The Farewell Tour- Saying Goodbye to My Favorite Running Trails Before Moving

In less than two weeks I’ll be moving back to my hometown of Atlanta, GA to be start a new marketing communications position that’s closer to friends and family. Though I could not be more thrilled about this awesome opportunity, it’s a bit bittersweet to say goodbye to friends and to the trails and sidewalks where I fell in love with longer distance running. I’m spending the next few days running these favorite spots and trying to de-stress from the lunacy of packing through this endeavor:

1. Grandview Drive

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Previously mentioned in my Run River City Recap, this is my go-to spot for scenic and shady hill training in the Peoria Heights area. It’s also home to some stunning homes

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I typically run 4-6miles here, as it basically runs into a busy highway around the 6 mile mark. It’s also super close to Running Central, the best running store in the area.

2. Rock Island Trail

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By far my favorite trail in the area, this 26 mile trail is built on old railroad tracks and is one of the best places to run no matter the season. I’ve used it extensively for long training runs but would advise caution in running in later in the evening hours, as after the 2 mile mark it can get a little isolated. You’re also likely to run into all sorts of critters

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This possum was the only other soul on the trail one snowy afternoon in February.

This trail is perfect for what I like to call a thinking run. If something is bothering me, or I’m stuck on a decision, Rock Island is the perfect flat course where I don’t have to worry about cars or being lost.

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It also constantly reminds me of The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost, as it splits at a few places.

Other spots in the Peoria area that I have enjoyed running:

Farmdale Recreation Area: I ran a ten mile trail race here last October, and these are not  your high school cross country course trails. This is a great trail for intense hill/trail training, but you do have to watch out for some of the overly aggressive bikers. There is great nature watching and since the deer are protected in this recreation area, they run rampant!

Do you have a favorite running trail in your area?