Playgrounds

Sorry I’ve been on hiatus for a week!  I was in Chicago for a few days for a conference and then flew on to Philadelphia for another conference, bringing me back home late Friday night.

One thing I can say for certain: I have the WORST luck when it comes to airlines and flights and travel in general… oi!  My first flight to Chicago was delayed several hours and then my flight home almost didn’t happen.  The weather on the East Coast was a mess last Friday with airports shutting down and that caused a “trickle” effect delaying and canceling other flights.  Seeing this happen, I threw my running shoes and my Garmin in my carry-on at the last-minute, if I could get on a plane, my last long run was gonna happen no matter what! 🙂  Yes, that is a bit of the OCD in me!

As the plane (finally!) took off from the Des Moines airport though on my way to Chicago, I watched the city glow underneath me.  I saw my running routes, I smiled at the memories of the last time I ran across that ped bridge.  The last time I ran around the Capitol.  The Dam to Dam route.  The Des Moines Half Marathon route.  All these memories in one city.  One city that has become my playground.  Once I landed in Chicago, that sentiment stayed with me as the cab driver wound through the streets past Grant Park where the Chicago Marathon starts and finishes.  The familiarity of Michigan Avenue, where I carb load pre-race.  The Nike Store where my name has been posted as a participant running in the marathon.  Another city and another playground.

In Philadelphia, I went over a running route with the concierge and set off one morning to experience a new city, a new playground.  I ran through the Market area, through Love Park, down JFK Boulevard to the Parkway and eventually ended up at the Philadelphia Art Museum where I ran up and down the famous “Rocky” steps three times.

It feels so free to be able to take off and run.  To be able to explore new places and experience new sights with nothing more than yourself and your running shoes.  I am so lucky to have the world as my playground.

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