Friday, June 24, 2011

Running while traveling

I write a silly running blog, so when Lindsey asked me to guest-post on her blog, my immediate thought was, "I have to make this work as a cross-post!." However, I then suffered from a bout of blogger's block, so I have to give a nod to my fellow guest blogger, Ursina, for coming up with this subject and Runners World for sending out a timely "Running while Traveling" email.

Some of my best travel experiences have come at times when I've combined physical activity, be it running, hiking or biking, with discovering a new place. But as I'll be traveling a little bit at the end of the summer while training for a marathon (admittedly domestically, I'm not a jet-setter like my dear blog-host), I will focus on running and leave hiking and biking for another day. 

Lindsey's friend Kate has done a great job of covering Lyon, the city in France where I studied abroad. Part of what made my experience in Lyon special was getting to know the city through long runs to the Parc Tete d'Or or along the Rhone river. While running in a new city isn't without its downsides (older French ladies who quite ostentatiously turn their noses up at women wearing shorts come to mind), it is a great way to get to know parts of the city a bit further than walking distance.

The other advantage of running in a new place is that you get the chance to discover parts of the city like a native. I live in NYC and still discover parts of Central Park or the running paths along the city's rivers that I hadn't previously known about. However, there are risks to just setting off on a run in one random direction in an unfamiliar city - the key to running in someplace unfamiliar is to plan ahead.

Runners World has a tool called "RouteFinder" in which one can plug in a city and find running routes that other runners have loaded into the system. While the international routes are a bit thin (I looked at Paris and Dublin), they still offer a decent range of distances and the ability to map.

MapMyRun has tools to track running distance and has a community feature where you can see runs that other runners post.

RunThePlanet has tons of routes, including places to run in Antartica, if you're into that.

My next bout of travel running will occur in Newport Beach, CA, where I've already discovered a few great runs (pictured).



thanks so much to Julie for the post... and be sure to check out her running blog, Feet Don't Fail Me Now at

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