This week began with an early start on Monday. Part of the reason I’m in Copenhagen is to attend two conferences – the first of which occurred Monday through Wednesday of this week. To be sure I arrived on time (8:30am), awake and attentive, I didn’t make time for a run on Monday morning. By the end of the day, however, I was itching to move. I suppose that’s to be expected following eight hours of listening to technical presentations.
On Tuesday I woke up an hour early (6am) to run a 5k before work. I took the same route as the Friday before, and I really pushed the pace. It felt good to run fast. This time the run only took 27:33. While I was stretching afterwards, two of the neighborhood kids passed by, probably aged three or four. The little boy was particularly vocal and kept trying to talk to me in Danish. Nearly everyone here speaks perfect English. The main exception: children. I had no option but to ignore him until his mother came by. He and his sister were pretty adorable, though.
During the conference on Tuesday I had a very hard time staying awake, especially in the afternoon. I don’t know how much to attribute to the long, tedious presentations and how much to attribute to the morning run. I just know it was hard to keep my eyes open…
Wednesday morning I went straight to work and endured another day of presentations. Don’t get me wrong: I really like what I’m working on (wind energy), but it’s still hard to sit passively while speaker after speaker presents very detailed results. The format isn’t great. Anyway, I had the special honor of being the last person to present at the conference. The adrenaline leading up to this event helped me stay awake – though lack of running that morning could have helped, too.
On Thursday morning I set out for the same 5k run before work. By now I had the timing worked out pretty well – an hour total to dress, run, and stretch. I ran the same route as before, this time in 27:48. The route is convenient, but it’s not particularly scenic. I may change things up for next week.
My next workout was Saturday morning: my long run. This was by far the highlight of my week. I wanted to run my usual eight miles, but I also wanted to see some interesting parts of the city. Out and back wasn’t going to cut it. The night before, I mapped the route: take the train to a large park north of where I live, run around the park, then run back home. When I woke up, however, I remembered that my travel pass wasn’t valid so far north, so I opted to run south instead. I’m glad I did. I was worried there would be too many people clogging up the streets, but it was relatively clear that morning (at roughly 8-9:30am). I memorized the route to the bridge and decided I would make it up on the fly from that point onwards. It didn’t matter where I stopped – it would be easy enough to take a bus or train back so long as I didn’t leave downtown.
By happy circumstance I passed through the Rosenborg gardens shortly after crossing the bridge. This area immediately became my favorite part of the city – the gardens and wide-open green lawns are gorgeous. I spent some time there before wandering past the famous Nyhavn. I even ran through Christianborg Palace which houses all three branches of the Danish government. Pretty cool, huh? I kept the pace relatively comfortable and finished the 8.2 miles in 1:20:53 which puts me right on pace with my runs around the harbor in Baltimore. I cooled down and stretched near Nyhavn before hopping on a train to head home. It was a great run.
On Sunday I spent some time at the Glyptotek before wandering around to take pictures. I did a bit of walking, but not so much as last weekend. My calves were really sore, but in a good way. It just means they’re getting stronger!
So far the perfect weather, sightseeing, and lack of driving have made Copenhagen a great place to stay fit. I’m very glad I’ve been able to keep up my running schedule and I really can’t wait until next week’s long run. Wait… did I really just say that? You bet I did!