Run Commuting.


On Christmas Eve, I did my first ever run commute. Yesterday, I did my second. I know a couple of people that run commute regularly, and I know a few others that bike commute. Anyhow, I figured I would give it a try!

My commute is about 3.25 miles each way. The way to work is mostly downhill, and the way home is mostly uphill. It takes me about 25 minutes each way, and I can cut it down to 3 miles if I’m willing to run along more heavily trafficked roads.

I glanced around online and I found a website devoted to run commuting. There is some interesting stuff on there. Shoes. Lights. Gear. The site has all sorts of things on it. Thus far, I’ve kept it simple. I’ve left everything I need for work at work so it’s waiting for me in the morning. I’ve only carried an ID, a phone and a light.

I know what you’re thinking. Dirty. Smelly. Perhaps some variation of the two. It’s really not that bad. I’ve never been a big B.O. guy (correct me if I’m wrong). The reality is that it’s cold outside and I barely break a sweat by the time I get to work. Also, I’ve contemplated Power Shower Wipes (by Nathan), although the thought of a giant baby wipe is more disturbing to me than being a little dirty. With that being said, if I recall, blogger/runner Jen Bigham gave them a thumbs up a while back.

At this point, I’m not sure if I’ll continue to run commute occasionally or not. While it allows me to increase my weekly mileage, my concern is that they are just garbage miles – meaning they don’t contribute much to my overall fitness. The jury is still out – what do you think?

Have you ever run commuted? Bike commuted?

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9 Responses to Run Commuting.

  1. Run commuting is something that always lingered in my mind.

    Before my company moved to another city, I lived very closely, less than 2 miles, knowing all the short cuts, I made it a bit shorter than a driving distance.

    I walked to work for a long time till my foot injuries from marathon training got worse. Although I ran to or around work a lot on weekends whenI went for a run, the only reason why I didn’t run commute is because I didn’t know what to do with my lunch and stuff. I don’t eat out often (because I don’t want to spend more money than I have to). Thankfully the building where my work was located was had a shower facility, which I used often, but with the current location, not only is the distance farther (close to 10 miles) but also there’s no shower in the building. And it takes a whole lot quicker to hop on a freeway to get to work. It’s more economical and efficient to run as many miles I want to run than run 10 miles each way and deal with other stuff – lunch, shower, getting ready, etc.

    By the way, I’m still recovering from my foot injuries, and also my recent knee injury apparently doesn’t like downhill running in spite of the fact that I got it under control to a degree. But even without injury, I don’t know if I want to run 20 miles 5 days a week at this time. My weekly mileage even when I was marathon training was only 40-45 miles.

    Anyway, it is always something that I want to give it a try (like I try one day a week or something), but for now I will have to wait for my bad knee to heal and follow what my head wants it to do!!!


  2. This is so cool, Jason! Even if you won’t do it regularly, sometimes it’s just nice to do to stay away from crowds and clear your mind. Unfortunately, my work is far from home and it’s not an option. Happy Holidays to you! xoxo Olena

  3. wanderwolf says:

    I bike commuted at least 3/5 days a week at the university in Germany. It’s much easier there than here (in the US, in South Florida).
    However, run commuting is harder, I think, because you can’t take as much with you as in a saddle bag and you get a lot more sweaty. I run errands running though. Hope that counts.
    Hope the knee heals quickly!

  4. Ellie says:

    I have jogged to work before. It took me 3 seconds (as opposed to the 15 seconds it takes me to walk there) 🙂

  5. I subscribe to the belief that as long as they don’t get in the way of your key sessions or, even better, if you incorporate them in to your key sessions (think fartleks!), there’s no such thing as junk miles, since they contribute to your overall running volume.

    For me, commuting utilises the time that I would otherwise have spent sitting on a train or stuck in traffic, and moves that to training. Typically I will commute once or twice a week, so that frees up a precious extra hour and a bit to spend with family, the other thing I really treasure!

    Happy new year btw!

  6. kate says:

    I have done both. But I have been living in cities where my 2-5 mile commute takes 30minutes via public transportation. so in rural syracuse the time save of killing two birds with one stone and not loosing much time doing it might not be there

    Run commute: i would take the “long way” home to make that part useful miles/work out and the run in to work just a reason to loosen up and stretch.

    Bike Commute: so much better. I’ve done it multiple cities, less sweaty, easier to carry stuff, and it is a great way to quickly loosen up your legs.

    The best combination; Bike in, run home, run in, bike home. for a 2 day stretch to not get to tired and not use your car.

  7. Mike Daigeaun says:

    Bike commuting is my primary means of getting to/from the office. It is 5.5 miles each way. It is not uncommon for me to run commute some days. If it has snowed or too icy for the bike, I am likely to run in. (Or if I couldn’t get up in time to do a run before work, I’ll use the commute as the flexibility in training. I try to keep extra clothes in the office. However, if I need to bring attire, I use a pack. Hoka EVO and the UD AK packs tend to get the job done for me.

    Some days like Kate above, I will bike in, run home, run in, bike home.

  8. Robin says:

    I have run commuted twice and bike commuted at least 160 times. The trip is at least 12mi, varying based on the route I choose. (Though we had a conference in Monterey a few months ago and I biked there from SF – 147mi for that is the longest I’d go 😛 )
    Run commuting is tough because of the planning ahead required, though with a bf who works at the same place I do, I can give him a backpack of my work clothes and such in the morning so I don’t have to carry anything for the run.
    The challenges in bike commuting can be laziness, lack of daylight (hurray for daylight savings/springtime!), weather (the worst we get here is rain and wind), and ever since the crash I try to ride with others along the commute route for safety but it can be tough to coordinate sometimes. But biking is really fun, not physically taxing enough that it compromises run plans, and it takes about the same amount of time as taking a shuttle to work would take. I’ve made a lot of social connections through bike commuting, too. We have fully equipped showers and locker rooms which make it easy to get ready for work after arriving!

    Since your commute is only a couple miles, I strongly encourage you to get there using a method other than driving a car. There is little as avoidable/wasteful as one person in a big car traveling a short distance. Biking a few miles to work wouldn’t even wrinkle your clothes! (Though on the really bad, snowy days you get in the winter, biking admittedly may not be worth the trouble.)

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