Apparently, when you're getting ready for the Track and Field Indoor World Championships you need to have a new track to run on. Or at least it helps and feels cool on your feet, plus it probably looks great when it comes to the big day. However, to make that happen there needs to be a certain number of events run on the track — a sport christening of sorts. Well, since the WC's are happening here in Portland the track was set up a couple months back in an old warehouse down by the waterfront for a few exhibition meets. Now, they weren't actually "the stuff of legends" or anything that deep, but they were a fantastic way to spend an evening yelling for your friends. We popped in one rainy Friday night to catch a glimpse at some olympic hopefuls and cheer on our Jacuzzi Boys Athletic Club doing what they do best.
The layout and execution of the whole pop-up indoor track scene was interesting. There were lockers at the end of the building with "House of Track" and a large swoosh (or whoosh if you're English) painted on their sides. Couches surrounded this area which made for a convenient pinning up and staging area for our hero's - Scott "Scooter" Olberding and his compatriot, the ultra fast - Karim Shakalia. You'll remember fondly their Cross Country exploits from earlier this fall. Well, turns out, they make the transition to the track as well.
Scott and Karim also crumple their numbers with the best of them. See, OBRA officials take note. Nay, officials everywhere take note, everyone does it. So, go easy on us as we attempt our small rituals that help us prepare for what we are about to undertake.
The race went. It didn't necessarily go as planned, nor did it go particularly well, but it did go. That's the thing about running, it can go exceptionally well, however, most of the time it is just a hard slog to the finish and then you think back over the race and try to find some small nugget of truth to take away. To have something positive to focus on. Maybe just a small thing — your start, the first few steps of the race and the position it put you in — the fact that your spikes didn't loosen up this time — or even finding that tying your singlet straps together in the back make the piece feel better, more snug — but a real something none the less.
Just being out there late at night with the blood and adrenaline rushing through your veins does something to you. It changes you. Maybe for the worse, since all that adrenaline rushing through you doesn't allow you to sleep until late into the night. But, maybe for the better as well? Because Scott came back in after that indoor extravaganza and we put our heads together as to how we could capitalize on the fact that people, fun people, run people would be coming to town for the Indoor Worlds. And this is what we came up with.
Another reason to be out at night.
Scott and crew put together a little five miler. A hot lap around NW if you will. Something to encapsulate what we do on a weekly basis, or when we find the time. And let's just say it has it all. The ups and downs that only the West side of the river can provide. It is meant to be fast and fun and furious all at the same time. Because what are we to do with all that pent up energy? The stuff that builds up after a day of watching others pour their guts out on a bright green indoor track in front of frenzied fans? Run it off.
Tell your friends that it is going down next Saturday night...