This loop is almost exactly 3 miles long (starting and ending near Davis Library). If you go in the morning or afternoon, Franklin Street is pretty empty so you don’t have to worry about people awkwardly watching you run.
Alternatively, if you’re the kind of person who is motivated to run faster when you know people are watching, take this route around 5 p.m. on a Friday. Just be prepared for a human obstacle course.
Bolin Creek Trail
This is a really great running/walking/biking trail right by The Root Cellar Café. You can run down Hillsborough Street from campus to get there. The best part is that the trail leads right to Caffé Driade. It’s an out-and-back trail, so it dead-ends in a park, which is also fun.
Just beware, if you take this route, that running back up Hillsborough toward campus will probably make you feel like you’re going to die. It’s basically one massive, painful hill. I usually end up singing and reciting motivational speeches to myself as I run up it.
This route is also pretty long but you can customize it by not getting all the way to the end of the trail. That makes you miss out on the opportunity to play on the swings, though, so it’s not optimal.
Outdoor Education Center
Running in/around this area is really pretty because there are lots of trees and lots of green.
There are also a few really beautiful, long winding roads right around the center. These roads are really quiet, so they are great for running, plus the houses along them are beautiful and are really helpful for distracting yourself. There are a couple of hills but nothing horrific.
Running near the Outdoor Education Center is a great move if you’re trying to get in a long run. You can run around the center a few times, then take a few side roads and see where you end up!
The next time you need some route inspiration, give one of these a try! I'll see you out there.