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So You Think You Can Run a Half Marathon: Running Route-less

           There are a few simple things that go into the making of a really great run. They include good music to listen to, comfortable clothes to wear and an interesting running route to traverse.
            This week I’ve discovered that the latter is of the utmost importance, as a dull route can really make for a not-so-great run. And when I say “not-so-great,” I really mean painstakingly boring and almost painful to get through.

            I’m a firm believer that a running route really sets the tone for a run. And when you’re running for numerous miles at a time, a boring route can make running seem like work.
            I guess I should clarify what qualifies as an interesting running route to me. I prefer running on concrete, and I prefer to have something eye-catching to look at while I run. I don’t need much, but I do enjoy running in a populated area so that I can look at other people passing by or check out the scenery as I pass.
            In a few short weeks, I’ve come to love running all over again through the course of my training, so my biggest challenge recently has proven to be finding motivating and appropriate running routes to run throughout the city of Gainesville.
            The city is centered on the college and I live off-campus, and all the routes that I used to love running last year are around the campus. I’ve had a hard time adjusting to running around my new neighborhood, and I’ve had an even harder time mapping out six, seven and eight mile routes to run every week.
             Luckily, I’ve found a best friend in http://www.mapmyrun.com. Through this website, I can calculate all types of running routes near my apartment and figure out the approximate length of each.
            I’ve spent the last couple of weeks testing out various routes to find ones that I like, and I’m happy to say that I have created a list of four to five routes to that I really enjoy running.
            However, I will continue to challenge myself to find new interesting routes. I’d hate to hit a plateau in my running and not enjoy the last few weeks of my training before my very first half marathon.

Sara Kaner was born and raised in Santa Barbara, California and first fell in love with journalism as a freshman in high school thanks to her wonderful Intro to Journalism teacher. A family move brought her to Fort Myers, Florida the summer after her freshman year of high school, but she continued to pursue an interest in journalism. She is in her second year at the University of Florida and is pursuing a dual degree in Public Relations and Psychology. She is heavily involved on the UF campus and dedicates most of her time to her various organizations and to her friends. She loves people, magazines, sports and social media, and she hopes to combine all three in her job someday. For now, she aspires to attend Law School and specialize in Media Law. She secretly aspires to be Chelsea Handler, but she's happy being herself for the moment, just as long as she can lose the freshman 15 this semester.
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