Train Better, Run Faster, Have More Fun

Whether you want to place higher or smile more this running season, we’ve got you covered.

Fact: Focusing on training and recovery techniques will make you a stronger, faster, healthier runner. Myth: You have to follow a rigid, zero-fun plan to train effectively. We talked to coaches, doctors, and pro athletes to hone in on the best ways to get in shape, ward off injuries, and get stoked on your training routine as you prep to return to the trails this spring.

–Training and Recovery–

Training Tips for a Pain-Free Return to the Trails

Though most of us have a hard time stepping away from the trails when they’re covered in snow and ice, a break from high-mileage running is actually an important step in your training. It gives your body time to recover from months of hard work, and you can use the off-season to become a stronger runner. Yes, you can actually get faster by not running at all. Here’s how to use the off-season to strengthen stabilizer muscles, improve balance, and ease back into the miles. Read more.

What’s in a Professional Runner’s First Aid Kit

With the Olympics just a few weeks away, Alexi Pappas couldn’t risk letting an annoying blister potentially grow into a workout-stopping injury, or a small post-flight cough develop into something worse. She wanted to be ready for anything and completely self-sufficient. So with the advice of her coaches, trainers, and doctors, she packed a first aid kit that she brought along on all of her journeys. Read more.

Want Fewer Injuries? Work on Your Hips.

Off-balance hips are a good indicator of muscle weakness and alignment issues, and, like lightning before thunder, bad alignment portends injury. Strong muscles and bones are swell, but if your leg’s pivot center is off, odds are you’re in for a world of hurt down the road. Here, coaches and athletes weigh in on how to strengthen your hips and work through problems before they start. Read more.

–Racing–

How to Ace a Stage Race

Stage races intrigue runners of all abilities. You can push your body to the ultimate limit if that’s your thing. You can explore the world on foot. Because you’re running, eating, and sleeping with your fellow competitors, you also build some deep bonds with people from around the world. Ready to run one? Here’s what you need to know. Read more.

Trail Races You Need to Run This Spring

With moderate temperatures and less snow and ice on the trails, spring is an ideal time to run a few key races. Here are 10 trail events of varying distances that don’t disappoint in challenge, organization, and scenery. Read more.

–Stoke–

These Photos Prove Training Can Be a Blast

Training doesn’t have to be made of grueling gym sessions and monotonous miles. By adding in variety, a training buddy, or a new perspective, you can stop dreading your workout plan. We rounded up seven ways runners are making their training sessions more fun. Read more.

10 Trails You Can Run Right Now

Whether you’re sick of treadmills or trying to get a jumpstart on spring, we’ll consider them all valid reasons to brave the elements for a winter trail run. We’ve put together a list of doable ones; some may lead you through slick conditions, and others are actually safer in winter (looking at you, Texas). But they do have one thing in common: They’re all better than the gym. Read more.