Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Lakefront Path

In the ever-elusive quest to find a means of exercise that I don’t find repellant, I tried running along Chicago’s lakefront trail again. 


Never again!

On the surface, it sounds nice: Eight miles of paved running path along Chicago’s lakefront with breathtaking vistas of the city skyline. 

Here’s what it looks like. 


See? Isn’t that nice?

In reality, the lakefront running path should be called the Lakefront running/dog-walking/biking/speed-skating Lane of Terror. 

Here’s what it actually looks like:


See? Isn’t that horrible?

Remember in grade school when you jumped rope? Two kids would be looping the rope round and round and you’d have to time it just right, dash into the looping rope and begin hopping up and down with split-second accuracy. 

That’s what it feels like just getting on to the pathway. Dogs and speed skaters and competitive bicyclists are all whizzing by in different directions. You have to time it just right and dash right in to get swooped up in the maelstrom. 

I made it onto the path and began my slow trot-trot-trotting along. 

Keep in mind that the running path is hardly wider than a one-lane road. 

I heard a sonic boom behind me as several Tour de France contenders blazed by with the warning, “On your left!!!” 

My heart was still pounding when roller-bladers whizzed past which left hardly any room for the guy on his bike pulling a toddler in the kiddy-trailer attached. Dogs on leashes complicated the matter. 

Trot-trot-trot . . . 

I couldn’t wait to get off the damn running path. 

I veered off onto a nice, regular sidewalk. If I had brought money with me, a taxi would have been hailed. 

There are some really beautiful, wooded pathways that meander through the bird sanctuary near my place. I’ve mapped out a two-mile route through there that I’ve been using.

True, the paths through the bird sanctuary aren’t really meant for running. 
They’re for bird-nerds. 

But let’s be honest about my running. 

Trot-trot-trot. . . 

Birdwatchers ambling along will probably pass me by.

1 Comments:

At 12:29 PM , Blogger heavy hedonist said...

Try Tai Chi. First you take a class to learbn the moves, then you can do it anywhere you have about 10 square feet of room to move around in; less if you have to. It's a great writer's exercise, becuase there is no need for special outfits, gear, or a club membership, not to mention it doesn't screw up your hair or cause you to require a shower afterwards.
And it increases all kinds of endurance. Peace, Mari

 

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