A Summer-Like Fall for Runners

The weather outside is so far from frightful, it’s not even funny. In fact, I’d call it downright delicious. 75 and sunny in November? As a runner, I can’t get enough.

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While my legs have definitely been feeling it, I’ve been running pretty much every morning for the last couple of weeks. There’s a part of me that feels as though I have to take advantage of these unseasonably warm days and lighter mornings even if I wake up tired or grumpy. Even if I have work to accomplish at 6am. Even if I instinctively don’t want to run.

Of course, once outside, it’s blissful. No hats or gloves. No triple layer tops. No ski socks. Just me, the warm air, the fall flora, and the sun.

From the Schuylkill…

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…to the Delaware…

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….it may look like fall, but it feels a whole lot more like late summer.

To uplift my mornings even further, I’ve been totally digging a bunch of new running songs released over the last few months:

If we’re being honest though, I could probably just run to Adele the entire time. I couldn’t be more excited for her new album to drop at the end of the month and plan on running to it through all of winter. Bring on the emo workouts. If you need me, you can find me bundled up in winter-wear, weeping tears of joy along the banks of the Schuylkill river.

The only downside to these beautiful mornings is that I’ve been skipping out on all that juicy complementary stuff that helps strengthen me as a runner. I had been hitting up yoga once a week, for example, to combat dark mornings. Or, I’d set up a chair in my living room, grab the five pounders, and make my way through a few barre videos. The variety is healthy, and I’m definitely missing out on that now.

But of course, it can’t stay 75 and sunny in Philadelphia forever. I know the mornings will get darker. The air will get colder. And as winter approaches, I will inevitably get lazier. So, we take what we can get, we live in the moment, and we enjoy it while we have it. In the words of Scott Jurek, “Rational assessments too often led to rational surrenders.” As it gets colder, I recommend that we all think a little less rationally.

Is this not the warmest November ever? Has the weather been unseasonably warm by you too? How do you transition to fall and winter running?

On the Run: The City of Lights

I feel incredibly fortunate to have spent a long Labor Day weekend in Paris, drinking wine, eating cheese, and walking absolutely everywhere. Of course, a getaway isn’t a getaway (to me, at least) without one solid, scenic run. And what better place to take in the views than Paris?

It’s not every day one gets to say that their run took them as far as the Champs-Elysees. Or the Louvre.


Or the Eiffel Tower.

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But last weekend, that’s exactly where we (Noah, my husband, joined me on my morning excursion) wound up. As he mapped our route back to the hotel, I couldn’t help but stare up, amazed, neck craned toward the sky into the metal abyss. It was beautiful, if not slightly intimidating. I couldn’t imagine at that moment anywhere else I’d prefer to be, which in itself is a magical feeling.

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Running, or exercising in general, while on vacation seems to be a touchy subject for many. We work so hard every other day of the year, it makes sense that people see their days off as a chance to stop, shut down, and unwind.

But for me, running is synonymous with exploration. It’s synonymous with discovery. It’s synonymous with peace of mind. Running through Paris, I felt at ease (save for the tiny streets packed with tons of people; at times, we simply stopped and walked).    I felt unrushed. I felt, well, not at all like I was on the run.

Of course after, my husband and I continued to eat our way through the entire city, stocking up on chocolate croissants, almond pastries, balls of burrata and other delicious, calorie-free cheese. (Winter is coming; see ya, summer bod.)

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And now, we’re back in Philly. Am I sad to be back in reality? Not really, to be honest. Now that I’ve finally been able to shake the jet lag, it’s kind of nice to be back to my weekly routine; I ran 3 days this week and attended a class at the barre studio. I slept in my bed. I snuggled my cat. I returned to the daily grind.

But it’s nice knowing that trips like these, even when they go by too quickly, are out there. With Paris behind us, I’m already ready to start planning the next one.

Have you ever run the streets of Paris? Are you a pro-vacation runner, or do you leave your Mizunos (or whatever else you wear) home?