With spring upon us, we decided to get up with three of Major League Soccer's brightest stars to tell us what it's like to run in their city. We've already profiled Lamar Neagle of the Seattle Sounders Football Club and Brandon Barklage of the San Jose Earthquakes. Last up, Kevin Alston of the New England Revolution.
What is the running community like in Boston?
Running in Boston is fantastic. It’s usually pretty easy to find influence from others being a busy city that has major influence from the Boston Marathon and local sports teams. No matter your running style or seriousness Boston has everything to offer. There are races weekly put on by local communities and the BAA (Boston Athletic Association).
How would you categorize the overall running environment and landscape?
Boston has a very runner-friendly environment with a diverse landscape that includes many running locations and youthful and mature people. Boston Proper is typically very flat, but surrounding areas of Boston can offer many Hills and steeper terrain.
What type of personality would you ascribe to it?
Boston is a passionate, vibrant, exciting, spry and active city with deep-rooted history.
How would you describe the running scene in Boston?
Boston is an old and historic city with a healthy mix of young and older adults that have the common quality of being active. People can be seen running pretty frequently throughout the day in most areas whether it’s early morning before work or school, or midday and late at night for leisure.
In terms of running, what makes Boston unique?
Boston is unique for a couple of reasons. The city is very dynamic in the sense that it has many things to offer between jobs, a large number of universities and scientific institutions. As a result this makes the running dynamic of Boston very complex. In addition, the city of Boston offers a large amount of options in terms of running locations and scenery.
Where do you run, and why do you run there?
I love running by the Seaport/Waterfront, mainly because it’s my neighborhood and where I live which makes it easy and accessible. But also because it is an active and exciting area in the summertime.
One of my favorite places to run when it’s nice outside is Boston Common. I like being able to run around the park and create my own course while being able to see the other people and activities going on at the park—including the swan boats.
Charles River Esplanade is a very popular place for fellow runners or bikers or people out for a stroll. I enjoy the environment of being around all the active people and the added bonus of the views of Cambridge across the river.
I really like the change of scenery and running on or next to the Marina Bay Beachfront because it’s peaceful and quiet.
When I want to get away from the downtown clutter and traffic I run on the Oceanside walkways in South Boston at Castle Island/Pleasure Bay.
For someone that doesn’t love to run, but wants to see Boston from a different point of view, where would you recommend they go?
For the people who don’t love to run but want to see the city from a different point of view I would recommend going to Newbury Street which is a busy area full of shopping and restaurants or Faneuil Hall, which is a historic landmark with street performances and food stands.
The adidas Energy Boost 2 is a versatile shoe with a bunch of tech features targeted at urban environments and running conditions. How does this translate to your running style?
The shoes translate well to my style because my running conditions always change and I like to challenge myself within my environment. I usually start out running in my Seaport neighborhood, which is relatively flat and easy to navigate, and then I make my way through the cobblestone path in the historic Faneuil Hall. To complete my runs I make way over to the Boston Common Park and finish off by challenging myself on the hills in Beacon Hill. The adidas Energy Boost 2’s versatility allows me to adapt to the change in terrains and easily transition from running on paved streets and sidewalks, to grass parks and cobblestone paths. The city is very busy and the shoes help me to navigate the obstacles and people that I come across while changing my courses with ease.
What makes your running routine different than others?
My running routine is different than others in the sense that I’m on an irregular schedule. I run in different areas depending on my mood and at random times whether it’s right after practice or late at night.
Why is running a lifestyle for you?
Running is a lifestyle for me because it can fit many needs. I am a soccer player and an active person. It’s great to run outside of my sport at my own pace. Running can be a calming release for me, or a workout if I want it to be.