I Am Participating In A Ragnar Trail Run

For the past eight months I have been obsessed with trail and long distance running. When I was presented with the opportunity to participate in a Ragnar Trail Run in Wawayanda State Park this October, I blurted the word YES before I could fully comprehend what I agreed to. Once I realized I’ll be running 15.70 miles in 24 hours I had to have a what the hell did you agree to conversation with myself. I quickly silenced the self doubt, bought a pair of trail running shoes and I have not looked back. Here’s a few tips I have learned along my training:


My running form has improved tremendously over the past two years. Prior to starting my running journey my sister and daughter joked that I run as if I am carrying groceries. My form was all jacked up. I kept tension in my shoulders, my legs did a weird shuffle and I landed mid-foot. My form was so bad I know it was painful to watch. I have since corrected my form but my arms. Boy oh boy, they are a mess. My arms does a weird sway in front of my body. Very similar to Red from Friday when Deebo stole his chain (if you are unfamiliar with that reference, are you living under a rock?) You can get so much power from your arms. So, pump those arms, engage your core, lean in slightly while keeping your gaze ahead of you a bit. Don’t be like Tikima and Red, use your arms while running especially uphill.


Starting a new training program I knew I needed to focus on my pacing. I’m one of those fast twitch fiber, sprinter, just-get-this-run-out-of-the-way type of girls. This Ragnar is not one of those types of parties. I need to learn how not to burn all of my matches at once. I do that by not focusing on the pace and ditching the watch. EVERYONE runs slower doing a trail run and I am NO exception. I started to listen to my breathe to ensure I was not gasping for air. If you need to gasp for air you are overexerting yourself. Therefore, pace yo’ self fool (just a play on words from a Friday reference. I couldn’t help myself) and slow down!! Focus on breathing and heart rate rather than speed.


Photo Cred Jim Pancoast at Empower Summer Camp

The next tip may seems like ummm duh but hear me out. This summer during #EmpowerSummerCamp(yes I attended summer camp) I had an epiphany...


I know you are thinking this sounds extreme and it is. I hold my breath or breathe very shallow (this may explain my high anxiety) leaving my body in constant fight or flight mode. I have been practicing meditation daily since my eureka moment and it has actually seeped into my running. I actually prefer meditation while running over the traditional style of meditation. While running I try to focus on one thing and not let my mind wonder. Currently I have been focusing on gratitude and my running cadence. I hope these tips help you with your trail running. I am super excited to participate in #RagnarTrailWawa with the amazing Sweat Pink team!!! Have you participated in a Ragnar before? I will use all the tips and tricks I need to not only get through the race but make it an enjoyable experience. Don’t forget to follow my journey on my socials. #TikimaReneeFitness #RagnarRelayRace #TeamSweatPink #Ragnar #Running #EmowerSummerCamp #RunningTips


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