Active Cities: New York City
Sweat and the city
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It’s a concrete jungle, but sneaking in a workout is easier than you think. Here’s an athlete’s guide to the Big Apple.
Central Park: Yes, it’s cliché. But the 1.5-mile cinder track around the reservoir is arguably the greatest urban run in the world, with majestic skyscraper views at every step.
Hudson River Greenway: The five-mile stretch of smooth asphalt from Battery Park to 59th Street offers incredible people watching and a light breeze off the water to keep you cool.
The Sports Center at Chelsea Piers: The 25-yard pool has a wall of windows that look out on the World Trade Center. $50 per day for pool and gym access; chelseapiers.com
9W: Starting just south of the George Washington Bridge, the 36-mile out-and-back through Fort Lee Historic Park up to the artsy suburb of Nyack is a rolling, tree-lined ride that climbs 1,400 feet.
Governors Island: Run or bike the 2.2-mile waterfront around the 172-acre former military base and take in views of New York Harbor. Bike rentals from $15; bikenewyorkcity.com
Element Times Square by Westin: Take advantage of discounted parking for hybrid and electric vehicles at this modern hotel. Once settled, you can head out on one of the hotel’s free loaner bikes. From $134; elementtimessquare.com
Circuit of Change: This catchall fitness studio near Union Square starts its workouts with yoga, then transitions into a full-body cardio circuit, abdominal exercises, and kickboxing. From $20 per session.
Paragon Sports: Whether you want to scale a mountain, train for an Ironman, or find a surfboard, this is the one place that has everything—and has for decades.
Citi Bike: With 332 stations and more than 6,000 bikes spread across Manhattan and Brooklyn, the city’s bike-share program is the largest and most convenient in the country. $10 per day, $25 per week; citibikenyc.com
What the Locals Have to Say
Local Pros: Rebeccah and Laurel Wassner, triathletes, Manhattan
“In the summer, we head to the Red Hook pool in Brooklyn—a ten-minute taxi ride from the financial district. It’s a huge 40-meter outdoor pool with lane lines, a rarity in the city. For long runs, we’ll start at city hall and link the Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Williamsburg Bridges. As a nine-plus-mile out-and-back, it’s a killer.”
Local Joe: Rufus Lusk, film producer and director, Brooklyn
“I literally moved to be closer to Brooklyn Boulders climbing gym. At night there are really good climbers, and it’s fun to work on hard routes. On Tuesday and Thursday mornings, the gym opens at seven, and there’s hardly anyone there.”