Trail Running Camps
Our Trail Running Camps are designed for all runners wishing to either improve their performance or simply 'get started' off-road. We base our camps in Chamonix, France, where you're spoiled for choice - an amazing variety of both trails and views of the Mont Blanc range.
You don't need to be a marathon runner or a speed demon to join our running camps! Read the Guardian's write-up of journalist Susan Greenwood's Tracks and Trails running adventure here.
During your week our experienced coaches will share their expert advice and provide you with a balanced itinerary of getting out into the hills and running, coaching tips and relaxing rest time. Our camps are ideally suited to regular runners who love the freedom of getting out and exploring new places. If you can run 10km or more, at any speed, then our trail running holidays are for you!
Run with us in the heart of the French Alps... it'll be the views that take your breath away!
Trail Camp Coaches
Excellent training and thrilling trails!
Not only will you simply have fun running in the mountains with like-minded people, you'll also learn A LOT!!!
- Run with mountain professionals on nature's own trail
- Training given by a UTMB/ TDS Finisher - Neil Maclean-Martin
- Breathtaking mountain vistas every day
- Healthy, balanced and delicious food
- Luxury accommodation in a lovely mountain chalet
- Learn how to plan and navigate your own route
- Expert advice on nutrition, equipment, clothing, racing, training and safety
- 'Run Fit' Sessions to enhance your core strength and conditioning
- Flexibility classes: combining 'pre-hab' stretching and optional yoga sessions
- Focus talks including injury prevention and advice on barefoot running
- Optional fitness tests
- A complimentary sports leg massage
We aim to offer a comprehensive week of trail running and performance guidance and education so that you can go home feeling confident and informed to explore. The skills learned on this week can be transferred to many other adventure sports.
A Runner's High
Great news received from Helen just one week after our September 2012 running camp as she smashes a personal best! "I do believe that all that altitude training really helped as I did feel like i was flying for the first 10 miles - possibly a bit too much." Helen, Sheffield
|Trip||Departure date||End date||Price||Status|
|ATR 1 15||Sun 21 June 15||Sun 28 June 15||£1195||Places available | Make a Booking|
|ATR 2 15||Sun 9 August 15||Sun 16 August 15||£1195||Places available | Make a Booking|
|ATR 3 15||Sun 13 September 15||Sun 20 September 15||£1195||Places available | Make a Booking|
Chamonix Running Week
26th - 28th June 2015 'Marathon du Mont Blanc'
If you are joining us for our week in June then there's the added opportunity to watch or to take part in an international running race. Each year Chamonix hosts several trail races in the same week: a 10km, a vertical kilometre, a half and a full marathon. For full details: Club des Sports
Off-road running on trails and amongst the hills has grown in popularity in recent years. Running with nature can add many new dimensions both to your health and to your sport. By taking to the trails runners find that they can escape by getting off the beaten track and get to discover new places. Varying your training and building up your off-road running can help prevent sports injuries and improve your strength and fitness along the way.
Day 1 Arrival in the Chamonix Valley
You will meet your coaches at your chalet in the evening who will brief you on the week ahead. Afterwards relax and unwind by tucking into the first of many tasty dishes to come. Our chef and nutritionist has designed the perfect runners menu for the week, offering a healthy and nutritious selection of delicious meals.
Day 2 Chamonix Valley Run & Test Your Fitness!
Morning: An easy run with stunning views of the Mont Blanc range. Speed is not the issue! To ensure that you get the most out of your week we will have two coaches available on our group runs to enable us to have two groups if necessary.
Afternoon: We complete our first day with a series of (non-frightening!) fitness tests and user friendly ways that you can assess and monitor your own fitness improvements. The fitness tests include finding out your heart rate zones with use of a treadmill and also a body composition analysis. The reports of which can be taken home with you and aid your future training.
We will also cover what we will need to carry and wear for our mountain days and organise when your complimentary leg massage will be.
Day 3 Mountain Highs & HRMs
Full Day: Our chalet base is ideally situated to access the mountains from the front door! We plan for a full day out taking a light lunch and snacks and explore some of the many trails the valley has to offer both uphill walking and running. During the day you will learn running techniques to tackle different types of terrain and route choice. As we progress we will get use to using maps and introduce simple, effective navigation along with advice on route choice.
If you have a heart rate monitor (HRM) then bring this along as we will use the information found from the fitness tests the previous day to help with our training.
Day 4 Learn to Love Hills!
Morning: A morning run looking at running 'drills' (don't be scared...) and training methods to strengthen your legs for both on and off road. We will also have a session to try running poles - a great help if on a steeper climb.
Afternoon: Nutritional and hydration advice for pre-race, during and after racing and training. Stretching and flexibility class.
Day 5 Vallorcine Valley
Full Day: We take the Mont Blanc Express - one of the world's most picturesque train journeys to the neighbouring valley of Vallorcine. Today we will run along some of the famous 'Tour du Mont Blanc' walking circuit following the trails of the Chamonix Marathon. We will cover 'night-running', mountain hazards, weather, terrain, emergencies and how to handle/ avoid them whilst on the move!
Discussion topic: Injury Prevention and Barefoot running.
Day 6 Goal Setting, Core Class & Free Afternoon
Morning: We look at ways to improve our strength and stability with a gym based 'Run Fit' core stability work out with our Physio Coach, Neil followed by a discussion forum on how to prepare the mind, body and feet for the longer distances. We will take time to plan your next adventures and how to train most effectively for them we will venture into how to go for longer and pushing harder.
Afternoon: Time to explore Chamonix or just relax in the chalet and enjoy the views!
Day 7 Peak Performance!
Full Day: Today is all about putting everything into practice. Looking at the weather, setting a route, having the right equipment and the 'know how' to plan a fun full day out in on the trails. We plan to run/hike to a 'summit' to ensure that you finish your week on a true high! We'll cover some distance and height to gain unforgettable views and memories. You will go home with the confidence and motivation to hit the trails when you return home.
Evening: Final meal and farewells.
On the last weekend of June Chamonix hosts several trail races. The atmosphere that week is always exceptional and as a runner you just want to be involved. If you wish to take part or to watch this even then please us know and we can accommodate this into your week.
Day 8 Departure Day
Today is departure day and the package finishes after breakfast.
Thank you SO much for an incredible week. I had a fantastic holiday, and can't wait to look back through all the photos to remind me of the awesome adventure. Send my thanks on to Neil and Jon for their expertise and guidance through the week. Meeting Kilian & Anna was a added bonus, but it will really be the trails that I remember most. Fingers crossed the Alpine flat training leads to PBs at the weekend! Camilla Ray, June 2013 Camp
Meet the Coaches
Julia: as Director of Tracks and Trails she works full time as an International Mountain Leader and cross country ski teacher in the Alps. She's happy to admit that everyday her office window has a new view! Julia's sporting vices are Nordic ski marathons, trail, fell and mountain marathons, climbing and biking. Her life before the mountains was as a personal trainer and triathlete in London. Julia gets great pleasure from giving skills to others to explore the outdoors with confidence and achieve their goals.
Jon: is well known in the mountaineering world as a professional climber and IFMGA mountain guide. Jon Bracey co directs Vertigo Guides and uses trail running for both pleasure and racing during the summer months and as 'cross training' to enhance his ski alpinism racing. Jon's mountaineering experience is vast and his enthusiasm for sport is truly inspiring. Jon gets great pleasure offering structured training tips and advice whatever your goal may be.
Neil Maclean-Martin: is the Director of the Clinique du Sport in Chamonix and has worked for more than ten years as a Physiotherapist in the world of elite and international sport (including various Olympic and Commonwealth Games). He is a clinical specialist in Musculoskeletal sports injuries with a Masters in Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Science. Apart from running his clinic, Neil is currently working with elite climbers, cyclists and runners in a coaching capacity by helping them with their training programs. So whether you need help with an injury or it's prevention, in need of a sports massage, require nutritional or training advice Neil can help.
Neil in action at the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc
We stay in a modern chalet perfectly designed with runners in mind known as the 'Runners Refuge'. The Refuge is within easy reach of the centre of Chamonix and is ideally situated on the trails of the 10km & marathon circuits. The guest bedrooms are based on twins, with en-suite bathrooms, the chalet offers a spacious living and dining area, free wi-fi, massage room, garden & hot tub where you can enjoy views of Mont Blanc. If the weather allows we can use the terrace for stretching and sitting in the sun with a cool recovery drink! Use of this chalet as our accommodation for this trip depends on numbers, availability and the time of confirming the bookings once the minimum numbers for the trip have been met. If the chalet is not available then we will book hotel accommodation of a similar standard. Single rooms may be available on request but would incur an additional fee. Each chalet also has a bunk room which can be booked as a twin at a lower rate.
Included: Full board accommodation (except lunch on your rest day) based on two people sharing in a luxury catered chalet, a planned healthy runners menu, 3 x coaches, 1x single cable car ticket (if needed), equipment hire for all sessions within the itinerary, 1 x sports leg massage, flexibility session, Run Fit session, pre-hab/core class, fitness testing and of course plenty of trail run training.
Not included: Flights and airport transfers, insurance, 1 x lunch, drinks, maps and race entry during the Chamonix running week.
This week will run once a minimum number of 4 clients have booked, we will take a maximum of 16.
Please note that you must have the appropriate insurance for your chosen activity. As we will be running in the mountains you must be covered for helicopter rescue, repatriation and medical costs. With regard to this please be sure you have read the Insurance section in our Terms and Conditions.
Upon booking a full kit list will be provided. The itinerary is designed to cover the essential information for those starting out or wanting to improve their trail running. We will certainly cover all aspects of the itinerary but due to changing mountain weather conditions we ask you stay flexible so that we can get the most out of each day.
If you would like to join our June dates that coincide with the Chamonix Marathon and other trail races and would like to take part then please ask for more details on how to enter or visit the Chamonix Club des Sport website. To be sure of a place for any of the events we advice that you book your race place as soon as you can - the marathon distance normally fill up soon after booking open online. The 10km though is normally possible to book the week of the event.
To get the most out of your week you may wish to buy a copy of the French IGN: Chamonix Massif du Mont Blanc 1:25,000 map this is available on arrival or online. Compasses would also be useful. Some are available for loan during the week.
Guided Running & Training
Our coaches are experienced in racing many sporting distances and disciplines. As well as our guided run along the Mont Jura, Swiss Valais and around Mont Blanc we offer bespoke training and coaching for ultra marathons, triathlon and ski racing. So if you have a specific goal in mind and would like personal training or private guiding on the routes then we can help you. Please contact us with any questions.
Chamonix is easily reached from other European and worldwide destinations by road, rail, coach or plane. For suggested travel links please refer to our Booking & Information pages for further details. Geneva is the closest international airport, only 75 minutes away by road, making shared transfers, buses or trains easy to arrange. Please contact us if you need further advise on your specific travel requirements.
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Trail running has done more than make me a stronger, happier runner: It has made me a runner that truly enjoys the act of running for its own sake.