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NEWS RELEASE No: 1659728 JUNE 2016

Run Forest Run, for beginners running in the forest

running in the forest

If you are new to running then a busy gym or jam-packed streets can feel like a daunting experience. Launched by Forestry Commission England on 11 July, the new way-marked routes in distances of 3, 2 and 1km ‘Run Forest Run’ trails are perfect for the beginner runner. The trails which are starting at 3 sites allow visitors to escape crowds and run at their own pace in an inspiring and quiet environment.

To compliment the trails, Forestry Commission England has also developed a ‘Run Forest Run’ beginner training programme with top personal trainer Claire Darlington. The free introductory programme is full of weekly exercises, inspiration, tips, and health advice for getting you off the sofa and into the woods.

Research carried out by England Athletics identified the motivations of different types of runners which led to the development of the trails. Designed to appeal to a young, predominantly female audience these routes have been specifically constructed to help set goals, to motivate, and to improve a runner’s skills in a peaceful and encouraging setting.

Claire Darlington, Personal Trainer explains:

“Running for the first time can be very intimidating, especially on the crowded streets or at a busy gym. 

“But running in the forest is a different story and brings with it a specific kind of magic; beautiful changing scenery throughout the seasons to motivate you and forest fresh air to keep your brain happy.”

“The runs have been mapped out on relatively level terrain with easy route finding markers; perfect for those beginning to venture into the world of running. And the way-marked routes for different distances are a great incentive to help you on your way to running 3k!”

Forestry Commission England has also teamed up with Bounts for those who need a bit of extra motivation to pull on the trainers and go for a run. Bounts is a free fitness app that gives you real rewards for being active… its air miles for exercise!  Treats include restaurant, cinema and high street vouchers every time you visit one of the ‘Run Forest Run’ sites for more than 30 minutes.

Full information on the routes, top tips and the benefits to running in the forest will be published on the Forestry Commission England website on 11 July. (


1. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Further information can be found at
England's Woods and Forests are cared for by Forest Enterprise England, an agency of the Forestry Commission.

2. Sport England are a government department who is working to increase the number of people who play sport regularly and aim to make lives better through sport.

Forestry Commission England’s partnership with Sports England is delivered through the Active Forest Programme. The Active Forest Programme aims to create a sporting habit for life for visitors to the public forest estate in England. The programme will provide engaging, inspirational and motivating sport and exercise opportunities for new and existing forest visitors.

3. Claire Darlington - Claire has completed an MSc weight management and has an undergraduate degree in Sport & Exercise Science. She is also the director of Delamere Outdoor Fitness Ltd and Co-Founder of Events with Adventure. She regularly teaches outdoor Boot Camp’s at Delamere, and is also a national presenter.

4. Bounts is a free fitness app that gives you real rewards for being active.

How does it work?

We’ve used something called ‘beacons’ to mark out six of our favourite forests to get active in. Once you’ve downloaded Bounts, simply head to one of these forests and you’ll automatically start earning vouchers and rewards for your favourite high street shops, restaurants and cinemas.

For more information and to request images, please contact:
Rebecca Ulewicz at the Forestry Commission on 0300 0674170 or email