There is something about strapping on a backpack and running home from work at nine o’clock at night that makes one feel simultaneously like an absurdly time pressured uptight New Yorker and a total badass. Last night, after months of injury, and more months of very slowly recovering from injury, I finally did the run commute again. It was great.
I worked a pretty long day yesterday, finishing up well after dark. Running through the city which so alive with people on a gorgeous fall night was a perfect way to end the day. From my office near Penn Station, I ran down through Korea Town and Gramercy, into the East Village to Chinatown. Then it was over the Manhattan Bridge into Brooklyn and up Flatbush Avenue to my apartment. Depending on the route I take, the run is anywhere from 6.5 to 7.5 miles. Last night it was seven and I finished it in a leisurely, stuck on crowded sidewalks, 1:15:00.
If, like me, you live within a reasonable running distance from your work, the logistics of running commuting aren’t difficult to master. Just bring your shit to work and run home. Or, if your office is fancy enough, or close enough to a gym, you might have a shower available to make a morning running commute possible. This is what my friend MT does. He’s never sure when he’ll get out at night, and he has a two year son at home, so running into work, and showering at the office gym, is his best option. For me, running home is the way to go. I simply bring my running stuff to work, change in the office bathroom, fold my work clothes up into my Gregory Miwok 22*, put on the head phones and head downtown, making my way through the city I love. I dodge tourists and sidewalk vendors, gaze at shop windows and remember landmarks long gone to the pace of constant reinvention that is New York. As a way to get home from work, it sure beats a crowded two train.
*I’d recommend the Miwok if all you’re carrying is work clothes. I leave my shoes at the office, greatly lightening the load. If you need to bring home a laptop, or tons of paper, you’re going to want to look into a bigger bag.