Running the DC Zoo

Good morning and happy Sunday!

I hope you’re all enjoying your weekends — I just wanted to pop in and share some fun photos from earlier this week. I had the best run on Tuesday night with my college BFF Turner (aka Laura… I always use her nickname)! She recently moved to DC and lives right by the zoo, so instead of going to my usual Tuesday night run club we decided to meet up in her hood for a change of scenery and a one-on-one catch up sesh.


I don’t come to this area of the city nearly enough. I was pretty pumped about the zoo! Did you know the zoo in DC is totally free? Pretty sweet — it’s part of the Smithsonian/museum stuff, which is also all free!


This photo is like Where’s Waldo — see me?

You can run right through the zoo to get to one of the Rock Creek trail entrances — perfect!



We stopped a couple times in the zoo along the way to check out the animals, obviously. :)


How freaking adorable is this red panda?!??! Turner and I were obsessed. I want one.


Oh hey, just an elephant sighting in the middle of our run, no big deal.


Once out of the zoo, it was on to Rock Creek Park!


It was such a lovely night for a run and the park was gorgeous.


Blurry action shot.


We finished the run out strong — the last mile was essentially all uphill back through the zoo! Oof.


5 miles in 45:42. Done! Our pace was a little all over the place since we were on trails for some of it, but here are the splits. I’m impressed our pace was still pretty good for the last mile that was all uphill!

  • Mile 1: 8:40
  • Mile 2: 9:37
  • Mile 3: 9:00
  • Mile 4: 9:10
  • Mile 5: 9:14

Average overall pace: 9:08. Yay!

We hit up Turner’s apartment gym after the run for some ab work and stretching, and then headed to a place in Cleveland Park called Nam Viet for dinner. We both got pho (mine with chicken, hers with beef) — it hit the spot big time! We also shared some fresh garden summer rolls before the soup.


Dear Instagram: Thanks for making otherwise sub-par photos look cool and artsy. Love, Anne

(Follow me! Username: fANNEtasticfood)

Yum. Such a fun night with a good friend. We’re going to plan weekly exercise + dinner dates, sometimes cooking, sometimes going out. I love combining being productive and getting in a workout with socializing! :)

Have a wonderful Sunday — Matt and I are headed out to enjoy the sunshine and then making a trip out to our wedding venue later today with my mom for a vendor planning meeting for the big day! Can’t believe how soon it is.


  1. 1

    Running through a zoo just sounds so fun! I’ve been meaning to go to the zoo in Toronto for the last umm, 3 years now? Next summer, it’ll happen for sure (we’ll just pretend I didn’t say that about this last summer. Or the one before that…)

  2. 2

    I love the DC Zoo too! I couldn’t believe it was free either. I take my Girls and John there all the time :-)

    Way to go on your pace.
    And can’t wait to hear about your progress on your wedding! ;-)

  3. 3

    Awesome venue for a run — and not too bad a time given the path and distractions! Well done! (What next? How do you top running past monkeys?)

  4. 4

    Yay! Glad you had fun, Hi Turner!

  5. 5

    What an awesome trail! I love some good miltitasking!

  6. 6

    I’ve always wanted to run the zoo actually! I love that part of town and secretly wish I lived around there… Have you ever been to the restaurant Open City around there? It’s amazing!

    • 7

      I have’t yet, but I need to! Matt and I were originally planning to live in this area of the city but the apartment we wanted got taken last minute – bummer!

  7. 8

    This post absolutely warmed my heart! When living in Woodley Park, lo, so many years ago, the National Zoo became my stomping grounds. As a fun contrast with an after-work outing, let me recommend an early-morning run there. That’s when I loved going because it’s less crowded and my favorite animals there – cheetahs, gorillas, elephants, etc. – are most active!

  8. 10

    Oooh I love running through the zoo! I live near Cleveland Park too and one of my favorite runs is to the National Cathedral and back, especially at sunset. It’s so pretty! If you are ever looking for another running route in that area I would highly recommend it! :)

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