I'm not much of a runner. I mean, not the outside, on the street kind of running. I do, however enjoy any kind of exercise that involves social interaction and ends with a cold, frothy pint of Texas brew. Until recently, my main motivation for even going to the gym was to gossip with my girlfriends while we kept a medium pace on our treadmills. So needless to say, a 5k with the word "Social" in the title definitely sounds like my kind of exercise event.
If you're from Denton, you might have already heard of this weekly run hosted by the Denton Area Running Club. Or maybe you've been driving down Oak Street, only to be caught in a traffic jam behind 100 social exercisers, like myself, running down the street. Not to worry, this is probably just a sign that you should be out there with them and here are my 5 reasons why you really shouldn't miss the next Denton Social Run.
- OSDH&CP - Know what this means? Neither did I until I actually arrived at the starting and ending point for the 5k. Oak St. DraftHouse & Cocktail Parlor is literally in a house located just east of the Square. If you haven't been there, you should go anyway. They've got more than 70 beers on tap, including local brews, not to mention the charming atmosphere is perfect for anyone who's into #dentoning in the most Denton-y Denton way possible.
- Patio Weather - While we are on the subject of #dentoning and Oak St Drafthouse, let me mention their amazingly ginormous patio. One of my favorite things about Denton, actually one of my favorite things about Texas in general, is PATIOS. Texans know how to patio like none other (high five, Texas!) The OSDH patio is huge and with plenty of picnic tables, heat lamps in the cooler seasons and an outdoor bar serving patron favorites. Seriously though, I can't imagine a better way to wrap up a 3.2-mile run than socializing on a patio in beautiful Denton. And since this is a social run...patio + beer + new friends = best 5k ever.
- The #3 is for $3 Texas Beers - Since Oak St. Drafthouse is the finish line for the 5k, how fitting they would host some pretty awesome drink specials to those who choose to celebrate their fitness accomplishment. Also, might I mention that everyone who finishes gets a ticket for a FREE shot...which I turned into a mixed drink (you can do that!) because shots are EW! For me, though, this is quite the incentive. Because the whole time I'm pushing myself through the route I'm picturing happy self on the back patio with my friends and thinking, "One more mile and I'll have a cold beer in my hands." Hey, it's better to be running toward something than away from something, am I right?
- Celebrate Community - While there is definitely the potential to run into old friends and (ideally) make new friends at the Denton Social Run, there is something to be said for just being involved in your community's events. There is one thing about the Denton culture that I find particularly interesting. There is a desire to be involved. You should know...this.is.rare. Society has created our communities, even our personal lives to move to the online social media platform of your choosing. Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat have become the new "community", inadvertently causing a social disconnect for so many. Denton is a rare place, almost in a sort of time warp, where people are engaged with each other, care about each other and actually go out IN PUBLIC, to socialize and celebrate their shared culture. No matter who you are, where you're from, Denton always feels like home. Because that is the Denton culture. That is the Denton community. And it is something to be celebrated.
- Exercise is actually pretty good for you - Or so I've heard. Seriously though, I'm a huge advocate for healthy living and while this may not come as a surprise to you, that typically involves exercise. Not into running? You know...that's ok. I'm not really either. Great news though, you can actually walk the Denton Social Run. Although, word of warning (specifically to the ladies), please make sure you have a group of friends to walk with you as some of the streets are dark and maybe not suitable for lone night walkers. But whether you walk, run or do that in-between walk/run thing that non-runners try to do when they are pretending to run (i.e. ME), no one ever regrets getting a workout in. Especially before $3 Texas Beer night.
Denton's Social Run is every Wednesday night, 7 p.m. at the Oak St. Drafthouse...see you there!