Trail running in Sioux Falls continues to grow in popularity, but there are definitely better and worse seasons for this popular sport. The better seasons for trail running will be here fairly soon. Less time on icy sidewalks and treadmills and more time on the soft surfaced bliss of the Sioux Falls area trails.
Trail running, like road running, is a fairly simple sport if you want it to be. However, there are some small differences in the footwear required to fully participate in trail running. The first main difference that you will find in a good trail shoe is in the traction. Most road shoes are fairly smooth on the bottom while trail shoes have rubber lugs in various patterns. The next main difference that you will find in a trail shoe is the presence of a firmer material underfoot. This is usually a plastic or thin metal plate that is designed to protect your feet from sharp rocks and other objects that you may encounter on the trail. The final big difference between road and trail shoes is durability, especially in the upper. When trail running, shoes undergo more lateral motion. The uppers are often reinforced to protect against tearing while under the added stress of trail running.
Now that you know the main differences between road and trail shoes, it is time to start thinking about your own pair of trail shoes. Here at the 605 Running Company, we carry Altra’s Lone Peak 2.0. It is an excellent option for running local trails. The Lone Peak, like all Altras is a zero-drop shoe with an extra wide toe box. This creates a very comfortable and natural feel. Trails are a great place to experiment with zero drop due to the softer surfaces and changes in elevation. The Lone Peak features Altra’s patented Stone Guard technology which is the most comfortable rock plate that I have experienced. Altra placed the plate between two layers of cushion which allows the shoe to still be cushioned and flexible. The traction on the Lone Peak is solid with lugs positioned to help you run uphill and downhill in slippery conditions. The traction isn’t overdone which is great for the kinds of trails that Sioux Falls runners will encounter or even on the roads. I also like to put on a pair of trail shoes in snowy or icy conditions. Lone Peaks, like most Altras, are very durable. The rubber on the bottom is very slow to wear and the cushion is firm enough to resist compaction. One last feature not to be overlooked is the gaiter trap on the heel of the shoe. Gaiters are commonly used to keep rocks, snow and other debris from getting into your shoe and causing irritation.
Overall, the Lone Peak 2.0 comes highly recommended as an excellent trail option for Sioux Falls runners - happy running!
What are some of your favorite trails to run in the area? Write to us and let us know - we want to do more with trail running as the season changes from winter to spring!
In it Together
In my opinion, that absolute best thing about running is the people. While in high school, I enjoyed the social aspect that others brought, while in college I became a better runner by training with other like-minded individuals and now post-graduation, I depend on other runners to keep me motivated and to get me out the door.
You should never underestimate the power that a regular training group can have on your training. You will run further, faster and just more than you would without. That's why I really enjoy the group runs that take place at the 605 Running Co. every Wednesday and Saturday; because regardless of the day, there will be other like-minded people there to help you get started when you might not otherwise run.
I've told my wife before that regular running with a group creates relationships, in fact, you'd have to purposely try to NOT make friendships with people you regularly run with. I figure if you run for one hour a day, five days a week, that is almost 11 straight days of running with someone over the course of a year. Whether you want to or not, you will get to know someone pretty well over that time. You'll get to know their goals, their plans to achieve, their religious beliefs, their bathroom habits (unfortunately) and all sorts of things about their past. You know you've found someone good to run with where regardless of how many days a week or how long you run for, you never run out of anything to talk about. If you find that person, make that running relationship a priority.
The picture above is me and a group of guys I run with. The gentleman on the left (Jason Zakaras) is a former University of Nebraska wrestler and finishes ahead of me in more races than I finish in front of him. He is a self-employed business owner, just moved to an acreage southwest of Omaha, two daughters (Lilly and Emma) and is married to his wife, Jayci, who works as a regional rep for Oiselle. Although he wanted to run a fast half/5k recently, he is definitely trending towards the ultra/trail races right now.
I know all of this about Jason, despite the fact that I have not ran regularly with him for months. I DO know all of this about him because we spent a lot of time running together, either early mornings in Omaha or long runs out in the country. You can't help but get to know someone when you run with them, and you should take advantage of them helping you enjoy running more.
Based on my experience of being married for almost four years, I would warn anyone in a relationship with a runner to strongly consider the commitment they are making. A relationship with a runner is very different than any other relationship since your significant other has another flame in their life: running. For those of you who are at the point of no return (like me), it's important to speak their running language, or at least know enough to pretend like you do.
I really do love my runner husband (especially when he wakes up early to run and I get the bed all to myself), but if there's one thing I have learned in my almost two years of being married to him, it is that he loves to talk running. It seems like any time he gets together with another fellow runner, I am subjected to a lot of runner talk and terminology. I will share with you what some of these tricky words and phrases mean, to the best of my knowledge, so you can fit right in with your other half and all of their tiny short wearing, runner-talking friends.
Farmer's blow: This is one of the first running words I learned, and it has a disgusting meaning. It's against running rules to stop while you're running for a tissue, so instead you just cover one side of your nostril with your finger and blow snot out the other. I told you it was gross. It's even grosser when your runner husband teaches you how to do it and it doesn't really work like it's supposed to the first time.
Cool-Down: After you've already run a marathon, which is 26.2 miles (are you impressed I know that?), or a race of any other distance, you have to run even farther, because obviously a marathon isn't enough for these people. If you don't do it, you're not "cool."
Drafting: This word means to run behind someone if it's windy so you don't mess up your hair.
Fartlek running: Fartlek running is when you run after eating a burrito (I actually don't know for sure what this word means, but I'm sure I guessed right).
Rabbit: No, this person does not get to hop around the track like I originally thought. A rabbit is actually the stupidest thing ever. He just runs around the track and then stops before he's even tired, so he looks like a huge running wimp. Also, never ask your husband who the "bunny" is in the race, because apparently they're not synonyms in this case.
P.R.: I have always wanted to go to P.R. I've heard they have great food and beautiful beaches. Plus, I do speak a little Spanish so I would fit right in. Okay, fine. P.R. in running talk means personal record, not Puerto Rico. Like when you beat your race time by a millisecond and everyone is supposed to make a huge deal out of it. Warning: It can also be used as a verb, but sounds a little gross. So if someone tells you they P.R.d in the race today, don't give them a look of disgust from thinking about what may have happened earlier out on the race course.
Splits: Take a lesson from my friend Kate, who was the track team manager in high school. When your sweaty sweetie asks you to do the splits (or the track coach in her case), they want you to time their laps, not show off your gymnastic flexibility. True story.
So now you know enough to impress the object of your affection. You might even be able to fit in with his friends a little better next time. Just try this: "Wow, that split was a P.R. in the race today and you didn't even need a rabbit! Does anyone want to draft me on the cool-down so I don't mess up my hair? Maybe we can even hit up Chipotle and then do some fartlek running!"
The Fashionista Teacher