Wear for Mud Runs

Clothing

For mud runs, less is more. Try to get light, tight fitting clothes. Avoid cotton and wool as they pick up water. Any clothing items that wick away water are a good choice. Your clothes might feel light and comfortable dry but wet it can be a whole other matter. A large t-shirt might end up hanging down to your knees after running with it wet for several miles.

Remember whatever extra weight you have on you, you must carry throughout the entire event. This includes the extra weight from water, so keep it light.

Accessories

Just like with clothes, only take what you absolutely must. Most events have water provided and possibly a banana or other food, so you shouldn’t have to carry any food with you.

Carrying your car keys or wallet is just a disaster waiting to happen. Even in a waterproof container the chances of losing them are great and the chances of finding them once lost, are pretty slim. Most events have places to securely store your personal items, or you may leave them with a spectator if you know one there at the event.

Hats, gloves, goggles are not necessary and may slow you down. Most events have a list of recommendations on what to wear. Read them closely.

Costumes

You are at the event to have fun. Many encourage participants to sport costumes. Wearing one may make the event more difficult to complete but adds to the reward factor and goes with the spirit of the event.

Training For Cross Country

The natural surface of cross country is varied and can include grass, mud, dirt trails, rocky areas, hills, gravel paths, and woodlands with roots or other tripping hazards and obstacles. Training for cross country must include preparation for these challenges presented by consistency of the terrain and changes in the elevation. An appropriate start would begin with light aerobic runs in county parks.

Take advantage of the variety in scenery. Look at pictures of ‘Rave Run’ from running magazines for inspiring ideas of more places to run (perhaps while on vacation). Get familiar with the feel of hard baked earth, with mushy mud, with cool moist sand on the soles of your feet. Learn to keep light on the feet even while cruising downhill. Get familiar enough with your surroundings so you can keep your chin up and scan the ground with peripheral vision or just occasional glances. This will develop your proprioception and reduce the chance of injury later when you run at full speed.

Since cross county distance events take place in the fall training should begin with accumulating base mileage over the summer months. Returning runners tend to log more miles than less experienced runners. A new runner may go out 3-4 times a week for 20 minutes runs. A more experienced runner may log runs 5-6 times a week or daily, totaling 30-50 miles a week and >500 miles over 3 months. Motivated runners may use the free online training log at Flotrack ( http://www.flotrack.org/ ).

One key to success in running is in having core stability. Core stability is an ability to move the arms and legs vigorously without compensatory movement in the abdominal spinal area and pelvis. Signs of core weakness include rotation, twisting of shoulders or hips, flexing or bending forward, and extension or leaning back. The base training period of summer months is a good time to work on the core with emphasis on resistance or weight training.

Dealing With Pre-Race Jitters

Many runners get anxious because they are afraid that they are going to forget something important. Have a checklist before you leave home with what you need. Type out a checklist, laminate it and actually check it off as you pack. Include everything – shoes, socks, anything that you may need. Even though it may be the middle of summer, I’ll still pack a lightweight pair of tights and a long sleeve shirt. You never know when the weather may turn. Be prepared for anything.

Sometimes your nervousness before a race is because you are afraid of the unknown. A good way to get over this is to be prepared for the race at hand. Get there early and get a map of the race course. Drive over it so that you will know where all the turns, hills, and finish line are located. Familiarity with the course will help you in this area.

Make sure that you get everything ready for race day the night before. I check a weather app to see what the weather will be hourly at the start and during the race so I’ll know what to wear. Then, lay out what you want to wear and pin your racing bib to the front of your shirt. Have your shoes and socks ready and if the race uses a timing chip – get it attached. Having everything ready before you go to bed causes you to be less anxious on race morning.

Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Many runners get overly stressed out because they feel that they need to run a certain time. Just have the attitude that you are going to run your best and take that weight off of your shoulders.

You’ve trained hard for your race. You know that you are ready. Follow these tips and let the excitement of race day carry you to a wonderful day.

Survival Gear

A Radio Or Cell Phone

One of the best pieces of field and survival gear you can have is a way to quickly communicate with the outside world. A cell phone is ideal as long as you have phone coverage.

A GPS Unit

Along similar lines, a great piece of tactical gear is a GPS unit. This should work no matter where you are as long as the batteries hold out, and you can keep from ever becoming lost.

A Knife

Knives and swords are both helpful, though knives are easier to carry. You can use these to clean fish if you need to eat or to build a lean-to out of small tress and branches.

A First Aid Kit

This will give you a basic way to fix minor injuries. You will not be able put a cast on a broken leg, but you can make sure a minor injury does not lead to major complications.

Extra Water

People are often thinking so hard about what tactical gear they need that they forget the basics. You have to have water to prevent dehydration and heat stroke.

Food That Lasts

Along similar lines, some of the best survival gear you can have is also the most obvious. You want to have food that is in packaging and can be rationed out for a long time if you are lost.

Something To Build A Shelter

As mentioned, a knife can be helpful in this process. It is also a good idea to have a poncho or some other sort of garment that you can use to keep off the rain.

Running After an Injury

Most injuries occur when we try to push ourselves to run too far, too fast, too soon. I actually injured my left hip flexor when I tried to do a 30 day run streak. I was only running roughly 3 days a week at the time, averaging about 15 miles. My so called 30 day run streak only lasted 9 days. And I have since been on and off the sideline since the beginning of November.

Depending on the severity of your injury is what determines just how much time off from running is needed. For a mild muscle strain or shin splints, a few days with proper stretching and ice (for the first 24-48 hours) will typically be enough. A moderate injury such as a strained ankle, knee or even a moderate hip flexor injury, generally requires anywhere from one to three weeks off to heal. And when it comes to a severe injury such as a severe hip flexor injury, a runner could be looking at up to eight weeks to fully recover. Only after you have taken the necessary time to complete some physical therapy, massage, and strengthening for your injury will you then be able to gradually make your way back to running.

Trying to run before your muscles have healed will definitely result in you taking even more time off and possibly even injure yourself even worse. I know this all too well, because I have tried more than once to start running before my hip was ready. And as I sit here writing this article today, I am still feeling the pain in my hip, because just yesterday I went out for a run knowing in the back of my mind that it may just be too soon. And, it was!

It is also very important that when you do go out for your first run after your injury has healed, you must take it slow. You can’t just go back out there and run the miles or the speed that you were doing before the injury. Start off with low miles and a slow speed, and gradually build yourself back to your pre-injury running schedule.

So please learn from me… When injured, take the time to heal your body first. And take your time when getting back into your running routine. Come back stronger and healthier than before you became injured.

Running With Your Dog

First of all, don’t run with a puppy. Your puppies’ bones and joints are growing when they are young – just as humans do. So, you want your dogs to be mature enough when they start running so that they don’t get injured. Smaller dogs can finish growing in 8 – 10 months, while longer breeds may take 16 – 18 months to mature.

In addition, you don’t want to run with your dog if he is too mature. You should not run with a dog that is 7 years or older. Remember dog years are more than human years.

Start running with your dog easily. Just as humans need to ease into a running program – so does your dog. Your first runs with your dog should be slow and easy and then gradually increase your mileage. And, as your feet toughen up to running – so does your dog’s feet – or his pads. They will toughen up – but you need to start easy. Keep an eye on his feet after your runs together to make sure they are not tender or bleeding.

Just as you need to stay hydrated, so does our dog. Make sure that you make arrangement for water stops for your dog as well as for you. It is extremely important for your dog to get water on his runs.

Make sure that you have your dog on a leash when you run. It is so tempting for a dog to run off when he sees another animal. For his safely, please keep him on that leash.

Have something with you to dispose of any waste. You know how annoying it can be to “step into something” when you are out on a run. Don’t be the person who leaves something for someone else to step in.

Make sure that you are keeping an eye on your dog that he doesn’t become overly tired. Watch to see that he isn’t overly panting, slowing down or his down. If he shows any of these signs, stop and try to cool him off immediately. You can water him down and get him inside. He may have gone too far on the run or too quickly. If he still acts funny after working with him for 10-15 minutes, you need to take him to see a vet.

Essential Mountain Hiking Gear

Carabiners

If you are going on a mountain hiking trip, all by yourself, then make sure you have carabiners. Carabiners are small metal clips that are usually made of aluminum. You will need carabiners while hiking so you can clip yourself onto the mountainous surface, or you can even clip your gear onto them. You can use carabiners for a variety of purposes depending on their shapes and styles. You can even use larger locking carabiners for belaying and for securing the rope to the surface of a mountain. You can use non-locking carabiners for holding other gear and for nonessential clips.

Belay Device

If you are worried about falling while mountain hiking, then you should essentially carry a belay device with you. A belay device is a small unit with two slots through which the rope is fed. If you are not hiking alone, then using a belay device will allow you to hike above or below your hiking partner. If you are hiking above your hiking partner, then you can pull back on the rope if hiking partner begins falling or vice versa.

Harness

If you are going on a mountain hiking trip, then another important gear, you will need is a harness. You can wear a harness just like a pair of pants, and it will rest on your hips. While hiking, you will need to use the harness for attaching yourself to the belay device or the rope and for carrying gear. A harness will act as a safety net for you while you are hiking over a mountain and make sure you wear it tightly enough so that if you end up flipped upside down, you do not slip out of it.

Rope

The rope is a very important mountain hiking gear and for it, you will be using a specialized rope. If you are lead hiking, then you will tie the rope to your harness, this way you will carry the rope with you as you ascend the mountain. You can place bolts and carabiners into the surface on the mountain in order to tack the rope onto it. This way, if you are using a belay device and there is a hiker hiking below you, will be able to catch your hiking partner in case of a fall.

Shoes

Since mountains have an uneven surface, you will have to wear cleat-like hiking boots that have spikes and tread marks under them to allow you to have a firm footing over the rugged surface. Shoes like these will prevent you from slipping while mountain hiking.

Helmet

Many mountain hikers overlook the importance of a helmet, but it is an essential mountain hiking gear. Even when hiking over a mountain, there is always the risk that a broken chunk of mountainous terrain might fall right on top of you, and your helmet will protect your head from damage.

About Rudiments of Climbing

There are people who only want to experience mountain climbing, just for the sake of experiencing it. But for people who are professional and who seek excitement and thrill want something that will give them the feeling that they want. These people prefer climbing mountains that are high, such as Andes, Himalayas, Mount McKinley and the French Alps. Commonly people who are climbing these categorys of mountains, experience frost bites, avalanche, cold winds that is bone chilling and hypothermia.

If this is your first time to go on a mountain climbing, then knowing the things that you need to brainwash is important, for you to be ready once you start climbing. This will also help you to be safe and to survive the mountains that you are planning to climb. Another important thing that you have to do is to know the current condition of the weather before you start climbing the mountain. There are places that are very snowy and cold, which means that you have to expect travels that are glacier. Put in mind that you have got to not only enjoy while climbing the mountain, but you should also make sure that you will succeed in climbing sound and safe.

As you all know, this type of sport is very risky especially if you are just a beginner. In case you don’t know, the mountain is full of surprises. You might get excited at first, but when you start climbing, you will surely come across some dangerous things and experiences. You may come across an animal that is wild, or you might get lost into the wild. So it is always better to research about the place that you are going for you to get familiar with it.

This exciting sport is worth a try. But always remember to stay safe, and let your friends and your family know your whereabouts, for them to know where to look for you in case of any problem.

Hiking Destinations in France

France is home to some of the most striking mountain ranges. The Pyrenees and the Alps are the two most favored destinations among the hikers. These mountain ranges offer exceptional conditions suitable for trekking as well as for hiking adventures.

Hiking is famous all over Europe. But France is considered as the best place for its unparalleled natural variety. Besides, the country also offers a good network of hiking trails. It provides diverse levels of hiking routes.

The hiking routes of France is spread over 40,000 km. It includes a range of stunning terrains which meet requirements of both experienced and amateur hikers. If you are in search for the best and the most exciting hiking experience, you can always go out hiking in the wonderful terrains of France.

Some of the major hiking destinations of France are the French Alps, the Jura, the island of Corsica, the Pyrenees, the Massif Central and the Champagne. Some of the other famous hiking spots include the Dordogne valley, Brittany, Languedoc, Burgundy, Aquitaine, Mont Saint Michel, Perigord region, the Ile de France region and the Alsace region. Tourists coming here can also opt for rock climb hiking at the Chamonix alpine.

Hiking in the French Alps will offer an opportunity to enjoy the breath taking view of this highest peak of Europe. On the other hand, Alsace region is another most popular hiking spot which attracts many travelers each year. This particular hiking area provides the taste of the wonderful French architecture and culture. You can also explore the popular Alsatian wine yard, medieval villages and a variety of French delicacies in the Alsace.

Hiking is common in the Queenstown area of France as most of the multi-day French hiking trails begins from here. One of such hiking trail is Routebourne track which starts from the Queenstown region. Hiking Tours in France are conducted by different reputed agencies for the convenience of hikers visiting this country all round the year.

Devices Used For Mountain Climbing

Services offered by climbing institutions

Rock climbing is a challenging and dangerous outdoor activity. Safety is one of the vital priorities in this extreme sport. It is very much important to obtain right set of equipment. You should take enough care to purchase superior quality equipment. Poor quality devices may put your life at risk. Institutions will provide the necessary information regarding gear list and thus improve the performance of the climber.

Features of ice climbing

Ice climbing is just like mountain climbing. Ice climbing is more challenging than rock climbing and so huge safety precautions have to be taken while performing this sport activity. Before doing ice climbing, you have to check your health condition. You need to work out regularly and make your hands and legs stronger. Next thing is to go to any institution and learn the basics of ice climbing. There are stimulated indoor ice hills in these training institutions where you can practice hiking. Such institutions or clubs will also provide you with climbing equipment. The equipment used in ice climbing is different from that used in rock climbing. Ice axe is one of the main equipment used by ice climbers. Ice axe can be used as a walking stick that provides stability.

Different styles of rock climbing

There are mainly two styles of rock climbing and they are Sport and Traditional climbing. Different types of gear and equipments are needed in each style. Sport climbing is generally done on walls with bolts. So, small number of equipment is required in this type of activity. On the other hand, traditional climbing is extremely dangerous and so all types of protection gears are needed.