Sunday, September 30, 2007

Track Town, USA.

Eugene OR has long been known as "TrackTown, USA" Most notably because of the legendary Steve Prefontaine, and the fact that he ran for U of O in the 70's before he was tragically killed in an auto accident during the height of his career. He had a teammate named Phil Knight who has gone on to bigger and better things, and a coach, Bill Bowerman who also knew a thing or two about Track and Field. Running has always been huge in this city, but it's really amazing to live here and see the true scope of it. There are running trails EVERYWHERE, and I do not mean just trails along the roadside. There is a division of the Parks Dept., whose sole job it is to maintain and police the nearly 100 miles of wide paved trails along the rivers. Dogs and bikes are welcome, but mostly you see runners...people whose jobs pay them to stay fit by running via corporate incentives, many also provide shower facilities for their employees so that they can run during their lunchhour. EVERYBODY runs. well, everybody who doesn't smoke :) ) and if you want a new running experience, the city prints a brochure that you can find in almost any store, listing the various trails and their terrain. The trails are beautiful...I wish I could bring my camera, to take some pictures along the way...but then I couldn't run. Running in the rain is easy, since it's not cold (at least not yet) but all the sporting goods stores carry all the state-of-the-art clothes for running in all conditions, NO excuses! It never gets very cold anyway, winters get chilly, but rarely into the 30's. (Eugene also happens to be the garden capital of the world. But that's another post.)

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