Do you ever go running on vacation?
I recently traveled to Boulder, Colorado for the Fitness & Health Social Media Conference and knew that while I was there I would need to plan some time for running. Running when you are somewhere new is always exciting but also intimidating because the roads and trails are unfamiliar. I am a creature of habit so being somewhere new can be hard because I have my favorite running routes that I like to stick to at home.
Lately when I have had the opportunity to travel I have been more adventurous and have decided that rather than sticking to the boring “dreadmill” in the hotel for running that it would be better to get out to see the local trails and to join in with the local running community. I have found one of the best ways to do this is to find the local running store online (mecca for all things running) and to see if they offer any evening “fun runs” or meet-ups to go running.
When I was in Boulder, CO I discovered the Boulder Running Company. It just so happened that the first night I was there the Boulder Running Company was having a weekly “fun run.” I was happy to discover that the store was within a few blocks of my hotel so I was able run to the store (warm-up) and meet up with the group for a great 5 mile workout. I arrived a little early so that I would have a little time to check out the running store, to drool over the slick new gear and the “Great Wall” of running shoes. I attempted to find a new trail running shoe (I am on the forever quest for a better trail shoe but my narrow, overpronating, high arched, high instep foot seems to be impossible to fit) with the store employee, a seasoned runner himself, sadly informing me that I really don’t have many options.
After a few moments in the store, resisting the temptation to purchase any of the cool running gear, I signed in to join the “Fun Run.” and happily entered my name in the raffle (which I never win). The group grew to about 75 of the most fit looking people you might see ranging from the newbie runner to the lanky, gaunt looking ultrarunner. The energy was pulsing and the group seemed eager to run. The runners were hoping to hit more of the Boulder Creek Trail which was recently flooded during the terrible Colorado floods. The leader of the run noted as to how the run would mostly take place in the Boulder streets due to the flooding closures however the group seemed very happy to be out running and experiencing normalcy in the wake of the disastrous floods.
The run took off at a fast pace, and although somewhat winded from the higher altitude than I am used to in New Hampshire I was glad for the energy of the group whisking me along through the streets of Boulder. The runners in the lead took the group on a 5 mile city adventure with only traffic lights as obstacles (strange for this country bumpkin). We ran at dusk and experienced a gorgeous pink and purple sunset with the Flatirons and Mt. Sanitas glowing in the backdrop of the City. I was surprised at my pace, 8:00 min/mile for 5 miles which included stops at traffic lights. A 40 minute run for 5 miles which reminded me of how much I love running the shorter 10K distance (Perhaps I should run more 10Ks and Half Marathons?).
The run ended at the Boulder Running Company with music and slices of free pizza an local beer. I waited for the raffle before heading back to my hotel room and in typical fashion was not a winner. I was happy to have gone on this run and will definitely do this again the next time I am in another new city.
Have you ever joined in a “Fun Run” when you are running on vacation?