Worcester is located 40 miles west of Boston and is the second most populated city in New England. The city’s geography is characterized by its seven hills, the Blackstone River that flows through it, and Lake Quinsigamond. Running in Worcester is a bit of a mixed bag — the infrastructure is a somewhat deteriorated owing to the city’s decline as a major industrial center, and auto-centric development resulted in major highways and large roads cutting through the city’s center.
The best area for running in Worcester is west of the city, combining Beaver Brook Park, Newton Hill, and Elm Park. Green Hill Park is another favorite park for running. If downtown, start at the iconic Worcester Common and enjoy some of the historic neighborhoods east and west of the central business district. South of the city, there’s some nice running in the College Hill area, including the paths of Cookson Field. There are also a couple of decent stretches along Lake Quinsigamond in the Lake Park area. For off-road running, the best bet is the 3-mile section of the Blackstone River Bikeway. Favorites for trail running include the Cascades Trails, and paths around Sibley Farm and Burncoat Pond. Trail runners should also consult this excellent Worcester Hiking Guide for more options.