Monday, March 28, 2011

Exercising in Puntarenas Costa Rica

Although fitness is not necessarily a craze for most of the Costa Rican living out here in Puntarenas, you will see a handful of Ticos walking, jogging or biking outdoors for exercise in the mornings and evenings (when the sun is still bearable).  There are also indoor gyms throughout Puntarenas, but for the most part, they are not air-conditioned.  It is a standard $2 a day charge to use most of these gyms if you don't have a membership.  You will not need to sign any forms or waivers to start using the equipment.

I've been wanting to jog outdoors since I got to Costa Rica, but have had some trouble acclimating myself to the loud and constant traffic on the main roads in Esparza and Miramar.  Trying to jog off the main roads has also been difficult since there are no real sidewalks in the housing areas (unless a homeowner decided to extend their driveway to meet the road), and you have a lot of loose dogs in these back roads.  I was, therefore, thrilled to learn about a jogging track that is within walking distance from the center of Esparza where I am currently staying (photos below).

The track appears to be regulation size (400 meters long) and I believe 4 laps around it equal a mile.  It is in a very peaceful area of Esparza where you can still enjoy the sounds of quiet and nature.  There is no lighting at night, so if you want to check it out, get there before it gets dark.  I walked the 10 minute walk back home by myself in the dark one night and did not have any problems, but better safe than sorry.

To get to the track, turn off Hwy 1 (which runs through the center of Esparza) towards the BCR bank.   Continue straight on this road until you see the King Chicken BBQ on your right and turn right.  Head towards the end of that road until you see the Liceo Emiliano Odio Madrigal school on your right.  The track is right next to the school.  Happy running!

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