Running in Philly

Rocky Steps at Art Museum

Running in the City

There are plenty of great running routes around the city.  Actual running trails are available on Kelly Drive, Columbus Boulevard, West River Drive and elsewhere.  Running by the water on these routes also provides a more scenic and enjoyable experience.

Running city blocks can also be productive so long as you’re not doing so during rush hour (forcing stops every other block).  Good tip for running city blocks: run on streets that don’t have traffic lights and depend on stop signs instead.  Much less stopping occurs, as it’s the cars that have to stop each block.  Also, obviously, running during weekends minimizes cars.

Then there’s destination runs: running to a particular location or several locations.  I’ve found these runs to be a good way to have a specific end goal rather than the usual monotony of running for a particular distance or time.  Specific destination runs include the following:

  • Cheesesteak Run – Run to and by several prominent cheesesteak establishments in South Philadelphia.  Pat’s, Geno’s, Jim’s, Tony Luke, John’s Roast Port, Cosmi, and many others are all within a couple of miles of each other.
  • Brewery Tour – With the city home to several breweries and brew pubs, you can run by the ones in the city.  To hit all of them (not counting Earth Bread + Brewery), it’s about 15 miles round trip from Center City.
  • Art Museum Run– Having a run go by or end at the Art Museum for a run up the Rocky Steps never gets old.
  • Bridge Run – Run across the Ben Franklin Bridge to New Jersey and back, without paying a toll.

Race Training

Everyone has a specific marathon or other long distance training program they follow.  I’ve found the Nike Chicago Marathon Training program works well.  It’s 17 weeks, features programs for beginner, intermediate and expert runners, and includes intervals, pick-ups and other necessary training aspects.