Whether you're coming to run or watch the 2016 Boston Marathon or just want to log some miles, it's an exciting time to visit the city. And, we hope this piece will help all the runners who are new to the city, here for vacation, or a business trip.
I remember my first Boston Marathon as a spectator – I've yet to put in the training needed to actually compete. Penny and I booked a hotel room for the weekend and left the car parked. We took in the runners' expo, pasta supper, and other pre-race activities, then watched a spectacular Boylston Street finish.
As an out-of-state runner staying near Faneuil Hall, I still wanted to get in a run or two, but wasn't sure where to head.
Now, as a Boston resident, I can recommend a couple of my favorite routes.
Charles River Run ...
If you're a visiting runner staying anywhere near the finish line, you can't beat a daytime run along the Charles River. It offers great views and a more open course without having to constantly cross roadways. This multi-use path is shared by bikes, blades, skate boards, dogs, and walkers. It can get congested as the day wears on but, who knows, you may find yourself sharing the trail with some famous, elite runners. It's easy to make any number of loops between the Boston and Cambridge sides of the river by using the many bridges along the way.
From Back Bay, you can access the Charles River Esplanade from Massachusetts Avenue, Fairfield, Dartmouth, and Arlington Streets. If you head west from the Massachusetts Avenue ramp you can also use the parcourse workout station that's located just up-river. Click here for photos and details including a map to find it.
Parks in the Heart of the City
For a tree-lined route, try the Commonwealth Avenue Mall – not a shopping center, but a park – that runs down the center of this residential street. At Commonwealth and Arlington, you can enter the pristine Public Garden for a slower pace. Moving through the center of the Garden will lead you across Charles Street to the Boston Common.
Inside tip: Local-isms
Mass Ave = Massachusetts Avenue
Comm Ave = Commonwealth Avenue
And, it's Boston Common (singular) not Boston Commons
Here are some Photos from past Boston Marathons
Here's a great site. You'll find dozens of local running routes, including along the Charles River.
For more places to run, Bostinno has a post on this topic – How to Train For the Boston Marathon: Where the Runners Run.
Words: Ed Cherubino
Photos: (Top) 2011 Boston Marathon, (Bottom) Esplanade Run ©2013 Penny Cherubino
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