Life and Travel in Puebla, Mexico

Tag Archives: cycling

The blog kind of fell off the face of the earth for a while there, but now we’re back on the air! Don’t forget to let me know if you’re interested in teaching high school in Puebla (see post below this one).

Anyway, if you enjoy exercising and nature, try biking through Puebla’s myriad small towns! The scenery is always amazing and worth all the huffing and puffing (there are no flat rides to be had here)!


I’ve only recently discovered the world of cycling in Puebla. If you’re a mountain biker, there are plenty of opportunities in our three mountains (La Malinche, Iztaccíhuatl, and Popocatépetl) and the surrounding hilly areas. One of the best known races is Popobike, which doesn’t take place on Popo proper but rather in its foothills. 

And if you’re a road cyclist, it turns out all the two-lane highways leading out of Puebla are great for cycling with Popo and Izta as a backdrop, and for seeing some small towns along the way.

Road biking

Heading out of Puebla. Photo by Trilife Triathlon Coaching.

 

This church had the only public bathroom I could find. I also decided to make a photo opportunity out of my pit stop. :)

This church had the only public bathroom I could find. I also decided to make a photo opportunity out of my pit stop. 🙂

We stopped here to re-group. The name of this town turned out to be the very long San Juan Tianguismanalco.

We stopped here to re-group. The name of this town turned out to be the very long San Juan Tianguismanalco.


Popobike is an annual cycling race in Puebla. Yesterday some friends and I decided to ride the route, which has already been marked for next weekend’s race. There are 30k and 60k routes; as amateur mountain bikers, we opted for the 30k. They turned out to be the hardest 30k I’ve ever ridden; we went the wrong way once and got lost in somebody’s crops another time, I walked my bike up and down many steep hills, my friend fell three times, and by the time we rolled back into Metepec, where the path starts, 5 hours had gone by! We were starved and had run out of water a while back, so the first thing we did was have a beer and some quesadillas! The route was beautiful and I would definitely recommend it– you can run it, too– but make sure you’re well-prepared! There are many dangerous, technical descents and it’s best to go with someone who knows the way, or, at least, take a lot of food and water and ask the other cyclists on the trail for tips (such as “don’t follow the red marks on the trees because that’s the 60k route).

Gorgeous views. Popo is covered by clouds.

Gorgeous views. Popo is covered by clouds.

The path went through a dry streambed.

The path went through a dry streambed.

Popo let out some smoke!

Popo let out some smoke!

The pro cyclists can finish the route in 3 hours or less.

The pro cyclists can finish the route in 3 hours or less.

Since it's almost Day of the Dead, many fields were planted with marigolds (cempasuchil).

Since it’s almost Day of the Dead, many fields were planted with marigolds (cempasuchil).

 


In an email, I got a question about running in Puebla. You can do just about any sport here, as there are myriad gyms and public parks all over the city, including two new public swimming facilities.

If your thing is doing organized sports like soccer or basketball, you can probably find a local team to join. Here at my job, for example, we have employees’ soccer and volleyball teams.

If you like running or cycling, then you’ll find many options:

Cycling

  • Parque Ecológico (3km paved loop)
  • El Bicentenario (5km dirt loop)
  • El Atoyac (5km paved path)

Running

  • Parque Ecológico (3km gravel loop, soccer fields, and a standard track)
  • El Bicentenario (5km dirt loop)
  • El Atoyac (5km paved path)
  • Parque del Arte (1.6k/1 Mile gravel loop, soccer field, and a standard track)
  • Laguna de San Baltazar (1.5k gravel loop)

Of course, you can always find your own routes within the city or outside of it. Many cyclists take roads that radiate out from Cholula towards the towns at the bottom of Iztaccíhuatl and Popocatépetl. You can also find endless paths for both running and mountain biking at the Izta-Popo National Park and La Malinche. Because Popocatépetl is an active volcano, you can’t go up it, but you can use all the trails on neighboring Iztaccíhuatl. La Malinche is at a slightly lower altitude and also offers many trails.

Lastly, Mexico City probably has more race opportunities than any other city in Mexico, and it’s only an hour and a half from Puebla.

The Mexico City marathon is an enormous race, but there are tons of smaller races there throughout the year.

The Mexico City marathon is an enormous race, but there are tons of smaller races there throughout the year.

Some yearly races in Puebla: the Mistertennis Duathlon, the Mistertennis 13k race in Atlixco, the City of Puebla's Marathon, Half-marathon, 10k and 5k races, and the Mistertennis Father's Day Half-Marathon.

Some yearly races in Puebla: the Mistertennis Duathlon, the Mistertennis 13k race in Atlixco, the City of Puebla’s Marathon, Half-marathon, 10k and 5k races, and the Mistertennis Father’s Day Half-Marathon.

Cycling, running, and dog-walking are all permitted at El Atoyac.

Cycling, running, and dog-walking are all permitted at El Atoyac.

Popocatépetl as seen from the trails on Iztaccíhuatl.

Popocatépetl as seen from the trails on Iztaccíhuatl.

Running on a road on La Malinche.

Running on a road on La Malinche.

Biking in Valsequillo, just outside Puebla.

Biking in Valsequillo, just outside Puebla.

The UPAEP's 5 and 10k race also occurs yearly.

The UPAEP’s 5 and 10k race also occurs yearly.