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Trail Running With Your Dog

For most walking the dog is sufficient, but for some they wish to bring their dog along when they perform more strenuous exercise, think jogging or trail running. Running whilst a good exercise can over time cause damage to human and doggy joints. So this article hopes to provide some tips and advice on running with your dog whilst staying safe during the run and after.

Make sure your dog is fit and ready 

Running is a demanding exercise, particularly on your joints.  If your dog is still growing,  the jarring impacts can cause joint damage . Vets recommend waiting until your dog is at least 3 years or older before any serious trial running. It is okay to go for short runs over smoother terrine. Advice from Eamonn Turley keen trail runner and founder of  dogwalkerinsurance.co.uk is before staring get your dog checked over with a VET for any potential problems, as it can be a gruelling sport

How far can a dog run?

How far a dog can run will depend on the dog breed, energy size and age.  On average, all dogs should be able to easily run 3 to 4 KM. Dog that are bred as working dogs can run much greater distances. AT the other side of the equation you have dogs that can only trot or jog  a few miles before becoming exhausted, this is true for overweight breeds that include bulldogs.

Examples of  some of the best dog breeds for trail running include:

  • Shepherds – German, Belgian, Australian
  • Retrievers – Labrador, Golden, Chesapeake, Curly and Flat coat
  • Rhodesian Ridge back
  • Cattle dogs – Blue Heeler, Kelpie
  • Collies – Border and Rough
  • Husky

Dog trail running gear

Before setting out, make sure you and your doggie are properly prepared for the event. Most important on the list is nourishment for the dog. Bring along high calorie snacks and water, bottle, both  of which can be shared. A waist attached leash is a popular option, giving more freedom and flexibility to both dog and owner. A collar leash is to be avoided at all costs for your and your dog’s safety. A running belt can hold the necessary accessories, plus don’t forget to bring plenty of poop bags. Running act as a trigger for dog to relive themselves.  Depending on the terrain, you may consider investing in a lightweight dog rain coat with underbelly and some paw protectors. 


If running alone  with your dog, take some safety precautions. First  making sure that you inform someone that you are off for a run and details of the trial run route. Consider a GPS collar for your dog should you get separated. If running in poor visibility, take some reflective clothing for you and your dog

Dog Care after the Run

Like us humans, your dog will need some time to relax and recover. Make sure you can find a comfortable location out of direct sunlight and have lost of drinking water should your dog have an unquenchable thirst, like mine does after a long run. After they have had time to recover,  carry out a check for cuts or damage to the paws, pay particular attention to spaces between toes and inner thigh areas. Also check doggies body for any freerides (ticks) that may have been picked in the grasses and bushes.

Can Vaping CBD Help Exercise and Recovery?

CBD has many benefits, from improving sleep quality to lessening anxiety. However, did you know it can also help exercise and sports recovery? The popular compound is part of a growing market for fitness enthusiasts and athletes. We spoke to Cara, Head of Customer experience at Vape Elevate to find out how her customers are using herbal vaporizers to improve focus, […]

How To Plan a Workout You’ll Want To Stick To

One of the most complex parts of working out is finding a routine you’ll want to stick to consistently. Here’s how to create a workout plan that will see you coming back for more, genuinely enjoying your time exercising and achieving your desired results. Get Clear About Your Intentions  Why do you want to work out?    That may seem […]

How To Build An Outdoor Gym

An outdoor gym is a great addition to your space, if you have a decent sized outdoor space that is vacant. An outdoor gym is the best of both worlds. You get to exercise and sweat out, as you would in a normal gym, but you are also connected with nature, which increases your energy and is good for your […]

A Beginners Guide to Trail Running

Trail running is constantly rising in popularity amongst all age groups, especially as more and more people take an interest in the outdoors and the sense of adventure it can bring. Those who take part in this state that running through the woods ‘nurtures their soul’. This is more important than ever before as we adopt busier lifestyles, have become technologically dependent and lose our connection with nature and the environment around us.

This activity allows you to go at your own pace, it can be a marathon or sprint. After being connected to smartphones at home and desktop computers in the workplace, running through the woods provides a real sense of calmness.

In this guide we’ll be covering the things every beginner needs to know about. If you fall in love with this outdoor activity and want to take it to the next level, some runners have even started travelling across the world to see what different locations can offer them. Regardless of if you’re on the move in the UK or overseas, it’s worth having a travel insurance policy. Cover is relatively inexpensive and can easily be compared online using a comparison site such as Utility Saving Expert. You’ll be insured for things like lost or stolen belongings, cancelled or delayed transport and emergency medical treatment. All useful when you’re on the move and away from home.

What can a beginner expect from trail running?

At this point you may already be used to running on tarmac, concrete or any other hard surface. Trail runs provide softer surfaces, making them more comfortable and you’re less likely to suffer from an injury as a result of this. It also provides a sense of excitement that road running just can’t offer. It will be no secret that runners will prefer to breath in the fresh air from a damp forest rather than fumes from hundreds of vehicles on the road.

Trail running will make you stronger and more importantly a happier runner. You’re no longer just running purely for fitness, there are other aspects such as peace of mind, body and soul. Here’s what you’ll need when you’re just getting started.

Running gear

This is a minimalistic activity in comparison to road running. You’ll want to leave behind your smartphone, as music and GPS navigation isn’t as important. Heart rate monitors can still be used if you want to train for an event and log your results. Generally, the whole purpose is to leave technology behind as it will take away from your experience.

Clothing: You can wear the same apparel on trails that you would for other forms of running, but you’ll want something that can withstand extra wear and tear.

Running shoes: This is where you’ll want to have specialised trail shoes. These will offer you added protection and greater stability in comparison to the running shoes you’ll see advertised by major sports manufacturers. Afterall, you will be running on uneven surfaces that differ in texture. Examples include: grass, mud and rocks.

Water bottle: Dehydration is a killer so you’ll need to drink lots of water regularly. This is even more important in hotter climates. You don’t want to faint in the middle of nowhere and require emergency medical attention.

Lighting: Another plus is that you can even run during the night without having to worry about colliding with a vehicle. However, you’ll need to have either a headlamp or flashlight to guide your next step.

After a good run, don’t forget you’ll need a towel and another set of clothes to change into.

What steps do I need to take on my first trail run?

Find a suitable trail
Pace yourself and take shorter strides
Embrace the hills
Keep your eye on your next step and the ground in front of you
Keep a safe distance from other trail runners
Be vigilant and avoid slippery surfaces, especially rocky ones
Safety first, you are now entering the wilderness

Other things to think about are what wildlife can be found in the area, when and where any hunting takes place and what time the sun is due to set. Although you’re not at risk of being hit by a car, there are still other dangers. This is why safety will still be a top priority.

If you’re ready to get started, here are some of the most popular trail runs in the UK:

Loughrigg Fell, Lake District
Noss Mayo and Newton Ferrers, Devon
Pen-y-Ghent, Yorkshire Dales
Frensham Common, Surrey Hills
Loch an Eilein, Cairngorms
Coed-y-Brenin, Snowdonia

We hope this guide has been useful in helping you better understand what trail running is all about. Hopefully, you enjoy this new endeavour as much as we do. You’ll go from a beginner to a seasoned veteran in no time once you experience what’s on offer.

Is Fleet Insurance A Good Choice of Sponsor For Your Charity Run?

When you are looking for a sponsor, you are going to have a few options up your sleeve as a charity run organiser.

One of those options would fleet insurance, which is something many organisations think about with events such as these. Yes, fleet insurance is a great way to go for sponsorships and it’s time to look at the reasons.


There is a sense of detail in how fleet insurance companies manage these situations and that is essential over the long-term. You are able to get more out of the relationship because they are going to want to associate with the charity and it’s probably going to offer protection too. This makes it a great way to put together a positive relationship and still get the charity run to go ahead as planned.

Personalised Coverage

The coverage is going to be personalised and that is a must over the course of the event. If you are going to be hosting a charity run, it makes sense to have access as soon as possible. It will save time and is going to personalise everything along the way.

Ideal for the Situation

The situation means you are going to need a sponsor who wants to support the event while getting their brand out there.

Of course, there are many requirements when it comes to a charity run but sometimes it’s as simple as finding a good sponsor. Cheap Fleet Motor Fleet Insurance sponsor these type of events, so in this regard, you will get a great deal and it’s going to boost the charity run as well.


Fleet cover is a great way to reduce the amount of pressure put on your charity setup when it’s time to put together a run. There is a lot that goes into this type of event and it’s smart to have full protection from an insurance perspective. Most companies will end up heading towards an insurance setup because it’s simpler, faster, and in line with what’s required for the moment. By going down this route, you are going to gain access to a professional agency that will take care of potential issues that arise during the run.

These are the reasons to go with a good fleet coverage when it is time to locate a good sponsor. You are going to get a great deal and it’s going to work out well for your race too. This is a win-win and it’s a great way to get the best of both worlds.

The Great North Run and Printed T-Shirts for Teams

The Great North Run or the Simplyhealth Great North Run is an annual half marathon that’s nearly four decades old. In fact, it’s the largest half marathon in the world and is held every year in September in North East England. The total distance of this half marathon is 13.1 miles, which begins from the Newcastle city centre and ends on the seafront road at South Shields. Each year close to 60,000 runners participate in the Great North Run. One must be at least 17 years old or more to be able to participate and the entry fee is £56 per person.

Nirvana is the official accommodation services provider for the Great North Run for both runners and spectators. You can get a decent accommodation close to the start line for as little as £32 per person. Nirvana also provides transportation services and other packages around the Great North Run. And you can get a 10% discount on train tickets if you book with Transpennine Express, the official train partner.

For many of these runners the primary objective is to raise money for various charities. To be able to run for charity runners agree to raise sponsorship money. Some of the charities that are associated with the Great North Run include Diabetes UK, Cancer Research UK, Bobby Moore Fund, Alzheimer’s Society, Breast Cancer Care, British Heart Foundation, Bloodwise, Children with Cancer UK, Save the Children, British Red Cross and Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity, among many others.

The Junior and Mini Great North Run takes place at the same time as the main event. The Mini category is for 3 to 8 year old participants, while the Junior category is for 9 to 16 year old participants. The distance of the run is 4K and 1.5K.

Many runners participating in the Great North Run come with a group of friends or with a bunch of co-workers and colleagues or are members of club. If you are a member of such a running team, then you can make this a special day with custom printed running t-shirts for your entire team. You will be able to bond with your friends and represent what you stand for with customised t-shirts. If you are running for a charity, the logo can be added to the t-shirt as well. At the end of the run the t-shirt will become a souvenir, one you can get signed by your friends or the winner of the marathon and treasure it for the rest of your life.

6 Things Every Beginner Should Know Before Trail Running

Trail running is gaining immense popularity among the youngsters as it helps them to train their muscles and achieve their fitness goals within a short span of time but just like any other sports, there are many challenges that you need to face while trail running so that you will enjoy this sports to the fullest. The 6 Things Every Beginner Should Know Before Trail Running is very important so that you can improve your performance and avoid things that can obstruct your training.Trail running is a kind of physical activity that involves running through the woods as it nurtures your soul and help you get closer to the nature as it can be the most soothing and rejuvenating
experience as you venture into the wilderness. It is an adventure race that offers you some of the most exhilarating experience of your life while you step out of your comfort zone as you run on uneven terrain as it will help in
improving your balance, coordination and agility while helping you burn more calories. You need to keep your safety in mind so that you can prevent any injury or accident while running as it will help you get more oxygen while you
run through the woods to relive your life.

young woman in skirt jumpin

6 Things Every Beginner Should Know Before Trail Running –

Slow down- rather than going for a quick start and slowing in the middle of the race, you should slow down from the starting so that you will be able to maintain the same pace on trail as there are a lots of obstruction that you will find on the way which includes rocks, trees, leaves and roots which might affect your pace adversely.

Pay attention to time and not pace- when running from road to trails, you should always keep in mind that running on the road is easier than on the trails and therefore you should ensure that you are covering the desired distance in a set period of time rather than your pace.

Keep safety in mind- trail running involves a significant amount of risks and hence you should always ensure that you are safe and for this you will need to do prior preparation with the right gears and equipment that will help you to undertake safe journey through the woods. You also need to download safety apps and have pepper spray that will protect you when you are in an unknown location.


Know the rules of trail running- there are certain rules that you need to follow as a beginner and this includes staying
on the marked trails, running through the puddles and ensuring that you are following all the safety measures.

Take short and quick strides- rather than running for a longer distance at one go, you should opt for shorter and quicker strides so that you will enjoy trail running to the fullest rather than being exhausted midway.

Adapt the new environment– you will need to know the different environmental conditions while going for trail running so that you can make preparations beforehand so that you will enjoy running.

Owens runs ‘race of his life’ to take 3 Peaks

In what will be fondly remembered as a sunny but breezy day in the Yorkshire Dales, Tom Owens today carved his name in fell running history as a winner of one of the most iconic races on the fell calendar, the Yorkshire 3 Peaks in an excellent 2.53.34 for the 23.3 mile route.

Speaking after his win Tom described his mammoth effort in tough conditions as “the race of my life”, strong words from a guy who has such races as the Carnethy 5 and the Trans Alpine run amongst his list of wins. His second place in 2008 had not only set his appetite to win this race one day, but also given him the tool of course knowledge to set up today’s win.

Owens triumphed after a big tussle up to Ingleborough with Shettleston team mate Jethro Lennox, but was able to pull away in the closing miles to register what he considers his biggest win yet. Scottish teenager Robbie Simpson ran an amazing debut on the 3 Peaks route to finish second, with Ambleside’s Ben Abdelnoor running an equally amazing race to finish third.

In the women’s race Anna Frost also returned to the 3 Peaks to tie up what she described as ‘unfinished business’ with this route, after finishing fourth on he previous visit in 2008. After a good battle with Calder Valley’s Jo Buckley, Frosty took over after Whernside and ran strongly onto Ingleborough and into the finish in Horton-in-Ribblesdale, to put her name alongside the likes of Sarah Rowell and Angela Mudge on the role call of winners of this race.

Helen Fines ran very strongly to finish second, with Shettleston’s Fiona Maxwell in third.

A further report, with reactions and 3 Peaks gallery will appear on MST early next week, as time is a little tight this weekend – sorry!

Full results now online at Sport Ident and images should be online at SportSunday soon…

Rob romps to Snowdonia win

Wales and GB international Rob Samuel pulled off the biggest win of his career on Saturday, as he won Britain’s toughest marathon. The 25-year old led majestically over the final 6 miles of this iconic 26.2 mile event to win in 2hrs 36 mins and 45 secs…

With a line-up of international endurance runners that many a UK marathon would have been proud of, the 29th running of the Snowdonia Marathon Eryri was destined to be a superbly competitive event, and it was

Commenting on his terrific winning effort Samuel said:

“This is crazy. I mean I am in good form, but I can’t believe that I have won. It means so much to take my first marathon win here at the Snowdonia Marathon, in front of such a fantastic crowd and on my ‘home turf’.”

After three years of stormy conditions and heavy rain the organisers were hopeful of some respite for the runners (who came from 14 countries). But as the race got off at 10.30am, started by First Hydro’s Brian Tindall, rain and high winds were already the order of the day and over the next 6 hours the unpredictable Snowdonian weather took hold with torrential rain, gale force gusts and hail all adding to the spice of this event which lived up to its billing as the toughest and most scenic in the UK.

After three years of stormy conditions and heavy rain the organisers were hopeful of some respite for the runners (who came from 14 countries). But as the race got off at 10.30am, started by First Hydro’s Brian Tindall, rain and high winds were already the order of the day and over the next 6 hours the unpredictable Snowdonian weather took hold with torrential rain, gale force gusts and hail all adding to the spice of this event which lived up to its billing as the toughest and most scenic in the UK.

Nearly 2000 runners set off from just outside of the village of Llanberis, now considered the ‘outdoor capital of Wales’ due to the preponderance of sporting events over the course of the year. However, it is this historic event which is perhaps the toughest, due in part to the unpredictable nature of the weather in this part of Wales at this time of the year.

But the elements were not to deter these intrepid competitors, and following the race all talk has been of a superbly organised event, testimony to the organising team and their dedication to this classic event on the Welsh sporting calendar.

Speaking about how the race unfolded, Samuel added:

“I felt really good in the first half of the race, and I knew I had to watch Richie (Gardiner), and it was just two of us pushing it on from about 11 miles onwards. We got to about 19 miles and felt like I should make an effort and started to get a gap.

The last three miles over Bwlch y Groes are tough, no matter how good you feel and coming off the descent I fell over as I was wearing racing flats, but luckily no damage was done. I then just put my head down and went as hard as I could into the High Street and, well, the feeling coming up the finishing straight with the crowd going mad was amazing”.

With 2010 winner, and recent gold medalist at the Commonwealth Ultra Trail Championships, Richie Gardiner taking to the start line, all talk was of who could stop the Aberdare man taking a second straight win. However, 55km of tough Anglesey trails and the Cardiff Half Marathon over the last four weeks would ultimately take their toll on the Welshmen, as he eventually finished in third place.

“That was tough”, said Gardiner after the race, “but I am glad that I came bag to defend my title. It just wasn’t to be today and to be honest my thighs started to stiffen up after about 8 miles, and though I led with Rob til about 19-20 miles I knew it wasn’t going to be my day. But hey, that isn’t taking anything away from Rob today, he ran a great race.”

The South Wales policeman obviously has a love for this race now, as he has vowed to return in 2012. “Oh yeah I’ll be back, if you’ll have me”, he concluded.

Splitting to two Welsh runners was Scot, Murray Strain. After finishing second at this year’s Snowdon Race, he ran very strongly for yet another runner-up spot in north Wales. The GB international orienteer was running his marathon debut and also found the conditions tough, and despite being a seasoned fell runner found the last thigh-burning two miles extremely difficult. Asked if he would be returning to the event his words were “most certainly”.

One notable top 10 finisher was Jez Bragg (7th). The ultra specialist is a previous winner of the famous UTMB race in France and this year finished 4th in the world renowned US 100 mile trail race, the Western States.

Further testimony to the quality of this race was underlined in the fact that all of the top runners ran inside 2 hours and 50, in addition to that fact 8 of the first 12 runners were Welsh. Backed up superbly by Math Roberts in 6th (2.44.07) and Gwyn Owen in 9th (2.49.39), Rob Samuel led the Eryri club to the team award.

The women’s race proved to be a highly dramatic story. Winner Kelly Morgan only hit the front in the last mile, after overhauling Ruth Johnstone (3:12:11) to win by just 39 seconds. Johnstone – returning to the race after giving birth in 2010 and missing last year’s event – had led the race for almost 18 miles, and simply couldn’t descend as quickly as Morgan when it counted.

Storming through the field in the last 6 miles of the race the Pontypridd runner commented,

“I don’t know where it came from! I took it steady in the first half of the race, and afer about 14 miles just ran faster and faster to the finish. I am completely amazed, but very, very happy”.

Her time of 3:11:32 was some 6 minutes outside of the course record set by Christine Howard in 2010. Exmouth runner Ellie Sutcliffe made up the top 3, finishing strongly in 3:13:50.

The quality of the women’s race was also underlined with all of the first five runners finishing within 6 minutes of each other.

“We’re extremely pleased with the event from an organisational perspective”, said race organiser Jayne Lloyd. “and the fact that our winners were of such a high calibre once again cements the event as one of Wales’ premier races.

“The whole organising and volunteer teams were amazing, and we had some great backing once again from our sponsors and partners, especially First Hydro. The high street finish is now a permanent fixture and has certainly added to the event and comments and feedback from the runners have been highly complimentary, despite the weather!”, Jayne concluded.

Men’s top 5
1 Rob Samuel 2:36:45 Eryri Harriers
2 Murray Strain 2:38:39 Hunters Bog Trotters
3 Richard Gardiner 2:41:02 Aberdare AC
4 Andrew Davies 2:41:43 Maldwyn Harriers
5 Rob Grantham 2:43:29 Ellesmere Port Running Club

Women’s top 5
1 Kelly Morgan 3:11:32 Pontypridd Roadents AC
2 Ruth Johnstone 3:12:11 Malvern Joggers
3 Ellie Sutcliffe 3:13:50 Exmouth Harriers
4 Andrea Rowlands 3:14:21 Eryri Harriers
5 Claire Phillips 3:17:07 Port Talbot Harriers

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