Spring Break Friedman Style: How to stay active in Boston

By Sheryl Lynn Carvajal

March has arrived, and there are so many things to celebrate this month.  Not only is it National Nutrition Month, but St. Patrick’s Day, spring break, the first day of spring, Easter, and National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day (which I will definitely be celebrating!) all occur this month.  With all of these days and events to look forward to, we definitely can’t forget to stay active.  If you’re staying in the Boston area during spring break, there are plenty of ways to get your fitness fix.

St. Patrick’s Day 5K Road Race

What comes to mind when you think about St. Patrick’s Day?  It’s one of my favorite days of the year.  It’s an excuse to be Irish for the day and to have everything in my favorite color, green!  With green clothes, green beer, green food, it’s not hard to have a good time.  This year, St. Patrick’s Day kicks off our spring break.  South Boston, or Southie as the locals call it, is heavily populated with families and individuals of Irish descent, making it a great spot to celebrate the festivities.  On March 17, the Boys and Girls Club of Boston will be hosting the Annual St. Patrick’s Day 5K Road Race.  Running 3.1 miles is an awesome way to be active, and to earn a couple of celebratory libations.  For more information on registration and details, visit http://www.bgcb.org/2013-st-patricks-day-road-race/.

City Running Tours

City Running Tours is a company that hosts guided group running tours of major cities in the US.  There is a City Running Tours team here in Boston, and you can choose to participate in a personalized run, or one of the several scheduled social runs.  There are four different types: 5K runs, 5K beer runs, 10K runs, and 10K beer runs, ranging from $25 – $45 per runner.  The online schedule makes it easy to select the length and area of the run.  Although this is geared towards travelers and tourists, it’s a great way to explore the city in a whole different light.  And since there are so many to choose from, you can participate in different running tours to liven your workout scenery.

Beer runs are followed by a Harpoon Brewery tour

Beer runs are followed by a Harpoon Brewery tour

Freedom Trail Run

Similar in concept, the Freedom Trail Run gives the people of Boston an exciting way to learn about the history of the city, while exercising the ol’ ticker.  The Freedom Trail goes through some historical landmarks, and this #1 voted best city tour will give you a run for your money, literally!  Registration is $40 and it includes the guided run, a drink, the return harbor ferryboat ride, and a Freedom Trail Run t-shirt.  If you haven’t had a chance to visit the great historical sites of Boston, be sure to take advantage of this unique opportunity this city has to offer.

Freedom Trail, Bunker Hill Monument

Freedom Trail, Bunker Hill Monument


Community Yoga

If you’re looking to slow it down a little bit, find your center at a community yoga class.  Most gyms and yoga studios require you to purchase membership to take classes, and as graduate students we’re often reluctant or can’t afford to pay full membership.  In the South End, a small dance studio called Urbanity Dance offers community yoga classes every day of the week except Saturday.  These classes are offered on a drop-in, pay-what-you-can basis, and are for all levels of yogis alike.

Additionally, Lululemon Athletica is a clothing store that sells athletic apparel, yoga mats, accessories, etc.  There are locations on Newbury Street, in the Prudential Center, and at the end of March, they will be opening up a store right around the corner from Tufts Medical Center.  Lululemon hosts community events every month, and running clubs and complimentary yoga classes are often on the list.  It’s easy to find a community event, just visit their website, and search for the store nearest you and click on their calendar of events.  These yoga classes are a great way to stay active that won’t break the bank.

Other spring break activities to stay active

One does not have to be at the gym, running 5K races, or taking a structured fitness class in order to be active.  Although it may not get quite as warm as where some of our classmates will be “spring-breaking”, spring is in the air and it’s time to get outside and enjoy the sunshine.  Put together a pickup game of football or Ultimate Frisbee at Boston Common.  Go to the dog park with your furry friend and run around with him.  Hit the beach for a day of sand and sun, and bring along a soccer ball or volleyball.  Regardless of what you do, the season of spring brings forth several possibilities to remain active in Boston.

*Photo credits: my awesome iPhone camera skills 

Sheryl Carvajal is a first year Nutrition Communication student who was so excited when she found out there was a National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day.  She is also very happy to be going back to the Sunshine State for spring break, where she will be doing lots of boating and fishing.

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