I am in NYC today for a friends wedding/paper-signing event and after a well-behaved night on the town it is time to make myself presentable for the day. But before I do…
One of the best things about running is how little gear you need with you to be able to run while you are travelling. Shoes, shirt, shorts, socks. That’s all you really need. Some would go without the shoes and socks too. Minimalist stylee.
But do I head to the basement gym with a tired treadmill grinding its worn bones and complaining at every step placed on it. Hell no!
Whenever I travel I make sure that I get out early in the morning and pound the streets. Shorts. Socks. Shoes. Shirt. And run. Seeing the soul of a city as it gentle wakes and fills with people allows you to glimpse the genuine character of the place.
Appreciating the empty streets and pavement/sidewalks, or the thrill of getting the timing right for the lights at the cross streets. Perhaps increasing your pace a little as you see the countdown for the crossings expiring at your next street. Building a map of the city in your head and noting interesting buildings whose features are accentuated and seem somehow more alive from the light cast by the low morning sun.
Perhaps you’ll find a river to run along. Target a park. Hit a normally busy shopping district that is a ghost town at this time. Dodge the street cleaners. Saying “Good Morning” to the hotel porters as you scoot by.
Why would anyone pass up the chance to do this. Wherever they go. Whatever the weather. It’s all good.
Sure the hungover business people at your hotel may look at you with a mocking indignation, but it is their loss, not yours.
I’ve run in many places in the US, around the coast of Ireland, the hills of Winterthür Switzerland, along the Danube in Belgrade Serbia, and around the ghosts of my childhood home town and University in England; often revealing things that I didn’t even notice when I was living there.
I wish I’d started running earlier in life as I’ve been to other beautiful places and would have liked to have had the chance to see them this way. Perhaps one day I’ll return and lay down some shoe rubber?
Running is the ultimate way to see a place.
Whether you are traveling for business or pleasure, be sure to throw in your running gear and get out there. You won’t regret it.
My only disappointment for today is that because of this ‘unlearning’ process I have to cut my run short; tempting though it is to ramp up the mileage and take in more sights, that might result in injury. So, just a short two and a half miler today with a pace affected by traffic lights and dodging other pedestrians.
Now to get suited and booted…