When the summer months cause the asphalt to sizzle, it’s time to ditch the pavement for trail traversing. Slip into a pair of these durable trail runners; with extra grip for those not-so-smooth surfaces, your feet will fly across whatever soil your soles encounter. While area parks offer plenty of paths for joggers and hikers alike, Fleet Feet Sports features a trail-running group for the long-distance inclined. We touched base with their training group director, Anna Katherine Freeland:
How long has Fleet Feet had a trail running group? >> Fleet Feet has had trail running for 4 years.
How many people participate each year? >> Typically about 20 active participants.
How did you get involved with Fleet Feet? >> I shopped at Fleet Feet and became friends with Sheila. 13.5 years ago, I trained to run again after my second child with a Fleet Feet training program. Since then, I have run several over-20 marathons, Boston twice, Comrades-ultra Marathon, and a 170-mile stage race. I have been the director of training groups for 7 years.
What is your favorite type of running? Are you a lifer? >> I teach creative writing in max security prisons so lifer is a word with gravitas. I am a lifer runner. I love trails most, but honestly my favorite type of run is with friends, road or trail.
Dirt Devils // (Clockwise from top) HOKA ONE ONE Speedgoat 2 in black and kumquat from Fleet Feet Sports; Brooks Cascadia 12 in gray, anthracite, and lime punch from Half Moon Outfitters; La Sportiva Bushido Trail in flame and SALEWA Lite Train in quiet shade and cactus, both from Sunrift Adventures. Women’s varieties at each location are available, as well.
What do you tell folks who want to come out and try it for the first time? >> It is so friendly and doable. We can make it fun and simpler. COME TRY. Email me too, I love questions!
Are there different levels in the group? >> Yes, most people in our groups are late 20s—70s.
Has being in Greenville been an advantage to the trail running program? Do you have a favorite trail? >> Paris Mountain is wonderful for regular training. Plenty of miles and it is pretty. It is pretty technical, so if you can train on it your feet can handle almost anywhere! I also love running in Dupont, NC, and the Mountains to Sea trail in Asheville.
Fleet Feet Trail Running Group
635 Augusta St, Greenville.
Salomon XA Pro 3D trail-running shoes in chive, black, and beluga from Mast General Store.