Trail running merely started out as another way for me to push my body. It allowed me to trick myself into running a hill workout or an avenue to strengthen parts of the body the road just tore up. I never thought trail running as a daily way to run, it seemed like too much work. It wasn’t until I signed up for my first marathon, which happened to be a trail race, that trail running got a hold of me and hasn’t let go. Being so close to numerous trail systems has only increased my love for the rough terrain and wooden lands. The days we get to escape out into the woods and kick some dirt in the air are treasured. It’s different and that’s why I like it.
Egypt Valley is hands down my favorite trail in run around the Grand Rapids area that I’ve been on. Well groomed trails, beautiful streams, rolling hills, and tall trees – Egypt Valley let’s me get into that rhythm where my mind can wonder and not worry about the ground beneath my feet. It makes 15 miles go by with ease. There are so many benefits of trail running, that I believe most folks dismiss. They assume they need special gear to run out on trails, making it confusing and not worth their while, but you truly don’t. All you need is some running shoes and a good trail.
Here are just a few reasons to test out the dirt:
1. Enhances proprioception – meaning you will have better balance and sense of the ground beneath you.
2. Less toll on your body – trails create less shock than asphalt does, making you less sore the next day.
3. Strengthens your body – especially your ankles and knees! Think of all the hills you’ll do!
5. Challenging and exciting – it’s hard to get bored on trails, unlike the same routes you run about in town.
4. Cleaner for your body – all that fresh air you’ll be taking in on the trails.
5. You get to run with nature. Enough said.