Running is a solitary sport. That’s why I like it. As a swimmer in high school, I like the idea that I can practice alone, and anytime I want, and that my biggest competition is myself. I can train with and against myself, I can beat myself, I can challenge myself. If I had to depend on another person to run, I don’t know whether I would enjoy it as much.
That said, the running community in Springfield is strong and helpful. In just the few short weeks I’ve been working on this blog, I have felt tremendously supported by the running community.
A few of my local favorite things:
Races: The Travis Manion September 11th 5K in Washington Park is one of my favorite events. I’ve done this race twice, and not only is Washington Park one of my favorite places to run in Springfield, but I love the patriotism of the event, the meaning of the event, and the community that supports the cause and its runners for this race. If you’ve never done this race, I recommend giving it a chance this year. It’s very walker and kid-friendly, so it would make a great race to do with your family regardless of whether you’re interested in running the race.
For Gear: I love Springfield Running Center. I really try to shop local as much as possible and Springfield Running Center makes that so easy. Springfield Running Center has everything you need to run (and swim…and recover…they really have everything you need period!), but that’s not why they have a loyal customer base. Springfield Running Center is so quick to give advice, encouragement, and opportunities to expand your running network and you simply don’t get that at a chain outlet. I have yet to ask a question the staff at Springfield Running Center couldn’t answer, and I always benefit from their advice.
For location: Springfield has great parks, trails and neighborhoods for running. I love Washington Park—hate the hills, but love the scenery. The bike trail between Centennial and Stewart Park is my go-to for a long run because it’s a nice flat out-and-back and mostly tree covered with some pretty views of the creeks in the summer.
[I’m sure there’s an artsy, inspirational caption for this picture, and since I was listening to “Eat, Pray, Love” when I took it, I should have one.]
What did I miss? What are your favorites?