I'm ashamed to say that for the last five or so years I've been running, I generally run in only one place--a small park near my sister's house that has a porto-potty, a drinking fountain, and a precise one mile around loop of gravel trail. It doesn't have much in the way of hills (actually, none), but it's a great, safe place to run and I've enjoyed logging the miles in a quiet place.
But now I'm bored.
So, as I've decided this year to try new things, I'm adding new running paths to my list. Yesterday, Bud and I drove out to a local park that a friend told me is a great place to walk her dog, and many people run the road through the park. We were going to see just how far around the loop was, so I could plan my distance runs accurately. We got as far as the parking lot before discovering the road we wanted to follow was closed to vehicles due to "soft road conditions". Drats. We drove home. I'd have to attack the loop by foot.
This morning, I drove back to the park, and ran the loop! No Ipod attached to my ears. What a beautiful place to run--a couple of pretty good hills, a winding black top road, and plenty of places to stop and catch my breath. The woods surrounding the road were lovely, and I can't wait to see them change over the coming months. Even though this loop has an odd distance to it ( I think it's around 2.84 miles), I'm going to enjoy running up the hills and around the park. I'll just have to pay attention to how many loops I make!
Next week, I'm planning on trying out another running trail. I will still go back to my tried and true park when I just want to get in a few quick miles; but it's good to change the scenery, unplug the Ipod, and hear myself gasping for air as I run!
Have a great week! Try this website for mapping runs where you live: http://www.mapmyrun.com/