My first ever dabble at off-road running was about 7 years
ago and was a 10km organised by Cancer Research at National Trust site Kedleston Hall. Blimey. I found it HARD. I was surprised how much harder running over grass and trail was compared to road and pavement. There was a fair bit of walking up the hills for me which really knocked my confidence. Back then, hills were really not my thing.
I’d love to tell you how exhilarating I found it and how that race was the start of my passion for running away from the roads. However, I found it so challenging I just didn’t enjoy it. With hindsight, the hills were barely undulations and the terrain very kind. To someone used to lovely smooth pavements though, it really was a whole new ball game.
After this race it was a while before I ventured back to the trails. I spent a few years jogging on my local streets for fitness and doing the odd 10km and half marathon. A few years later I joined British military fitness. Now this was something I loved. Outdoor fitness training with a great bunch of people was so motivational that I stuck with it for around 4 years.
So you may be wondering what the moral of this tale is or what happened next. Well, everyone has to start somewhere and sometimes it takes more than one attempt at something for it to take a hold. If you’ve tried fell running and thought it wasn’t for you, why not give it another go? Pick a route with some great scenery, take some snacks and a drink. Don’t plan to go for miles, choose to go for say 30 minutes or an hour. Don’t pressure yourself against a set distance in a set time. I can’t cover the same ground over fell that I can on road so you mustn’t compare the two. Treat them as 2 different sports.
Give it a go and see what happens, persevere, I am so glad I did. Until next time lovely people.