Thursday, January 10, 2013

Only Run On Natural Surfaces

Not the "natural surfaces only" line again.

I don't know how many times I've been told that I can't run on man made surfaces without "properly cushioned" shoes.

If natural surfaces are so much easier for running why does EVERY track meet have a man made surface?

Oh, you meant a golf course when you said natural surface? I see, that would be a man made surface. The rock trails at Mammoth Cave National Park would be natural surfaces.

As I run on the roads around my house, I sometimes have to hop over onto the natural surfaces as cars come by. These natural surfaces include bare limestone, prickly pear cactuses, and fields of chest high wildflowers and prairie grasses.

When I trail run at Mammoth Cave it gets so much faster and easier when I hit the boardwalks and sidewalks.

I think most people that tell me to run on natural surfaces have never run on natural surfaces and never run in anything but heavily cushioned shoes.

I happen to love natural surfaces, but not because they are easier to run on. I love them because they are harder to run on. Running on trails forces me to use more awareness, better technique, a larger variety of movements and therefore a larger variety of muscles.

So yeah, run on natural surfaces, then when you need some active recovery take it easy on a sidewalk.
Natural Surface
Man Made Surface