Today’s Tuesdays on the Run post is brought to you from the beach. Clearwater Beach, Florida, to be exact. I am here this week for a conference. I know, it’s quite a sacrifice to be in such a beautiful location right on the Gulf of Mexico, but someone from my office had to go. This morning I went for a run in a beachfront park next to my hotel. It was pure heaven. Until the remnants of Tropical Storm Erika hit. I got a little wet, and that is OK. It is the beach, after all. For this TotR, I am linking up with April from Run the Great Wide Somewhere, Patty from My No-Guilt Life, and Erika from MCM Mama Runs. They are blogging about hydration tips today, which I clearly needed since I forgot to pack my running water bottle! Check out their blogs for advice on staying hydrated during runs. My post is going to stay focused on the beach as I take you along for my run.
First let me tell you about Clearwater Beach. It is located on a thin peninsula just west of Clearwater proper and directly across the Old Tampa Bay from Tampa. It is one the nicest beach towns I have visited. Very clean streets and beaches. Lots of great restaurants. (Fresh caught seafood every night? Yes!) Quaint shops and buildings. Not too much traffic. This is my second trip here. Both times have been for work and without my family. We are definitely coming back for a family vacation. (It’s just one hour, 35 minutes from Walt Disney World. Bonus!)
I am staying at the Marriott on the Sand Key section of the beach. Lovely hotel! It’s not actually on the beach, but it’s literally a 3 minutes stroll. Simply cross the two lane street and you are just a few feet from the sand and surf. The hotel does have a beach buggy to take you to the beach if you choose not to walk. The hotel backs up to the Clearwater Harbor, so I have a clear view of Clearwater itself from my balcony.
Now on to my morning run. Sand Key Park is across the street. It is a public space with picnic tables, a dog park, a playground, and beachfront access.
Once you reach the beach, you can go directly to the gulf or stay farther back along the packed sand. That’s what I chose to do as Tropical Storm Erika was just off the coast. If you look closely, you can see a rainbow in the distance.
The wind really picked up and the clouds were coming in pretty fast, so I decided to run back along the beach to the first park entrance. See how dark the sky was getting. I actually started to get a little nervous!
Inside the park, I knew I would be on pavement if the storm hit hard. It is not the most scenic route, but at least there were palm trees in my sight. I don’t have that view in Nashville!
All in all, it was a great run. Nearly two miles. I
could have should have ran further, but the storm was rolling in and I had to get ready for the conference. I also stopped to take photos and a video, so my pace was slower than normal, but it was so great to be on the sand and watch the waves crash onto the shore. Very relaxing!
Have you been to Clearwater Beach? What beaches have you run on? Let me know in the comments below.