Fitness doesn’t have to take a hibernation break just because it’s winter. While colder temps and snow flurries can certainly put a crimp in your exercise plan, that doesn’t mean you can’t get in a good outdoor workout. In fact, there’s something to be said for running outside in the winter—it’s less crowded, more challenging, and the view can be beautiful. As part of our Urban Wellness program, we’ve culled some of the best winter running routes, whether you’re visiting us in Chicago or New York. Be sure to dress appropriately, watch for icy patches, stick to daylight runs, and—if the weather just won’t cooperate—don’t despair: Both of our locations offer guests access to a 24-hour, fully equipped onsite gym.


The Lakefront Trail
Packed with people during summer, this scenic route is much less crowded in the winter but still makes for a stellar run. The paved 18-mile path extends from Ardmore Street on the North Side to 71st Street on the South. You’ll pass through lakefront neighborhoods including Edgewater, Uptown, Lakeview, Lincoln Park, South Loop, and Hyde Park—not to mention attractions like the Lincoln Park Zoo, Navy Pier, Monroe Harbor, and the Museum of Science and Industry.

The 606
This elevated park on Chicago’s Northwest Side sports the 2.7-mile Bloomingdale Trail, which is perfect for runners year-round. Located between Ashland Avenue and Ridgeway Avenue along Bloomingdale Avenue, the 606 also connects to ground-level neighborhood parks.  Ask a member of the friendly concierge team at The James Chicago for the best way to head to the 606, as it resides in many of Chicago’s most exciting, upcoming neighborhoods for food, drink and shopping.

Promontory Point
This popular spot extends out of Burnham Park on Lake Michigan, featuring beautiful Chicago skyline views. Paved running paths make it a destination for joggers year-round. Take a 3.2-mile loop through the Hyde Park neighborhood, starting and finishing at East 56th Street and South Kimbark Avenue.  Promontory Point offers a unique view at the South Loop and Hyde Park neighborhoods (home of President Obama).


Central Park
Skaters, sledders, and little kids playing in the snow—there’s nothing like Central Park in the winter. Unless you’re prepared for a rugged woodland run, stick to the main loops or the reservoir track.

Hudson River Greenway
With an esplanade that sports sweeping river views, Hudson River Park offers a pleasant run that can take you all the way up the Hudson River from Battery Park to The Upper West Side. Runners can hit the paved paths at many points along the waterfront, but we recommend hopping in at Watts Street, just a short walk from the hotel.