Running the Williamsburg Bridge

Running hills has long been a cornerstone of serious running programs. Whether you’re doing threshold training or running intervals, running uphill is a great way to “ramp up” your cardio session. For city dwellers, running over a bridge can offer a nice variation on the classic hill run.

If you are in the NYC area, I recommend running the Williamsburg Bridge as it’s generally less prone to foot traffic from tourists as compared to the Manhattan or Brooklyn Bridge.

The Williamsburg Bridge runs from Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood into Manhattan’s Lower East Side. According to Wikipedia, the Williamsburg Bridge is 7308 feet (don’t worry, I did the math and it comes to about 1.38 miles.)

When you’re crossing the bridge from Manhattan into Brooklyn, the pedestrian crossing splits into two sections. Staying to the right is steeper on the last downhill portion so I generally prefer to stay to the left; very steep downhills take practice. (It’s still pretty steep on the left.)

I brought my invisible shoes (and my camera!) with me on a recent running excursion into my native Brooklyn.

Watch the video below to see how it went:

11 thoughts on “Running the Williamsburg Bridge

  • By Crystal Curtis -

    Running (or biking as I normally do) the Williamsburg bridge is REALLY gorgeous at sunrise when the Chrysler building and the rest of the midtown skyscrapers light up pink. How are those shoes?

  • By Al Kavadlo -

    Hey Crystal – my video really doesn't do the view any justice. In case you couldn't tell – I LOVE the Invisible Shoes!

  • By Char (PSI Tutor:Mentor) -

    Cheer for this~ not that we have bridges in my city~ my shoes will be here next week or so

  • By Al Kavadlo -

    Which shoes did you wind up going with?

  • By Char(PSI Tutor:Mentor) -

    pre-made in purple

  • By Al Kavadlo -

    Nice choice. Hope you like 'em!

  • By jeffdf -

    Interesting observation on the bridges–though I'm always coming at it from a biking perspective. I LOVE the Manhattan Bridge way more than the other two: the Brooklyn Bridge is the most gorgeous architecturally-speaking but tourist HELL and my experience of the Williamsburg Bridge has been pretty clogged with mixed pedestrian/running/cycling traffic. I like the very clear cut separation of sides on the Manhattan Bridge (cycles on the north side of traffic and pedestrians/running on the south side of traffic). Which probably says more about the way my brain works; never mix, never worry. Well hardly ever…people walk on the wrong side all the time; curses!

  • By Al Kavadlo -

    You bring up a good point about the Manhattan Bridge's separation of bikes and pedestrians. I'm still personally partial to the Willy B, but it's worth noting that the Manhattan has its own appeal.

  • By Aaron -

    Do the shoes encourage forfoot/midfoot strike? I have two pair of Vibrams and find when I run a distance over 5-6 miles I get tired and start to heel strike sometimes. I almost always go completely barefoot now and wear my Vibrams as my primary shoes. Get a lot of weird looks but I just don't care at all!

  • By Al Kavadlo -

    The shoes definitely encourage midfoot/forefoot striking. If you land on your heels in these it hurts! It's almost like putting a shock collar on a dog to get it to stop jumping on the table.

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