Like every good UFC Fan I was at the bar last Saturday night watching the fights. And like every good married couple myself and Brad were sitting across from each other in silence and scrolling through social media. Thanks to all the cool Toronto people I follow on Instagram I was alerted to the hashtag #OpenStreetsTO. Annnnnd thanks to the WiFi at the bar I downloaded some maps, spoke to Brad, and we made a plan of attack for last Sunday’s long run.
“Open Streets TO is the city’s largest free recreation program, unlike any other in Toronto or Canada. We’ve created a world-class program that connects our diverse neighbourhoods and people across the city.
Open Streets are programs where the streets are temporarily opened to people and closed to cars. People traffic replaces car traffic, and the streets become “paved parks” where people of all ages, abilities, and social, economic, and ethnic backgrounds can come out and improve their health.”
I was pretty darn excited to stumble upon this. All long runs from now until my half marathon will seem far less extravagant. I felt like a king … or I guess that would be like a queen in my case. I felt like a boss. And I felt so much pride seeing all the other Torontonians out there having a fantastic time.
The number one reason that this excited me is because we try to stay away from running on the sidewalk. That cement is just so tough on my joints. As often as I can I direct our training runs to the track, trails or asphalt. And c’mon, how often do you get the chance to run through the streets of Toronto and not have to pay for it via race fees?
Thanks to our matching pink hats, two of our friends even spotted us from behind while they were riding their bikes. We stopped to chat for a bit (long runs are slow and steady so no harm done, right). I’m convinced that Brad texted them to say “save me … we’re in the pink hats at Yonge and Bloor.”
I’m sharing all this fun Open Streets info with you because it’s happening AGAAAAAIINNNNNN! On Sunday September 18th a section of Yonge street and Bloor street will be closed down again for some healthy fun and recreation. Unfortunately we won’t be able to go because we’ll be at the Famous Canadian Beer Run that day (also a fun choice for anyone in/near Toronto).
Check it out next month and tell your friends because we had a blast. As for this weekend’s long run … I’ll be back on my usual path but dreaming of the wide open asphalt 😉