Moab Mindful Running Retreats

Reduce stress and prevent burnout with mindfulness

Guided Trail Runs | Mindful Running Workshops | Restorative Yoga | Desert Beauty | Natural Running Form Clinics

Book October 22 - 25, 2020Book Oct 29 - Nov 1, 2020

During the four-day, three-night Moab Mindful Running Retreat, situated in a stunning desert landscape of red rock, soaring cliffs and delicate natural arches, you’ll tune in to what drives you—in running and in life—and make sure that your energy is going into the activities that most feed your soul.

Each day’s run offers a new challenge, and therefore opportunity, to learn something new and take your running to a whole new level because it is possible to be the runner you want to be without having to train harder and push yourself to exhaustion. While it’s not necessary to have run trails before, this retreat is recommended for runners who can comfortably run 8 miles or more on the road. With the support of your retreat leader and running guides, you’ll be able run at your own pace, without needing to keep up with anyone else. You’ll stop frequently to soak up the views, snack and hydrate and savor each mindful moment.

Through our practical clinics, informative discussions, mindful movement and free time for quiet contemplation, you’ll stop the energy drains and divert your energy back into your running. Become a durable, strong, motivated runner using these tools and techniques that will keep you healthy and injury free. 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.

Moab Mindful Running Retreat Itinerary

Day 1 Thursday  |  Powerful Posture

Our program begins at 2:00 pm at  Red Cliffs Lodge with the official welcome orientation meeting, during which your retreat leader will review what’s in store for the upcoming days and meet your fellow retreat participants. After the meeting, you will be able to check into your rooms and drop off your belongings. We ask for volunteers to carpool to a nearby trail for our first group run. After a short warm up, we’ll introduce the Power Posture, after which we’ll put these tips into practice during our relaxed shake-out run of about an hour. After freshening up back at the lodge, we’ll enjoy a classic southwestern meal at the Red Cliffs Lodge’s Cowboy Grill.
Time on trail (including stops and clinic): 90 minutes to 2 hours

Day 2 Friday  |   A Run Through Time

We begin the day with breakfast at the lodge, then meet our guides and drive to the trailhead of today’s run that will eventually take us along the Colorado River. Near the run’s start, our second Natural Running Form Clinic will give you the secret to using breath to regulate pace and efficiency while running uphill. These simple techniques will help us during today’s scenic and rewarding trail run past ancient petroglyphs carved into the rock by the Anasazi people. Upon finishing, we’ll enjoy a casual picnic lunch, then drive back to the Red Cliffs Lodge for some downtime. Late afternoon is our first Mindful Running Workshops, during which you’ll uncover the truth about what’s holding you back from running and feeling your best. After the workshop, we’ll ask for new volunteers to help us carpool into town for a restorative yoga class for runners (no experience necessary!), followed by dinner at one of Moab’s trendiest downtown restaurants.
Time on trail (including stops): 3 – 4 hours

Day 3 Saturday  |  Mindful Form at Navajo Rocks

After breakfast at the lodge, we’ll meet our guides again and drive with them to the Navajo Rocks Trails. Upon arrival at the trailhead, we’ll have our third Natural Running Form clinic, then begin our loop run through some of Moab’s icon landscapes, including cliffs, monoliths and sage brush. At the halfway point, you may opt to end your run here, or continue you run to complete the full loop. Once we return to Red Cliffs Lodge, we’ll have lunch on the River Deck, followed by free time to freshen up. Before dinner is the last workshop with your retreat leader, during which you’ll also have an opportunity to purchase items from the Mindful Running shop. Tonight we’re in for a special treat at a neighboring ranch (asking one last time for a few volunteers to carpool for the 5-minute drive), where we’ll enjoy a three-course farm-to-table gastronomic feast.
Time on trail (including stops): 2.5 – 3.5 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 with our guides 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 out-and-back 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 Utah-sized brunch buffet before our final wrap-up and farewells by 1:30p.m.
Time on trail: 2 – 2.5 hours

This program operates under a special recreation permit with the Bureau of Land Management Moab Field Office.
The total run distance for this retreat will be between approximately 22 and 28 miles. Each day’s run 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 Workshops

How 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? 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 Clinics

Use mindful running to run more efficiently 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.

Participant Photos + Testimonials

Great Experience

“Our longest run along the Colorado River was something I would have never had the courage to try solo and it was great. I felt challenged yet able to enjoy the amazing scenery. I came away clearly understanding the importance of the Power Posture for my running, and the importance of telling myself a more positive story about my running.”

— Ann Marie W, Denver, CO

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

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!”
–Patricia J.

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!”

–Meg G.

Camaraderie, Encouragement and Support

“Before the retreat, I was struggling with low motivation if I wasn’t training for an event and was hard on myself when I didn’t meet my goals. At the retreat I learned how to apply self-compassion to my running.  I loved the camaraderie, encouragement and support.”

–Leslie H., Charlotte, NC

Spectacular Scenery

“It was a wonderful, peaceful four days filled with spectacular scenery, laughter and friendship and physical challenges. It was truly a fabulous experience!”

–Che S.

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.

Running For Me

“I learned to find joy in running again. I also learned to run for me and not worry if I was slow or fast, and also to take care of myself as I run. It was really valuable to learn to run efficiently without wasted energy up hills! Small strides, small strides!”

–Loretta O.

Friends and Lifetime Memories

“It’s more than a running experience. If you allow it to be, it can be a life-altering experience, making friends and lifetime memories. We all have struggles and challenges, but we also have amazing support from each other, nature, universe and so much more strength within us – in mind, body and soul.”

–Stacy G.

Found Confidence

“Sign up! It’s a great opportunity to step outside your comfort zone and surprise yourself.”

–Cristina M.

In Good Hands

Our retreat leader Charlotte was warm, helpful, and so perfectly genuine in her care of all of us and the different challenges we were facing. Incredibly generous on and off trail – I felt we were in such capable hands. Run Wild Retreat’s commitment to their mission and to creating a wonderful experience for all participants is so clear.”

–Dinah B.

Left Feeling Proud

“It’s a retreat for runners – but it is a whole lot more than that. I learned I am a much stronger runner than I gave myself credit for.”

–Wendy G.

Details About Your Four-Day, Three-Night Package

Moab Mindful Running Retreat

Note: we have pushed back balance payment deadlines on 2020 retreats to approximately 6 weeks before the retreat begins.
We have reduced the deposits needed for 2020 retreats from $600 to $300 USD per person.
Click here to see the other special measures we are taking to ensure your safety and wellbeing at our retreats.
We are also offering alternative dates for upcoming retreats.

October 22 - 25, 2020

Running Level: II
Group size: 12 – 18 women
Shared Room Package: $1,995 per person 
Private Room Package: $2,395 per person 
Deposit Required: $300 USD 
Balance Payment Due: September 1, 2020
Alternate retreat dates: March 25 – 28, 2021

Oct 29 - Nov 1, 2020

Running Level: II
Group size: 12 – 18 women
Shared Room Package: $1,995 per person 
Private Room Package: $2,395 per person 
Deposit Required: $300 USD 
Balance Payment Due: September 15, 2020
Alternate retreat dates: March 25 – 28, 2021

March 25 - 28, 2021

Running Level: II
Group size: 12 – 18 women
Shared Room Package: $1,995 per person 
Private Room Package: $2,395 per person 
Deposit Required: $300 USD 
Balance Payment Due: January 15, 2021

October 28 - 31, 2021

Running Level: II
Group size: 12 – 18 women
Shared Room Package: $1,995 per person 
Private Room Package: $2,395 per person 
Deposit Required: $600 USD 
Balance Payment Due: July 1, 2021

• 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
  • Flights
  • Transportation to/from the airport
  • Alcoholic drinks
  • Other incidentals
  • Guide gratuity
  • Some ground transportation
  • Travel/cancellation insurance
  • Anything else not listed under “What’s Included”
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 rated Level II, which means we recommend you have a base fitness level that allows you to run up to 8 miles at a time on roads. It doesn’t matter how fast or slow you run–really!
  • Daily runs at this retreat range from 5 miles to 9 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 are required.

Planning Your Travel to Moab

Program Start/ End Times 

Our program begins on Thursday at 2 pm, so we commend arriving no later than 1:30 pm. (Official check-in time to rooms at the Red Cliffs Lodge is 3 p.m., though you may sometimes be able to check in early.)
Our program ends on Sunday at approximately 1 p.m., after brunch.

Many people opt to fly in on Wednesday evening and drive to Moab on Thursday morning, and then fly out on Sunday evening (depending on where you're going to). We recommend searching for flights on because we do not book airfare.

Where to Fly Into

Option 1: We recommend the Grand Junction, Colorado, Regional airport, which is a 90-minute drive northeast of The Red Cliffs Lodge, located 17 miles from Moab. There are shuttles available from this airport to the Red Cliffs Lodge (see below for our recommendations) as well as rental cars.

Option 2: Another good choice is the Salt Lake City International Airport (a 4.5-hour drive from Moab) and renting a car.

Option 3: The Moab Airport (called Canyonlands Field Airport) is located just 10 miles from Moab, and currently has flights from Salt Lake City and Denver.

Getting From the Airport to the Red Cliffs Lodge 

We offer retreat participants a sign-up sheet through which they can coordinate ride shares with others who are on a similar travel plan as you. This way, you can share your car rental with others, or join in someone else's rental car. Otherwise, shuttle services are available between Grand Junction or the Moab Airports and the Red Cliffs Lodge through these providers:

Additional Hotel Nights Pre/Post Retreat

If you would like to book additional nights at the Red Cliffs Lodge, you may contact them directly to do so. You don't need to tell them you are with the Run Wild Retreats group, but do notify us of your pre- or post-retreat booking and we will coordinate bookings with the hotel. As much as possible, we will try to keep you in the same room so you don't have to change rooms. Contact us first to confirm what room type you have booked for the retreat if you are unsure. Otherwise, you can also book hotels in Moab or by the airport from which you are flying.

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.

Looking for a beginner / low-mileage version of this retreat?