While hiking is often cited as the No. 1 recreational activity in Eagle County, many people flock to Beaver Creek each summer for the fast forwarded version of hiking – trail running.
As with anything in life, with ups come downs, and what comes as a surprise for many people to learn is that downhill hiking and especially downhill running is actually more taxing on the body than its uphill counterpart.
“While most competitors focus on the lung-busting climbs - that only get exacerbated with the high elevation of a course like Beaver Creek or Snowbasin - the majority of fatigue and post-race soreness in your legs, hips and back actually comes from the run DOWN the mountain,” said Darren Brown, strategic channel development manager for OOFOS footware.
Brown ran a sub-four-minute mile in 2008 and is the husband/coach of professional American distance runner Sarah Brown, so he understands the physiology behind exercise and recovery.
This summer, Brown will bring the OOFOS Great Descents Series to Beaver Creek, highlighting the benefits of recovery in a runner's journey.
“When you run downhill, you are constantly ‘falling’ a further distance per step than when running flat or uphill - where your foot hits level or above where it took off from,” Brown explained. “This means that when your foot contacts the ground, you are having to decelerate from a higher rate of speed than if you were running flat and uphill. This deceleration is called ‘eccentric loading’ or impact. Impact is the primary driver of post-race soreness, and that’s where OOFOS comes in. After the race, OOFOS footwear helps runners feel better and recover faster.”
OOFOS’ proprietary OOfoam technology absorbs 37 percent more impact than traditional foams, decreasing stress on tired legs, hips, feet and back.
“Despite the feeling of relief you get when you reach the top of a climb, the descent that follows is actually where most of the impact and damage happens in your muscles,” he said.
OOFOS representatives will be on-site at Beaver Creek to educate and engage with runners on July 21-22 as part of the Xterra Mountain Championships taking place at Beaver Creek on July 21.