I’m sometimes surprised by how often my clients tell me they can’t find anywhere to run in the city. I tell them, “If there is ground ahead of you and you can put one foot in front of the other, you can run.”
Having said that, there are some spots that are more conducive to running for fitness than others. Three of my favorite places to run in NYC are the West Side highway, the East River path and, of course, New York City’s famous Central Park.
The path on the West Side Highway was built fairly recently and runs along several miles of the city, from lower Manhattan up past midtown. If you head south, the path leads into Battery Park City, one of NYC’s hidden gems for runners. If you’re going in the other direction, you’ll pass Chelsea Piers and you can follow the path north for another few miles before turning back.
For those of you closer to the Lower East Side or East Village, you may prefer to run along the East River. You’ll need to cross an overpass to get on the other side of the FDR expressway, but there are several entrances. Once on the other side, you have a few options. You can run on the path adjacent to the highway, you can run along the esplanade (which is still under construction) or you can check out the running track near the East 6th street overpass.
If you’re running south, you will eventually cross through the South Street Seaport and you can wrap around and come up the West Side. If you’re heading north, however, watch out! The path thins out around midtown and you could find yourself running on the highway if you’re not careful!
Of course, there’s Central Park–the granddaddy of them all. With its famous reservoir, over 6 miles of rolling hills and several trails off the beaten path, Central Park offers something for everyone. Whether you’re a resident of New York City or just visiting, make sure to take advantage of the city’s nicest natural resource.