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Explore

Posted May 10 2013 6:53am

I consider myself to be a generally adventurous person. Ok, no, you won’t see me jumping out of an airplane anytime soon, but I definitely enjoy experiencing all that there is around me, from new food to new friends to new hikes and locales.

To this day, some of my favorite adventures are those that I make up right in my own backyard. While on my nearly-daily morning run yesterday, which took me around the lower loop of Central Park (have you heard that one before?) I got to thinking.

Picture 12

I’d run that very route probably hundreds of times to that point. More than three years, and at least 2/3 of the mornings, I’ve woken up, thrown on my sneakers, and made my way uptown about a mile to the entrance of Central Park — either on 59th and 5th by the massive cube of an Apple store, or to the opening at 72nd and 5th in order to window shop the Madison Avenue boutiques.

While monotonous, I for the most part enjoy the routine of what I do. Sure, there are mornings when I get the ugh-this-again? moment; but all in all, it’s kind of nice to have a reliable route that requires little thought or effort (save, of course, for moving and sweating for all of 50 minutes).

Each morning, I know I’ll come upon one of my favorite views in New York City: this slight hill where the buildings and trees collide.

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What really makes these mornings so enjoyable, however, is that every now and then, you stumble upon the game-changer. This week, I traveled a new route — quite literally the road less traveled.

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Quiet.

Lush.

Deserted. (No, don’t worry mom, not so deserted that it was unsafe.)

And then, I saw this (queue some sort of angelic background noise here).

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This has been sort of a doozy of a week, but here, I find myself practically knocked over the head with instant zen. Here is where life is. This is where I can think. Please don’t make me leave!

The moral of the story is simple, my friends. You don’t have to veer too far from your comfort zone. Your route doesn’t have to change all that much. But even if it’s for a moment — for just a quarter of a mile, or 3 minor minutes — explore.

  • How often do you try to spice up your route?
  • What’s the best discovery you’ve made while exploring lately?

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