While I'm an unabashed fan of the treadmill, when the seasons turns sunny I book it to my nearest park. But even with beautiful weather and scenery to reward me when I run, I still occasionally switch up my runs by going to an outdoor track. Many people think running on a track is tedious, but I love it. For me, running on the track helps clear my mind and calms me down, often more than if I were out on the streets. Want to know more reasons to love the track? Read on!
- No unwelcome obstacles. City running has its list of perils: uneven pavement, overly friendly dogs, and inopportunely timed traffic lights can have you weaving and stopping when all you want to do is go. A track, on the other hand, is perfectly primed for runners; from the uniform ground to the lanes that keep other runners mostly in check, there are no surprises!
- It's an easy way to keep track of your progress. Sure, there are tons of iPhone apps that can track your route and the length of your run, but sometimes a good old-fashioned oval is all I need to gauge how well I'm pacing myself as well as how far I've already gone.
- Other runners can motivate you. My favorite track always has running clubs, sports teams, and solo runners all working out, and it's inspiring to be in the midst of all of it. Watching a slow and steady paced runner never stop or an experienced runner race around the track often motivates me to push myself harder.
- It can get you into race mode. Whenever I'm on a track my nostalgia for my high school track team days comes out in full force. Those experiences can motivate me when I'm running for time or doing intervals — there's nothing like rounding a corner and pushing yourself to sprint to the "finish line" to keep track workouts interesting!
Are you a fan of the track?