply running for pleasure, if you’re planning to run over a longer distance through the wonderful mountainscape of SalzburgerLand, it’s important to note that both calorie and fluid intake requirements increase in the Alpine mountain air, and that the weather can also be unpredictable. Therefore, a well-fitting running backpack is recommended. It should contain a running jacket, overtrousers, a sufficiently charged mobile phone, perhaps a headlight, a small first aid kit, and a litre of fluid as well as an energy bar or gel. That ensures that it’s an adventure. But safe.

Mag. Michael Mayrhofer is a training scientist, state-certified trainer, a lecturer at the University of Salzburg, but above all a Health Improvement Coach who specialises in “Medical Training Therapy”. It goes without saying that as founder of the Jogging-Akademie he is also a running coach.

(c) Christian Waldegger – adidas infinite trails


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