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  • Writer's pictureBrent Beckham

Running around Luang Prabang searchin' out the alleys and side roads

Nothing spices up a run like something completely random. Take for instance my recent run around Luang Prabang, but more on that later.

I should first note that I underestimated just how small the historic district is here (where we’re staying). After an initial run around it, it’s 5km and a bit around. It has some questionable spots without a side walk, some with a lot of mini buses and tuk tuks, etc. Venturing further away raises questions of safety, the area at large, etc. The wonderful views do help, but running the same road routes can still get a bit samey.

My initial thought was to do some faster runs. This felt great, but I was leery to continue regularly for fear of injury.

Finally I had an idea, that I was surprised I didn’t think of earlier. On this recent run, I ran straight out along the Nam Khan River towards the end of the peninsula. Then looped around the end, but on the way back aimed to cut down as many side roads and alleys between the main roads. And let me tell you, it was soo much fun! Ha! It was reminiscent of a Hash Run, because I was constantly looking around but in this case for the next alley/road to cut down. Similarly my pace varied greatly with start/stops/sprints/easy stretches/etc., and I also got to see more and different areas of town. There was also the possibility of an “alley” just being a side walkway or dead end. Though when it went through, off I went! The terrain also varied as most alleys had steps and the roads had a slight grade.

Don't worry I wasn't disrespectful. I was very mindful of my surroundings and those around. Especially when one allly lead me to a Wat, which I just respectively walked through, sticking to the outskirts while making as direct a path to the next exit.

There were probably a few locals and tourists left staring and wondering, "What's up with the guy in the highlighter yellow shirt and "VUR" thir?" Ha!

So the next time you are in a funk,

getting bored with a route, or looking for a way to explore a new place (remember to always keep safety in mind), consider alternative options to spice it up. So give it a go and let me know how you went!

Happy running! ✌🏻😊

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