Colleen O'Neil November 13, 2013 TWEET COMMENTS 29

12 Top Trail-Running Clubs - Page 3

4. Trailhead Running

Austin, TX

Photo submitted by Susan Farago

“You’re not lost. You’re with us!” boasts the slogan of this all-female group who received the more nominations than any other club—a whopping 47, including several from men who aren’t a part of the club but consider themselves diehard supporters and frequently volunteer at Trailhead events. The club was established by Susan Farago and Richelle Criswell, two runners with a desire to provide fellow women with a fun, low-stress way to explore local trails.

The club offers an eight-week “Women on the Trails” introduction program including group runs, informative sessions and personalized workouts for each runner involved. They also host weekly speed workouts (on trails) every Tuesday, as well as free, no-drop fun runs on the Austin Greenbelt. Humor plays a huge role in the club’s ethos as well: says Kristin Madl, “You're sure to get an awesome ab workout too, just from laughing so hard, around Susan and Richelle!”

Trailhead Running also hosts an all-female trail-race series, which includes three annual, ecofriendly “zero-waste” races. The races are short, and, to encourage a non-competitive vibe, not chip-timed.

Member Rave: “It is a welcoming and accepting place for any runner, whether a speed demon or tortoise, ultra runner or true beginner. With other clubs, I've been left behind on group runs; so many groups are cliquish about speed and competitiveness. But the leaders of this group make everyone feel welcome and want everyone to have a great time out on the trails.” –Amy Sugeno



5. Bangkok Runners

Bangkok, Thailand

A relatively new group, Bangkok Runners started in 2012 and grew to over 600 members in just over a year. One member describes the club as a “United Nations of Runners,” with runners from at least 30 different countries, including Austria, Australia, Canada, Denmark, New Zealand, Sweden, Wales and more.

They host weekly morning runs nearly every day of the week, as well as evening runs and track sessions. Sunday morning runs in Lumpini Park typically draw the biggest crowd. Locals, ex-pats, travelers, elites, midpackers and back-of-the-packers are all welcome. Last year 40 members ran across Thailand, and many members compete in the Columbia Trail Masters 50K, the North Face 100K and Bangkok Ultra Trail Festival. To get out of the city, they venture out for short jaunts in the Indian Himalayas or Thai islands.

Member Rave: “Bangkok Runners makes running, even in hot and humid conditions, really cool.” –Manfred Waibl



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