The Ultimate #RuntoWorkPHL FAQ

run commute

Guys, we are less than 48 hours away from Philly’s inaugural Run to Work Day. Can you feel the excitement in the air?!

All signs point to the fact that we’re going to have an EPIC showing for this first-ever region-wide event, and I couldn’t be happier. Hundreds of readers have signed on to our Facebook invite in solidarity, and I’ve heard from several businesses throughout the region who are encouraging their employees to run to the office on Friday. How cool is that?

Several of you have asked questions about some of the logistics for the day, so I thought a post tackling all of them at once would be useful. If there are any queries I missed, feel free to add them in the comments and I’ll get right back to you. Capisce?

I’m excited to run! But, um, how do I get all my stuff to the office? 

This takes some planning ahead, but it’s worth it. Tonight when you go home, pack a bag of clothes, toiletries and whatever else you’ll need for Friday, and take it to the office with you tomorrow. Leave it in your desk or cube so it’s ready to go. That way, all you’ll need to run with on Friday is your wallet, phone, house keys and, if needed, whatever form of ID you need to get into your office building. These are all things that can easily be ported in a pocket or SPIbelt.

If for some reason you want to haul your stuff with you on Friday, your best bet is a backpack. Seasoned run commuter Keith Fitzgerald, who’s also the chief technology officer at Philly start-up PeopleLinx and who often commutes by foot from Chestnut Hill, recommends a snug-fitting backpack that fits a laptop, clothes and shoes. He likes the Osprey Manta (or Mira, for ladies). While it might be a bit much for Run to Work Day, it could be worth the investment if you end up loving the whole run-commuting thing after Friday.

For more run-commuting how-to tips, check out the blog The Run Commuter.

How’s the whole Sweat Fitness-showering thing going to work? 

Good question! You’ll remember last week when we announced this whole dealio that Sweat Fitness kindly offered to open the doors of its eight locations on Friday to runners who are in need of a place to shower. That deal still stands, of course, and word on the street is they’ve been getting a lot of inquiries about it. (Translation: Please don’t be surprised if the locker rooms are a bit crowded.) All you’ll need to do is a show an ID to get in the door, and tell the front desk folks you’re there for Run to Work Day. Bath towels are free, and you’ll be able to use the gym’s shower products (shampoo, conditioner, body wash), too. The gyms also have hair dryer, but they’re not kept in the locker rooms; you have to ask at the front desk to borrow a hair dryer. Don’t forget your shower shoes!

Ugh. I don’t work near a Sweat Fitness location, and my office doesn’t have a shower. What can I do? 

Bummer! The good news is, it’s going to be pretty cool on Friday morning, so unless you’re covering an insane number of miles, I’m guessing you won’t get just-jumped-out-of-the-pool-level sweaty. But even if you do, here’s what I would recommend: In the prep bag you’re bringing to the office tomorrow, pack a container of baby wipes or cleansing wipes, such as Pond’s Wet Cleansing Towelettes. Shower normally on Thursday night before bed. Then, once you get to the office on Friday, you can simply wipe yourself down in your office’s bathroom. Boom—a showerless-shower.

I know it sounds weird, but it actually works, you guys; I’ve done it many times after lunch-break workouts when I’m a complete and total sweaty mess. I keep a pack of the Pond’s wipes in my desk, and I’ve found that if I wet them with a tiny bit of water, they get nice and soapy. I wipe down my arms, legs and face, then pat myself dry with a small towel that I also keep at work. I feel completely and totally fresh afterwards.

As for your hair, dry shampoo or baby powder works wonders. Or you could dunk your head in the sink for a quick rinse if you must. I prefer dry shampoo and a cute braid or bun, personally.

I want to run but don’t feel comfortable doing it myself. Will there be any running groups? 

Yup! Stay tuned on that front. I’ve got a separate post in the works (I’ll link it here when it’s up) detailing a few meeting points throughout the city, if people want to run together.

My commute is really, really long. How can I participate? 

Already tackled that one here!

How is the #RuntoWorkPHL hashtag contest going to work? 

It’s easy: All you need to do to enter is tag a photo from your run commute (or a funny one of you in your running clothes at work—ha!) on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #RuntoWorkPHL. You can submit as many photos as you’d like, but you’ll need to get your entries in by 3 p.m. to qualify for the giveaways. We’ll contact the winners via Instagram or Twitter just after 3 p.m., and we’ll post the winners on Be Well Philly, too. The winners will be selected randomly.

Here are the sweet prizes at stake: One winner will get free running shoes for a year (that’s four pairs total—one pair every three months) from Philadelphia Runner, and a second winner will get a free 60-minute massage and a three-month massage membership from Phila Massages.

Do I have to run home from work, too? 

That’s totally your call. All we’re asking is for people to run to work in the morning, but if you’re up for a two-a-day, have at it. That said, there’s no shame in catching the bus, train or carpool to get yourself home. I’d say you earned it.

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