If you don’t post your workout to social media, did it even happen? Jokes aside, two things Austinites love are getting fit and technology, so posting your workout on Instagram is a no-brainer in the capital city. If you’re new in town, we’ve got you covered with some of the best spots for a workout and post-workout pic:
The Shoal Creek Trail was a hot workout spot for Austinites long before Instagram was even a thought. Built in the 1960s, today it’s just short of four miles long, with plans to take it all the way from Lady Bird Lake to The Domain in Northwest Austin. Hike, bike, run or walk your dog — the Shoal Creek Trail winds through the heart of Austin and you’ll end up not only breaking a sweat, and possibly snapping a few good photos, too.
The stretch of Congress Avenue between Cesar Chavez and the Capitol is so popular, it’s part of Austin’s most iconic road races like the Thundercloud Subs Turkey Trot, Statesman Cap 10K and Austin Marathon. If you’re looking for your next photogenic running destination, we recommend visiting during early mornings and weekends when the traffic isn’t quite so… intense. But, if traffic and tourists don’t deter you, it’s a great place to get your heart rate up, and snap some pics of the skyline.
Head out of central Austin, about 25 minutes north along Highway 183, and you’ll find the Brushy Creek Regional Trail. It’s a 13-mile, out-and-back trail that takes you through woods and playing fields, over the creek and past serene ponds in Cedar Park. It’s a cool run, even in the summer, since much of it is shaded by a canopy of native trees. It’s more than walking, running and biking here. You’ll also find splash pads, and fishing docks, and playgrounds for the wee ones. Make sure you charge your phone battery before you hit this trail, because there’s so much to see and so much worth posting.
The Butler Hike and Bike Trail winds around Lady Bird Lake from the Mopac Bridge past Auditorium Shores, under the Congress Avenue Bridge to the Longhorn Dam, and back again. This 10-mile long loop is prime Instagram fodder for runners, bikers and kayakers too. Whether you’re posting selfies from the boardwalk, or snapping a photo of the Stevie Ray Vaughn statue near the South First Street bridge, you’ll find lots of content to post here, and plenty of ways to get active.
No list of Instagrammable places in Austin is complete without Zilker Park. This jewel in the city offers so many ways to get fit, from group classes on the lawn, to hiking, biking, running, and kayaks and swimming at Barton Springs. Or try pickleball, kickball or cornhole sports leagues. Zilker is also essential Austin and #zilkerpark is a must if you’re capturing your Austin experience on the ‘gram.
It’s called a workout for a reason. The outdoor experience is one of the reasons Austin attracts so many newcomers. All the places on this list will challenge your body and host beautiful scenery for a few photos here and there. And in Austin, there are lots of other places to go to create content for your page and your soul. Lace up those running shoes or head out on your bike with your phone in your pocket — because ATX is there waiting for you.
About the Author
Jayce Lambert is a graduate student in Texas who loves running, camping, hiking and cycling. Her love of the outdoors is apparent in her dorm room, which she adorns with hanging plants and ferns.