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Road or Trails? We asked our community

What do you prefer, the reassuring stability of the road under your feet or the unpredictability of the trail? We asked our members whether they head for the tarmac or off road when they head out for their runs. Here's what they had to say:

Edith - Trails. I found my new passion in running on mountain trails. You have to be focused and you train all abilities in your body. You get rewarded when you reach the top or when you get to a place where you have an unforgettable view. On trails you are mainly alone and you find your inner calm. Furthermore, you don't think about time as each meter is different and not comparable. Each run is special.

Tawni - I love the trails. They are harder and sometimes much more challenging, however, I enjoy the changing terrain, the fresh smells, and all the little things you see on the trail. Also, it seems there are less people which makes it more relaxing for myself! Oh, and one last reason I love the trails…I am completely unplugged, no music just the sounds of my breathing and nature!

Rosemary - Trails for sure! Trails provide an escape out into nature and beauty. I feel at home again since I grew up running around the mountains of Colorado. Trails also give me side-to-side motion that requires more muscle engagement. Attitude improves with altitude!

Juliet - I usually prefer to know my foot is going to stay right where I place it which is hard with trail. However, I do love running off road and letting the dog run free and catching the best views, so I'm torn!

Tanja - I run on trails because it's more comfortable, you get nicer views, it's not in town so you are not between cars, bicycles, busses, it's quiet and you can smell nature. We definitively love trails here in Switzerland. But I know that a lot of women run on roads because they don't want to run alone on trails. When you get better at running, you get fearless and you have more confidence. Than it's easier to run on trails. 

Lesley - I love the fresh air on the trails but marathons are my first love so I have been spending a lot of time on the road lately. A compromise I do is to run in some larger parks and along the water where I can.

Astrid - I am addicted to trailrunning, so there is no question for me. But I like also variety so I try to run on different grounds and running on road is good for speed training!

Carol - Roads are fine for bad weather and winter time, but I love being able to get away from it all on a trail. It's a bit more of a challenge for body and mind as you do need to keep alert and aware of the terrain.

Debbie - I love my local trails! Scrambling over rocks, trees, through mud and water! And the calmer rail trails too. I love hearing the birds and frogs and seeing the occasional bear! It's a complete break from the hustle and bustle of normal day to day life.

Linda - I also enjoy trails, but not TOO technical as inclines that are too steep and jumping over a lot of streams tend to aggravate old injuries. I do love how you have the peace of the trail, but also your brain really has to be engaged so you don't trip on a root.

Susanna - I usually run on the road as that is the only option available right outside my home. Lately, I prefer to run on the trails. There is a wonderful park that is 30 minutes from my home. Every chance I can get I run the park, enjoying the fresh air and the connection with nature. It is such a peaceful experience running under those conditions and I feel refreshed after each run! I wish that little piece of heaven was outside my back door!!

So, it seems trails win hands down!

What do you prefer and why? Tell us by leaving a comment below ...

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