You don’t have to worry about being the slowest one at this retreat! The Moab Mindful Running Retreat for Beginners, situated in a stunning desert landscape of red rock, soaring cliffs and delicate natural arches, is designed for those just starting with running or returning after a layoff.
Through our practical clinics, informative discussions, mindful movement and free time for quiet contemplation, you’ll develop a valuable set of tools for establishing a consistent, sustainable running practice.
Immerse yourself in the powerful healing energy of this vibrant desert landscape as you run scenic, challenging trails at a pace that is playful, relaxed and social. There’s no pressure to keep up with anyone else!
Moab Mindful Running Retreat for Beginners Itinerary
Day 1 Thursday | Powerful Posture
Our program begins at 2:00 pm at Red Cliffs Lodge. After checking in and settling into your room, we’ll have an official welcome orientation meeting, during which your retreat leader will review what’s in store for the upcoming days and answer your questions. After the meeting, we’ll hop on a nearby trail for our first group run. After a short warm up, we’ll pause and practice the key elements of the Power Posture, after which we’ll put these tips into practice during our relaxed shake out run of about four or five miles. After freshening up back at the lodge, we’ll enjoy a fresh-prepared meal at the Red Cliffs Lodge’s Cowboy Grill.
Time on trail (including breaks and clinic): 90 minutes – 2 hours
Day 2 Friday | Mindful Form at Big Mesa
After breakfast at the lodge, we’ll have our second Natural Running Form clinic that will give you the tools and tips that will make trail running fun and easy, after which our guides will drive us to a local trailhead at the Navajo Rocks Trails. Once we return to Red Cliffs Lodge, we’ll have lunch on the River Deck, followed by free time to freshen up. Late afternoon is our first of three Mindful Running Workshops, during which you’ll uncover the truth about what’s holding you back from running and feeling your best. The workshop is followed by a restorative yoga class, then dinner downtown.
Time on trail (including breaks and clinic): 2 – 3 hours
Day 3 Saturday | Desert Splendor + Dino Prints
We begin the day with breakfast at the lodge, then drive to the Dino Trail. Part three of the Natural Running Form Clinic will give you the secret to using breath to regulate pace and efficiency while running on trails. Discover the ease of managing your effort level with this simple technique during today’s scenic and rewarding trail run of 5.5 miles that takes us along a scenic loop trail featuring slickrock and vast desert views. After a picnic lunch, you’ll have some free time to relax at Red Cliffs Lodge before another Mindful Running Workshop then a special dinner at Red Cliffs Lodge.
Time on trail (including breaks and clinic): 2-3 hours
Day 4 Sunday | Feeling Fine at Fisher Towers
Over a light continental breakfast, we’ll dive right into our final Mindful Running Workshop, which is all about cultivating confidence and breaking through the mental blocks that keep us stuck in familiar yet not always healthy routines. Shortly afterwards, it’s a short drive to our final trail run, that is truly a celebration in the simple joy and adventure of running for our own health and happiness. During this run, we take our time to soak up the views and see the soaring Fisher Towers. Upon our return to the lodge, we enjoy a luxurious brunch buffet before our final wrap-up and farewells.
Time on trail (including breaks): 2 – 2.5 hours
This program operates under a special recreation permit with the Bureau of Land Management Moab Field Office.
Important note about the runs: The total run-walk distance for this retreat will be between approximately 18 and 21 miles. Each day’s run-walk in this itinerary is represented by time spent on the trail rather than miles run because the mileage covered will depend largely on your run pace. Faster runners will cover more mileage than slower runners in some cases. These run times include breaks to enjoy the views, take photos, eat and drink. The precise route and trails run may change due to changes to trail routes, weather conditions, guide recommendations and other safety considerations.
Wellness WorkshopsHow mindful running helps you stress less and run more
Part I: Stress and Runners
Where does your energy go? Do you ever feel too tired to run? Do you ever feel so overwhelmed at the prospect of starting a training plan that you give up before you’ve begun? Do your long runs or hard workouts so wiped out that you’re pretty much useless the rest of the day? Discover what feeds your energy and what depletes your energy and how to stop the energy leaks.
Part II: Mitigating the Effects of Stress
How do you know if you're doing enough to build your fitness and reach your goals, but not so much that you're becoming depleted and at risk of over extending yourself? You’ll design your own mindful running practice that will allow you to fulfill your goals and run with confidence. Discover how mindful breathing improves your running efficiency and dial down the stress response in any situation.
Part III: Values Inform Intentions
Running is an important part of your personal self-care routine, and yet, it can be so hard to prioritize sometimes. Fulfilling your potential is about living in alignment with your values. These mindful intention-setting exercises allows you to align your approach to running with you values around wellness, self care and fitness. Come away with a clear approach to balancing health with life's demands.
Natural Running Form ClinicsUse mindful running to improve efficiency and prevent injury
Part I: Power Posture
Use proper alignment to make gravity do more of the work. This reduces the muscular force involved with running so it feels easier and less strenuous on muscles and joints.
Part II: Focus on Efficiency
Use natural running techniques to drastically improve efficiency. You'll practice changing stride length, cadence and tempo on various types of terrain.
Part III: Find Flow
Put the pieces together to achieve the ultimate trail running experience. Learn to cultivate the circumstances for flow to occur by being relaxed and mindful.
About Your Retreat Leader, Kirsten Horning
Kirsten Horning is a well-traveled, well-read runner with a background in teaching and an itch to share her passion for the outdoors with others. She has a Masters in Educational Leadership and Human Resources and a Bachelors’ Degree in German. Kirsten worked for Outward Bound as an instructor and course director for six years, during which she led mountaineering courses through the Sierra and Rocky Mountains.
Her love of connecting with different people and places has led her to live two years in Germany, and travel extensively from Nepal to Guatemala to Hawaii and many places in between. She loves running for its simplicity, the deep sense of community it can facilitate, and the ways in which she has witnessed running help her and others grow. Kirsten believes people must reach deep within themselves in physically demanding situations to find a sense of purpose, personal motivation and strength. She lives and runs in Telluride, Colorado with her husband and three children.
Participant Photos + Testimonials
“This retreat far exceeded my expectations! It gave me an opportunity to learn where I can go with my running and I love connecting with all the awesome, inspiring women!”
–Maude B, Rochester, NY
Love Trail Running Now
“Everyone ran their own run, not keeping track of time or distance. I am new to trail running but LOVE it now. I’m excited to see how this new love changes the story to my runs, the energy it will breathe through me, the new sights I will see, the challenges it will present and inevitably growth I will make.”
–Griselda P., Chico CA
“I am so grateful to be able to travel to a new place and have an experience in nature where I feel the power in my own body!”
–Alice M., Boston, MA
Retreat was a Dream
“This last week has been a dream. Run Wild Retreats put together a fantastic trail-running trip that improved my form and solidified a lot of what I’ve been thinking about running more mindfully.”
–Tracey S., Atlanta, GA
Organic and Relaxed
“I was concerned about going on a ‘scheduled’ vacation, but it didn’t feel scheduled at all. Everything was so well planned and coordinated, one experience just rolled into the next and I didn’t have to think about anything except having fun. I actually didn’t even realize anything was scheduled or coordinated, it just felt so organic, relaxed and fun!”
Glimpse of What's Possible
“Since my return home I have not been able to stop thinking about how much I enjoyed running on the trails in Moab. So much so that I have decided to celebrate my 50 birthday by running a 50 miler. Thanks again for giving me a glimpse into what is possible!”
Best Things I have Done for Myself
“This retreat was one of the best things I have ever done for myself. It was a great opportunity to learn from such a knowledgeable and compassionate coach and share my love of running with a fun-loving group of women. I returned home more motivated and inspired about my running. It was very enjoyable running with other women of all ages and hearing others talk about the challenges they were facing. In many cases, we face the same types of challenges so it was comforting to discover this and not feel so alone.”
–Patricia H., Boulder, CO
Eager to Practice Mindful Running
“After spending last weekend on a Run Wild Retreat, I returned home eager to practice mindful running. Today I paid attention to my posture, breathing and any negative thoughts that began to creep in (all part of the body’s response to stress). But managing how I responded to these symptoms allowed me to push past any negative thoughts and I finished feeling strong and well.”
–Nancy U, Washington, D.C.
Details About Your Four-Day, Three Night PackageMoab Mindful Running Retreat for Beginners
Retreat Group Size:
Package Per Person
Package Per Person
- What's Included
- Getting to Moab
- Other Important Things to Know
- Is This Retreat Right for You?
• Three nights’ accommodation at the Red Cliffs Lodge
• Meals from dinner on Thursday through lunch on Sunday
• Daily guided runs
• Mindful Running workshops
• One restorative yoga class for runners
• Natural Running Form clinics
• Trail snacks/energy food and drinks
• Private group within the Healthy Runners’ Community
• Run Wild Retreats gift bag
• Introduction to Mindful Running online program
- Alcoholic drinks
- Transportation to/from the airport
- Other incidentals
- Guide gratuity
- Some ground transportation
- Travel/cancellation insurance
- Anything else not listed under “What’s Included”
We recommend the Grand Junction Regional airport, which is a 90-minute drive northeast of The Red Cliffs Lodge, located 17 miles from Moab.
Another good choice is the Salt Lake City International Airport (a 4.5-hour drive from Moab).
We are usually able to coordinate retreat participants who fly into these airports so they can share rental cars for the drive to Moab. Otherwise, shuttle services are available.
The Moab Airport (called Canyonlands Field) is located just 10 miles from Moab, and currently has flights from Salt Lake City and Denver. Taxi service is available from the Moab Airport to the Red Cliffs Lodge through these providers:
Getting to Moab:
We recommend the Grand Junction Regional airport, located a 2 hour drive northeast of Moab. Another good choice is the Salt Lake City International Airport (a 4.5-hour drive from Moab). We are usually able to coordinate retreat participants so they can share rental cars for the drive to Moab. The Moab Airport (called Canyonlands Field) is located just 10 miles from Moab, and currently has flights from Salt Lake City and Denver.
If you book your retreat with a deposit, the balance payment will be due approximately 3 months before the retreat begins. After that time, full payment is needed at time of booking to secure your spot. Click here for the booking and cancellation policy.
About the Accommodations
We will be staying in suites at Moab’s Red Cliffs Lodge. Every room at Red Cliffs Lodge has a soothing view of either the Colorado River (just 100 feet away) or Castle Creek, which runs through the property. Every luxury room is a mini suite featuring:
• Separate kitchenette • Coffee pot • Refrigerator • Microwave • Toaster • Air-conditioner • Separate dining area • Fully tiled bathrooms with bathtub/showers • Carpet/Mexican Satillo Tile On-site facilities also include outdoor pool, hot tub and exercise room.
Special Dietary Needs
We can accommodate those with special diets, including vegetarians, gluten-free and vegan, though meal options may be limited for some meals. When you register for the retreat, you can indicate your special dietary needs in your Retreat Participants Intake Form.
This retreat is Level I, which means:
- Daily runs/walks range from 3 miles to 6 miles on singletrack trails.
- Two guides accompany the group to support the different pace groups, so there’s no pressure to run faster than you’re comfortable.
- Trail running experience isn’t necessary. Your retreat leader provides trail-running tips for running in this terrain.
- You’ll encounter trails with loose rocks, and some exposure to heights. You can walk/hike trail sections as you need.
- Trail running shoes and a hydration pack are required.
October 24 - 27, 2019
Secure your spot now with a deposit of $600
April 9 - 12, 2020
Secure your spot now with a deposit of $600