EU Embassy Run

I went on the most epic run ever on Saturday. If you follow me on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram), you may have seen this post.

7 hours, 13 miles of running, 10 embassies. Put a fork in me, I'm done. #EUEmbassayRun.
7 hours, 13 miles of running, 10 embassies. Put a fork in me, I’m done. #EUEmbassyRun.

And yes, that means I spent pretty much all day Saturday running around the city. More specifically running from one European embassy to the next.

Running from Finland to Poland, I think

Saturday was the European Union’s embassy open house, which means you can tour the various embassies, try lots of delicious food from the different cultures and visit a bunch countries without ever leaving DC.

The EU

Hanging with Apollo in France – don’t mind my squinting into the sun

The DC Capital Striders, one of the local running groups, organized an awesome group run where we got to run from embassy to embassy, skip the lines that wrap around the block to get in and eat some delicious food.

Outside Sweden

Wearing large clogs and nom noming some oversized cheese in the Netherlands

Good food in Poland

I didn’t know a single person going, but the run sounded way too much fun to pass up.

So I headed over to the French embassy bright and early Saturday morning and found myself surrounded by about 40 other runners.

The group in France

We did a quick warm-up, ate some delicious French cheese and then set out to our next destination.

The UK

In total we ran to nine other embassies: Sweden, the UK, Denmark, Finland, Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, the Netherlands and Austria.

They love their Angry Birds in Finland

Hanging with the Finnish Ambassador

Most of the distances between embassies were pretty short — about a mile or less. There were two fairly long stretches between Finland and Poland and from Poland to the Czech Republic. Those stretches were probably closer to 2.5 or 3 miles.

Awesome dancing in the Czech Republic

Some of the gang in Hungary

Nothing that wasn’t manageable, but by the end of the day the lactic acid was definitely building up and my legs were toast on some of the nasty DC hills. All the stopping and starting and walking through embassies was definitely taking a toll.

An ad for Coke…or stretching our legs in Hungary

Being on your feet for seven hours is exhausting, but this run was 100 percent worth it. I got to see parts of the city that I didn’t even know existed (and I’ve lived here for a pretty long time at this point), I got to tour some really cool embassies without waiting in line and I met a ton of new friends.

Sweaty and exhausted at the end of our journey in Austria

Seriously, runners are the most awesome people ever. I showed up not knowing a single person and by the end of the run I felt like I made 40 new friends.

Despite the fact that we got poured on at a few points during the run, I honestly can’t think of a better way to spend a random Saturday in May. We covered about 13 miles of running and 10 embassy visits in just about 7 hours.

Thanks to Chito and Orlando and everyone else who helped organize and lead such a fun run! And thanks to Catalina and Skvora Limited for sharing the awesome photos! I’m looking forward to lots more events with this group!


  1. Hi Jess,
    Awesome blog about the embassy run this past weekend. You are very talented!!! :-)

  2. 13 miles in 7 hours? wow that must be your slowest half marathon to date. Looks like a lot of fun!
    Carolina John recently posted..He actually did it!My Profile

  3. I love this!! I would consider a trip to DC for this!
    Susan – Nurse on the Run recently posted..early thoughts on triathlon trainingMy Profile

  4. Jess, great post! I was part of this fun group (pink tank top in your Netherlands clog photo!), after also starting out not knowing anyone. Definitely a fun way to spend a random Saturday in May!
    Sue Palminteri recently posted..Bike to Work Week is on!My Profile

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