Two weekends ago, Dave and I ventured up to Portland, OR to have playtime with our friends Margaret and Kenny, AND to do a little racing. Dave ran the full Portland Marathon and I ran the half. We spent 3 full days up there and had a total blast. With this type of trip we like to try to just act as locals with our hosts. We don’t need to see the sights, per say, because in a lot of instances we’ve already seen them or we just don’t need to. We just want to hang out and have a relaxed time, which is what we did!
We went to the Plumper Pumpkin Patch and entertained ourselves with caramel apples, beehives, annoying kids, disfigured gourds and most importantly, a pumpkin sling shot, which incidentally was one of the most talked about activities of the trip.
We also braved the crowds of Buffalo Wild Wings to binge on wings, fried pickles and an outstanding MSU victory over U of M. We made friends with some visiting drunken douche bags, one of which had just taken a dare and jumped in a fountain naked. They were wasted, rooting against MSU (I ended up making $5 in a bet), when when they should have been getting ready for a wedding later that night.
BW3 was not the only stop on our eating and drinking deliciousness train. We had beers at the Widmer brewery (YUM HEFEWEIZEN), brunch at Bijou Cafe, met up with old SF friend Jade for barbecue at Russell Street BBQ and I showed a giant calzone’s who the boss was at Hopworks.
But of course Dave and I were there to run. The race was early on Sunday morning and we woke up greeted to rain, rain and more rain. While I’ve definitely done a bit of running in the rain, I’ve never raced in it. I snooped around Margaret and Kenny’s apartment to find a garbage bag to help keep dry, which was kind of a joke. I eventually took it off after a few miles and just embraced the down pour.
While I started off in a little pain, by mile 4 I was cruising along and feeling great. By mile 10 I was soaked but I felt really great and decided to pick up the pace. I later found out that I passed about 40 people over the last 3 miles stretch and I finished strong feeling like I still had a lot left in me. My goal was under 2 hours (finally) and I ended up pulling into the finish in 1:50:36. I definitely attribute my strong finish to my training, particularly my long 16-18 mile runs recently.
Dave also ran a strong race, finishing his full in under 3 hours pretty easily. Now we’re both shifting gears in preparation for the California International Marathon in December, which as we all know will be my first.
It was a weekend full of fun and we had a blast with Margaret and Kenny, two of our closest friends for sure. I really loved Portland this trip and can’t wait to go back again soon. More photos here!