I Am a Run Commuter

I recently discovered I am a run commuter. It went like this:

(upon finding out a friend was running to school each day)
Me – Hey that’s so cool! You’re, like, run commuting!
Him – Uh yeah, just like you.
Me – Me?
Him – Yeah, you. What do you call it?
Me – I just run toward home from work three days a week.
Him – Yeah, that’s called run commuting. </sarcasm>

Well. That led me to Google “run commuting” and it turns out…I am a run commuter! And now that we put it that way…here’s my story.

I’ve been run commuting since moving to New York City in 2009. The decision to run home from work was more practical than anything else. I live 11ish miles away, which takes anywhere from 45-60 minutes via subway. I moved in February, so riding the subway home before leaving to run guaranteed I’d be running in the dark in neighborhoods with which I wasn’t yet familiar. It only made sense to take my running clothes to work and run toward home in the evenings. I’ve been doing it ever since.

My Method

I typically run toward home three days per week. Days and distance depend on whether I’m training for a race and what my training plan calls for. I start at the office, run as far as I need/want to, then hop on the subway or a bus to ride the rest of the way. For example, while training for a marathon I might run a 6 mile tempo run on Monday, the full 11 miles home on Wednesday, and an 8 mile easy run on Thursday.

I take my running clothes with me to the office on run days. I change after work, leaving my work clothes in my office. On days I don’t run I carry my work clothes back home.  I keep two pairs of shoes in my office, which alleviates the need to carry shoes back and forth.

Most days I run with a waist pack that holds my phone, wallet (ID/metro card/cash), and keys. If I am running 10+ miles after work, I go ahead and run with my Nathan HPL 020 so that I can carry snacks and fluids.


The best part about run commuting is being able to unwind from the work day. No matter how good or bad a day you have, it’s better after a run.

Another good thing is minimizing a crowded commute. Running cuts down on the time you spend crammed in to a rush hour train or bus.

Run commuting gives you options to take a different route home and gets you into parts of your city that you might not normally visit.

Try it!

Even if you only have time to run commute one day a week, it’s worth trying. You might find out you really like it. 🙂

Here are some pictures I’ve taken during my commute:

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