I went for a run this morning. It’s my weekly long run as I continue to train for the Helsinki marathon in August. I decided to run along the Capitol Area Greenbelt. It’s a nice pathway, with a few streets thrown in for good measure. The biggest surprise I had was how hilly the route is. I haven’t been on that many hills since I did the Mad Marathon in Vermont last year.
I started off my run at the Civil War Museum at Reservoir Park.
This was my first climb of the day. It was not too bad, but it certainly was a foretaste of the things to come.
After the park, you stroll through a neighborhood until you get to the East Harrisburg Cemetery. Besides the obvious weirdness of running through a cemetery, it’s a short pleasant stroll, and again, more hills. Then on to some nice paved pathways.
I made my way down to the old state hospital grounds. The grounds are beautiful and well maintained. They offer lots of shade.
Then it’s over to Cameron St. and the Farm Show Complex. You have to take the tunnel that goes underground to cross the street. Again, some nice shade.
And then it’s past the Farm Show buildings.
After that, I went up to HACC and ran through some of the campus until I got back on the Greenbelt pathway.
After another mile or so, I passed I-81 and was to Wildwood Park. It’s a beautiful park, with lots of shade. And lots of hills too. At this point I was starting to think about all the hills that I was hitting and still had to hit. I was amazed by how many hills there were. And I was recalling my first marathon – the Harrisburg Marathon, which I ran over 10 years ago. We ran through many of these sections and I still remember all the hills in Wildwood park.
After Wildwood, then I hit the northernmost point on the Greenbelt path – Linglestown Rd. It felt like an accomplishment. And it was about 1/2 way through my 16 mile run.
There’s some great views from this point because you cross over a bridge and you can see for miles.
After that, I weaved my way back south towards Harrisburg. I ran through some nice neighborhoods on side streets as I finally came to Vaughn st. and cut over the Susquehanna River and back into Harrisburg.
I love running along the river. It’s so pleasant and calm. At McClay St. it was time for me to jump off the Greenbelt for a bit and cut back over to Cameron St and head home. Little did know, the biggest hills of the run were still in front of me.
Like this one.
This was a beast, and at this point my legs were singing “the hills come alive with the sound of ouch…” The hills were beastly and getting worse, but I was determined to finish this route.
I weaved my way back through the areas I ran and ended up back at Reservoir Park. The last mile or two felt like it was all uphill, and that’s not an exaggeration. But it was well worth it. The view from on top of the hill at the park is wonderful.
After that last climb, then it was down hill, around the bend and back to the house. I was glad to be done. My legs were done.
And have no fear, I’ll be back on the Greenbelt path again. All those hills are great training. Just not again today.