We are currently holed up in an Air BnB in Augusta, GA, waiting to move into our new house in nearby Evans.
This week I’ve been exploring some new places on my runs, trying some different-ish routes just about every day.
As I may have mentioned, I’m a fan of going for a run in a new place with no idea where I’m going to simply see what I can discover.
You may not be quite as cavalier as I am about going out for a run in a new place, which is fine.
But if you’re thinking about venturing out into the great unknown, here are a few things to keep in mind.
Tips for Running in a New Place
Traveling for business or pleasure? Visiting some friends or family? Moving to a new area and jonesing for a few miles?
There are no shortage of reasons that you might find yourself running in a new place from time to time.
Here are a couple of tips I’ve picked up over the years that I keep in mind when I’m running somewhere new.
Don’t Get Lost
I mean, this one is pretty straightforward, eh?
Yet, sometimes part of the fun of running in a new place is heading out, getting lost, and finding your way back to where you started.
Whether you’ve got a pre-planned route in mind, or programmed to your watch, or you’re just out there and taking turns as the spirit moves you, as long as you’ve got your phone with you it’s doubtful you’ll ever get too lost.
You can always pull up a map to see where you are and to reorient yourself.
If needed, you can even call for a ride.
The surest way to not get lost when running in a new place is arguably the most simple option: out and back.
Planning a 5 mile run?
Run for 2.5 miles, then turn around and head back to where you started.
It’s pretty hard to get lost in that case.
Go Where the People Are
One thing that is definitely frustrating about running in urban areas is dodging all the people.
That said, running where people are has some advantages.
Lonely, back country roads can certainly be quiet and peaceful.
They also tend to have little/no shoulders and speed limits of 55+ mph.
That’s not exactly the safest option, especially if you’re running in a new place.
If people are around, there’s a sense of safety in numbers that comes into play.
And if something happens where you need some assistance, any decent person will be happy to help you out as they are able.
People are (Usually) Friendly
One thing that both Rebekah and I have noticed this week is a bit of a cold shoulder from passersby while we have been out on our runs.
That is until we say good morning.
Every time I’ve passed someone and said good morning, they’ve broken out in a smile and wished me a good morning as well.
So when you’re running in a new place and see other people, give a little kindness and odds are you’ll get kindness in return.
And if there’s one thing all of us in the world could use more of, it’s kindness.
Trust Your Gut
Maybe the most important thing to keep in mind when running in a new place is to trust your gut.
If something feels a little off or you’re not comfortable, trust that feeling.
Turn around. Call an Uber. Cross to the other side of the street.
Whatever seems like the right call at the moment, that’s what you need to do.
And if skipping your run altogether feels like the right option for you? That’s cool too.
Running in a new place can be a great way to get familiar with a new area, but not if you can’t relax and enjoy your sightseeing/exploring.
So if you’re up for it? Get out the door and enjoy your miles.
But if it’s not your cup of tea, for any reason, sleep in a little bit and don’t worry about the miles you miss.
In the big picture, those miles aren’t likely to count for much anyway…
Do You Like Exploring New Places on Foot? Or Not So Much?
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