Run Like It Ain’t Nobody’s Business!

Hi dear runners.  Hope you guys are feeling well rested and ready to take on a challenge.  I want to challenge you to do your best from today to next week Wednesday to get at least 6 days of exercise in, at least 30 minutes a day.  Some of you might already be doing this so I’d like to encourage you to continue doing what you are doing.  I am talking to the rest of you who are not–those who have not lifted a single toe to move this week (besides that of going into the job) to add some longevity and boost your energy bank.

Yesterday evening I got in my car without knowing exactly where I would run, so I just headed east towards the beach because this place usually calls my name.  I love running on the beach.  Something about all that hydrostatic energy coming from the sea and it’s salty water lifts my spirit like…umm….maybe crack does to a crackhead. It usually makes me feel elated.  That water and sand and sun combo makes my body secrete good and sweat happy hormones (endorphins) that usually dopes me up (naturally) for a good run.  So before you call the police, try it for yourself one day.

As mentioned, I headed to the beach, but landed in the city of Aventura  where I decided to park my car at the shopping center,  Loehmann’s Fashion Island.  I parked my car in front of one of my favorite stores, Barnes & Noble, where I stretch and said a prayer for protection.  If there is one thing I know about this “City of Excellence (as they call it),” it is that they need a to sign many of it’s citizens up for driver’s education. Maybe they can do so right across the street off  William H. Lehman Causeway, State Road 856 at the PoPo’s (Police’s) station.

I think they should also call it the city that is excellently “Noisy.” While doing my pre-run stretch, I was trying to clear my mind with a light prayer, but it was a bit hard to concentrate because of all the Beep Beep Beep (angry motorist trying to go to mall or to their home) and Wheeew, Wheeeew. Wheeew (police siren) and that noxious infarcting sound coming from a nearby ambulance.  Aventura, is a Latin word meaning ” adventure, or excitement.”    Biscayne Boulevard (US 1) where I started, despite 5 lanes on each side of the road, produces much traffic, especially during the rush hour in the evenings and on Saturdays when everybody and their grandmothers are trying to get to the Aventura Mall–the greatest attraction there.

Bloomingdale at Aventura Mall

In Aventura, a city of 3.5 square miles, you will find the Aventura Hospital, and a Mount Sinai Emergency Room (satellite ED) directly across from the mall—no doubt needed because the prices are a bit steep at this mall, and well, Uncle may have “the big one,” like Fred Sanford of the TV show Sandford & Son calls it, while dishing out money to pay for stuff that caught his sweetie’s eyes.  It’s not only the mall making money, but so is medicine.  How convenient.  No conspiracy theory, please!

Now, despite the noise and adventure or excitement, Aventura is also a cozy little city whose citizens seems to be very active and also part of the  like-to-look-good-naked club.  Yes, they are fashionable people with nice homes and expensive cars.  I was told that a few celebrities, like Whitney Houston, owns home in the area.

The city of Aventura is also fitness-friendly with a few parks where enthusiasts can hide away from the noisy traffic  to do their thing.  Here you will find recreational places such as Founders Park, Founders Park Bayside, Waterways Park, Waterways Dog Park, Veterans Park, the Community Recreation Center, and the new Liberal Arts theater.  If you visit, I hope you take time to explore these lovely options.

Ad for Mount Sinai ED

So, I peeled myself away from the excitement of this city of excellence fashionistas, cars, noise, and headed north towards the mall down Byscayne Blvd.  I was feeling good in this run. On my way there, I passed the sign advertising for Mount Sinai satellite ED.  When I reached the Wm Leahman Cuaseway another ambulance was circling the road across from the mall, and  I thought how Aventura could also be called the city of convenience.  On my left there was a mall, and Ed, and on my right there was a police station with lots of police cars.  Further up accross the bridge was the intracoastal with many boats, and ahead was the beach (though not part of Aventura).

 

I Ran as far as Williams H. Lehman Causeway, over the causeway, right on A1A or Collins avenue, a right turn onto 172nd street–my old neighborhood which circled around some condos by the intracoastal waterway, turned another right unto 163rd Street overpass, over the bridge, then landed on Biscayne blvd again, then made my way back to Barnes & Noble where I cooled down and stretched. In all, it was 8 miles I ran, with a good spirit and a bit of challenge due to the overpasses.

A ward of caution: if you ever take this route to run, be careful when running the W.L. Causeway.  The traffic there accelerates and the speed limit…well, these folks don’t too much worry about this, even with the police station nearby.  Just try to stay on the grass, and after crossing the first bridge, keep the far right and run on that side which is runners, walkers, and bikers friendly.  When you approach the second bridge which leads to the gorgeous city of Sunny Isles Beach, be careful of the traffic getting on the bridge from your side as you are trying to do the same.  This part  of the run is a great workout.  You will feel it on the buns and calves.  This up-hill climb could be a challenge for some, but you will soon forget this when you catch the view of the Intracoastal at the top.  Take a deep breath and enjoy the downwards stride and scream at the top of your lungs (if they are not smokers lungs), “DOWNHILL POWER!”

When You reach Collins Avenue in SIB, be mindful that the sidewalk is narrow and there may be runners, bikers, elderly folks with their shopping bags on wheel, skate-boarders, and those teenagers tied at the hips.  I run mainly on the grass, where there is a patch, to avoid the crowd.  You may find this also the case all the way over the 163rd bridge to Biscayne Blvd.

OYE!  Aventura and other South Florida people take delight in looking good.  The heat, the occasional cold weather, the mad motorists, grandpa who only looks one way when driving up to the sidewalk, the PoPo (Police), and the pluck-your-nerves ambulance cant stop us!  We run like it ain’t nobody’s business!  So get out there.  Run, and tell us about it.