As you move along a trail through forest, desert, or parkland, you enter a different state of mind. You’re constantly interacting with the ground, vegetation, elevation change, and a variety of sounds and aromas. Mind-body activity is elevated to a higher level of awareness to be ready to react. You’re living in the moment and interacting with life around you as you move forward.

  • The journey: Our ancestors programmed us to move from one point to another along the trail. Forward movement is positive and fulfilling.
  • Sharing:There’s a special bonding that occurs when we run with one or more companions along a trail.
  • Variety: Even if you run the same trail each day, you will feel different sensations on each run.
  • The mission: Planning the trail runs usually requires scheduling the drive to and from, assigning time in a busy schedule, coordinating with running companions, and dividing responsibility for logistics.
  • Enjoyable scenery: I’ve run thousand of trail runs. Each has delivered a memorable series of visual images, interesting and diverse sounds mysteries and puzzles.
  • Strengthens legs and feet: The legs and feet have to work a bit harder on trails to maintain balance, push off on different terrain, and shift usage of muscles.
  • Part of nature: As you move through the trees, plants, hills, grass, and sand, you become part of nature.
  • Preparation for off-road races: A growing number of races offer off-road races or segments.
  • View scenery in a unique way: Due to the light, foliage, and recent precipitation, the scenery changes from one traill run to any other.
  • Brain invigoration: The brain instinctively revs up when you start running on a trail, turning on “circuits” for high awareness.

Learn more about running and walking in Jeff’s book Jeff Galloway Trail Running at:

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