Updated: Sep 20, 2021
Wild Flowers at Scissortail Park
I’ve been spending a lot of time outside this year. With there being nothing open, nobody to see and no gyms to workout in, I’ve had to resort to other means of remaining calm. I’ve taken up running to the greatest extent in my life so far. I even read Born to Run by Christopher McDougall, the famous book about the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico, a tribe of super athletes legendary for their great endurance.
So far I’m able to run (slowly) for about 30 minutes without dying. Pretty proud of that.
I’ve also been meeting up with friends in parks, taking pictures and looking for new green spaces in and around OKC.
I’ve spent most of my time on the trails around Lake Hefner. It’s a great place to run. It’s very flat with wide, safe trails. I have this weird belief that being near open water is good for you in the same way regularly spending time in the sunshine is good for you. I have absolutely no scientific basis for believing this, but it sounds right to me. Call it a superstition.
I impulsively purchased this vintage road bike, when gyms were still closed and a nasty case of shin splits was preventing me from getting any miles in on foot. Cycling is incredibly popular in Oklahoma. On the trails around Hefner in particular, you’ll regularly see teams riding together in their race jerseys.
Lake Overholster, further away from the city and less popular than Hefner, also has some amount of paved running trails. Mostly though it seems to be a more popular spot for fishing and photography. It would also be a great place for a picnic.
The Plaza District is a fantastic place to meet up with a friend or two on a weekend afternoon. Walk down the Plaza walls alley and see fantastic street art and gigantic murals on every available surface.
Killing time in the Plaza with my friend Palmer
Grab a snow cone or ice cream from Roxie’s, and listen to buskers playing music. Empire Slice House is practically an OKC institution at this point, and the wings at Goro Ramen are absolutely fire. Just a few blocks a way is a very interesting neighborhood called Carey Place, which looks like somebody picked it up out of Southern California or France and dropped it just south of 18th street. Supposedly it’s actually haunted, and at night it’s a pretty spooky stroll.
Of course probably the most culturally relevant outdoor activity you can partake in right now would be protesting for police reform as a part of the largest civil rights movement in human history. It’s a great time seeing such enormous, diverse crowds gathering to shout together in support of a common cause. And, you’ll certainly get your steps in with all the marching!