musings on running, life, and everything in between

Running Out of Town


I got to travel to Washington D.C. for some work-related stuff, though it was a very short trip. Still, any chance to sleep in a bed by myself and have a decent amount of independence from others is always welcome! I was on the fence about bringing my running stuff, as I would literally be in D.C. for 31 hours and my running stuff took up more space than my regular stuff. However, I figured I’d be more annoyed with my self if I DIDN’T bring it than if I did.

At one point during the flight, I looked out the window and got a great shot of the frozen/melting Great Lakes. 2015-03-07 08.27.412015-03-07 08.38.53I was also catching up on the latest Runner’s World magazine. I was frightened to read that we are so sedentary in our culture currently, that we need to run about 6 miles/day to burn the same number of calories as our grandparents. Another reason to keep moving! That thought haunted me as I sat at a table doing work for most of the trip. It definitely motivated me to get out and run.

I attempted half-heartedly to get up before meetings on Sunday, but the double-whammy of Central to Eastern time change PLUS daylight savings was too much for me. We did finish our work early (it was conference planning stuff) and I had a late flight, so I decided to cram in a run before my flight. Boy was I glad! It was in the low 50’s and sunny. There were so many runners out, it was great! I used some maps from the Washington Running Club ( to map out a route past various landmarks. So of course, you can’t miss the White House. Lots of tour groups and security! It looks smaller from what I remember ad a kid, ha.

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I love the Washington Monument. Against the blue sky, it was pretty awesome. You can see how melty everything was in the area! I think you can go inside to the top of the Monument? At least I thought I remembered that from when I was a kid. I took a picture of the Mall/Monument from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. It really is an outstanding piece of architecture/planning. All that symmetry! Too bad there wasn’t any water in the reflecting pool this time of year.

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I almost bypassed the Lincoln Memorial as there were quite a number of steps, but I couldn’t get a good picture without climbing them, ha. It has to be one of my all-time favorite people sculptures. He always looks so sad. I think I remember reading about it being purposeful, to express the gravity of the times of his Presidency.

2015-03-08 14.01.32 You probably can’t tell from these next two pictures, as they are nearly identical. However, they were taken from two different bridges spanning the Potomac River–the Memorial Bridge and the 14th St. Bridge. As you can see, the Potomac was still pretty frozen. I felt the urge to jump on it and attempt to walk across as some parts still looked pretty solid…don’t worry, I didn’t.

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For the most part, I was able to stay out of the puddles. However, there were some that just weren’t avoidable. It was either “run/walk through flowing water” or “run/walk through squishy/muddy grass and dirt.” After awhile, I accepted that my feet were going to be wet and that cleanish water was preferable. I did feel very cross-country runner-ish doing it (to be honest, though, I only lasted in cross-country for like a day. I didn’t like all that running, ha!)

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The last bit of my run took me past this. I couldn’t decide if it was public art or bike racks. I decided both. But how fun is that?!
2015-03-08 15.00.25I’ll be honest, this run almost didn’t happen. I had to check out of my room before noon, but my flight home wasn’t until almost 6 pm. So I had a choice. Run and take a baby-wipe bath or don’t run and do random reading/writing/grading for a couple hours. Then I checked the weather back home, which was quite a bit colder. I chose to run and baby-wipe it. I like to think of it as training for Ragnar! Honestly, though, I feel like I sweat a lot less than the average person, and I ran in shorts so I didn’t get very hot.

One thing I am always fascinated by traveling is the kinds of things you find in airports. From things like the food to the retail stores to amenities. I think it was the Minneapolis airport that had a nail salon and mini massage parlor (brilliant!). Chicago’s Midway airport trends towards more local restaurant offerings. And D.C.’s little kiosks offered some awesome grab-n-go food option, including a vegan Soba noodle salad. But I was most excited about these two things. Vanilla cafe latte by Vita-Coco. Totally delicious, and I pretended the coconut water in it balanced out the sugar (lies, I know). It might also balance out the trashy magazine I bought for amusement that you can see in the background.

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Now THIS, THIS I’m excited for. Korean-style beef jerky. I actually bought it for my husband, but I might make him share. I do think Americans’ proclivities towards naming ethnic-influenced food by a weird version of their original name is kind of weird. Like “gogi” in Korean is “meat.” You would probably never buy “American” food that was just labeled as “meat.” Or “chai” just means tea for most Indians, but it’s a very specific sweet, milky processed product for Starbucks-goers. Don’t even get me started on their horrible mistake in what they call a macchiato…

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Anyhow, it’s the beginning of the work week. Good luck surviving “Heart Attack Monday” today. As a mom, I hate daylight savings. I thought I WAS going to have a heart attack trying to get my kids ready and out the door as they were screaming they were tired and didn’t want to go to school. There may have been coffee and donuts as bribes to get moving…

Anyone out there LOVE day light savings?

Running while traveling? Do you do it or not? I do think it’s “easier” (for safety concerns) for men to do this than women, but that’s a whole other post….

Author: runNerdier

Marathoner. Academic. Mom of 2 ankle-biters.

7 thoughts on “Running Out of Town

  1. I always mean to run out of town & barely get one run in usually. That’s wonderful you made it out & saw such cool stuff. And stop it with that 6 mile/day thing because it terrifies me.

    And we had refusals to leave the bed, refusals to dress, refusals to brush teeth…uuuggghh! Buuuut: I drive home in daylight! It was sunny in my car at 6pm. So for that, I’ll deal with the agony of the time change.


  2. Oh & let the record stand: that 5:12am attached to my comment is a huge lie. I do nothing at 5:12am. It’s midnight.


  3. My husband and I are not from the Chicago area, so we end up traveling a few times a year to visit family out of state. I’ve learned that running while visiting your crazy relatives is a great way to stay sane! Whether I’m officially training for something or not, I always make sure that I have some long runs saved for those days. Then when the run is over, I take a shower (slowly) and drink my coffee. After that, I’m ready to face anything.


  4. Pingback: Been too long | RunNerdier

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