When you’re getting ready to go for a run, there are a few things to think about.
First, you have to have the right running gear. Suffering through a run in the wrong shoes is the absolute worst thing ever.
Once you get your gear issues sorted out, your route becomes the real question. Where are you heading, how far are you going and what will you see along the way? Sure, places like Frick Park, Schenley Park and the North Shore are among the best places to go for a run in Pittsburgh. But those are just locales, what about the details like where to park or pick up the trail? How about a map, directions or destinations along the way?
We had the exact same questions. Which is why we mapped 11 different runs in 11 different neighborhoods. So now you can spend less time planning and more time pounding the pavement. Happy running!
Take a tour of Schenley Park, via the Bridle Trail. This 3 mile out and back run includes a little bit of everything, including on and off-road running, a nice climb and scenic sights right in the city. Park in Schenley Plaza and plan to snack at the Porch or Conflict Kitchen (or Waffallonia!) when you’re finished.
What’s the best way to see all of Pittsburgh’s most Pittsburgh things? Well, we’re bias, but we’d argue in favor of going on foot. If you like the sound of that, you’ll love this 4 mile run – the Pittsburgh Landmark Route. Leaving from Stage AE, you’ll pass Heinz Field the West End Bridge, the Incline, Point State Park, the Fountain, Fort Pitt, PNC Park, and cross all three rivers.
Our friends at the Steel City Road Runners have mapped one of the most popular routes in all of Pittsburgh. Known as the “Top of the World Run” this 4 mile route begins at the First Avenue parking garage. After crossing the Liberty Bridge, prepare for a climb up McArdle Roadway. Anticipation builds, and your efforts or rewarded with the view from the top of Mt. Washington.
Over the river and through the Strip District, along the Heritage Trail System we go! Best of all, this route can be modified. Go for 5 miles or upwards of 8 miles depending on what you’re feeling. Either way, planning to finish up in the Strip District isn’t a bad idea. Brunch anyone!
Hop on The Three Rivers Heritage Trail in the South Side, at South Fourth Street. Then take the trail, following alongside the river for and out and back run that totals 9 miles. Along the way you’ll travel past South Side Works and the UPMC Sports Medicine Complex and the Steelers practice field. This route turns back around 4.5 miles, but the trail keeps on going and you can too.
Yes, technically this 7 mile run starts in Lawrenceville. But look closely and you’ll see the starting point is also right outside of one our favorite snacking spots – Coca Cafe. If the thought of brunching after you break a sweat running to the Point and back doesn’t motivate you, nothing will. Except maybe the awesome sights and sounds of running through the Strip and alongside the river in route to the Fountain at Point State Park.
Pick up this 5 mile route outside of Children’s Hospital, near the Allegheny Cemetery. From there, you’ll head down Penn Avenue past Spak Brother Pizza into Garfield. As you close in on East Liberty, you’ll see Commonplace Voluto Coffee on your left. Keep truckin down Penn Ave, through East Liberty, Shadyside and Bloomfield to return back to Children’s.
Here’s a great weekend run route for you. Begin in Bakery Square. Caff up at the coffee shop. Then kick a 5 mile run past Mellon Park, down Fifth Ave, returning to Bakery Square via Ellsworth Avenue. Upon your return, plan on snacking and shopping in the Square, followed by a stroll through Mellon Park.
Are you up for a 10 mile run through Station Square and the North Side? Great! It starts Downtown at Gateway Station near the Point. After that you’ll cross the Smithfield Street Bridge, pass through Station Square, take the West End Bridge onto the North Side for the majority of the milage. The Roberto Clemente Bridge will bring you back to where you began this run.
Here’s a confession for you. In case you haven’t noticed, we really like starting our runs at a coffee shop. This 5 mile run through Highland Park is no different. Pick up the route after a pick me up at Tazza d’Oro. Then, follow North Highland Avenue into Highland Park, where you’ll round the lower and upper loops before linking up with Stanton Avenue for your return trip to the coffee shop.
Come on! What list of Pittsburgh run routes would be complete without hitting the trails at Frick Park? Don’t worry, gang. We’re all over it. Starting near the tennis courts on South Braddock Avenue, take the Braddock Trail into Nine Mile Meadows. From there, take the Nine Mile Trail to Tranquil Trail, which you’ll follow until you hit the road at South Homestead Road. The remainder of the run follows the road, so mind the street signs back to the tennis courts.
We’ll keep you up to date on all things health, fitness and local food in Pittsburgh.