Urban Trail running in Antwerp
Last Sunday I enjoyed a beautiful tour through Antwerp. The weather wasn’t too bad, the city was bustling as always and I got an interesting behind-the-scenes view of some of Antwerp’s most prominent buildings. The tour I ran was 12 km on foot and there were 9999 other people in my group. It was then I realized I was finally running the Antwerp Urban Trail.
Vene Cuccuri Vici
Is there a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than run around the city you love pumped up on endorphins? Yes there is. Run through/under/in/over the most prominent buildings and heritage of that city you love with a ton of crazy encouragements from random people. I can now officially tell my grand kids their grandpa ran through the metro tunnel before De Lijn (ed. public transportation company) took it in use.
That wasn't the only spectacular building I conquered though. We crossed the impressive brick Borgerhout District hall, the astonishing Antwerp Central Station, the former Napoleon Bonaparte Palace at shopping street Meir, the beautiful City Hall, MAS museum to eventually end 12k later at the awesome new Park Spoor Noord. If I had a bucket list of Antwerp-buildings-I-want-to-run-through it wouldn't be very long after last weekend.
It made me feel like the Antwerp version of emperor Caesar on sneakers. I came, I ran, I conquered. (forgive any possible mistakes in my attempt to translate this oneliner in Latin)
7 rules to follow if you want to look like a professional Urban Runner
As it was the first time I ran a (very well - I must say) organized city tour I decided to talk to a couple of experienced runners. These little chats eventually led to 7 rules one should follow to look like a pro Antwerp Urban Trail runner.
1. It’s all about your rhythm. Don’t follow the pumped up steroid guy who goes speeding in the first 100 meters. You’ll pass him after km 3. That’s where the first ambulance usually is.
2. Don’t take selfies of you in a running outfit. You’re wearing lycra.
3. Learn a couple of classic runner quotes and shout ‘em out loud while jogging:
“Sweat is just fat crying”
“Pain is nothing compared to what it feels like to quit”
Runners love them.
4. If you get tired, look at frustrated drivers, sitting behind the wheel while you’re passing a red light with a police officer smiling at you. Now that’s power.
5. Talk with runners, they’re crazy people. One guy was running around with a little backpack filled with bricks. He told me “he liked the challenge”. Mental.
6. If you run with music, make sure you got some decent equipment on you. You don’t want to stop running because your MP3’s are crashing again again again again again
7. Tell as many people as possible you are entering a running competition. Now there is no way you’re ever going to quit before the finish.
Enjoy! Because I sure did.
Text by Mystery Runner
Pics by Dieter Schietse