My company is part of a huge conglomerate based in the part of the country where "Don't ya know?" is a common phrase. We have a small contingent of people; scientist and engineers, up there working on projects for us. On occasion we bring them out to work with us for a week or vice verse. It's a good thing.
One of the guys is out here this week. When I heard he was coming I invited to go on a run. We met last year, so I knew he was a runner. He has run three marathons in past - Twin Cities, twice and Grandma's, his PR at 3:28. Unfortunately at his age it doesn't come close to qualifying him for Boston. I know that when I travel I like to find a place to run. So I took it upon myself to be the running tour guide.
Monday was the only real night that worked out. When I planned this thing the heat was in the mid 80's which is still tolerable. Then last Friday and over the weekend the temps were into the high, high 90's until well past sundown. Luckily Monday things cooled back down. By the time we left work at 6:00 them temps were in the reasonable mid 80 range.
We of course headed over to my favorite trail for my 5 mile Sunday morning Bonelli Loop. I had warned him about the hills in advance. I had a great time and I think he really enjoyed it too. He agreed that the last big hill was pretty killer, but we made it up. It turned out to be one of the slowest times for the loop, but I think that was due to my non stop chatter. Normally I'm running this thing alone and in silence.
And then since my wife was at her gym class and Bryan was at work he and I headed downtown for some Mexican food and a Dos XX's.
Today I'm up in Portland, actually somewhere in the Beaverton/Tigard area at a Embassy Suites in Washington Square. I'm up here for a study group to sit in on a presentation by one of our regional managers on bonding. This is something that fits within the responsibilities of my current job, so I'm here to learn from the master.
I landed in Portland at 7:00, grabbed the rental car and drove over to Tigard. I quickly checked in and changed to get out there while the sun was still up. The nice thing about being so far north is the fact that daylight lasts so much longer than I'm used to in SoCal. Official sunset was listed as 8:55 but it was still plenty light enough nearly 30 minutes after that.
I only needed 3 or 4 miles today. The plan was to head over to Greenway Park. I quickly left the hotel to head over to the north side of the park only to make a wrong turn and ended up on the freeway. Off the freeway and exit later and back to the right street only to be met by a train blocking the intersection. I was able to turn around and tried to get to the southern end of the park and was again blocked by the train. I was afraid that the precious daylight was going to wear out before I got there.
Finally the train began to move and traffic slowly thinned out. I drove down Scholls Ferry Road and could see the trail off to the right. I pulled into a shopping center and parked. I wasn't sure if you were allowed to use the shopping center parking to access the trail but I took my chances. The sun was setting any slower. I was able to head north on the trail until I hit Hall Blvd. Along the way there are many places that you can jump onto the trail from the neighborhood that abuts it. There are basketball courts and play grounds interspersed along the length of the park. It would be nice to have something like this literally in your backyard. The only downside I could see, is that it would drive the poor neighborhood dogs absolutely crazy.
After I got back to Scholls Ferry I took the bridge under the road and continued south until I came to Windsor Place where I turned around and went back to the car. I ran for 29:11 and figure I covered about 3.5 miles (8:20 pace). Breathing some of that same air as Iron Mike must have been a good thing.
When I got back I took a better look around and turns out I was parked in at a shopping center that included the Portland Running Co. Ironic. By this time tomorrow I will be back home and will rest for 2 days before running again. Today's run marked 5 days in a row, a milestone that hasn't been seen for a while and for the most part my body is holding up.