11 Fitness Pros Reveal Their Favorite NYC Running Routes

As the weather warms and we transition from treadmills to treading the pavement, it’s time to reinvigorate our standard runs. If you’re stuck in a running rut and need a bit of inspiration from someone in-the-know, we’ve turned to NYC’s top fitness pros and asked them to share their favorite routes throughout the city.

“I’m a firm believer in bridges, and I run the Williamsburg Bridge every morning. It lets me see the city—and it’s typically quite early, so I see the same people very early every day, whether commuting to work or commuting home. Running the bridges allows me to breathe, and [there’s] the incline and decline up and down on both sides, which is always a challenge.”

Jenna Wolfe, Former Today Show Anchor, Fitness Guru, and Host of the Jenna Wolfe Show

“While I’m obsessed with data when it comes to gym workouts (calories, distance, energy), when I go for a run outside, I trade all of that for beauty. I love running along Riverside Drive from 55th Street up along the Hudson River to 95th and back. I get lost (in thought) watching the boats, enjoying the cool breeze off the water, and checking out the activity on the piers.”

Ngo Okafor, NYC trainer to celebrities and creator of the new fitness app, FitMatch

Ngo Okafor.

“The West Side Highway is my favorite running route. Running allows me to get out of the gym and enjoy the city. I head downtown, past Tribeca, to Battery Park, and back up. The juxtaposition of the water and powerful NYC high-rise buildings is so inspiring to me. The miles just fly by. As inspiring as the water and views are, running alone can get boring, so I try to recruit a buddy to run with me. FitMatch is an app that I created to help my clients and me easily find workout or running buddies in our area, using geo-location technology.”

Jeff O’Connell, Chief Content Officer and Managing Director of Bodybuilding.com

“My favorite NYC run takes me along the Hudson River through Battery Park City. I love running alongside water, especially in a congested city like Manhattan. It kind of defeats the purpose of exercising in the first place if you’re sucking exhaust fumes while building your lung power. This jog offers killer views of the Hudson River and Jersey waterfront. Another favorite run of mine winds through Riverside Park on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. This one’s great in the summertime because of the abundance of shady trees and relatively flat terrain. Running for me is about mental escape as much as it is about physical fitness, and running alongside the Hudson River makes you forget you live in a concrete jungle.”

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