I’m a casual runner, but every time I venture to a new city, I love to lace up. The morning after I turned thirty, my husband and I ran at sunrise from our hotel near the White House to the steps of the Lincoln Memorial as a way to experience our nation’s capital in a new way. A few years later, I bought a double jogging stroller to help manage the stress of my husband being deployed. Whenever I hear Houston’s Lizzo in my headphones, I’m instantly back in Iwakuni, Japan, pushing my two babies through fields of lotus flowers near the Marine base where we lived. And last April, as we were hunkered down during stay-at-home orders, I explored our new neighborhood in Flower Mound one mile at a time.

One perk of running in Texas is that all of our open space usually means less jogging in place at stoplights. The not-so-nice thing? The heat. Summer and early fall are a dreadful time for outdoor activities that don’t involve being dunked in water. But when a cold front blows across the state and overtakes the warm, wet air that has plagued us for months, that’s bliss. We’re entering the most wonderful weather time of the year, so turn off the treadmill, step outside, and check out one of these running spots in regions around Texas.

Corpus Christi

Bayfront Seawall

Corpus Christi’s main running event is the annual Beach to Bay Relay in May, the largest relay marathon in the country. There’s no better way to practice than to feel the wind come off the water as you run on the seawall along the bayfront. A little over a century ago, the hurricane of 1919 caused city leaders to look at ways to protect the city from future storms. Sculptor Gutzon Borglum designed a seawall in 1928, a few years before he moved to South Dakota and carved Mount Rushmore. The structure is made of cement mixed with salt water from Corpus Christi Bay, rather than the usual fresh water. To allow for social distancing, the city shuts down a portion of Shoreline Boulevard from 7 to 11 a.m. each Saturday to give runners and bikers extra room. Start at the Selena Memorial Statue and head south to Cole Park—a distance of nearly 2 miles.