When you are training on a regular basis one of the challenges you will face is injecting variety into your training routine. If you always run the same route everyday it can get boring. Therefore, it is a good idea to have a few different routes planned ahead to keep boredom at bay.
If you live in the small town or country you will have access to some country roads. Country roads are a great surface to run in. They are more absorbent and will cause less shock to your joints compared to running on concrete. You will also find that there will be less traffic to interrupt your run and you will be breathing in fresh air. Depending on the route you may come across a few hills which are always good to build strength in to your legs.
However, country roads are not always perfect and these are a few things you need to consider:
Although there will be less traffic in the country roads compared to urban areas you still need to be on your guard. Many country roads do not have any speed restrictions therefore, you will have to expect traffic to be fast moving, even though it will not be as busy. In the city and other urban areas the traffic is use to moving around runners and cyclists. In the country they are less so and this means they are not often expecting or prepared for runners on the road. Therefore, you need to keep your wits about you.
In the country you will probably see a lot of pets and dogs roaming about. In general most or friendly however, you may come across some dogs that are not. A bite from a dog could put you out of action for a number of weeks.
Running on flats and then up hills is a great way to add little variety and build strength in to your legs. However, you need to be careful not run up steep gradients for long distances. This can put a lot of pressure on your upper legs and particularly your hip joints. Over long distances this can lead to injury. Run on the middle of the roads when running up a steep gradient and always keep a look out for traffic especially at the top. Keep your wits about you and always be prepared to get out of the way at a moment’s notice. Avoid having your back facing cars coming towards you. Always face them, in this way you will be in a better position to jump out of the way.