In my attempts to make running easier and more enjoyable, I’ve been choosing a more scenic path whenever I have the extra time. I live about 15 minutes from Washington’s Crossing, which is the historic site where Washington crossed the Delaware River during the Revolutionary War (blah blah, history history). But my point is, there is a lovely canal right by the river with a walking path. It’s the perfect place to run because: a) it’s completely, 100% flat ground; b) it’s in the shade, therefore always at least five degrees cooler than everywhere else I would run; and c) it’s scenic. Who doesn’t love nature? And running next to water? Running outside is always better than in a stuffy gym, but running through neighborhoods and towns gets tedious and boring. Stopping at red lights, waiting to cross the street, noticing all the people driving by who are watching me run (and struggle)… All of that kind of puts a damper on my run. But on the canal, the only people passing are fellow athletes (ha!), and just observing the natural setting puts me more at peace. Sure, you get a few gnats up the nose every now and then, but hey, you learn to appreciate it. Whenever I have enough extra time, I head to the canal to run there instead of my boring route through town. It’s totally worth going out of my way to have a more enjoyable, productive run. Find your own relaxing, calming route to run, and running becomes that much easier and more enjoyable.