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Trail Running Warm-Up

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Trail running is done on uneven surfaces, so it is important to have a trail run warm-up routine in place to work your muscles before setting off on the run. Having a pattern of exercises will increase flexibility and strength, enhance flexibility, raise endurance, and ultimately aid in the minimization of injury risk.

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A Good List to Follow:

Calf Stretches

Stand on a step with the heel of the leg to be stretch resting off the back of the step.  Drop the heel down by slightly bending the opposite knee until you feel a stretch in your calf. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat.

<img src="calf stretch.png" alt="women on stairs trail running warm up”>

Heel Raise

Stand on a step with the ball of your foot on the edge of the step. Drop the heel down and then rise on your toes. Change Continue in reps of 10 for three sets.

Single-Leg Balance

Start by standing on your left leg, lift your right leg straight toward the 12 o’clock position if you were standing on a clock. Gently swing the right leg forward and back, from 12 o’clock to 6 o’clock. Repeat 10 to 15 times each leg.

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With your knees aligned, put your front knee over your shoe and back knee pointing down.

Keep your knees, hips, and shoulders all facing in the same forward direction. Be aware of how you distribute your body weight. Repeat for a total of 10 on each side.

<img src="lunge stretch.png" alt="man warming up on beach”>


With your feet facing forward, spread your feet hip-width apart. Squat up and down 15 – 20 times.

Side Planks

Planking is a great way to warm up the whole body. Start on the floor on your side with your feet together and one forearm directly below your shoulder. Hold in your core and raise your hips until your body from head to toe is in a straight line. Switch to the other side and repeat 15-20 times.

<img src="planking stretch.png" alt="women side plank warm up in grass”>


Lie face down with your arms reaching out in front of you and your legs extended behind you. Engage your core and glutes and raise your arms and legs and chest off the floor. Hold for 20 seconds and repeat 8-10 times.

There is a special feeling when you run an open trail terrain. It brings running and nature together which beats treadmill running. Research shows that exercise done outside in nature can help you stick to a fitness plan.  Use a good warm up before your run.

<img src="glute stretch.png" alt="women warming up hamstrings and glutes”>

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Results represented in these images are specific to this individual and may not be representative of your results based upon your diet, exercise, lifestyle and health factors.

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