Trail running is highly sought out because it combines the experience of marathon running, with the perks of a weekend getaway. The Lonavala trail Run organized by RunBhoomi is one such marathon that takes place in Maharashtra’s most exciting weekend getaway and hill station – Udhewadi in Lonavala. At an elevation of 2,047 feet above sea level, Lonavala is dotted with waterfalls, valleys, and dams. Unlike the neighbouring metros of Pune and Mumbai, Lonavala boasts of a pleasant and cool climate which is perfect for a session of trail running.

If you’ve decided to give this marathon a shot, the next step is to pick out some gear that assists you through the training. While most of your road running gear will work here, it can be useful to invest in shoes that provide support, traction, and extra protection so you can run tough trails with ease. Here are a few things to keep in mind while choosing cross-country running footwear.

Train or race?

Most serious athletes usually invest in two pairs of shoes – one to take on the challenges of training and another for race days. The former is designed to be lightweight but well-cushioned so as to protect your feet against errant rocks, pebbles or harsher trails. Racing shoes are more minimal and often have spikes for better grip – these are designed to maximize your performance and keep you light on your feet. If you’re not planning on racing anytime soon, stick to a pair of comfortable, supportive shoes that allow you to train under various conditions. Do not take your spikes out for practice, as these tend to wear out faster and are also incapable of providing adequate support against injuries.

At an elevation of 2,047 feet above sea level, Lonavala is dotted with waterfalls, valleys, and dams

Injury prevention

As your feet get used to the new terrains, you need the traditional support and cushioning provided by good training shoes for long-distance, high-intensity workouts. This help prevent common running injuries like shin splints, IT band problems, and Runner’s Knee. If your present running shoes are in good condition, then try them out at practice before rushing for a new pair. It’s best to visit a shoe speciality store and get some expert advice on shoes that can absorb maximum shocks on the trail. Focus on flexibility, fit and try on several pairs before going with the one that suits you best. Sturdy trail running shoes also make great alternatives for cross country training gear.

Designed for speed

Though they are minimal and lightweight, cross-country racing shoes feature aggressive treading at the bottom with excellent grip on different surfaces. The lighter material also increases breathability and adds barely any weight to your runs. Consequently, they can help you achieve better cadence during your runs and also lead to faster striding. Most cross training shoes are one-third the weight of training gear and you’ll feel this difference very noticeably on race day as you fly faster with less or no resistance.

Surface watch

Cross-country racing shoes are available in both spiked and flat varieties, the latter being more beneficial on harder surfaces such as dried dirt, hard soil or concrete. Shoes with spikes, on the other hand, offer great grip for short bursts of speed running on loose, gravel trails, and soft mud and dirt roads. They will, however, wear out faster on hard trails, so keep them for designated races, or pick out a shoe with detachable spikes to get the best of both worlds. Anticipating the kind of surface you’ll eventually be running on is your first step towards acquiring a pair of shoes that’ll stick with you for several memorable races.

Running on trails is based on skill and requires a level of balance, strength, and focus that is greater than running on an asphalt road. So, it is wise to train well before you go out on a wild trail run. As the Official Virtual Training Partner for the Lonavala Trail Run, Mobiefit knows the importance of the right training and diet when it comes to balancing your energy levels and your speed when it comes to trail running. That’s why we have designed specific training programs that will include a workout schedule followed by a number of strengthening sessions along with your own personalized Diet Plan designed by Nutrition expert, Shwetha Bhatia. The programs target specific areas or skills that one will need, to enhance and cater to runners of all levels and types. If you till haven’t signed-up for the Lonavala Trail Run, then head over to Mobiefit Events for details and registrations.

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