Sunday, October 16, 2016

Running in Lyon, France

Posted by Rachel

As promised, I'm slowly making my way through our France vacation, specifically the most active parts (and believe me, there were plenty of inactive parts). Lyon was an interesting place. There were tons of awesome trails and parks for running. However, since it seemed like pretty much everyone in the city was a smoker, I'm not sure how they were also runners.

Lyon is a city on two rivers and the Rhone has a fantastic running path on its east side. I'm not sure how far it goes since our longest run in Lyon was 6 miles, but it seemed to stretch quite far.

If running isn't your thing, this path is also lined with barges that are actually bars. 

Heading north on the Rhone, there are a lot of cool paths next to the river. Some of them were pretty isolated, but it didn't seem to be sketchy. 

There is also a park that looked fantastic for running - Parc de la TĂȘte d'Or. We tried to find it on one of our runs and somehow missed it (don't ask how - it is gigantic). However, we walked to it later on which is when I realized it really would've been perfect for running.

From Lyon we took a day trip to Annecy, France in the French Alps. This is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been - HIGHLY recommended. While we didn't swim, bike, or run there, we easily could've done any of the 3.

Unless you count pedal-boating as biking

And a few more pictures of Annecy, just because. 

I'd love to go back here and bike around the lake and do some of the hikes. We'll see where our future journeys take us.

And that's it for Lyon. Next up: Burgundy!!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Swim/bike/run in Nice, France

Posted by Rachel

Last month Travers and I were fortunate enough to be able to spend two weeks of vacation in France. We went to 4 different places in France and each one was uniquely awesome for at least one of swim/bike/run, so my plan is to make a post for each place. At the rate I blog this will probably take 6 months to finish, but hopefully it will be helpful to anyone visiting the area (or anyone who is interested in our vacation).

This is an easy one. Nice is right on the deep blue Mediterranean. As far as I could tell, you could hop in anywhere other than a boat lane (which are well marked by buoys). Unfortunately for me I chose the windiest (and choppiest) day to open water swim, but despite getting tossed around it was still awesome. I went for about a mile until I decided that sitting on the beach with a drink would be more appropriate for vacation.

The little speck in the middle is me swimming out. Looks calmer than it was. The water is SO BLUE!

We rented some decent road bikes in anticipation of having to climb a few hills on the ride from Nice to Monaco. We really had no idea what to expect and I couldn't find great information about the availability of bike lanes between the two places. While it turns out that there wasn't a well designated bike lane the whole way, the drivers were very aware and respectful in terms of space. Probably better than California's drivers, which in hindsight shouldn't come as a surprise... France is the country of the Tour. The most terrifying parts of the ride were a few short tunnels we had to go through, but we made our way through them without incident. Anyway, on the bikes we were able to get some awesome views of the coastline we wouldn't have otherwise seen. The ride was ~13 miles each way with ~700 feet of climbing each way, and I highly recommend it. My only regret- wearing shorts from Old Navy instead of proper bike shorts. Chafing. 

Absolutely stunning views on the ride

Bike lane looks ok here

Here's a link to my Strava if you want to see the route we took for this ride. (Yes, I know... we weren't winning any speed awards here. We were on vacation! And also, I'm not a cyclist.)

There is a pancake flat bike path along the beach which is spectacular for running. I couldn't believe how many other runners we saw in Nice at all times of the day. Besides being a little bit humid, this place is paradise for running.

Running at dawn 

Ventured away from the pancake flat beach path to run up a hill for the views. Worth it.

Summary: This place is awesome.
Next up: Running in Lyon, France