The Importance of a Change of Scenery

change of scenery

Running long distances is boring. Let me rephrase that… running long distances CAN be boring. But it doesn’t have to be. If you find yourself hating your training and dreading the track around the same sidewalk, it might be time for a change of scenery.

I am in touch with the feeling of boredom when it comes to my runs. We have a loop in my neighborhood – a 2 mile sidewalk that is appropriately named “The Circle.” It’s great, for a 2 mile run. It’s even great for a 4 mile run. It is terrible for anything longer. Why? Well, who wants to run around the same track for an hour? Pass the same houses, and the same tree “landmarks” and the same crack-in-the-cement “obstacles”? Bor-ring!! Below are two photos of that route, at two separate points of the loop. Pretty similar, right?

change of scenery     change of scenery

Not so exciting, huh? It’s safe, it’s predictable, good for a quick evening (or early morning) run. But Napa and Sonoma? Well, that’s a landscape that could never bore! Not me anyways. And when I join Destination Races for their Napa to Sonoma half marathon event in July, I plan to be ready. Both for a change of scenery, and for the hills I hear they have out there!

But for now, I must satisfy myself with what’s readily available: bridges. We have a new bridge connecting our town to the next one over, affectionately known to residents as “The New Bridge” because it just opened last December. They did a great job with it, and it’s become super popular with drivers and runners alike. And the views provide that perfect change of scenery as I progress with my training.

change of scenery

Here’s an up-and-over view:

change of scenery

change of scenery

change of scenery

change of scenery

The New Bridge = mastered. Just wait until I show you some of the others. Those lead out to more open waters, and the ocean. 😉


*This post was written in partnership with Destination Races Wine Country Half Marathon Series. All thoughts and opinions expressed are purely my own. For more information, please visit Race to Wine Country

  • I get so bored whenever I go for a run! Maybe I need to find some scenery that will distract me from actually running 😉

    • It does get extremely boring to run the same route every single time! I couldn’t do it if I only had the circle in my neighborhood… and god forbid only a treadmill!! Changing the scenery definitely helps keep it fresh. 🙂

  • If I had that scenery to run around i might take it up!

    • Haha we do have a wealth of beautiful scenes here!! I never thought much about the bridges until I moved to land-locked Orlando for college – then it felt really weird to drive for more than 15 minutes without crossing water! lol

  • Somerset Wedding Gal

    I would have thought that running would be one of the more interesting exercises, due to all the scenery and the fresh air!

    • Oh it is!! Or it can be, if you don’t have to lap the same track the whole time. Since the circle in my neighborhood is approximately 2 miles, and I’m training for a half marathon, that means that for my longer runs I would have to run that same circle up to 6+ times… and that would get a little old after about lap 2 or 3. 😉

  • I agree, running long distances can be SO boring! When I was training to run a marathon I would have to run for a few hours straight, and because I tended to run the same routes I would often become bored very quickly. And when you become bored it has a really negative impact on your motivation to keep going, particularly when you’re tired!

    • So true! I have to have my music or I would never get through a long distance run. And forget doing the same route again and again! Luckily, we have plenty of bridges and several state parks with trails in my area, so I plan on taking advantage of that!

  • How pretty! This scenery might would get me to start running 🙂

    • Haha I have to say, having pretty places to run definitely helps me stay motivated! Just tonight actually, I was not looking forward to a run around the neighborhood, so I popped over to another bridge in my area and really enjoyed it! 🙂

  • You SO have to keep your mind entertained, or else the run seems much longer and it seems a lot easier to give up. At least to me. I absolutely can’t do a track {my default stopping point is 2 miles on a track}, so I try to find trails and there’s plenty of wide sidewalk along the waterfront in Honolulu to run.

    • I’m with you on a track – 2 miles, 3 at the VERY most, would be my absolute limit. Same with a treadmill. I’ve never been to Honolulu, or Hawaii (gasp!) but I imagine there would be lots of pretty trails available. Maybe more suitable hiking though? Would be gorgeous scenery! 🙂

  • Alyson

    How true is that! I have a few good loops that are perfect for those short runs around my home but I NEED the change every once in a while, even for the shorter runs. But I sometimes find it so hard to drive to a place just to go for a run though. What a cool bridge!

    Thanks for linking up 🙂


    • Amy Lynne Hayes

      Thanks Alyson! I enjoyed being part of the link up. 🙂 I foundI have run around the circle in my neighborhood so many time, often the thought of of doing that outweighs the dread of sitting in traffic to run somewhere else lol.

    • Thanks Alyson!! I find recently that I have run that circle in my neighborhood so many times that the thought of doing that same route again is worse than the thought of sitting in traffic lol. Luckily I’m in a small town, so our concept of “traffic” isn’t really all that extreme. 🙂

  • Oh yes, running + scenery go hand in hand! Those pictures are amazing!

    • Thank you!! I’m getting myself all prepared and in shape for adventure for when I make it down to your part of the world. 😉