Why I Miss Running in Minnesota
I miss running in Minnesota. In spite of the horrendously cold weather of recent, part of me wishes I was there, testing the limits of human endurance in the face of epically frigid conditions. Seeing the wrath of old man winter on the frozen faces off those on Facebook and Twitter have me staring at my box of winter running gear, longing to suit up like a warrior going into battle.
I should probably clarify something… I don’t currently live in Minnesota.
Some of you know the story, but the abridged version is that my wife, 9 month old son and I moved to Portland, Oregon right before Thanksgiving as part of a relocation for her job. It’s an amazing short term opportunity for reasons too numerous to get into here. I say short term because right now, the plan is to move back in 2-ish years.
Once a Minnesotan, Always a Minnesotan
Having spent that vast majority of ones life in the same 10 miles radius, makes it hard to think of yourself being from anywhere else. We still own our home in Minneapolis, and I’m working (part time) for a boutique leadership consulting firm downtown. I’ll be traveling back twice in February and almost every other month this year.
One of the first questions I got when telling people we were leaving was, “what about the blog?” Not to worry, the beauty of the internet and an amazing team of content contributors makes it possible for us to continue to bring you awesome, local content.
3 Things I Miss Most about Running in Minnesota
I never thought I’d miss running in Minnesota. A place where the governor cancels school days in advance because of life threatening windchill. I never thought I’d miss living in a place where winter running gear is required almost five months a year.
But I do.
Three things in particular I think make running in Minnesota one of the greatest places in the country.
- Location, location, location. Sure, Oregon has some killer trails, mountains and an ocean… but so far it’s got nothing on Minneapolis. I was going to do a post on the best winter places to run outside in Minneapolis, but they are all the same great places you can run in the summer! From the chain of lakes, Minnehaha Parkway, Greenway, River road, Wirth Park… the Twin Cities has some pretty sweet running routes. Don’t forget the great trail running in Minnesota!
- Number of Races. According to Running in the USA, running in Minnesota will give you almost twice as many races per year than Oregon. In fact, we’re number 16 overall. Not bad for the land of ice and snow. That’s a lot of opportunities to set PR’s and challenge yourself towards big audacious goals.
- Community. More than anything, I miss the running community. I’ve run several times with a few groups, but it’ll just take time to get connected. There’s a toughness and ferocity Minnesota runners have that I haven’t quite seen here yet (prove me wrong Portland!). I’d love to see the Nike Oregon Project face off against Team USA Minnesota.
What I Don’t Miss about Running in Minnesota
Just so you don’t think I’m crazy… the novelty of running in Minnesota when it’s -20 wears off. Last year I didn’t put away my cold weather running gear until the end of April. As I write this, it’s 60 degrees warmer here. I missed snow at Christmas, but I like knowing I can do a hard workout outside without worrying about breaking my neck on hidden ice. Running without needing ski goggles is a bonus too.
What You Can Expect from Minneapolis Running
Running in Minnesota takes guts and dedication! Having races canceled due to extreme heat and cold have both happened to me living in the Land of 10,000 lakes.
To honor that commitment, we will continue to bring you great original, local content to help you improve as a runner. Here are a few of the projects we have started and are in the queue for 2014.
- Improved local race calendar.
- Trail and Hill Map build out.
- Indoor running location finder.
- Challenges and more giveaways to keep you motivated.
- Local running club/group/store profiles.
- More coaching opportunities.
- Healthy eating plans for optimizing your training.
- Twin Cities Bathroom map v2.0.
- And much more!
If you would like to contribute ideas to the community, contact us, or leave a comment below. The site has been built on the tribal wisdom of it’s readers. What are YOUR favorite things about running in Minnesota?