Whether you live for the thrill of dodging taxis or prefer something more zen with babbling brooks and trees, you will certainly always find a trail to meet your running needs in D.C.

While many joggers struggle to stay motivated running the same trails day after day, we city-folk are fortunate enough to simply close our eyes, pick a random spot on the map, and more than likely end up on a route we’ve never tried before! Here are just a few popular courses that D.C. runners enjoy!

The National Mall

 running on the national mall

Courtesy of washington.org

Did you really think we’d start with anywhere else? If you’ve been putting off a jog through the National Mall because it feels cliche, take a step back and knock some sense into yourself. Seriously, you’re depriving yourself of the opportunity to speedily tour through one of the most historic trails in the nation. This four-mile route runs alongside all 34 Smithsonian museums, the Washington Monument, the Reflecting Pool, and the World War II Memorial. Of course, there’s even more than that, but to find out what else you’ve been missing you’ll have to fasten your sneakers and see for yourself!

The National Zoo

national zoo

Courtesy of fuzzytoday.com

Every runner has passed a squirrel or two on their daily jog, but how many can say they’ve seen a couple of lions? What this trail lacks in distance it more than makes up for in entertaining scenery. You may be feeling hesitant to jog through a zoo, what with all the moderately supervised children zipping from one exhibit to the next. However, the National Zoo is actually quite the hotspot for avid joggers. So popular, in fact, the zoo was forced to cut its hours of operation in 2016 because so many runners were colliding with the zoo’s trucks!

The National Arboretum 

national arboretum

Courtesy of bikeandrolldc.com

Those who find running as a means to detox should head over to the National Arboretum the next time they’ve got some steam to jog off. With approximately eight miles of paths to choose from, and a long list of elegant plant life collected from all 50 states to observe, the National Arboretum is an easy run that will leave joggers feeling tranquil.

Embassy Row

 embassy row

Courtesy of thegourmez.com

If you’re in search of something closer to the hustle and bustle of the city, this is the trail you’ve been looking for. Much like the National Mall, Embassy Row is a four-mile loop showcasing centuries of our nation’s impressive architectural history. And those hoping for more of a challenge in their jogging will be excited to take on the mile incline that begins at Whitehaven Street. Home to the diplomatic embassies of over 40 international countries, this trail is as informational as it is ideal for staying in shape.

Rock Creek Park 

running at Rock Creek Park

Courtesy of washington.org

Here there’s a route perfectly suited for every runner. Novices can build their endurance along flatter routes, such as Western Trail, while the more advanced test their strength by ditching the paved pathways and heading off-road through more elevated trails.

Where is your favorite place to run in D.C.? Let us know in the comments!