How exhilarating it is to experience a run through downtown St. Louis! The sights and sounds will inspire you as you wind through the city streets and parks, taking it all in as you pass over, under and through some of the city’s most historic sites.
Within a 3.5-mile circuit you can easily marvel at The Arch, pass by Busch Stadium and the statue of Stan Musial, admire the Mississippi River and maybe, most fittingly, pay homage to The Runner statue in Kiener Plaza – a statue which commemorates the first Olympics held on American soil in 1904 – in St. Louis!
City running is definitely on the upswing as younger people are moving into the cities and taking to the asphalt with no apologies. However, before heading out, there are some dos and don’ts to consider that are particularly helpful for urban running.
Most important of these is staying safe. Joanna Sommer, author at Informedmag.com, reminds us that it is always best not to run alone – especially at dawn, dusk or at night. Not only is this safer for avoiding a mugging or attack, but it is also helpful in case you would trip, fall, or otherwise get hurt – always best to have a friend running with you! If you can’t organize a run with a friend, be sure to bring your cell phone and ID with you in case of emergency.
Wear brightly colored clothing and/or reflective gear especially when running early mornings or after dusk. City running also comes with plenty of traffic, people, and congestion so you’ll want to be sure you can be seen. Because of this, it is best to avoid rush hour if at all possible since the traffic can increase up to tenfold.
Also, with respect to traffic, Joanna Sommer highly suggests running towards oncoming vehicles rather than away from them. With your back to oncoming traffic, you might not be aware of a hazard coming your way. This also ties into her suggestion not to wear earbuds in both ears. Leave one ear free so you can quickly hear and respond to any problems. Every second can count. Also, make sure that if you do listen to music, podcasts, or audio books, you keep the volume down.
If at all possible, choose asphalt for your run over concrete. Concrete is one of the worst surfaces you can run on because of its hardness. Repeated running on concrete can contribute to and even cause injuries. Asphalt is more forgiving as it has more give, choose it over concrete when you can.
City running can be invigorating and exciting. City dwellers often do not have access to parks and tracks but are lucky to be able to enjoy the hubbub and vitality of the city. As noted above, there are a few safety tips to keep in mind when running in the city but most will not take away from your run. The bottom line is to just get out there in the fresh air and enjoy your day!