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Digital Subscriptions > Men's Running > October 2018 > TROUBLE IN PARADISE

TROUBLE IN PARADISE

FANCY AN OFF-ROAD RACE IN MAURITIUS? AS MR’S EDITOR DISCOVERS, THE TRAILS OF THIS TROPICAL PARADISE ARE AS TOUGH AS THEY GET

TRAIL RUNNING SPECIAL/DODO TRAIL

It’s not every day that an email pops into your inbox inviting you to do a trail race in Mauritius. After thinking it over for all of 10 seconds, I nobly accepted. After all, how hard could 25K on the trails of this island paradise be? Well, as it turned out, harder than I could ever have expected.

The race in question was the Dodo Trail. Offering four challenging distances, the race is fast gathering a reputation among elite and not-so-experienced trail runners as one to tick off the bucket list.

According to the Portuguese dictionary, the word ‘dodo’ is derived from ‘doido’ meaning ‘fool’ or ‘crazy’. Of course, it was only after the race that I actually found this out. One of the unwritten rules of trail running is always know your course – that way, you can prepare for the unexpected. Unfortunately (and I only have myself to blame), my preparation was limited, both in terms of training and reconnaissance – a mistake I’m unlikely to make again. How thoroughly dodo-ish of me!

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About Men's Running

When I first started running, venturing off-road was all about school cross-country races, generally around anodyne playing fields in heavy football boots. It wasn’t the kind of experience that books are written about. In fact, it was the kind of experience that scarred many would-be runners for life. But fast forward, cough cough, a few years and trail running is now big business. The clamour for places in the ‘big daddy’ of all trail race, the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc, is as fervent as the Virgin Money London Marathon and shoe companies now have entire ranges dedicated to trail and off-road. Why is it so popular? If you haven’t yet ventured off the beaten track, trail running is about being more in-tune with nature and taking stock of your surroundings. It’s not about times or even really distances; it’s about testing your body over different terrain with vistas to die-for! In this Men’s Running special, we talk about everything trail, from training to technique. We even cover a few races for good measure. We hope you enjoy!