If you know me, you’ll know I’d pick a trail run over a road run any day. There is something about the routes a trail run takes you on that a road run just can’t compete with! The leafy trees, rolling hills, trickling brooks, and, of course, the unknown terrain ahead! It’s physically, visually and mentally stimulating, so as you can imagine I was stoked to be joining Salomon Running on a trip to Wales for a 12k trail run.

We’re off to Wales!

As it had been my birthday the day before, I decided to stop over near Abergavenny, to give myself a more chilled morning before I met the rest of the runners. Trains to these sorts of places are few and far between so I wouldn’t have arrived in time for the event, so I made the right choice, which also allowed me to devour a big hotel breakfast in preparation! I was greeted at the meeting point by the Salomon Running team who were all very secretive about what our day would actually entail! I guess that was where the Run Unexpected element came into play…!!

We arrived at the start location in the middle of endless greenery near Talybont-On-Usk with lots of people buzzing about, I soon noticed everyone was wearing the same Salomon Running footwear and running bags. Luckily, I wasn’t left out! On sign-in I was gifted a brand new pair of Salomon Supercross trainers. I’d normally never dream of running off in trainers I hadn’t broken in, but here I was changing my footwear to match everyone else! Talk about following the crowd! I was mildly concerned if I’d made an epic mistake… I guess I’d soon find out… but at least I matched everyone! 🙂

Salomon Running Groups

Split off into three running groups, we were led off into the great unknown outdoors. Our lovely run leader stopped us at a hill for a bit of coaching on how to tackle hills on trail runs, before we went off for the main run. Some of those who were attending hadn’t done much trail running, so this was a great touch and to be honest it was good for me to have a little refresher lesson! We practised how to deal with the hills appropriately and soon we trailed off onto the run.

Off on the Brecon Beacon trails

The beauty of trail running is that it is unexpected, you don’t know what you’ll be greeted by and this journey was no exception. Loads of mud, twigs, rocks, slippery surfaces, bracken, sheep and plenty of photo opportunities. That was the great thing about our particular running group, after having a good chat with most people it seemed that the connection we had to trail running was the same, we loved to be outdoors and with nature.

The Run Unexpected part

You’re possibly wondering what exactly this Salomon Running ‘run unexpected’ part was all about. On the 12k route we set out on, we stopped for 3 things, 1. a waterfall, that most of us stopped and dunked in. 2. a slackline lesson and 3. a fitness session. All equally fun and completely unexpected!

I’d love to trail run more than I currently do, and if anything this Salomon Running event has certainly reignited that passion for me. For once I just relaxed and simply enjoyed it. The problem for me at the moment is that I’m pressuring myself to be better, quicker and beat myself for these 12 in 12 challenges. It can become a bit of a fun sponge, so this was a little reminder on why I love this incredible sport, and the views win me over every time!

It’s okay to pull it back and take it all in and apparently, you can hop into new trainers and do 12k with your feet hurting! Overall a fantastic event, especially with food and yoga greeting us all as we crossed the bridge to the main Salomon Running tipi site. Thanks to all my new running pal, especially Group 3 and huge thanks to Salomon Running for inviting me.

Watch our run with the hill running techniques below.