You’ll encounter some form of mud on almost all the Lakeland Trails courses, in particular those at Hawkshead, Keswick and the Dirty Double. We asked a range of mud-loving trail runners for their top tips on how to beat the sticky stuff.
On muddy sections, alter your stride length to land closer to your hips and on your forefoot to engage more underfoot grip. By shortening your stride and increasing your cadence (steps per minute) you can maintain speed without sacrificing stability. Visualize short fast strides as if running on hot coals. As soon as you’re through the mud revert to your normal running stride. Dave Taylor
To be strong in muddy conditions, you should get to the bottom of it - you need a bigger, rounder and firmer backside! Lunges and squats are your friend. The strength you’ll gain will benefit your uphill running too, help with injury-prevention and technique, as well as helping with stability when terrain is muddy. Get squatting, for a backside like a Kardashian! Damian Hall
Get a pair of shoes with long rubber studs for the best grip in mud. Allow yourself a brief, five-minute fling with the shoes while they are clean (remember to take a selfie with them) before ending the affair and running through the biggest, deepest, smelliest puddle of mud you can find! Ben Mounsey
Pick the best line through the mud. If running with a partner or friend, get them to run in front when you get to a muddy patch (best to allow this to happen in a subtle fashion rather than being too obvious), and then avoid the sections where she/he sunk particularly deep! Jasmin Paris
This is crucial. Do not leave your shoes caked in mud lying around in a bag until the next time you need them. Get them cleaned! How is best to clean them? This is how: First remove the footbed, then, using cold water, hand-wash or rinse your shoes both inside and out. Stuff them with newspaper to help the shoes keep their shape. Allow them to dry naturally with the footbed still removed. Do not force dry as this can damage the uppers and midsole. Lee Procter