4 free ways to get running in Atlanta

Joining a gym starts to feel like a cash drain when running outside is always available for free.

But neighborhood runs can start to feel boring, and sometimes without a group cheering us on or a change of scenery around the corner, a consistent fitness schedule can fall by the wayside.

Check out these free places and groups that encourage runners in Atlanta to get out there and log a few miles.

Piedmont Park Active Oval

400 Park Drive NE, Atlanta

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This 0.52-mile running track in Piedmont Park plays host to plenty of adult and adolescent sports leagues, but you'll find Atlanta runners hitting the track more often than anything. Tailor your route to the distance needed by cutting through the center, or wave hi to friends playing ball in the middle. No reservations or memberships needed.

Big Peach Running Co. group runs

Various locations. 

Pushing yourself through that last stretch of a run is a lot more fun with a tribe of folks that have your back. Big Peach Running Co. organizes regular group runs at its many Atlanta locations, ensuring that time or location is never the excuse for skipping a jaunt through the city. Check out the brand's list of running groups here.

Public high schools

Plenty of Atlanta public schools allow neighborhood runners to use their facilities when their own sports teams aren't practicing and school is not in session. Take a peek at iSports' list of running tracks near you to see which schools have facilities for a jog.

Shack Track and Field at Shake Shack Buckhead

3035 Peachtree Road NE Suite A146, Atlanta. 470-809-9201. 

If your idea of "fitness" is more like fitting a bigger burger onto your plate, Shake Shack may have the solution. The Buckhead location has established a free community fitness club called Shack Track and Field, incorporating a monthly run that can end in a free beer or custard for those willing to run decked out in Shake Shack gear. Either way, the workout closes at one of the best-known burger joints in the country — it's hard to argue with that idea.

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