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12 Questions: Lucas Rothenberger
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12 Questions: Lucas Rothenberger

Locally Grown

Our 12 Questions series this week takes a look at Lucas Rothenberger, who has recently joined the PRC family and will be working primarily at the Scholls location. Lucas has deep roots in the Pacific Northwest, having been born in Portland and graduating from Portland’s Jesuit High School and Gonzaga University in Spokane. Lucas is also coaching cross country and track at Jesuit and plans to begin work on his master’s of school counseling this fall. In addition to coaching and running, Lucas enjoys music and non-fiction writing. His favorite series is PRC’s “12 Questions” by Greg Mitchell. Okay, that last part was actually non-non-fiction.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Lucas Rothenberger I was born in Portland, OR, a couple miles down the road at St.Vincent’s Hospital!

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
LR I went to Jesuit High School, possibly the most beloved high school in the entire state…. We were the Crusaders. Yeah, definitely not the greatest mascot, but we have just never changed it.

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment?
LR Without a doubt, getting my shot blocked by a future PAC-12 Defensive POTY when I was in high school. The JV team practices with the varsity team and we were doing this 3-on-2 / 2-on-1 drill and I was coming back down the court on this 2-on-1 and for some boneheaded reason I thought I was going to elevate and challenge this 6’5″ stud of a human being and I am about to take flight and I realized I am in trouble so I try to abort and shoot this little floater real quick and he just hung in the air, sized up my shot and swatted the ball against the gym wall. He hit it so hard against the wall, it sounded like a gunshot. I jogged back  to the end of the line and didn’t say a word for the rest of the week during practice. I just accepted my humiliation.
GM I like how you emphasized it was a “future PAC-12 Defensive Player of the Year” that swatted your shot. As if it would take a superhuman effort to block a shot by what I imagine was a 5’5”, 110-pound version of you.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
LR Man, I can’t say I have a “favorite” but one of the spots I regular is River Pig Saloon.  It’s down in the Pearl kind of near a lot of the action. It is an excellent spot to people watch, the food is always on point, and it’s one of the few places that serves my favorite canned beer: Montucky.

GM What is your current training shoe?
LR I kind of rotate between the Nike Pegasus, Nike Vomero and Nike Free RN Distance, it just depends on what I’m looking for. I also really like the New Balance Fresh Foam Zante; it’s pretty slick.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
LR I definitely do not mess with snakes…. Clowns are weird, but not scary. Snakes are beyond terrifying to me.
GM The entire internet apparently disagrees with your “clowns are weird, but not scary” sentiment.

GM You can be a character in any movie, who do you choose to be?
LR Matt Damon in Rounders…. I can rewatch that movie over and over again and he becomes more of a boss every single time I watch it. If you included TV shows though, I’d be Timmy Riggins from Friday Night Lights for the obvious reasons.
GM Superman. Indiana Jones. James Bond. Han Solo. Legolas. Mike McDermott?

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
LR Great question. It would be unfair to act as if I have only one pet-peeve, but when a parent comes up to me the first day of practice to let me know that their kid is “special” and wants to be assured that their kid will be getting “enough attention” it really kind of irks me. Like, I am going to give your son or daughter plenty of attention just like all of the other kids. I don’t know, sometimes parents can get pretty aggressive when it comes to their kids and their athletics.  

GM What is your favorite candy bar?
LR I don’t like candy. That’s not true. I like Snickers, and Reese’s…and Twix. But besides those three, I probably only like 15–20 other candy bars. They all contain chocolate. This wasn’t my greatest answer, but I’m just spitballing here.

Lucas and his entourage.

GM Who is the most famous person you have ever met?
LR My friends and I were at this downtown Portland club near the waterfront. We were at the bar about to grab a drink and we realized people were crowding behind us and we looked back and Greg Oden was directly behind us with his entourage. So, we went up to him and his entourage and they were rapping so we joined into a freestyle rap thing and yeah I don’t know how famous he really is now but at the time he was a big deal.
GM “We joined into a freestyle rap thing.” I would pay good money to see you rapping with Greg Oden and his entourage. I bet it was “dope.”

GM Unicorn or Unicycle. Explain.
LR Ehhhh, probably unicorn. I’ve always had mediocre balance. I just don’t think I’d get a whole lot of enjoyment out of a unicycle with the current skill set that God has blessed me with.
GM Hmmm. I feel like riding a unicycle might be easier than riding a unicorn.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
LR My coach in college, Pat Tyson, would always tell me to believe. The exact quote he would always tell me before a race or big moment was “Lucas, without your dreams man, you’ve got nothing…nothing. Don’t let anyone take your dreams away from you.” To this day, I don’t think anything has resonated with me as strongly as that did. Pretty simple but it just connected with me.

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell becomes more of a boss every single time he comes to work at our Beaverton store. Email [email protected]
12 Questions: Becky Hamilton
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12 Questions: Becky Hamilton

Frisbeetarian

Our “12 Questions” series continues with a look at Rebecca “Becky” Hamilton. Becky is a recent addition to the PRC family and will work primarily at the Grand location. The most important thing to know about Becky is she loves ultimate frisbee. Boy, does she love ultimate frisbee. Amidst playing on multiple ultimate teams and serving as a youth ultimate coach, Becky managed to graduate from Portland State University with a degree in Environmental Science and Management. But back to ultimate frisbee: Becky currently plays on the Ivy, an elite women’s ultimate frisbee team. On a side note, Chad has proclaimed that the male PRC staff would be victorious in an ultimate frisbee grudge match against Becky’s team. Stay posted.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

 

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Becky Hamilton Portland, Oregon born and raised!

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
BH I went to Grant High School and our mascot was the General.

The General…we’ve seen that guy on TV!

 

GM What was your first pet? What was its name?
BH Hmmm…. I can’t remember who was first. Maybe it was Lego the dog, Perry the cat, Parsley and Carrot the rabbits, or Jessica and Kelly the rats. We had a lot of pets growing up!
GM Wow. A veritable zoo! Luckily you didn’t have any pigs. Chapter 13.10.020 in the Portland City Code and Charter strictly prohibits it.

 

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?
BH One of my first XC races my shoe came untied and I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to stop and tie it or not. I ran almost the whole race with one of my spikes coming off….

GM What is your current training shoe?
BH I just got the Saucony Ride for running, before that I was in Nike Frees. (Sorry, Greg.)
GM Well, now thanks to your Saucony shoes, you can EVERUN.

GM What is your favorite apparel carried by PRC?
BH I really like the new Nike Polyfill Vest!
GM I presume this is because it keeps the core warm and dry, but allows full range of motion to catch and throw a frisbee.

GM What is your favorite TV series of all time?
BH Avatar the Last Airbender is my favorite show. Yes, it is a cartoon, but it’s also really good.
GM My daughter’s favorite show is also a cartoon. Of course, she’s 7….

 

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
BH I hate it when I’m in a group of people (like my ultimate frisbee team) and they take forever to get moving (like going to get food after tournaments).

Becky, center back in basketball jersey, is ready to go get food.

 

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Why?
BH Roost is my favorite. They only serve brunch on the weekends, but it’s so good.

GM What is your favorite book of all time? Why?
BH I really like the Hunger Games series, or any dystopian young adult fiction with strong female protagonists.

GM Frisbee or honey bee? Explain.
BH Frisbee, duh! Here’s my explanation.
GM I’m going to let you have this one without a long lecture on the importance of honey bees and their role in plant pollination.

 

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
BH The XC assistant coach would always say “no regrets” before our races. I like using that for frisbee, and other parts of my life too. I never want to regret giving something less than 100%.

No regrets.

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell works at Portland Running Company and dominates on the masters running circuit. Email [email protected]
12 Questions: John “Cliff Dawg” Clifford
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12 Questions: John “Cliff Dawg” Clifford

All the Way Up

Twelve Questions sits down gingerly with one hand on its low back this week and chats with John “Cliff Dawg” Clifford. John has been with Portland Running Company since 2011, spending the vast majority of his time at the Beaverton location. John is a native Californian who graduated from San Diego State University before most of his PRC co-workers were born. When he’s not working the floor at PRC, John is putting his environmental design degree to good use at his landscape architect firm. John is a competitive master’s runner and races every distance from 800m. to the marathon. John lives in Sherwood with his wife and their empty nest.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

From the Eddie Bauer catalog.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
John Clifford I was born in Ventura, California, a coastal city between Los Angeles and Santa Barbara. Although I spent a lot of time at the beach, I never did learn to surf, but I did learn to sail while working for a yacht club.

John working on his block start in high school.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
JC I went to a parochial high school, Saint Bonaventure. Our mascot was the Seraph, the highest order of angels. In sports we were the “Fighting Angels.”

GM What was the year, make and model of your first car?
JC It was a white Volkswagen Rabbit I bought from my brother before I went off to college. It always needed work, and I put more money into it than it was worth just to keep it running. By the time I graduated, I eventually upgraded to an Audi 4000. It could have been a great chick magnet, but the first girl I picked up for a date is now my wife.
GM Uh, I encourage you to not sound too disappointed here.

John and his Audi.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Why?
JC My favorite restaurant is Higgins on SW Broadway. It’s a quaint, upscale restaurant with a casual feel, great for business lunches or for a pre-show dinner with my wife. Most of the time you’ll find me at one of the local Sweet Tomatoes since I’m a soup and salad guy who loves to go back for seconds.

GM How many siblings do you have?
JC I grew up in a large family with four brothers and three sisters. Our house was always the place to be for large gatherings. An invitation to party at our house was like being invited to the Kennedy Compound on Cape Cod, yet we were the less affluent Clifford Compound.

Living that Kennedy-compound life.

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment? Explain.
JC It was during the Hood to Coast Relay. Around 2 a.m. and our van was parked next to all these sleeping runners. Our runner was finishing his leg and I was up next for the hand-off. I was in the back seat struggling to remove my sweats without taking my shoes off. My teammates did not realize I was still in the van and walked away locking the doors. I tried to get their attention, but it was too late. I knew the alarm was going to go off, but I had to get out. I pulled the door handle and the van horn went off waking everyone up. I had to jump out and find my teammate who had the key to shut it off.

GM What is your current training shoe? Explain.
JC My shoes tend to be light and flexible with minimal stability, so I typically train in the Nike Free or Nike Pegasus and my favorite racing shoe is the Nike Lunaracer.

John racing at Champoeg Park in his Lunaracers.

GM Who is the most famous person you have ever met? Explain.
JC Ultra-marathoner Dean Karnazes who I met a few years ago when he came to Portland to promote one of his books and discuss his many running adventures.  I had the opportunity to talk with him and get a photo of us together. Not only is he short like me, but we’re only a month apart in age and we can both say a few words in Greek.
GM What the heck kind of conversation results in you finding out you both speak Greek?

GM What is your favorite accessory carried by PRC? Explain.
JC The employee coffeemaker, especially when dark roast K-cups are available. Seriously, I have to say it’s the Amphipod Xinglet reflective running vest. It’s one of the best and most commonly used running vests for the Hood/Portland to Coast and I see it on just about everyone who runs at night or those who need to be seen during the day. It’s available in three great options and I love selling this PRC accessory to our customers. It’s the perfect running safety vest.
GM No joke: John drinks at least 4 cups of coffee per shift at PRC.

GM What would you like the epitaph on your tombstone to read?
JC “His legs were thin, his body slim. He kept on running until the wind blew him off course, yet the strength of his heart led him to victory.”  
GM That’s serious. I’ll make sure your wife and daughters receive a copy of this request.

Runs on wine and coffee.

GM Raisin or grape? Explain.
JC Grapes hands down. Without grapes we would not have wine. I’m not a wine snob, but I love drinking this delicious, historical, and healthy libation. I am comfortable enough to say I drink a glass of red wine with a piece of 95% chocolate almost every evening.
GM I’m pretty sure “I’m not a wine snob” translates to “I’ll drink it out of box, bottle or barrel, just bring on the vino.”

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
JC It sounds a bit silly, but I took the advice of my grandmother to make my bed every day before I leave the house. I won’t go into details about our discussion or how this small morning task has affected my life, but I can assure you our bed is made every morning before my wife and I leave the house.

John’s coworker Phil Orlowski insists that John looks just like cycling commentator Paul Sherwen (above).

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell works at PRC and kicks butt on the masters running circuit. He is such a wine snob that he still hasn’t found any he’ll drink.

12 Questions: Katie Parry
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12 Questions: Katie Parry

Anti-Litterbug

This week “12 Questions” takes a look at Katie Parry. Katie is a recent addition to the PRC family and will work primarily at the Scholls location. Katie is a transplant from Florida, where she graduated from Florida Atlantic University with a degree in exercise science and health promotion. She was also a member of the Owls’ track and field teams while at FAU and managed to become proficient in both Microsoft Word and Excel while balancing academics and athletics. Katie has three years of experience working in run specialty thanks to her time spent at The Runner’s Edge in Boca Raton, FL, where she served as assistant manager and women’s apparel buyer.

Interview by Greg Mitchell. 

Katie running in Idaho. The trail is called something like Hulls Gulch or Hells Belch.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Katie Parry I am an international woman of mystery; I was born in Panama City, Panama.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
KP I attended Satellite High School in Satellite Beach, FL. Our school mascot was the Scorpions, which was seriously intimidating for our rivals! (Satellite Beach is also home to Dakine Diego’s, the most delicious burrito joint on planet earth!)
GM I’m going to need to consult burrito expert Scott Fauble regarding the status of Dakine Diego’s as the “most delicious burrito joint on planet earth.”

On site at Dakine Diego’s, where they serve burritos THIS big.

GM You just won a free trip to anywhere. Where do you go?
KP Tough decision, but I would book my free trip to Fiji. There is something incredibly captivating and magical about being outdoors, and Fiji seems to have it all: the ocean, plenty of sunshine, hiking, waterfalls, and an abundance of wildlife. I am almost certain I would accidentally miss my return flight.

GM What is your favorite temperature? Why?
KP I like it a little chilly because I love jackets. You could call me a jacket connoisseur, my collection is growing rapidly since moving to Oregon and I’m not complaining.
GM I have some bad news about Fiji….

Before the jackets…

…there were snowsuits.

KP I currently have two shoes that I bounce back and forth between. One of my go-to trainers is the Nike Structure 19. I have so much love for this shoe! It’s lightweight, responsive, and I love the way it fits. I’m also running in the Nike Pegasus 33. I like to switch between stability and neutral shoes—just to keep things exciting!

GM What website do you visit most?
KP Possibly the easiest question you’ve asked yet! Goldfishkiss.com is an awesome blog created by a super rad chick. Your go-to guide for everything bikinis, beaches, fitness, style, hiking, traveling and SO much more!
GM I’ll check it out before I purchase my next stylish bikini.

GM What is your favorite movie of all time?
KP I’m not sure if I have a favorite per se, but any movie with Will Ferrell will do the trick. He’s my boy!

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
KP Can I have two? My biggest pet-peeves are people being rude and people littering. Possibly interchangeable, but I think it’s vital to be nice to people and take care of Mother Nature.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Why?
KP Since I am new to Portland I am currently taking suggestions, but I’m a sucker for breakfast burritos and a good cup o’ joe. I try to hit up the Clearing Café any time I’m going for a run in Forest Park.

Katie’s brunch food.

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment? Explain.
KP This brings up a dark past, Greg. I once lost an epic battle of beer pong to Shaq.
GM Let it be known that through follow-up questions, this alleged beer pong episode was revealed to be a fictional event. Now that’s embarrassing.

GM Whiteboard or Chalkboard? Explain.
KP Hands down a whiteboard. No screechy noises and no leftover chalky mess. (Also, I love the color selection from Expo dry erase markers!)
GM You make some good points. As a former classroom educator, however, I have to say I appreciated the ability to drive home a point with a chalkboard by tapping the board repeatedly or throwing the chalk against the board and having it explode all over the front row of students. I miss those teachable moments.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
KP Anything my dad has ever said to me. He is full of wisdom, great advice and has lived a lot of life. I’m so grateful for him!

 

 

 

Through follow-up questions it was revealed that Greg Mitchell thinks “Beer pong” involves an Atari 2600. Email [email protected]
12 Questions: Rob Crow
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12 Questions: Rob Crow

Frontier Attorney-Triathlete

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a looong look at Rob Crow (keep reading though; it’s worth it). Rob has worked at PRC since 2006, and you can find him working Sundays at the Scholls location. The rest of the week, Rob is a criminal defense and DUI attorney with a private practice in Portland. Rob received his undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia and went to law school at the Cumberland School of Law at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama.

According to Rob, “There are a few nice things about Samford University: 1) If you say it fast it sounds like Stanford and, 2) with the fancy writing on the diploma, if you put it back behind your desk, sitting in a client’s chair, it looks like Stanford and both of these things make you seem smart.” Rob is an avid triathlete, which is to say he has become intimately familiar with asphalt and fish hooks. Rob is married, and he and his wife Jen are expecting their first child in January.

Interview by Greg Mitchell (a patient man). 

Rob and his lovely wife, Jen.

Rob and his lovely wife, Jen.

Greg Mitchell: In what city and state were you born?
Rob Crow: I was born in Rocky Mount, Virginia, which is in the rural/farming part of Franklin County. Franklin County is the moonshine capital of the world. The recreational department used to have a 5k race (the first race I ever did) called the White Lightning 5k. The winner got a little jug, although sadly there was no moonshine in it. If you’ve ever seen the movie Lawless, that’s a “true” story about where I grew up.

GM: What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
RC: I attended Franklin County High School. We were the Eagles. Unless, of course, you ask the rich snobs who went to Cave Spring High School who referred to us simply as “rednecks.” One of my favorite memories from high school involved Cave Spring, when our soccer team finally beat them. The high school was redoing the football/soccer field so there was a huge tractor out front. So, after the final whistle, we all ran off the field and out to the tractor and started chanting “warm up the tractor” as the rich kids slowly shuffled to their bus.
GM: Really hard to pin down why the Cave Spring students referred to you guys as rednecks….

We found a picture of Rob in the PRC singlet. Usually he wears a traithlon leotard.

We found a picture of Rob in the PRC singlet. Usually he wears a triathlon leotard.

GM Where is your favorite place to train in Portland? Explain.
RC: My favorite place to train is somewhat of a tricky question since I am more of a triathlete than runner (I discovered when you aren’t the fastest guy around, it’s good to mix up your sports. After all, the really fast guys sink when they swim. By the way, Greg, we should go for a swim). Hagg Lake is great because you can knock out all three disciplines while there. Rocky Point is a great bike ride because it’s hilly and hurts like hell, but there’s a great feeling of accomplishment when you finally reach the top. I also enjoy training downtown because people often give you odd looks when you’re training. For example, I once swam in the Willamette River just south of the Hawthorne Bridge and got a fish hook stuck in my arm. Oh, that reminds me, how often are you supposed to get a tetanus shot?

GM: What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Explain.
RC: I don’t know that I have a favorite restaurant in Portland. I like many places. My favorite used to be a place called Indish, which was an Indian restaurant owned by a barrister from England and a cook from Birmingham, Alabama. I had many things in common with them, and the food was awesome. I also had many good first, and a couple second dates at North 45. It was my watering hole, and they make a great Manhattan. Now that I’m married and my life is over, Mazatlan gets me my out-of-the-house time and a margarita.

GM: What is your favorite shoe on the wall at PRC? Why?
RC: My favorite shoe on the wall at PRC likely is the 361 Strata. I say that not because I think it is the best shoe, but because it was my race shoe at Ironman Louisville, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone sell a pair. Other than that, my favorite shoe varies by what day it is. If I’m working with Larry or Alison, I like Mizuno, if for no other reason, because they dislike Mizuno so much. When Dylan Dougherty was at the store, I hated Saucony because I was jealous they sent him to Ireland to enjoy Guinness the way it is supposed to be served (I guess he ran some, too). I also miss the On Cloud because my friend Greg loved it sooo much.
GM: The most shocking part of the above response is that you referred to me as “my friend.”

Rob in action in Canada.

Rob in action in Canada.

GM: What are the biggest differences between training for a triathlon and training for a marathon?
RC: I can’t tell you what the biggest difference is between training for an Ironman and a marathon because I’ve only done 3 marathons: Ironman Coeur d’Alene, Challenge Penticton (formerly Ironman Canada), and Ironman Louisville. I’ve never done a marathon on its own. But, if I had to guess, I’d say the biggest difference is you don’t have to bike or swim during a marathon, unless it’s a marathon in the Northwest between September and May, aka “the rainy season.” People also tend to not put in as much running mileage training for an Ironman since you gain a lot of fitness, without all the impact, riding hours upon hours on a bike.

GM: Does being a runner help you as an attorney? Explain.
RC: I can’t say that running has helped me as an attorney directly, but I think it has helped me. My life can at many times be stressful, and running is a good way to relieve stress so that I don’t drink myself to death. Running does help with learning endurance and the fortitude to push on when times are tough. And, sometimes, if you’re lucky, you can build relationships with prosecutors, judges, and clients through a mutual love of running. It’s part of why I’m such a great people person.

GM: What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
RC: My biggest pet peeve is poor grammar. For example, the GM (General Manager) of Portland Running Company, whose initials happen also to be GM, once misspelled “judgment” in an email, and it drove me nuts. I think poor grammar can be an indication of laziness or ineptitude, both of which are not endearing qualities.
GM: Though it is unclear just who this mysterious “GM” is, I do know this: According to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, “Judgment can also be spelled ‘judgement,’ and usage experts have long disagreed over which spelling is the preferred one.”

Rob proofreading his diploma.

Rob proofreading his diploma.

GM: Who is the most famous person you have ever met? Explain.
RC: At the risk of becoming a little philosophical, isn’t “famous” relative? Dave Harkin is pretty famous in the Portland running community and I’ve met him. But, for me, I’d say the most famous person I have ever met would be Julian Bond. In case you don’t know who Julian Bond was, he was a founding member of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee during the Civil Rights Movement and knew Martin Luther King, Jr. well. He was also a longtime Chairman of the NAACP. I met Julian Bond at the University of Virginia when I was a student. He taught a seminar on the Civil Rights Movement that was limited to 20 first year students (we didn’t do “freshman,” “sophomore,” “junior,” and “senior” at UVA because Mr. Jefferson thought you could never be “senior” at education). It was full when I tried to sign up. So, I decided to use my wonderful people skills to go convince him to let me in. He said, “No.” I then explained I was really interested in the death penalty (I knew in high school I wanted to be a lawyer) and a lot of research I had done and seen on the death penalty came from the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. He and I talked for at least 30 minutes about the death penalty and then he said to me, “Go get a course action form. I’ll let you in.” I took two more courses from him, and he was my thesis advisor (“Culpability and the Ultimate Punishment: Executing Juveniles and Mentally Retarded People in America”). He also wrote me letters of recommendation and offered to be a reference. It’s never bad, when wanting to do public interest law or criminal defense, to have the Chairman of the NAACP on your list of references. As an aside, I started my own law firm because no one would hire me.
GM: My favorite Bond movie is Casino Royale. Oh wait, you said Julian, not James.

The late Julian Bond.

The late Julian Bond.

GM: What is the best accessory we carry at PRC? Explain.
RC: Although we don’t technically “carry” it, RoadID is my favorite accessory. There are a lot of important safety things we carry such as reflectors, reflective apparel, and lights, but RoadID has been invaluable to me. When I wrecked my bike and knocked myself unconscious, I was in no state to remember anything important. I was able to point to my wrist, however, and tell the lady who stopped to call my wife. I have a hard enough remembering my wife’s information (not so much name, but phone number and birthdate), but there was no way I could have recited it right then.

GM: Fremont Bridge or Marquam Bridge? Explain.
RC: I don’t really care about bridges, Greg. But if I have to choose, I’d say the Marquam Bridge. I love the view from both bridges, but I had bad experiences with the Fremont Bridge when I first moved to Portland. I got lost a few times and kept crossing back and forth on the Fremont. Also, the first time I moved after living in Portland, I moved from Hawthorne to Northwest. I borrowed the PRC death machine, I mean van. I feared for my life as my PRC coworker Brian Edwards raced the van over the bridge. I’m not sure the PRC van was road safe back then. I haven’t ridden in it since.
GM: Weird. The PRC van handles like a dream these days.

GM: What is the best advice you have ever received?
RC: Advice is an interesting thing. I think the best advice I ever received was from my dad. He once asked me, “Would you rather be right, or would you rather be happy?” I’ve discovered this is great advice for many things in life, but particularly in relationships. Professionally, I think the best advice is in a quote I have framed sitting in my office facing my clients. Mark Twain once said, “Better to be a fool and sit in silence than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.”

Rob is an animal lover.

Rob is an animal lover.

 

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell is the GM in question. He recently finished second in the masters division at the US Club XC championships in Florida. Email [email protected]

12 Questions: Hazel Richardson
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12 Questions: Hazel Richardson

Champion of Nuun

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Hazel Richardson. Hazel is a recent addition to the PRC family and will work primarily at the Scholls location with occasional guest appearances at Grand. Hazel has previous experience working running specialty as well as in physical therapy. She hails from Sacramento, California, but interestingly enough, has dual Irish and American citizenship. Hazel graduated from Utah State University with a degree in exercise science, and while at Utah State, she competed for the Aggies in both cross country and track. Hazel aspires to make the Olympic marathon team…for Ireland.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.


Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Hazel Richardson I was born in Sacramento, CA.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
HR I went to Roseville High School, home of the Tigers. I graduated in 2009 and ran XC and track all four years. I also held the 800m record until my youngest brother’s girlfriend beat it two years ago.

sjsrotwweek3

Sac-Joaquin Section Honor


GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Explain.
HR Oh wow. I just moved here so that’s hard to say…. There’s a Thai place that’s pretty good in Goose Hollow called Kinara Thai. I am open to suggestions!

GM What was your first pet? What was its name?
HR My first pet was a kitten when I was 4 years old named Nick. Right now I have a German Shorthair named Carter. He’ll definitely be in the shop!
GM Wait. Nick. Carter. Nick Carter is the name of a Backstreet Boy. Don’t ask me how I know this.

Carter, we think.

Carter, we think.


GM
What is your favorite shoe on the PRC shoe wall? Explain.
HR Right now it’s probably the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080. I was really intrigued when Fresh Foam was released. The cushion and support provided by the concave/convex shapes was interesting to me, and I love how lightweight it is. But don’t hold me to that; I feel like my favorite shoe changes everyday.

GM What is the most significant difference between Ireland and the USA. Explain.
HR For me it has to be the culture. Irish people are relaxed and enjoy the simple things in life. Everyone knows everyone so the whole country feels like family. They will help a stranger at the drop of a hat. Californians were not quite like that, but I think I’ve found a people similar to myself in Oregon.
GM So long as you appreciate naked bike rides and various zombie-themed events, you’ll fit right in.

 
Zombie stuff, check.

Zombie stuff, check.

 

GM What is your favorite smell? Explain.
HR Crisp mornings. The smell of a new day. It’s the smell of running.
GM Unfortunately, I’ve exposed my wife and daughter to a different version of the “smell of running.”

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
HR People who walk slow! Walking anywhere already seems like a chore. I always tell myself, “I could run there faster.” I do a lot of eye rolling when I’m stuck behind a group of slow walkers.

GM What is your favorite nutrition product we carry at PRC? Explain.
HR I can’t live without Nuun. I always have a tube or five around the house. I don’t like soda or juice, so it’s a nice refreshing beverage. And water is useless without your electrolytes.
GM The Utah State exercise science department just lost some credibility due to your “water is useless without your electrolytes” comment.

GM You just won a trip to anywhere. Where do you go? Why?
HR Does all of Europe count? I’ve always wanted to travel and backpack through Europe. I would fly into Dublin, and from there visit friends and family I have in England, Belgium, Spain, Germany, and Greece. And visit everywhere in between.
GM I feel like this was just a way for you to brag about having family in exotic, international locales. I have family in Gresham.

GM Hill repeats or track intervals. Explain.
HR Ah, that’s hard. Track intervals are mentally easy to devour. So I’d probably pick hill repeats. I enjoy the mental push of running.

Hills over track.

Hills over track.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
HR I’ve always loved “Hakuna Matata.” Everyone knows it means “no worries.” But to me it’s more than that. Some things in life you can’t control. Things don’t always go according to plan, but don’t worry because life goes on.

 

 

Greg Mitchell is the general manager at PRC and a nationally recognized masters runner. Email [email protected]

12 Questions: Will Baker-Robinson
  • Embellishing Oatmeal 100%

12 Questions: Will Baker-Robinson

Geo Tracker

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Will Baker-Robinson. Will is a recent graduate of the University of Portland, where he studied biology and exercise science. During his time at U of P, Will was a member of the Pilot cross country and track teams. Though he makes guest appearances at the Beaverton store, you typically find Will BR holding down the fort at our Grand store.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Will Baker-Robinson I was born in Greenbrae, California.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
WBR I went to Sir Francis Drake High School. We were the Pirates. My school was named after the English privateer who claimed the nearby coast of California for Queen Elizabeth in the late 1500s.

Will, left, competing for Drake.

Will, left, competing for Drake.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Why?
WBR I don’t know that I have a favorite. I am continually trying new places. My aunt took me to a fancy Spanish spot last night called Ataula. We shared 5 tapas. All were awesome, especially the shaved acorn ham with heirloom tomato on coca bread. I highly recommend it!

GM What was your first pet? What was its name?
WBR My first pet was a white cat named Snowy. I got him for my fourth birthday and was obsessed with Tintin at the time. Even though he wasn’t completely white or a dog I insisted on calling him that.
GM Ah, Tintin. This explains your hair….

GM What is your current training shoe?
WBR I’m jogging these days pronounced with a soft J, but rotate through a couple. My favorite has to be the New Balance Zante 2 for its responsive fast feel. Chaser didn’t make the cut. Sorry 361.
GM Once you emerge from this period of jogging and resume fast running, I have no doubt that you’ll come to your senses and embrace the soft, fast Chaser by 361 Degrees.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
WBR Snakes. Especially rattlesnakes. Every summer in high school we would have to hurdle them as they sunbathed in the middle of the trail. To help things, my coach also liked to tell us a horror story about a local runner who was bitten.
GM I think it would be an even scarier story if it turned out to be a sunbathing clown that had bitten a local runner.

GM What is your favorite smell? Explain.
WBR Coastal bay leaves after it rains. Nothing like it. Reminds me of late fall cross country and winter trail runs.

Young Will, front, anointed with the essence of bay laurel.

Young Will, front, looking for bay laurel trees and longing for rain.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
WBR When you’re listening to music and someone keeps skipping tracks just as you’re getting into them. No explaining needed.

GM What is your favorite breakfast cereal? Why?
WBR Does oatmeal count? I have it every morning with some cinnamon, a banana, yogurt, chia, and sometimes blueberries. When I eat cereal, I feel like I need a second breakfast an hour later.
GM Chia? Cinnamon? What has become of today’s youth? The correct answer is Lucky Charms. If you are hungry later, you have another, bigger bowl of Lucky Charms.

GM What would you like the epitaph on your tombstone to read?
WBR Wow this is a pretty serious and morbid question for a running-store employee interview. I don’t feel like I need a permanent memorial in the form of a tombstone. I have hopefully 70+ years on this earth to leave an impression. I’d rather have people remember me in another way than looking at a boring rock. You could also ask [Will’s coworker] Phil [Orlowski]. He likes to joke about not seeing you in the obituary when it has been awhile, and he is getting up there in age….

Will, right, all grown up.

Will, far right, all grown up.

GM Father Time or Mother Nature? Explain.
WBR Mother Nature. One of my housemates wrote his senior thesis on how sexual identity applied to nature. We ended up having an inside joke calling each other out for being “heteronormative” in our view of nature whenever we were out to make it to the summit or not stopping for the scenery. I try to not get caught up in beating nature and enjoy being out there.
GM Father Time is shaking his head in a “heteronormative” way at your inside joke.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
WBR My high school photography teacher Jeff Martz was one of the most inspiring and passionate people I’ve met. Towards the end of my senior year he said, “The two things stopping people from the playing field of life are fear and laziness. Don’t let them control you. Get out there.”

Will Jager-Robinson

Will Jager-Robinson, front.

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell is a coach, runner, and mentor par excellence. He manages our Beaverton store.
12 Questions: Connor Wilson
  • Sneezing Freely 100%

12 Questions: Connor Wilson

Scott Fauble Fanboy

Our “12 Questions” series looks this week at Connor Wilson, who has recently joined the PRC family and will be working primarily at the Grand location. Connor comes to us by way of Texas, where he spent three years in the run specialty world at Luke’s Locker in Fort Worth, Texas. He’s a sophomore on the University of Portland cross country and track teams and won a silver medal as a member of the US Junior Mountain Running Team. Connor has a lot of interests beyond beyond running—golfing, skiing, traveling—but I get the impression that he probably spends a majority of his free time looking at Scott Fauble’s Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

He'll be comin' down the mountain when he comes....

He’ll be comin’ down the mountain when he comes….

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Connor Wilson My life’s journey began on September 6, 1996, in Little Rock, Arkansas. I was a big baby weighing in at 10 lbs, 8 oz. Probably giving John Cena a run for his money at the time. Just not anymore….
GM Too soon.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
CW I attended high school at Nolan Catholic in the great metropolis of Fort Worth, Texas and somehow managed to make the craziest decision to not play football and do this thing called cross country/track where people run around in fields in the fall and then circles in the spring like a bazillion times. Consequently, this choice had severe effects on my chances of staying up late on Friday nights as well as having a girlfriend.
GM Uh, I think I touched a nerve here. I just wanted to know the name of your high school mascot (the Vikings). I am sorry you didn’t have a high school girlfriend though.

GM You just won a free trip to anywhere. Where do you go?
CW I would be heading to Cape Town, South Africa because it is a stunning place to get out and explore with both the beach and mountains. Culturally it’s very diverse which means lots of food, which means I am one-hundred-percent interested. The Comrades Marathon is also out there which is definitely one of the most grueling races ever so that’s enticing.

El Burrito Azteca is a handy place to find a police officer when you need one.

El Burrito Azteca is a handy place to find a police officer when you need one.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
CW I can confirm that the potato burrito with steak and no beans at El Burrito Azteca on Rosa Parks has significantly enhanced my dietary life. This is a Scott Fauble favorite, however, being from the South I am not surprised that I crave warm tortillas almost constantly.

GM What is your current training shoe?
CW I have to run in Nikes at the University of Portland, so the Pegasus in the craziest looking color pattern you can imagine, because it’s all about how you look and the attention you can draw from others that determines your actual success in this sport. But, I’m also considering a pair of Hoka Tracers for the easy days. Thanks Faubs.
GM Well, once the University releases you from its clutches, you’ll be free to explore the wonders of 361 Degrees and it’s fast and soft Quikfoam technology.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
CW I have been having nightmares of snakes ever since I was chased by two cottonmouths at our neighborhood pond. Luckily, my hamstrings were not as tight as they are today, and I managed to outrun those pit vipers.

cottonmouth

GM Who is your favorite professional athlete of all time?
CW My high school coach, two-time Olympian Alan Culpepper, taught me how to “man up” and be comfortable with being uncomfortable. I know he always has my back and I couldn’t be happier with the influence he has had over me both as a runner and young man. Also, I swear I’m not a fanboy, but it’s hard not to root for Scott Fauble these days. He’s doing big things <3
GM I feel you have hijacked this interview and turned it into a love letter to Scott Fauble.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
CW I strongly dislike when people hold their sneezes in! Your body is trying to clear itself out, and by holding your nose and mouth shut you are essentially denying your body its necessary means to function normally. I will definitely judge the individual and things may never be the same if I witness such an atrocity.

GM What is your favorite accessory carried by PRC?
CW The high white women’s Stance socks that say “HARD WORK” only because we don’t have any white men’s Stance socks and frankly, I’m a controversial dude.

GM What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
CW Continuing on with my trend of questionable tastes, I will have vanilla nine out of 10 times. If I get too far out of this creative box, I am often left eating a honey ham with gravy flavor at Salt & Straw pondering the real purpose of life and why [Connor’s teammate and coworker] Will Baker-Robinson still doesn’t have a girlfriend.

Connor courting controversy during a recent visit to the Portland Art Museum.

Connor courting controversy during a recent visit to the Portland Art Museum.

GM Abracadabra or Hocus-Pocus? Explain.
CW Abracadabra only because it sounds a lot like that spell in the Harry Potter movies. Maybe I’m just a tough movie critic, but I watched Hocus Pocus in a middle school class and it came close to ruining my childhood.
GM Hocus Pocus in class? Fort Worth must have high educational standards.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
CW “Stop feeling sorry for yourself. You are so much stronger than you think you are.” –my mom.
GM I would listen to her. After all, she did give birth to Baby Huey.

 
 

Greg Mitchell once made an unassisted triple play in Gresham Little League. Email [email protected]
12 Questions: Larry Julson
  • Knowing the Futures 100%

12 Questions: Larry Julson

Footwear Category Manager

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Larry “LJ” Julson, who is the footwear category manager at Portland Running Company. Larry grew up in Michigan and graduated from Grand Valley State University with a degree in marketing and distribution logistics. During his time at GVSU, Larry ran for the Lakers’ track and cross-country teams, earning All-America honors in track. Prior to joining PRC, Larry was a manager at Striders Running Store in Grandville, MI. In addition to running, Larry likes to climb, camp, hike and spend time with his dogs and best girl, Alison. However, Larry is currently training to run a 50 mile race, so he will be doing none of these other things any time soon.

[Editor’s note: Larry completed said 50-mile race, so now he has nothing but time on his hands.]

Larry before his first 50-miler.

Larry before his first 50-miler.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Larry Julson I was born in Charlotte, Michigan.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
LJ Potterville High School and we were the Vikings.

GM What was your first pet? What was its name?
LJ A bearded dragon named Spyro.
GM That’s a pretty ambitious first pet.

Spyro, is that you?

Spyro, is that you?

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment?
LJ Getting disqualified from a cross country race for swearing at the finish line.
GM Holy $*&#! That’s terrible.

GM What is your current training shoe?
LJ My current shoe is the Saucony Kinvara.
GM Aha! Lightweight. Responsive. Low offset. Sounds like you’re in the market for a pair of 361º Chasers.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes?
LJ Neither. Snakes and clowns serve a vital role in our ecosystem by ridding us of small rodents that might otherwise pass on infectious diseases.
GM Man, I hope there aren’t any clowns out there reading these interviews.

GM Who is the most famous person you have ever met?
LJ Abdi Abdirahman, aka the Black Cactus. I was in the Los Angeles airport, arriving for the Olympic Marathon Trials, when I saw this tall figure huddled over a wall outlet. I saw a USA roller bag and my interest was piqued. I approached, and to my amazement I found that it was the Black Cactus himself. I moved in and made awkward conversation with him like we knew each other, even though we had never previously met.

Larry, center, in his homage-to-Pre days.

Larry, center, powered by Poutine.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
LJ Bottled water. The environmental impacts are irreversible.
GM Says the guy who bought styrofoam plates at 7-Eleven for our last staff pizza feed.

GM If you could travel back in time, what timeframe would you choose? Why?
LJ I would travel back to the Western Expansion era, approximately 1829–1859. This is right at the height of the California gold rush and westward pioneers were exploring new lands everyday. Our country was just establishing itself and drawing what would become some of it’s final boundaries.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
LJ Henry’s Tavern. Their Poutine Waffle Fries are incredible.

GM Unicycle or Tricycle? Explain.
LJ Tricycle. This is the only reason I need:

 

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
LJ “Just don’t quit.” –Greg Mitchell

 

 

Greg Mitchell coaches fast runners, runs fast, works at PRC, and dispenses advice to anyone within earshot. Email [email protected]

12 Questions: Riley Wattier
  • Keeping an Even Keel 100%

12 Questions: Riley Wattier

Sale-or

Our “12 Questions” series continues with a look at Riley Wattier (pronounced “Wah-tea-ay”—at least by me).  He comes to PRC after graduating recently from Arizona State University with a degree in Religious Studies. Refer to his arm-sleeve tattoo for more information on some of the topics covered in his classes. Outside of the classroom, he was a member of the Sun Devils’ track and cross country teams while in Tempe. Additionally, Riley has significant running specialty experience having worked for four years at Fitness Sports, Iowa’s largest running store (and possibly Iowa’s worst website). You can find Riley working at both our Beaverton and Portland locations.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

 

Riley without his glasses. More on that later.

Riley without his glasses. More on that later.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Riley Wattier I was born in good ol’ Phoenix, Arizona.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
RW I actually went to two high schools. My first two years I went to Roosevelt and we were the Roughriders, and my last two years I went to Waukee and we were the Warriors.

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment?
RW Goodness. I’ve had some doozies. I’m not sure. I would probably say my freshman year of college. I went into the conference meet with the second fastest 5k seed time by quite a margin. I had run that in early February and this was May. So I was pretty confident and sort of let my mouth roll a bit to some people. Long, ridiculous story later, I finished in 12th place with my slowest 5k time of my career. To this day I don’t know what the time exactly was. But I know what it said with two laps to go and I didn’t look at the clock again. I would have been finishing 5 seconds slower than in my February race and I still had 800 to go. Eesh.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Why?
RW I have not been to a restaurant in Portland before. Seems crazy, I know. But I have gone out and tried quite a bit of beer. My favorite place to hang out and drink is Growler Guys. It’s small, simple, has a crazy amount of beer on tap, and encourages you to bring in food from the other restaurants that are nearby. Chips and guac from the Mexican restaurant nearby make this a nice place. It’s also right around the corner from a bowling alley-brewery thing.
GM I’m a little worried that you can name a place to get “a crazy amount of beer,” but not a place to eat actual food.

Dining out is hard.

Dining out is hard.

GM What is your current training shoe?
RW I have run in Nike Vomero for the last 3 years. Have really enjoyed those quite a bit. It’s still a pretty light feeling shoe with good room in the toe box, and since I pretend I have 80-year-old legs the extra cushion is such a nice plus.
GM Extra cushioning is great. No doubt, you’d like the cushioning provided by Quikfoam which is present in all 361 Degrees shoes. Slide into a pair. It’s like having a sheetah* on both feet: soft and fast.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
RW Seriously no brainer for me. SNAKES. I can’t even stand grass snakes that don’t bite and aren’t venomous. I was running in the trails in Tempe and we saw a snake. The thing turned and slithered up the tree! The most frightening experience of my life. There is nowhere to hide from those things! I didn’t run on that trail for the rest of the semester. If there is a hole in the ground my mind guarantees me it’s a snake hole. If the bushes rattle. Snake. If it’s dark in my house in the middle of the night. Snake on the floor. I run without my glasses on, and every stick is a potential snake. I’m afraid some snake is going to be camouflaged and I’ll think it’s like a pair of headphones and then boom. Dead. But I have absolutely zero problem with clowns. Never understood that one.
GM …But how do you really feel about snakes?

GM You can be a character in any movie, who do you choose to be? Why?
RW Definitely Denzel Washington in The Equalizer. That is the most insane movie character ever. He single handedly takes on the government, the police, the Russian mob, the Italian mob, and all their armed mercenaries. And he’s doing it for a cause. All the while reading all the books on his 100 book list. And he never sleeps. Also, he’s a local at a diner. There is no greater feeling than being a local at a diner. You walk in and they just give you your “usual.” If I could accomplish anything in my life it would be achieving the “usual” status at a local diner.
GM I was a local diner at Jake’s Deli in McMinnville. I’d walk in and they’d make me a turkey sandwich on French roll without a word…. It was a special feeling. Unfortunately, Jake’s was recently transformed into a marijuana dispensary. Suffice it to say, I don’t have a “usual” there….

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
RW Hmmm. I’m not exactly sure…. I will choose not to answer for the time being. And then later be kicking myself when I think of some incredibly annoying thing.

GM What is your favorite breakfast cereal?
RW With milk: I’m so boring. I love Oatmeal Almond Crisp. It really has everything. Don’t knock it till you try it. Without milk: Cookie Crisp. Definitely could sit and watch the Cubs win with a box of Cookie Crisp on my lap. Yes, that was a plug about how amazing the Cubs are. Get on board. If you like the Cubs I already like you more.

GM As a recent transplant, what do you consider the “weirdest” thing about Portland?
RW I haven’t really explored Portland too much. I don’t have a great answer for this one. That’s two I didn’t really have answer for…. Sorry!
GM Well, I can tell you about a new pet-peeve I have.

GM Paper clip or rubber band? Explain.
RW I think the paper clip is the most pointless invention ever. And let’s be honest: You can hold a paper clip and frown. But there is no one in the world that can make the Batmobile with a rubber band and not smile. Competition over.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
RW Best advice. Hmmm. My college coach used to always stress emotional stability. He always stressed no roller coasters. That really big highs can be just as hard to bounce back from as really big lows. That it’s okay to enjoy things and be happy. And it’s okay to get down. But 95% of the time you need to just be emotionally consistent. That’s the best way to get your work done and accomplish everything. Being able to stay level-headed will get you so much more in life than not. You can stay focused and you will achieve your goals that much faster. I think that was great for running, but I also think it is great for a lot of other parts of life.

Hooray! Now calm down.

Hooray! Now calm down.

 

*Half sheep, half cheetah.

 

Greg Mitchell coaches runners, runs fast, works at PRC, raises a child, and cultivates bonsai.

12 Questions: Brent MacDermot
  • Mellowing the Weekend Vibe 100%

12 Questions: Brent MacDermot

Coach, Teacher, Uncle

Our “12 Questions” series gets back on track with a look at local running and coaching legend Brent MacDermot. Brent has worked at Portland Running Company since the summer of 2003. In addition to semi-frequent weekend shifts at the Beaverton store, Brent helps with course planning and marking for all PRC and Run With Paula races. A retired middle-school science teacher, Brent has coached college, high school and middle school runners for decades. Currently you’ll find him with stopwatch and clipboard at the ready at Hazelbrook Middle School in Tualatin. When not posting photos of himself at far-flung exotic locations on Facebook, Brent and his dog Murray are busy building a cross-country course on his property in Estacada.

Interview by Greg Mitchell

Brent and fellow trail-builder Murray.

Brent and fellow trail-builder Murray.

Greg Mitchell: In what city and state were you born?
Brent MacDermot: San Bernardino, CA , but I moved to Oregon well before it was fashionable…way back in the last century.

GM: What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
BM: I went to South Eugene High School. The mascot is the Axmen. This comes from Eugene being a big timber town when the school was formed. It was the original high school in Eugene. When I went to school there we should have been the Hippies.

GM: What was the year, make and model of your first car?
BM: My first car was a 1972 Pontiac LeMans. V-8 engine. In 1975 gas cost 32 cents a gallon, so a huge engine was no big thing. His name was Robespierre. For our woefully uneducated youth, Maximilien François Marie Isidore de Robespierre was a French lawyer and politician and one of the best-known and most influential figures of the French Revolution.
GM: The name of my first car was “Blue Thunder.” Kind of the same thing.

GM: What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area? Why?
BM: My favorite restaurant is Chez Jose on Terwilliger. Lime chicken enchiladas…. ’nuff said.

GM: What is your current training shoe?
BM: I wear the Saucony Guide, the right combination of weight, stack height, and light motion control.
GM: Next up for Coach MacDermot, the Strata by 361 Degrees. Now that PRC is carrying the 361 brand at the Scholls location where you work, you’ll have ample time to discover what you’ve been missing.

GM: What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
BM: Science teachers aren’t afraid of anything. Snakes are our friends.
GM: You say that, but I know you’ve got to still have nightmares involving middle schoolers, Bunsen burners, and flammable chemicals.

GM: What is your fondest coaching memory?
BM: The excitement of watching Meghan Armstrong round the curve with 200 meters to go in the 3000, take the lead, and pull away down the stretch for her first of six state championships for Tualatin HS. It came at a cost though. I wore a full beard at that time, and that evening I had the terror of a band of high school tracksters taking turns shaving it off. I had worn a beard for 16 years. Sigh.

Brent, Meghan Armstrong, and her parents. Now Meghan Peyton, she runs professionally for Saucony Team USA Minnesota.

Brent, Meghan Armstrong, and her parents. Now Meghan Peyton, she runs professionally for Saucony and Team USA Minnesota.

GM: What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
BM: People who move here from California and continue to drive like they are still in SoCal. If you wanted to drive like that you should have never moved here people!

GM: Who is the most famous person you have ever met?
BM: I once ran a workout at Hayward field while Pre was running his, but we didn’t speak so I suppose that doesn’t count. Jim Ryun, Frank Shorter, Rosalynn Carter after she was First Lady.
GM: Okay, now you’re just name-dropping….

Brent, Frank Shorter, and Jim Ney at the Portland Marathon Expo.

Brent, Frank Shorter, and Jim Ney at the Portland Marathon Expo.

GM: What is the most drastic change you have seen in the Portland running scene over the past few decades?
BM: Races have gone from being races to being events. Now it is more about the costumes, food, finisher medals, and music. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing as participation has skyrocketed. Anything that can get more people out and moving is good.

Hood To Coast 1988. When beards were earnest, not ironic. Brent is second from left, top row.

Hood To Coast 1988. When beards were earnest, not ironic. Brent is second from left, top row.

GM: Neil Young or Neil Diamond? Explain.
BM: Oh, tough one! You expected Neil Young as a given, but “Sweet Caroline” and “Holly Holy” are great songs. However, “Long May You Run” puts Neil Young over the top.
GM: I get the impression that you came to this final conclusion lounging in your recliner after placing some old vinyl albums on your record player.

GM: What is the best advice you have ever received?
BM: Running advice: My college coach, Alf Harrer, was a student of the sport. He knew Bill Bowerman, and my team got one of the very early versions of the waffle shoes. Alf’s advice to us: “Run 5 quick steps past the top of a hill. Everyone slows down at the top. If you don’t, you can gap them.”

Life advice: Enjoy your job. Don’t just go to work and punch in and clock out. For me as a teacher, it meant getting involved in the kids lives in sports, after school activities, and talking to them outside of class. The teachers who do that are the ones kids will remember long after they have left.

Brent is second from left, second row up, in this Beloit XC photo.

Brent is second from left, second row up, in this Beloit XC photo.

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell coaches runners, works at PRC, and trains to add to his collection of masters national championships.
12 Questions: Alison Modafferi
  • Trailblazing 100%

12 Questions: Alison Modafferi

Aspiring Mini Driver

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Alison “One L” Modafferi, who has joined the PRC family for the summer. She moved to the PNW from Michigan to attend George Fox University and work on obtaining her doctorate of physical therapy. She just completed her first year there, so we’re hoping to squeeze a couple more summers out of her before she graduates. She comes to us with significant run retail experience, having worked for three years at New Balance in Grand Rapids, MI. Alison was a collegiate lacrosse player at Grand Valley State University, so she and Henry will likely participate in weird lacrosse-related rituals. Alison will be working almost exclusively at our Beaverton store.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

 

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Alison Modafferi I was born in Milford, Michigan.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
AM I attended Milford High School. Which was located in Highland, MI, which doesn’t make any sense. The mascot was originally a Redskin, but it had to be changed to a Maverick.

GM What was the year, make and model of your first car?
AM My first car was a 2007 Chevy Trailblazer, which was the only thing my dad felt was safe enough for me to drive in the winter. Which is why I have the same car now.
GM Your 2007 Chevy Trailblazer should offer the horsepower necessary to successfully navigate the impressive puddles of a typical Portland winter.

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?
AM I was running down the sidewalk of a very busy road near my old university with my dog a few years ago and tripped on the sidewalk, fell, scraped my knee, and almost pulled my dog down with me.

It started out so nicely....

It started out so nicely….

 

GM What is your current training shoe?
AM Saucony Triumph, forever and always.
GM Forever and always, that is, until you try the Chaser by 361 Degrees.
[Editor’s note: Yesterday Greg was raving about the NB 1400, so take his endorsements with a grain of salt.]

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
AM Clowns. The smiles are too unnatural.

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Alison and Larry, smiling, naturally.

 

GM What is your favorite TV series of all time?
AM My favorite TV series is Dexter. It’s funny, serious, and dramatic all in one!

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve? Explain.
AM Unnecessary swearing. There is no need for that.
GM So #@&%ing true.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
AM I don’t have one yet. Any suggestions?
GM Yes. I suggest you find a boyfriend who takes you out to nice places for dinner (just kidding, Larry).
[Editor’s note: Rob Conner, Amelia Bryan, and Jessie Rubin all like Proper Eats, but their bumper stickers include unnecessary swearing, which might not sit well with you.]

Sanitized for your protection by PRC. Eat clean.

Sanitized for your protection by PRC. Eat clean.

 

GM What would you like the epitaph on your tombstone to read?
AM “Work to live, don’t live to work.”

GM Minnie Mouse or Mini Cooper? Explain.
AM Mini Cooper. I don’t really know why, but I choose Mini Cooper.
GM Well, you may not be welcome at Disneyland any longer.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
AM “You do you.” I was told that minutes before my PT school interview at George Fox, and because of that, I was myself, and got a position in the class.

 

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell lives in McMinnville. His favorite style of music is “oompah.”
12 Questions: Jessie Rubin
  • Going Nowhere (Fast!) 100%

12 Questions: Jessie Rubin

Water Strider

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Jessie Rubin, who is a familiar face at both PRC locations. She was a multiple-time XC and track state champion in Maryland and was an outstanding collegiate runner at Duke University. Jessie moved west to pursue her running aspirations and to find a way to put her marketing degree to good use. She’s currently nursing an injury in her foot, which has allowed her some down time to develop a youth running program. Let it be known that her spirit animal is the ring-tailed lemur. In her spare time, she also likes to do stuff like this: The Track Touch.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Jessie Rubin I was born in Baltimore, MD. Have you seen “The Wire?”
GM I have not seen “The Wire,” but I’m guessing it is set in Baltimore.
[Editor’s note: Dude, Greg. Seriously?! Get thee to a couch, posthaste.]

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
JR I attended Thomas S. Wootton High School. We were the Patriots. I was sad because I wanted to be some cool animal instead of a silly man wearing a silly coat.
GM And Paul Revere just rolled over in his grave….

For height comparison.

For height comparison.

GM If you could choose one superhero power, what would it be? Why?
JR The ability to not get injured, particularly in my navicular bone. Just kidding, but that would actually be great. Besides that, flying. To effortlessly soar above the earth would be incredible, and I would spend so much less time on Facebook. This is kind of a sore topic though. I had many an existentialist crisis realizing and accepting that I can never fly (on my own).

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?
JR Speaking of sore topics, perhaps “The Burrito Mile” during my sophomore year of high school. The objective is to eat a one pound burrito as fast as you can, and then proceed to run a mile, as fast as you can. On the second lap, I was on the ground re-formulating my own burrito. There were some EMT guys sitting in their ambulance laughing at me, which was nice. Oh, and the burritos were from Qdoba, so I thoroughly enjoyed dining at our last staff meeting.

GM What is your current training shoe?
JR Well, technically my current shoe is an aqua jogging shoe. When running, I use the Asics GT-2000. If I ever return to running, however, my 2000s may be up against some competition against the 361 Degree Stratas. I haven’t run in them yet, but I just keep hearing so much about them…
GM It’s crazy. Almost every time I do a staff interview someone is talking about the 361 Degree brand we’re now carrying at our Grand location. Those Stratas have Quikfoam in the midsole, which is both soft and fast. Much like a cross between a sheep and a cheetah. A sheetah.

Jessie, in less-injured times.

Jessie, in less-injured times.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
JR Clowns. Read about the Uncanny Valley here.
GM Aha! This “Uncanny Valley” business might help explain why we all love R2D2, but want to throw C3PO into a trash compactor.

GM What is your “go to” karaoke song? Why?
JR Hmmm. Probably Santeria by Sublime. My voice doesn’t go super high, so this is a fun yet not overly-played song within my range.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
JR The sound of people chewing and chomping. Rawr.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
JR If we judge based this on number of total visits, I’d say the Whole Foods hot bar. Otherwise, I really like Proper Eats in St. Johns. I’m not vegan, but they craft delicious and satiating plant-based meals.

Not a vegan, yet.

Not a vegan, yet.

GM You just won the lottery. What do you do with the money?
JR Probably pay the medical bills for the heart attack caused by shock and disbelief. The rest will go to taxes.
GM Well, that’s a fun answer.

GM Justin Bieber or Justin Timberlake? Explain.
JR Depends on what I am doing to them.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
JR To authentically do what is right and control what you can, and let go of the rest. You cannot control the thoughts, feelings, or actions of others.

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell has two decades of coaching experience and three years of work at PRC under his belt.

 

12 Questions: Chad Linnerooth
  • Being In Tents 110%

12 Questions: Chad Linnerooth

Events Manager

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Chad Linnerooth, who currently fills the role of Community Outreach Coordinator and Events Manager at Portland Running Company. Chad graduated from Linfield College in 2015 with a degree in exercise science before joining the team here at PRC. While at Linfield, he was an integral part of the cross country and track and field programs, where he was an all-conference performer in the 1500 meters. He recently finished his first marathon in which he “felt good through about 16 miles.” Around PRC he is known for his high energy, tremendous work ethic and propensity to pass out arbitrary and meaningless “Demerit Slips” to fellow staff members (mostly Larry and Dylan).

Interview by Greg Mitchell. Hero image ©Win Goodbody.

 

Chad, with his mom, center, and brother, left.

Chad, with his mom, center, and brother, left.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Chad Linnerooth I was born at St. Vincent’s hospital here in Portland, Oregon! After 18 months of my life, my family moved up to Washington. I would have gone to Lakeridge High School if we stayed. I don’t remember much of this.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
CL I went to Cedarcrest High School in Duvall, Washington. Red Wolves!

GM You’re stranded on an island. What fictional character would you like with you?
CL Arwen from Lord of the Rings.  Mostly just because we would be stranded together…. When Aragorn first met her, he was about my age. However, she was somewhere north of 2,700 years old (Elves don’t age). Which gave her plenty of time to learn how to survive on an island. She is also supposedly the most attractive Elf in Middle Earth. I don’t mind pointy ears. Hopefully Aragorn is out of the picture.
GM I feel like maybe you’ve given this a bit too much thought…

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?
CL I have a hard time thinking of a specific moment. When I was a child, I played on a youth basketball team. I was great at practice! I’d run around, shoot, pass, the whole package. During games I just played hot potato. As soon as a teammate passed me the ball, I would pass it away immediately. Afraid of failure, I guess.

Because Larry (over Chad's left shoulder) loves this photo.

Because Larry (over Chad’s left shoulder) loves this photo.

GM What is your current training shoe?
CL I mainly run in the Brooks Launch and Nike Pegasus. Great shoes. I’d love to log a couple hundred miles in the 361 Degrees Chasers, if you want to give me yours, Greg.
GM It remains to be seen if you can handle the softness and fastness of the “sheetah.”

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
CL When I was in early high school, I went to a haunted house with some friends. Part way through, a clown jumped out to scare us! My friend, who was under 5 feet and weighed less than 100 lbs., was very scared! His first reaction was to punch the clown in the face. He absolutely decked this guy, and the clown went down. That was the only time I have run from a clown. Snakes are a lot scarier when you get in their space and they jump out at you!

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Chad is no stranger to going FKW for the big race. Unfortunate choice, this one.

GM What is your least favorite mode of transportation?
CL Donkey. I rode a donkey once. It was slow and smelly.
GM Sounds like TriMet.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
CL Hard to nail it down. At PRC I hate it when all the Sticks and Addadays end up on the same bench. When I’m running it bugs me when people don’t wave back to me. Larry and Dylan know how much I love smiling and waving at other runners and drivers! Also, it’s annoying when other pedestrians do not share the sidewalk with me at all and force me to step in the grass or road. I don’t wave to them.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
CL My favorite restaurant is ¿Porque no? I really like Mexican food.

GM What famous person do you think you look like?
CL My brother insists that I look like Derrick Rose. I am not sold. Greg says that I look like Mac Fleet. That makes more sense.
GM You decide:

ChadLookalike

GM Carmelo Anthony or Susan B. Anthony. Explain.
CL I’ll go with Carmelo Anthony on this one.
GM Probably a good call. Though she was an integral part of the suffrage movement and vital to the development of our nation, I bet Susan never could drain a three.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
CL It is very important to “buy in” to your training program and coaching. Having faith that your program and coaches will help you achieve your goals is half the battle. It is too bad that I was buying into Greg Mitchell…. Big mistake.
[Editor’s Note: Yikes. No wonder it’s been tense at the store lately.]

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell coaches distance runners and works at Portland Running Company. He is one of the nation’s best masters runners, as well.
12 Questions: Alex Mangan
  • Painting the Corners 21%

12 Questions: Alex Mangan

Tennis the Menace

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Alex Mangan, who has recently joined the PRC family and will be working at the Scholls location. He joins the team as a 2016 Linfield College graduate, where he earned a degree in business with a minor in sports marketing. He was also a varsity cross country and track & field athlete during his years as a Wildcat, garnering multiple all-conference honors in cross country. Beyond XC and T&F, he enjoys tennis and deep water running.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

This is Alex.

This is Alex.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Alex Mangan I was born in Lebanon, Oregon, but I grew up in Klamath Falls down in southern Oregon.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
AM I graduated from Henley High School, and we were the Hornets. Our notable alumni include Dan O’Brien…and that’s about it.

GM You just won an all-expense paid trip to anywhere in the world. Where do you go?
AM With Rio just around the corner I feel like I’d be crazy to not go there and watch the Olympics. If that wasn’t in the cards though, it would have to be England. I really want to watch Wimbledon at some point in my life and see Fed win another major.
GM I think you’ll have travel back in time to see Federer win another major.

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?
AM This is a two-part answer. The first would be that I chose not to run track my freshman year of college to play tennis. While my decision may not have been that embarrassing, my 1-21 singles record my freshman year definitely was. My first year of track and field was my junior year. My first ever track race was a 5,000m at George Fox University. I had to ask my team where the start line was and the official how many laps the race was (turns out it’s 12 and a half). The other runners thought I was really dumb….

332951_4230023704178_1803723497_o

I hope he got the sign that means “don’t serve into my brain stem.”

GM What is your current training shoe?
AM I’m currently on a little bit of an injury forced hiatus from running and am sporting a very chic Top Shelf walking boot. However, I’m a diehard supporter of the Asics Gel-Kayano. Especially the Gel-Kayano 22.
GM Sounds like you could use something both soft and fast. You know, like a sheetah (half sheep, half cheetah). 361 Degrees makes something along those lines.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
AM Snakes. I think it just looks super unnatural whenever they move, and it freaks me out. The only thing worse than seeing snakes would have to be seeing them on a plane…. On a completely unrelated note, I am terrified of geese and large birds. I’ve had a few bad run-ins with them that I would rather not relive.

GM What is your favorite TV series of all time?
AM I absolutely love the first season of “Prison Break.” After season one though, it begins a rapid decline until its inevitable end.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
AM I really hate cell phone ringtones. I just think that they’re super annoying and go off at the most inopportune times. In a perfect world everyone’s phones are permanently on vibrate.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
AM I actually haven’t spent a lot of time in Portland, but I really like Tequila Grill in McMinnville, if you want to count that.
GM As a McMinnvillian myself,  I’ll allow it, but I’m pretty sure all of the foodies of Portland just rolled their eyes and shook their heads disapprovingly.

GM What’s your favorite animal to see at the zoo?
AM I really like sharks and whales. When I was really young I wanted to be a whale trainer at Sea World. However, this dream was crushed when I found out I am a very underwhelming swimmer….
GM I guess when I said, “zoo” you heard “aquarium.”

GM High-Five or Fist-Bump? Explain.
AM High-five. A fist-bump just doesn’t bring you the same satisfaction that a high-five brings you after a really exciting moment. Plus, I hate when I go for a fist-bump and the other person goes for the high-five (or vise versa), so I stick with the classic high-five.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
AM One of my college running coaches would often give out sage wisdom for us lowly runners. Something that always resonated with me was that nothing in life comes quickly. It takes a lot of time (and often a lot of miles) to achieve your goals, and you should enjoy the process that gets you there as much as the results at the end.
GM He sounds like a very wise man.

AlexAndGreg

Alex, taking advice.

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell coaches distance runners and works at PRC, where he is Director Of Running Knowledge.
12 Questions: Kerri Lyons
  • X-Ray Vision 100%

12 Questions: Kerri Lyons

OD 2B

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Kerri Lyons. She’s a recent hire who will see time at both Grand and Scholls. While new to the PRC payroll, Kerri has been a regular at our Tuesday track nights and Sunday group runs since she arrived in Portland last summer after a transcontinental drive from Connecticut. You’ll want to keep an “eye” on her as she is currently working on her optometry degree at Pacific University as well a masters of education that focuses on vision function and learning in the classroom. A speedy runner with impressive credentials, Kerri is currently focused on “enjoying the sport,” which for her means a track workout one day and a trail 50k the next. Outside of the running realm, Kerri claims to be skilled at both foosball and doodling.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

Kerri and some teammates after Shamrock this year.

Kerri and some teammates after Shamrock this year.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Kerri Lyons I was born in good ol’ Wilton, Connecticut.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
KL I went to Wilton High School. We were the Warriors.

GM What was your first pet? What was its name?
KL My first pet was an unnamed fish that—believe it or not—my sister ended up eating! We decided she couldn’t be a vegetarian.
GM Thank goodness your first pet wasn’t a hamster.

GM You’re stranded on an island. What fictional character would you like with you?
KL Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes. So much Calvinball. Plus, if we got hungry Spaceman Spiff could probably find us Chocolate-Frosted Sugar Bombs.

GM What is your current training shoe?
KL I’ve recently been swept off my feet by the Brooks Launch 3.
GM Ah, but wait until the Chaser by 361 Degrees comes knocking on your door. It’ll be love at first sight. So soft. So fast. Like a sheetah (half sheep, half cheetah).

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
KL Clowns. Snakes just want to sleep in the sun and eat a lot…. You’re never sure of a clown’s motives.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
KL The Bye and Bye! Despite not being a vegetarian I always appreciate giant bowls of vegan-hipster awesome.
GM I guess you’ll have to dine elsewhere when your pescatarian sister comes to town.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
KL I’m hard to annoy, but I’ve considered if “Peeve” would make a good name for my first dog.
GM Ha! I get it. “This is my pet, Peeve.”

GM What is your favorite time of day?
KL My favorite time of day is dawn. When I’m up then, it usually means I’m up to some sort of good trouble, or that it is almost time for coffee.

GM What is your favorite sound?
KL Falling snow.

Kerri peeved about running at dawn.

Kerri peeved about running at dawn.

 

GM Sasquatch or Yeti. Explain.
KL Oh dear, this is like trying to pick my favorite ice cream flavor…. Can I do a split scoop?
GM I had no idea you were such a fan of mythological creatures. Perhaps you should scrap the optometry and get a degree in cryptozoology instead. Let me know what you find out about the sheetah.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
KL “First pants, then shoes.” – Gary Larson

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell coaches distance runners and works at PRC. He is really taken with those new emoji things. Have you seen them?

12 Questions: Paul Brisentine
  • Cultivating Personal Growth 100%

12 Questions: Paul Brisentine

Teacher Man

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Paul Brisentine. Paul joined PRC in 2013 after fleeing his native California where he was a teacher and worked in a run specialty shop. He has been a key team member at our Grand location ever since. Paul graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in psychology and is currently finishing up his master’s of education at Portland State University. In his spare time, Paul plays in a band, trains for marathons, and nurtures his prodigious facial hair.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

GM In what city and state were you born?
PB I was born in Mountain View, CA, although I grew up in San Ramon, CA. I do not go out of my way to proclaim that up here.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
PB I went to California High School. I promise you I’m not making that up. Proud home of the Fightin’ Grizzlies.
GM That’s right next door to the Hotel California, right?

GM What was the year, make and model of your first car?
PB Biege 1996 four-door Toyota Camry, which happens to still be my current car. It’s the stuff dreams are made of. I think it runs on unicorn tears.
GM My parents’ Camry runs on unleaded gasoline. Do you have the LE model?

GM What is your current training shoe?
PB My current shoe is the Saucony Triumph. I’m a huge fan of the Isofit and the Everrun, as well as the stretchy flat laces. At my first PRC staff meeting in October of 2013, I told everyone that my favorite shoe was the Triumph 9, and everyone thought I was an idiot. But now this shoe is back and better than ever before.
GM Word on the street is that everyone on staff is saying that they can’t believe “that idiot Paul” isn’t wearing the Chaser from 361 Degrees. They feel fast and soft, kind of like this “sheetah”:

TechBanner

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
PB Clowns. I live across the street from Soundgrounds Coffee shop, and every Wednesday morning they have a kids’ show featuring Portland’s resident clowns, Olive and Dingo. They’re quite odd. They ride super tall bikes and do tricks with rubber chickens. I’ve accidentally wandered in there too many times and am a bit traumatized.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
PB Fancy occasion? Nostrana or Roost, both quite close to PRC-Grand. Casual evening? Teote near 12th and Hawthorne. They have amazing Venezuelan food with an awesome patio.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
PB When customers turn the shoes the wrong way on the wall. It creates an eyesore. That being said, not too much bothers me.
GM “Not much bothers me” …Other than when people touch the running shoes at the running store.

GM If you had a band, what would you call it? What type of music would it play?
PB Funny you should ask… I play in a band called Space Shark. Silly name, but some serious rock ‘n’ roll. 
GM You’re welcome.

PaulRealGuitar

GM What is your favorite breakfast cereal?
PB My favorite is Golden Grahams, Cinnamon Toast Crunch’s less-popular cousin. But seriously, Golden Grahams are delicious, dry or with milk. Try to eat just one handful, I dare you.
GM Are you hearing this, Corey?

GM What would you like the epitaph on your tombstone to read?
PB “This is on me.” I like to be straightforward.

GM Bill Bowerman or Bill Gates. Explain.
PB Bowerman. I’m a proud UO alumnus. Go Ducks!

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
PB “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.” That’s from Tony Sanchez, my high school football coach. He now coaches at UNLV. Essentially, when faced with a massive challenge, just tackle it little by little. That’s all you can do. By the way, I am in no way condoning eating elephants. It’s a metaphor.

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell works at PRC and coaches at Linfield College.
12 Questions: Dylan Dougherty
  • Issuing Demerits 100%
  • Scheduling Conflicts 100%

12 Questions: Dylan Dougherty

Beaverton Store Manager

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Dylan Dougherty. Dylan is the store manager at the Beaverton location. He is also assistant accessories buyer and handles filling most online orders on the PRC web store. Dylan (pronounced “Die-Lawn,” as in, the five greatest rappers of all time) moved from upstate New York to Oregon in February of 2014, where he was immediately hired by PRC thanks in large part to his vast retail experience in sporting goods. During the past two-and-a-half years, he has morphed from a casual fan of running to a passionate student of the sport. His favorite runner is Emma Coburn.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.   

Dylan on a typical work day.

Dylan on a typical work day.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Dylan Dougherty I was born in Binghamton, NY. The Carousel Capital of the World, hometown to Rod Serling and the creator of a unique sandwich called the spiedie. It’s pretty much just skewered, marinated meat (usually chicken) on a piece of Italian bread, but it’s really good. And it’s apparently sacrilege to put ketchup or really any condiment on it. My grandpa used to always scold me for it. Well, he also scolded me for not liking bananas and for putting ketchup and mustard on my hotdog. He would tell me I was weird and that’s not how they would like me to do it in Brooklyn back in the 1930s.
GM I have the funny feeling that this is going to be a long interview based on the fact that my first question simply asked where you were born and it somehow digressed to you telling me about your dislike of bananas.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
DD I went to Susquehanna Valley High School. We were the Sabertooth Tigers. Sabers for short. An animal so fierce it went extinct.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
DD This is a hard question. Tilt is my first thought, though. The burgers are good, and the portions are large. Also, if you just walk over to the bar side you can skip the line to order food. Their fries are great and cheap and serve like five people, plus they have “Tilt Sauce,” which is super good. I always take a couple extra containers of it. I should also mention I’m a sucker for any themed weeks. Like this last week was “Portland Pizza Week.” Baby Doll Pizza has been an easy favorite.

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment?
DD In the sectional tennis tournament my senior year of high school, I came in pretty underrated. I won my first two matches of the day relatively easily. The third victory would have put me into the semi-finals and would’ve gotten me into the state qualifier tournament. We split the first two sets, and we were in a third set tiebreaker. I was pretty tired, having already played two full matches. I was up 6–1 in the tiebreaker (first to seven, win by two) and I dumped two volleys in a row into the net. I lost the next five points and lost the match. At least I didn’t score on the wrong team’s basket (see 12 Questions with Ryan Baxter for more on this).
GM It appears that you choked on your spiedie, so to speak.

GM What is your current training shoe?
DD Right now, I’ve been cycling through three. The Zealot from Saucony treats me well on most days. I wear the Hoka Challenger when I want to feel like I’m not actually running. The Nike Structure 19 is my new go-to long run shoe. If I was still running track workouts right now the New Balance Zante would be my shoe for that.
GM You could hit the track in the Zante or you could put the Chaser by 361 Degrees on your feet. I think you’d find it both “strange and beautiful,” much like this shee-tah:

Sheepah

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
DD The only thing we have to fear…is fear itself. Neither of these things are scary to me, and I’ll never understand why they’re always so terrifying to most others. If I was going to pick I would pick a snake, but I mean, only because there are some that are 40 feet long and could swallow me whole without chewing. But the chances I ever come across one of those guys is pretty low because they only live in places with 100% humidity all the time like rainforests and Florida, and I don’t ever plan to be there. I’m more afraid of Florida than I am of snakes or clowns.
GM From the sound of things, after “Portland Pizza Week” you may not have to worry about that 40-foot snake being able to swallow you whole….

Just like every pizza is personal, isn't every week 'Pizza Week'?

Just like every pizza is personal, isn’t every week ‘Pizza Week’?

GM Who is the most famous person you have ever met in person?
DD Well for you running enthusiasts, I met Hicham El Guerrouj once when working at PRC-Grand, although I didn’t know who he was until he left. He had a guy with him who was explaining to me who he was. He bought some GU in case you were wondering. I guess holding the world record in the mile is kind of a big deal. Oh, also the owner of Secret Aardvark Sauce came in for shoes once. Not a celebrity, but I was starstruck because that’s one of the best hot sauces in the world and it’s Portland made! Otherwise, probably some players for the NY Mets. We had a minor league Mets affiliate in Binghamton, so I’ve met plenty of them. Oh, and I shook Bill Clinton’s hand once. I don’t know if that counts as meeting, though.
GM I think it says a lot about you that meeting the former leader of the free world is an afterthought compared to meeting the creator of a hot sauce.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
[Editor’s note: My new one is verbosity.]
DD I try to not let anything get to me, but sure, there are a few things. One is basic grammar mistakes, especially when I am the one at fault. Does that make me my own pet-peeve? How about when someone uses way too much of a condiment, but then just leaves it on their plate instead of rinsing it off. I don’t even care, I’ll do your dishes for you as long as there aren’t eight servings of mixed-up ketchup and ranch dressing just left to sit on your plate. It’s disgusting, and I can’t figure out why. It takes like three seconds to turn the faucet on and rinse it off!
GM I definitely expected you to be someone else’s pet-peeve, but not your own.

GM If you could travel back in time, what era would you choose? Why?
DD Well, I’d love to say I would go back to the 60s/70s and go to Woodstock and listen to all the good music Katey Angel loves, or maybe go back to just before humans discovered how to make and control fire because how cool would it be to just learn about fire like that?! But, no, I would go back to August 30, 1998. This happens to be one day before my seventh birthday. I insisted my family went to the lake where my grandparents had a cottage in Pennsylvania for my party. My parents had played the same numbers in the lottery every drawing for however many years (some combination of their birthdates and anniversary), but they forgot to get a ticket before going to the lake. Guess what numbers were drawn that night? Yeah, the exact same ones my parents had always played. Guess who gets blamed every year on his birthday for stopping us from getting rich? Yeah, it’s me. So I would go back and get rich by the age of seven.
GM Such a sad story. Just think: You could have invested in Secret Aardvark Sauce!

Happier times at that very same lake.

Happier times at that very same lake.

GM What is your “go-to” song when you sing in the shower?
DD I generally don’t sing in the shower unless something is really stuck in my head, which may sound strange based on the fact that I’m not afraid to sing anywhere else, as everyone at the store knows. But I can guarantee if something is stuck in my head and I am singing it, it’s in my highest falsetto.

GM Frank Sinatra or Frankenstein? Explain.
DD Frank Sinatra all day. I have many of his albums in my music collection. He didn’t write most of his own songs, but his voice is perfect. Maybe I should be singing Sinatra in the shower? I like horror movies, but Frankenstein isn’t too exciting to me, and there’s too much general confusion over whether or not Frankenstein is the doctor or the monster. I know he is the doctor, but who wants to call it Frankenstein’s Monster? It’s too wordy to be scary.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
DD I honestly can’t remember. If I ever need advice I usually just Google around for an applicable cliché and live my life that way. I guess most importantly—it’s not really advice—but I learned from my mom to never take anything personally and to not worry much over anything I don’t control. I think I live by both of those standards pretty well. Especially the second one. I’m never afraid to make a joke about a situation instead of being concerned.

 

 

 

 

GREG MITCHELL WORKS AT PRC AND COACHES AT LINFIELD COLLEGE OMG!!!

Twelve Questions: Katey Angel
  • Laying Down the Bass Line 100%
  • Laying It Down on the Roads 100%

Twelve Questions: Katey Angel

Portland Original

Twelve Questions continues this week with a look at local legend Katey Angel. Katey has spent nearly 30 years working in running stores in the Portland area. Her tenure with PRC began a decade ago, and you can find her almost every day at PRC-Grand sharing her knowledge of all things running-related. When I asked about her post-high school education, she said she “graduated from the School of Hard Knocks.” One can only assume she earned her doctorate there. As if being the oracle of Portland running wasn’t enough, Katey is also a talented musician. She is currently playing the bass guitar in a duo with Alan Hager as well as with Bill Rhoades and the Party Kings. So whether her instrument of choice is a guitar or a pair of shoes, she’s helping make sweet music here in Portland.

Interview by Greg Mitchell. 

Katey has developed a large following over the years, like the pied piper.

Katey has developed a large following over the years.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Katey Angel I was born in Portland, Oregon.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
KA I went to Cleveland High School here in Portland. The mascot at the time was the Indians.

GM What is your favorite musical instrument? Explain.
KA I enjoy a lot of them. I started to play the trumpet in fourth grade and stopped after eighth grade. I am now playing the electric bass in a blues band and a duo with Alan Hager.
GM I wanted to play the trumpet in the fourth grade too! My mom made me take piano lessons instead. Stupid piano lessons.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
KA Portland has a lot of great restaurants! My favorite is the Taqueria Portland. They serve up a mean chicken burrito.

GM What is your current training shoe?
KA I have a whole closetful to choose from. In this business, it is easy to have a variety. Right now the Nike Free RN Distance mixed in with the Nike Lunar Tempo and the Hoka Clifton.
GM I know next time I ask you this you’ll say, “Chaser by 361 Degrees.” How do you not love a brand that has a mascot that looks like this?

Sheepah

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a…Cheepah?

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
KA No fear of either one. I try not to be fearful of anything. It is just a waste of energy.
GM The fact that you have no fear of either frightens me.

GM What has been your favorite race experience of all-time?
KA I have many, but the two that stand out are the 1986 Portland Marathon and the 1988 Olympic Trials that I ran in.
GM This is where I brag on your behalf that you won the 1986 Portland Marathon.

So, this happened.

So, this happened.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
KA Cell phones! The use of a cell phone with no regard for others in a place of business or a restaurant.
GM Sorry. What was that? I was on my phone.

GM Who is the most famous person you have ever met?
KA John Kay of the band Steppenwolf. You know, “Born to Be Wild.”

John Kay is the frontman. The guy in the front.

John Kay is the frontman. The guy in the front.

GM What is the most drastic change you have seen in the Portland running scene over the past few decades?
KA Lots of things have changed since I started running. There are more races to run. All the walking events now in conjunction with the running races. More people out there. The advent of chip timing. People wearing costumes.
GM I’ve seen race photos from the 1980s. Are you sure you weren’t wearing costumes?

GM Elevator or escalator?
KA I take the stairs. If no stairs, then the escalator.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
KA My own advice to myself… Listen to what people have to say and then make your own choice.

Greg Mitchell works at Portland Running Company and coaches at Linfield College. He is a masters runner, but Katey is in the supermasters division, so that must mean Katey > Greg.

12 Questions: Corey Mehl
  • Eating Quorn 50%
  • Listening to Korn 93%

12 Questions: Corey Mehl

Minister of Sport

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Corey Mehl, who can be found working away at both PRC locations. In addition to working at PRC, Corey is a track and cross country coach at Multnomah University in Portland. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Charleston in “The Dub V” and got his master’s in sports administration from the University of Louisville. He and his wife Kelly live here in Portland where Kelly enjoys eating a strict lactose-and-gluten-free vegan diet and Corey cooks for himself.

Interview by Greg Mitchell. 

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Corey Mehl I was born in the “Forgotten Borough” that is Staten Island, New York.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
CM From 2001 to 2005, I attended the lovely Bellefontaine (pronounced “bell-fountain,” no idea why) High School in Bellefontaine, Ohio. Home to the Chiefs and the first concrete street in America!

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment?
CM My freshman year (2006) at the University of Charleston (WV) doing the steeplechase for the first time.  It was snowing at Cedarville University, and it was freezing outside. They filled up the water pit minutes beforehand so it wouldn’t freeze.  I barely practiced the barriers before my first attempt at it and was doing fairly well the first mile. Then on the water pit barrier halfway through the race, I landed with too much forward momentum, fell face first into the track and smacked my head. After that, I just remember looking up in the infield at my coach not ever wanting to do the steeple again. My teammates later told me not only was it hilarious, but also that I swore very loudly and all the Christians at Cedarville instantly judged me as a terrible human being.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
CM Nicholas Restaurant because of their pizza-sized pita bread. Or Pizza Nostra on Fremont because of their pizza sized pizza.

GM What is your current training shoe?
CM Currently I’m running in the Brooks Adrenaline with a Sole insert. It’s been a solid replacement for my past love affair with the Brooks Addiction.
GM Sliding that Sole insert into an On Cloud might spark a new love affair.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
CM The infamous snake clown. Terrifying.

Doesn't seem too scary, really.

Actually kinda cute!

GM You can be a character in any movie, who do you choose to be?
CM Definitely Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter films. He’s a wizard, gets to be famous by association with Harry Potter, and then ends up with the beautiful Hermione Granger. I’m already a ginger so this is a no-brainer. Did I mention I get to do magic?
GM Wait, Ron ends up with Hermione?!? Talk about a spoiler.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
CM My wife doesn’t squeeze from the bottom of the toothpaste. It enrages me.

That must be toothpaste.

That must be Colgate.

GM What is your favorite breakfast cereal?
CM Sorry, but I don’t do cereal. Grosses me out. I’m an Eggo waffle kind of guy.
GM You don’t do cereal? What Soviet Bloc country are you from again?

GM As a recent transplant, what do you consider the “weirdest” thing about Portland?
CM Besides not being able to pump my own gas, probably the lack of car horns on the interstates. I’m from Ohio where bad drivers are raised. It’s normal to roll down the window and give drivers a piece of your mind. Here? The exact opposite. I think it actually makes me more angry being so nonchalant about getting cut off.
GM I tell you what, if you ever cut me off I’ll hold a tube of toothpaste out the window and squeeze from the top. That ought to give you a dose of that road rage you’re looking for.

GM Plaid or stripes?
CM Plaid. “Stripes” was a great movie though.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
CM I play by no one’s rules. Not even my own.

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell coaches at Linfield College and works at PRC. Email him if you need more hours.
12 Questions: Ryan Heal
  • Making PRC Y3K Compliant 110%

12 Questions: Ryan Heal

D.A.D. (Global)

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Ryan Heal, Portland Running Company’s Digital Assets Director (Global), which translates in this case to, “I can change anything Greg writes in this interview because I’m the one who puts it on the web. Ha!” [Editor’s Note: And I just did. Ha!] In all seriousness, Ryan is the guy “behind the curtain” of all things digital, from the PRC website and web store to Facebook and Twitter to our email marketing. He is also the point man for the PRC Race Team and spearheads the Tuesday Track Nights at Catlin Gabel and Sunday long runs. Ryan joined PRC almost eight years ago, after escaping from California. He and his lovely bride and two children live in North Portland where they do their best to help keep Portland weird.

Words by Greg Mitchell.

 

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Ryan Heal I was born in Davis, CA.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
RH Jesuit High School in Sacramento. The mascot is a marauder.

GM What was the year, make and model of your first car?
RH The first car I drove regularly was an ’84 or ’85 Ford LTD wagon, white with blue trim. Our family called it “The Ford From Hell” because it occasionally started belching black smoke from under the hood, usually on a hot summer day when the AC had been cranking. This was before cell phones were common, so when we thought the car was on fire we would pull into the drive-thru of the nearest fast-food joint and when they asked through the little speaker what we would like we’d tell them we’d like them to call 911.
GM “So let’s see here… you’d like one call to 911…. Would you like fries with that?”

 

Ryan Through the Years.

Ryan Through the Years.

 

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?
RH One summer night in high school I got sick to my stomach from 1) eating salad and hotdogs for dinner, followed by 2) running windsprints as part of pre-season soccer training. I tried to make it to the locker room at the nearby community pool. I didn’t. I was hurling all over the ground, in the drinking fountain, on a tree—all right outside the busy entrance/exit of the pool. I remember mumbling “help,” but no one did. I think I rejoined the workout after a few minutes, as you do. Anyways, I apologize to the citizens of Davis and the staff at the pool at the time for this incident. Surely someone or several someones out there that I don’t know have memories of this as vivid as mine. “Remember that time we were leaving swim practice and that guy was projectile-vomiting all over the place?” Good times.

GM  What is your current training shoe?
RH I have a few. It’s a source of friction in my house. I like my new Mizuno Wave Catalysts pretty well.
GM No doubt, one of those unnamed “few” is the On Cloud.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
RH Clowns. There’s something sad and disturbed behind the makeup and slapstick comedy, am I right? Snakes keep it real. I like nature. Did you know a snake won’t eat something it didn’t kill? In the animal kingdom, that’s some pretty sage advice. That’s also why playing dead is an effective defense against snakes. So, next time you are running in the Gorge and you hear that telltale rattle, you just lie down on your back, stick all your limbs straight in the air, and wait a spell. You’ll be good. The snake will leave you alone. In this situation I feel pretty sure that a clown would still attack you with a shaving-cream pie and/or seltzer bottle, so this is another reason to favor snakes.
GM For other similar advice, pick up a copy of Ryan’s book How to Die in Nature.

GM What was your first job as a kid?
RH Paperboy! I delivered the Davis Enterprise in the afternoon from my bicycle in junior high. Dad woke up early on Sunday to help me deliver the morning paper from the open hatchback of one of our cars.
GM A flaming car full of combustible newspaper. What could go wrong?

 

Ryan as a kid.

Ryan as a kid.

 

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
RH I think it might be fast-walkers. I like to stroll.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
RH RoboTaco. I eat too much RoboTaco. Always the Breakfast Burrito, which is gargantuan and should probably be called the Breakfast-Lunch-Siesta-Why-Aren’t-You-Hungry-for-Dinner? Burrito. Also Laughing Planet, because they wash their plastic dinosaurs several times a day in the dishwashers, among other great things about that restaurant.

GM Where is your favorite place to run in Oregon?
RH My co-worker Phil Orlowski has introduced me to some pretty great trails, especially Crown-Zellerbach and the McKenzie River Trail. But I’d have to say my favorite places are the beach and Neahkahnie Mountain in Manzanita and Beverly Beach north of Newport.

GM Sno Cone or Cotton Candy? Explain.
RH Sno Cone. Takes me back to Little League. Cotton Candy is a mess.
GM Correct answer! The kids on my team would all order a “Graveyard,” which was all flavors mixed.

 

The Papa Bear.

Parenting!

 

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
RH My wife told me that enthusiasm follows action, and it’s true. You just have to start a project, and once you get into it, you’ll get “into it.” You dig? Also, it’s a risky proposition to play in or around your neighborhood abandoned mine shaft. If the bouncy ball goes into the abandoned mine shaft, you should probably reconsider your mission to extract it and instead wait for the ‘Joes to show up and spit truth.
GM …And now you know.. and knowing is half the battle.

 

 

 

Interviewer Greg Mitchell works at PRC and coaches at Linfield College. His curfew is 8 p.m.
12 Questions: Brittany Long
  • Making Lifestyle Adjustments 100%

12 Questions: Brittany Long

ND-to-be

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Brittany Long, who has worked for the past three years at our Grand location. In addition to being a steady presence at the Portland store, Brittany is currently working on her naturopathic doctorate. What exactly is that you ask? Well according to Brittany, a naturopath is trained in the same way a traditional medical doctor is with “additional emphasis on nutrition, exercise regimes, supplements, herbs and other impactful lifestyle factors.” As if that wasn’t enough, she’s also working on getting her license in midwifery. So for those who have been looking for a running store that delivers, PRC Grand is just that place!

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Brittany Long I was born in Irvine, CA.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
BL I attended Steamboat Springs High School in Colorado and our mascot was the Sailors (don’t ask me why since Colorado is landlocked).

GM You just won a free trip to anywhere. Where do you go? Why?
BL Ooohhhh that’s a good one. Hmmm. Right now it’d be a tie between going back to Interlaken, Switzerland or somewhere in Vietnam.
GM So cliché.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
BL Hmmm, probably Dick’s Kitchen—some of the best burgers around!

GM What is your current training shoe?
BL Right now I’m in the Nike LunarEclipse and Nike Structure.
GM Seems you like the local company, eh? Did you know On—who makes the On Cloud (which everyone but you is wearing)—has its North American headquarters right here in Portland, too?

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
BL I haven’t had much experience with either, but I’d prolly say clowns; they can just be so demonic looking…. Plus, I trust animals more than humans when we’re talking scary things.

GM What is your favorite song of all time?
BL Going back to an old high school favorite that I’ll never get tired of- “All I Want to Do” by Sugarland.
[Editor’s Note: 99% sure that Greg thought she meant Sugarloaf.]

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
BL When people put the shoes out of order on the wall! Gets me every time; I’m just pretty OCD about it. Ha, ha.
GM You know that right now at Grand, one of your co-workers is rearranging the wall just to mess with you.

10171189_10102454990256701_3887681607822146490_n

This is my wall. Do not mess with it.

GM What is your favorite accessory carried by PRC?
BL Camelbak! I love mine and run with nothing else as my water carrier.

GM What is your favorite color?
BL My favorite color is green!

GM Blaze or Timber Joey? Explain.
BL Timber Joey! Love the Blazers more, but Blaze is just kinda crazy…and scary.
GM Ah, so clowns and snakes don’t scare you as much as a basketball mascot.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
BL Whatever you think your end limit is, it isn’t. Keep pushing.

 

 

 

Interviewer Greg Mitchell works at PRC and coaches at Linfield College. He has won a bushel and a peck of masters national championships.
12 Questions: Henry Richenstein
  • Skiing in jorts. 80%

12 Questions: Henry Richenstein

Hot Wing

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with Henry Richenstein. Henry graduated last fall from Gonzaga University with a degree in business administration. In addition to learning how to administer business at Gonzaga, he was also an instrumental part of the Bulldog lacrosse team. He spends most of his time slinging shoes at the PRC Beaverton location.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

27035

Henry prefers kayaks to canoes.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Henry Richenstein The beautiful city of Portland, Oregon.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
HR Riverdale High School (same school that Archie from the comic went to). Our mascot was a Maverick, which was a glorified cow. We literally all “Moo’d” together before sporting events to get pumped up.
GM For a second there I thought you said “Rivendell” and the LOTR nerd in me got excited.

GM You just won a free trip to anywhere. Where do you go? Why?
HR I would probably choose to attend whichever World Cup is going to be held in Europe next.
[Editor’s note: Enjoy Russia 2018, Henry.]

GM What is your favorite temperature? Why?
HR My favorite temperature is 80 degrees, but my favorite weather is snow.
GM That makes sense.

GM What is your current training shoe?
HR I am currently in the Nike Lunar Flyknit 3, the white and gray ones to be exact.
GM The On Cloud also comes in those colors. You should get a pair.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
HR Definitely snakes. Those things are just weird, and I actually get nightmares about them sometimes.

GM What is your favorite movie of all time?
HR My favorite movie is probably Django Unchained. The mix between the acting and the soundtrack was unbeatable. I also think Leo should have won an Oscar for his role.
GM Everybody knows you have to get mauled by a grizzly bear to win an Oscar.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
HR I hate when people leave the front door open when they are the last person to enter.

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?
HR My favorite restaurant is either Salvador Molly’s or Fire on the Mountain. Both of them have amazing spicy food.

GM What drink do you order from the flight attendant when on an airplane?
HR Water or a gin and tonic. It depends on the occasion.
GM Uh, the occasion is that you’re on a plane.

GM Canoe or Kayak? Explain.
HR Easily kayak. They are just much more versatile.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
HR Be yourself or else people won’t like you for who you are.

Interviewer Greg Mitchell coaches at Linfield College and works at PRC. He won last weekend’s Shamrock 15k. Has anyone seen his keys?

12 Questions: Hayley Ney
  • Being N Sync with the Latest Trends 100%
  • Lighting a Fire under the IT Dept. 100%

12 Questions: Hayley Ney

Bye-Bye-Buyer

PRC Nation: This week’s “12 Questions” is a special “Wave Sayonara edition” as we say farewell to Hayley Ney. Hayley has been an invaluable member of the Portland Running Company staff for the past three years or so, most recently holding the reins of apparel and accessory buying for the store. She heads off to Flagstaff, AZ, later this week where she’ll have frequent headaches and run slowly due to the dry climate and high elevation. In all seriousness, I think we can all agree that she will be sorely missed around these parts.

Interview by Greg Mitchell. Hair by his alter ego Paul.

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Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Hayley Ney I was born right here in Portland, Oregon!

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
HN I went to Catlin Gabel, and our primary mascot was an Eagle (original, I know), but our secondary mascot was a Douglas fir tree, because we were sort of hippies, ya know?

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Hayley winning a state title and setting a school record.

GM What was your first pet? What was its name?
HN My first pet was a Pomeranian pup named Che. My mom really likes Che Guevara.

GM What is your current training shoe?
HN Hoka Cliftons are my favorites right meow.
GM I’m a little surprised you didn’t say On Cloud. You always seem to be telling me how much you love them. Or maybe that’s me telling you how much I love them? Basically the same thing, I guess.

[Editor’s note: Opinions about footwear expressed in this interview are those of the participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Harkin Family, Portland Running Company, or its affiliates.]

GM Your dad worked at Portland Running Company for years, so you kind of grew up around the store. What’s your first memory of PRC?
HN I ran Paula’s first RWP race, Fury of The Falls, sometime in the early 2000s. I was 13 probably? I was the first woman and won a pair of Brooks shoes. I thought they were hideous so I never wore them.
GM And yet your favorite shoe is a Hoka….

10398772_10205420053728153_3002121546156101159_n

Hayley with her dad Jim, right, and “Uncle Brent” with his shirt tucked in.

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
HN Clowns, definitely. A lot of that stems from a fear of the person who decided to dress up like a clown. They can’t be normal.

GM You are moving to the Southwest. What about the Pacific Northwest do you think you’ll miss the most?
HN You, Greg. And the trails. And sea-level-ness.
GM And I will miss your sincerity.

Hayley and more old guys. Weird theme, this.

Hayley exhibiting the toughness that obviates the need for compression socks.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
HN There’s nothing cute about ill-behaving/unsupervised feral children in public places. I’ll probably never have kids.
GM Yes, sticking with a quiet, well-tempered dog such a Pomeranian is a better idea.

GM What piece of apparel or accessory item carried by PRC are you most surprised doesn’t sell better?
HN Nick Symmonds’s book, banana flavored Hammer Gel, and XL split shorts….

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Hayley selling apparel.

GM What is your fondest memory from your time working at PRC?
HN Pretty early in my PRC career I took a phone call from an elderly lady (like, 90+) who wanted to purchase a pair of Brooks Addiction Walkers. She lived in a retirement home, and for whatever reason didn’t think her place could accept shipments. The home wasn’t far from the store, so I told her I’d drop them off for her. I found her room and knocked. She opened it up, and her apartment was furnished like a set out of Moulin Rouge! Not only that, she was made up in cabaret attire, like she was Nicole Kidman trying to win an Oscar. I will never forget that.

GM Peanut butter-filled pretzels or Red Vines? Explain.
HN PB Pretzel. Unless it’s a defective one without the peanut butter filling. Eating one of those is a day-ruiner.
GM Right up there with an ill-mannered child, I suppose.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received from [PRC owner] Dave Harkin?
HN He’s given me so much advice, I don’t even know where to start! Lock the door behind you at PRC-Grand when you go to de-activate the alarm. Don’t let email strings go on more than 10 messages. You can’t judge tone through electronic communication. Lime green + neon blue is the best color combo on the planet. But my favorite is definitely: Measure twice, cut once!

[Editor’s note: Seriously, Dave?]

Seattle+Sounders+v+Portland+Timbers+5JM0n6EsK4xx

Greg Mitchell works at PRC and coaches runners at Linfield College in McMinnville. He has won 10 national masters running titles.

12 Questions: Bobby Olivera
  • Working Out the Kinks 90%

12 Questions: Bobby Olivera

Chill Pill

Our “12 Questions” series continues this week with a look at Bobby Olivera, who works most evenings and weekends at our Beaverton location and leads the Wednesday night group run from the store. Prior to joining us at PRC, Bobby worked for nearly a decade in run-specialty in the L.A. area, so he knows his stuff. He graduated from California State University-Northridge with a degree in geography and is currently working on becoming a licensed massage therapist, which means he should have no problem finding you when you schedule a house-call, assuming he has a topographic map handy.

Interview by Greg Mitchell. Hero-photo cred: Jacuzzi Boys AC.

BobbyO

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?
Bobby Olivera I was born in Ventura, California.

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?
BO I went to Buena High School. We were the Bulldogs.

GM What was your first pet? What was its name?
BO My first pet was a dog, a German Shepherd-Coyote mix. Apparently you can’t legally own one, but the dog’s mother was hit by car when he was a puppy. My dad used to work for a rig company, and the workers each took an orphaned puppy home. “Duke” was his name. He was an awesome dog.

GM What is your most embarrassing athletic moment?
BO Becoming part of the one-sock club more than once. Depressing. Ha, ha.
GM I’m hoping you were wearing Balega socks. Soft like two-ply.

GM What is your current training shoe?
BO I am running in the Nike Zoom Elite 8 and occasionally Adidas Tempo Boost.
GM When you decide to upgrade to a shoe that we actually carry at PRC, might I suggest the On Cloud?

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.
BO Cockroaches! Yuck!
GM I like how you think outside the box.

GM Who is the most famous person you have ever met in person?
BO Well, living close to L.A. it’s hard not to brag about how many stars you see from time to time. Ha, ha. Just kidding. You don’t see too many where I’m from. I have to go with the time I ran with Scott Jurek. He was a nice man and a real down-to-earth guy.

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?
BO People who use a lot of excuses about how they can’t find the time exercise because they are too busy when they just really are not.

GM If you could travel back in time, what destination in time would you choose? Why?
BO I would go to the 1980s, because of the funny athletic clothes that were around. Plus music was good: Run DMC, Bon Jovi, U2, Bruce Springsteen, Michael Jackson, The Police…. There were also some really good movies out at the time, too. The Naked Gun, Airplane!, Beverly Hills Cop, Top Gun…the list goes on and on.
GM I have The Naked Gun and Airplane! on VHS tape, if you want to come over.

GM What is your “go-to” song when you sing in the shower?
BO I go with Madonna’s “Vogue.” Good beat.

GM Jason Bourne or James Bond? Explain.
BO James Bond of course: smooth, sharp-dressed guy who gets all the ladies.
GM Wrong answer. At this altitude, Jason Bourne can run “flat out for a half mile before his hands start shaking.

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?
BO I’ve been given lots of advice in my young life. My mom never gave me too much advice until last July when I was considering the move to Portland. She said “If I WAS YOUR AGE, I wouldn’t think twice about moving!” It was shocking really because my mom never really gives advice. She’s a quiet lady. I laugh in a good way about it because it was out of left field. But the message I got from it was “live your life and continue to be the first of your brothers to keep dreaming big, we’ll be here for you.”

 

 

 

 

Greg Mitchell coaches at Linfield College and works at PRC. He is a 10-time USATF masters national champion.
12 Questions: Ryan Baxter
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  • The Rock Bottom 100%

12 Questions: Ryan Baxter

Cager-turned-grappler

This week’s subject is semi-recent PRC hire Ryan Baxter. Ryan (or “Baxter” as he’s affectionately known at our Beaverton store) is a recent graduate of Pacific University in Forest Grove, where he majored in Chemistry and minored in Mathematics (and earned an honorary degree in Nerdology no doubt). He also ran cross country and wrestled for the Boxers. He spends most of his time at the Beaverton location and is often responsible for transferring inventory across town.

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?

Ryan Baxter I was born in Craig, Alaska.

 

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?

RB I attended Craig High School, the home of the Panthers. Student body, 75 kids.

 

GM What was the year, make and model of your first car?

RB To this day I am carless, although I did own a sweet pair of skis that was more functional than any car in the wonderful Alaskan winter.

GM I imagine this helped your popularity with the ladies.

 

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?

RB My junior year in a basketball game against our rival, the tip got batted around and unfortunately I got confused and scored on the wrong hoop….

GM Ah, this helps explain your switch to wrestling.

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(W)Hoops.

 

GM What is your current training shoe?

RB Brooks Launch 2…. Thanks to my PRC co-worker, Chad Linnerooth.

GM Chad gets confused. I’m sure he meant to recommend the On Cloud. [Editor’s note: Greg Mitchell really, really likes the On Cloud.]

 

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.

RB Clowns easily. On a wrestling trip in high school we stayed in an old dormitory attached to a portion of our opponents’ school. There was an old TV monitor hanging from the ceiling with a VHS tape sticking out of it. Of course we decided to watch it, and it was a weird pseudo-horror movie called “It” featuring a terrifying clown. To this day, I think it was an attempt by the home school to freak us out.

 

GM What website do you visit most online?

RB Either Letsrun.com or Flowrestling.com.

 

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?

RB Doing the dishes. I avoid it by only using a single spoon and bowl.

GM I bet you host some pretty classy dinner parties.

 

GM What is your favorite breakfast cereal?

RB Berry Colossal Crunch because of its wonderful fruity flavor and bargain basement price.

 

GM What would you like the epitaph on your tombstone to read?

RB “Intensity isn’t for everyone, but neither is success.”

 

GM Douglas fir or ponderosa pine? Explain.

RB Douglas fir for sure; when harvested it yields a much stronger product that is less prone to warping than ponderosa pine. It’s also easier to split with an axe.

GM I was expecting a figurative answer, but thanks for going literal here. This will help me when I build my next log cabin.

 

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?

RB The best advice I ever received was geared towards wrestling, but it applies to every aspect of life. “Get up and train while your opponent is sleeping.” So pretty much just do the extra work and it will pay off eventually.

 

 

 

 

 

Interviewer Greg Mitchell coaches at Linfield College and works at PRC. He has won more masters national running championships than he can shake a Douglas fir stick at.

12 Questions: Andrew Bennison
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12 Questions: Andrew Bennison

Shoeslinger, Lawyer-to-be

PRC Nation: We are thrilled to announce that we just hired Andrew Bennison, who will primarily be working at the Scholls store. He recently graduated from Syracuse University with a degree in philosophy, which should come in handy as he reads Dave’s blog posts. To help you get to know a little bit more about him, we asked him a few questions. Below you’ll find our discussion with all of its hard-hitting and insightful questions and responses. Welcome to the team, Andrew!

Interview by Greg Mitchell.

 

AndrewBenny

 

Greg Mitchell In what city and state were you born?

Andrew Bennison I was born and raised in Portland, Oregon.

 

GM What high school did you attend? What was the mascot?

AB I went to Central Catholic High School. Our mascot was a ram.

 

GM What was the year, make and model of your first car?

AB My sister gave me her 2003 Subaru Forester sophomore year of college. It is all gold, inside and out. Many memories were made in that car, the best of which was last summer as I drove her—my car—home for summer.

 

GM What has been your most embarrassing athletic moment?

AB My most embarrassing athletic moment was in high school. I turned the wrong way leading a race and no one followed.

GM I feel like this was just a way for you to mention you were leading a race.

 

GM What is your current training shoe?

AB My current training shoe is the Nike Pegasus but I am anxious to get in the New Balance Zante.

GM You should try the On Cloud. Everyone here loves it. [Editor’s note: Greg Mitchell really loves the On Cloud.]

 

GM What scares you more: clowns or snakes? Explain.

AB I fear snakes more than clowns because they are quicker in the first few seconds thus offering less chance of successfully retreating.

 

GM What is your favorite TV series of all time?

AB True Detective season one is my favorite thing ever to have watched, including movies.

GM I thought all the kids your age liked Frozen.

 

GM What is your biggest pet-peeve?

AB My biggest pet-peeve is dishes left in the sink. That dirty dishes are left mere feet from dishwashers will always be a mystery to me.

 

GM What is your favorite restaurant in the Portland area?

AB My favorite restaurant is Pine State Biscuits.

 

GM Where do you get your hair cut?

AB I cut my own hair.

GM We all kind of figured that.

 

GM Batman or Superman? Explain.

AB I prefer Batman over Superman because Batman is stealthier. The Batman trilogy also might be my favorite movie series.

 

GM What is the best advice you have ever received?

AB The best advice I ever received was to learn from every experience. After I heard that, I realized that I had left a lot of lessons unlearned and decided not to let that happen going forward.

 

 

 

 

Interviewer Greg Mitchell coaches at Linfield College and works at PRC. He has won more masters national running championships than he can shake a stick at.
I Am PRC: Katherine Dutton Tomlinson
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I Am PRC: Katherine Dutton Tomlinson

PRC Race Team Inspiration

katherine-collage

We outsourced this one. Actually it just sort of fell into our lap. Sometimes you get lucky like that.

Katherine Dutton Tomlinson has had more than her share of really bad luck. She was diagnosed with a debilitating autoimmune disorder two years ago, one that threatened to keep her bedridden with intense pain. Instead, Katherine challenged herself to run one race per month.

In September of this year, that race was the Pints to Pasta 10k. Katherine finished on a foot that she later found out was broken. She’s not taking this lying down, either. While she recovers, Katherine is volunteering at races and supporting her teammates on the Portland Running Company Race Team.

Read this interview by Katherine’s longtime friend Erin Fitzgerald at Adventures in Thumbholes to find out more about this amazing woman who is an inspiration to all of her teammates. If ever you don’t feel like running, Katherine’s story can change your mind. (Oh, and it shouldn’t get lost in this story that Katherine is a really good runner, too!)

Read the interview

 

 

I Am PRC (and NAZ Elite): Scott Fauble
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I Am PRC (and NAZ Elite): Scott Fauble

Professional Runner

ScottFaubsTraining

Scott Fauble worked at Portland Running Company this summer after finishing up his eligibility in track and cross-country at the University of Portland. You might remember him from, among other things, his big black boot he hobbled around in while recovering from a broken foot. Scott recently departed to pursue his dreams as a professional runner, but he will continue to appear on this website as a guest blogger, offering training tips and insights to make all of us smarter, stronger, faster runners. Here’s a little background on Scott.

What is your current occupation?
I am currently a professional runner, which, as I have come to realize more and more lately, requires a further explanation. As it stands currently, I have a contract with a professional running team, Northern Arizona Elite, and that team has contracts with other companies, mainly Hoka One One and a training log app called Training Peaks. So I get paid to represent NAZ Elite in races and on social media. I am also currently working with my agent to find other sponsors to partner with.

How did you get there?
I started running in elementary school as a way to improve as a soccer player. I quickly found out that I was pretty good at running, and that I really liked to do it. My success in running and my love of it persisted into high school, and by my senior year I was being recruited pretty heavily by a few of the best NCAA programs in the country. I ended up deciding to go the University of Portland because it was a great combination between good academics and good athletics, and because I bonded with the head coach, Rob Conner, really quickly.

When did you get the sense that you might be able to pursue running after college?
I guess I kind of always knew I wanted to be a professional athlete, when I was young it was soccer or basketball, but by the time I got to high school it was pretty obvious that running was going to be my best chance to be a professional. I remember growing up watching the Bolder Boulder on TV every year or the few track meets that made it onto ESPN and really idolizing athletes like Alan Webb, Adam Goucher, Bob Kennedy, and Alan Culpepper. I’ve had the dream to be a professional for a long time, and I think the fact that I have had a lot of support from coaches and teammates, and a lot of success, really fueled that goal and allowed me to see it as a possibility from a very young age.

What are your current goals with running? When will we see you race?
Currently, I am just restarting hard training as I am coming off an injury. So, I’ve only been doing hard workouts for about two and half weeks. I do have some races on the schedule for the late fall. I am going to run a 5k in Phoenix on November 1 as a rust-buster/ tuneup for the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon two weeks later. After that I will be running at the USATF Club Cross Country Championships in December in San Francisco with some of my teammates, and after that my schedule is kind of up in the air. As far as goals, my short-term goal is to adjust to my new situation and get back to the level I was before I was injured, my long term goals are to make the Olympic Trials on the track this spring and to really crush a half marathon in the next year or so.

What have been the high points of your running career so far?
I’ve been really lucky to have had a lot of highlights in my running career, but I think one of the best moments was when I qualified for nationals in the 10k on the track in my second year at UP. I wasn’t projected to qualify past the regional race in Austin, and with about 10 laps to go I was pretty far off the top group. Somehow I was able to catch the leaders and finish sixth in the race and qualify for nationals. I think that was probably the most I’ve ever been able to make myself suffer, so that’s super memorable. The other highlight was this past fall when my teammates and I finished third as a team at NCAA cross-country nationals. It was a great way to finish my college cross country career and an amazing experience to accomplish such a cool thing with some of my best friends.

Where are you from? If you weren’t a pro runner, what would you be doing?
I’m originally from Golden, Colorado, which is a small town west of Denver. I had a really adventurous childhood and grew up skiing, hiking, or camping pretty regularly, and I still love to do all of these things. In fact, if I wasn’t a pro-runner, odds are that I would be a ski-bum, park ranger, or work at REI for the employee discount. I just love the outdoors and nature.

What’s the daily schedule of a professional runner like?
I meet up with the team in the mornings and either go for an easy run or we do a hard workout. Then I go home and stretch and do some strength work and roll out. A few times a week, we have an organized afternoon practice where we work on our biomechanics or do strength training with our chiropractors/physical therapists, and sometimes my coach wants me to do a second run—it kind of depends on the training schedule for the week. During the day I am pretty free and actually looking for another job, so if anyone knows of someone looking for some help during the day a few times a week in Flagstaff, let me know!

How are you transitioning to running strictly in HOKA? 
I was a little worried at first because they look so big and different, but to be honest I haven’t had any trouble with them. They are pretty much a normal running shoe, but they have a ton of cushioning, which is always nice.

Tell us a little about Flagstaff. Why is it a running mecca? Would a Portlander like it there? 
Flagstaff is great, for a ton of reasons. First of all, it sits at about 7,000 feet above sea level, which is great for elite runners because altitude has been shown to be super beneficial when it comes to developing aerobic strength. Additionally, you can drive to places that are only 3,000 or 4,000 feet above sea level if you want to do really hard workouts and get your legs used to turning over at a faster pace. That combined with the seemingly endless dirt roads and well-maintained trails have made Flagstaff a popular place for elite athletes to live or visit for 6–8 weeks at a time. It’s crazy because you can show up to a community run and go for a run with one of the many Olympians from all over the world who live here.

I think that someone from Portland would really like Flagstaff as long as they were outdoorsy and adventurous. If you want to go to a fashion show and a play then Flagstaff probably isn’t for you, but if you enjoy hiking/running/being outdoors/local breweries, then I think that a Portlander would fit in just fine.

All that being said, leaving Portland was really hard. I made a lot of really good friends in my time in Portland, and my girlfriend is still back there, so it was hard to leave. I loved my time in Portland, and I love the Pacific Northwest. Portland will always feel a little like home to me.

How’s altitude treating you?
Altitude has been hard, not quite as hard as I expected it to be. I thought that I would struggle more, but I am from Colorado, so I have experience living and training at altitude, which I think helps. It’s been probably 4 years since I was back in Colorado for more than 6 weeks, however, so it’s been a while since I fully got adjusted to altitude. As it stands I have been here for two and a half weeks, so I have started to adjust. To get the full benefits and get used to altitude you probably need to be at altitude for 6 weeks or so. The hardest part has been the hills. Even the smallest hill takes your breath away and not in a figurative way, although most of the runs I’ve been on have been beautiful!

How’d you like working here at PRC this summer?
My time at PRC was great. I think I was kind of stuck in a bubble in my time at UP, and I lost sight of what 99% of runners experience. It was great to expand my knowledge base, and I learned a lot about shoes, biomechanics, and just the sport of running in general. I also really value the relationships I made at PRC. There are some really cool people who work there, and it was awesome to make so many new friends.

Tell us a little about your philosophy of training. Does it translate to the weekend warrior?
My training philosophy…. This is a hard one because the more I learn about running the more questions I have and the more I realize I have so much more to learn. I guess, when it comes to my own personal training I believe that no training system should be described as either strength-based or speed-based. Good training systems should incorporate both strength and speed; it’s only the proportions that should change. I also really believe that a training plan should be tailored fit to an athlete as opposed to an athlete trying to conform to a pre-established training plan. As far as how this applies to the average runner, well, you can tune in to my future blog posts for more in-depth analysis and hopefully you can glean some great training tips along the way.

I Am PRC: “Queen” Kate Novakovich
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I Am PRC: “Queen” Kate Novakovich

No. 1 Producer

If we were in real estate, Kate Novakovich would be our No. 1 producer. She is the most prolific salesperson in our Beaverton store, without a doubt, and she does a good job with all the customers she helps. Kate is a beloved personality among staff members and customers. She’s quick with a quip and gives it to you straight. And then there’s that laugh. We peppered Kate with questions to learn a little more about the one they call “Queen Kate.” The following discursive exchange has been edited a little as possible to retain more of Kate’s flavor.

How long have you worked at Portland Running Company? How’d you become part of the staff?
Three years. I volunteered for Run With Paula‘s Hippie Chick race when I first moved here. Paula Harkin saw the raw talent for selling things and had me talk to Dave Harkin. Jen Treadwell put me on the schedule.

Where are you from?
Born 1953 in San Antonio, TX, and being an Air Force brat lived in Guam, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Florida, Germany, Florida again, and Virginia. Parents retired in Williamsburg, VA where I graduated high school and college, BA in psychology. Since then I have lived in Dallas, TX, Carlsbad, CA, Billings, MT, and now Newberg, OR.

What have you done?
I worked as a bartender to get me through college, sales rep for Manpower in Dallas; Texas Instruments in Dallas, and School District 2 in Billings as a speech therapist’s assistant for special-needs kids. My bartending days make me extremely qualified as a Skratcharita-maker. Services are available upon demand, and you buy the alcohol.

Why live in Newberg?
It is not Portland.

Is Portland actually weird?
Yes.

What place is weirder?
No place on earth. Maybe the moon.

How many bottles of wine do you go through a week there in Newberg?
Screw cap or cork?

Favorite wine?
A to Z from Rex Hill and Wine by Joe (Dobbes). Both screwcaps. Regarding beer: Since I qualified for Boston at Philadelphia, I have been as loyal as I can to hoisting Sam Adams.

Do you have any pets?
Don’t make me cry. I lost my 13-year-old retriever Buddy in January, then we lost Mr. Bunny in April. No pets at the moment.

Tell us about your immediate family.
Well there’s Keith my husband of 24 years; son Connor, recent grad of University of Montana, now a PE teacher/basketball coach at Glendive High School in Montana (his dad’s alma mater); and daughter Kara in Miles City, Montana. So now you know the Montana pull. I need to get back there. I am still hoping the kids grow up good in spite of their parents. So far so good….

What are your hobbies, or at least what keeps you busy outside of PRC?
After I can run no more I really want to explore trails and do more hiking. I read a lot.

How many hours a week do you work here at PRC?
As many as Dave will let me.

What do you like best about working here?
Oh, wait. This is work?! I get to talk running all day long!

How many states have you hit running marathons?
States…I don’t know. In my early years in Dallas and Montana I always ran the hometown marathon every year, so they account for about 15 marathons. But I have run a bunch of others like Montana, Missoula, Fargo, SLC, Melbourne Beach, FL, as well as Twin Cities, Grandma’s, NYC, Austin, San Antonio, Abilene, Houston, Carlsbad, Napa, and Eugene.

So then how many marathons have you run?
Seattle Rock ‘n’ Roll this Saturday will be 60. Trying to get to my age. Got in to NYC and qualified for Boston after 58 tries, so I’m going.

Why such long races?
I have no speed.

Favorite race?
All the ones I did well in. And probably Dublin, my only international race. Family and friends went to Ireland for mom’s 85th birthday. I ran the marathon with my best friend Cindy Thompson from Billings, had family cheering, stayed in a castle, went to Galway, and drank a lot of Guinness.

Why is your nickname Queen Kate?
Holly named me that after we heard that Queen Elizabeth II was coming to the USA. We practiced our queen waves, and I won. I gave Paula some long black queen gloves for Christmas one year because she is also Queen. Of all she surveys.

What do you think your co-workers think of you?
They think I’m the best.

Favorite place to run around here?
My neighborhood, Champoeg Park, Forest Park. Wherever I have not been is where I want to go.

Do you do other forms of exercise, besides running?
PUMP class twice a week with Brianna in Newberg. She kicks my butt and makes my arms shake.

Favorite post-run recovery treat?
Beer. Is there anything else?

What’s your motivation for running?
It’s what has stuck. Over 37 years of running. It was easy. I improved. It was rewarding. Softball was not; I needed a team to play.

What’s coming up next?
Seattle Rock ‘n’ Roll on June 13, marathon no. 60.

What are your current running goals?
I got into the New York City Marathon this year, so I will run with my nephew, see family, party at my cousin’s bar in Chelsea. I ran NYC 27 years ago in 4:06; chip-timing had not been invented yet. So as close to that time as I can get will make me happy. I ran well in November in Philly and qualified for Boston, first time ever. So many close races over the years but no cigar until now. I’m going. So I will have to train well for that. But Coach Hayley [Ney] and Dr. Stevie Wonder (our very own Steve Edwards) will get me there.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
“Life is too short to wake up in the morning with regrets. So love the people that treat you right, forget about the ones who don’t, and believe that everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it. Nobody said it would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it.”

Best piece of advice about running that you’ve received?
“Hills are speedwork in disguise.” -Eric Weinbender or Frank Shorter
“BE FEARLESS.” -Dave Harkin

What do you think about on a long run?
I sing to my iPod, mostly country songs, really loud, and solve everyone’s problems. I get home feeling really good.

Tell us something funny or strange or unique about you.
Other than the running madness, not much there. I am an okay driver, mediocre dancer, not so good singer. My husband is a better cook than I am, and I would be lost without him.

I Am PRC: Carol Craig
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I Am PRC: Carol Craig

Top Race Volunteer

Everyone putting on races should have a volunteer like Carol Craig. She’s so loyal, she even showed up to volunteer at Pints to Pasta in 2011 wearing a bulky boot after breaking her heel!

When she’s healthy, Carol races, too. She walks in one or two races every weekend, if she can, carrying her cane with her the whole way.

Carol’s a regular customer at our Grand store, and credits manager Katey Angel with introducing her to all things PRC and Run With Paula. Our Holly Paige sat down with Carol recently to find out what got her started and what keeps her going.

How did you get started as a walker?
My doctor said it would be good for me to walk. And so, I started in, I think it was about 2002, or 2004. And I walked in Race for the Cure in clogs. Everything wrong! And then I met Katey, and she introduced me to the right clothes and shoes. And I’ve been following her ever since.

What kind of races are you doing today?
Anything that comes along, I’m usually doing it. I try to do one or two a weekend. I just did a half marathon, against my therapist’s wishes…and paid for it a little! I’ve done 12 marathons and I don’t know how many halfs and 10ks and 5ks, whatever I can find.

Do you have a favorite race?
Hippie Chick. It took me about three or four years to get in it. It was always sold out.

I didn’t do it this year because I had a total knee replacement. But I did do it last year and the year before that and the year before that. Pints to Pasta. I like that one, too. I like all of them!

What’s your favorite shoe?
[Size] 9.5 extra wide ASICS Gel-Cumulus. I love ’em. I have such problems with shoes, and Katey has worked real hard in getting me into the right shoe.

Why do you volunteer?
For one thing, it gets me out of the house. I don’t like being home. I like being out, being around people, meeting people and just getting out.

I was bedridden for five years after a car accident in 1987. I just got tired of it and went to my doctor and I said, “I keep waiting for the day when I’ll feel good, so I can get out into public again.”

And he says, “Carol, that day is never going to come. You’ve got to work for it. And once you go out, don’t turn around and go back.”

And I never have. I carry a cane with me. Even when I do my races, I carry a cane.

What kind of jobs have you done as a volunteer?
Bag check. Packet pick-up. Writing bib numbers on bags. Handing out shirts. Stuffing bags.

What makes a great race volunteer?
Don’t stand around. Look for what needs to be done. If you’re handing out a shirt, look over the shoulder of the person getting the bib to see the size of the shirt on the bib and have it ready for them. Try to get the safety pins in groups of 4 and put them in the sack, ready for the person so they’ll have them.

Share with us why Run With Paula Events and PRC are good resources to the running & walking community.
They’re all great, great people. And I enjoy going into the stores. Everybody greets me. And I don’t even know half of them!

Anything else we should know about you?
When my son did his first marathon, I told him we are going to Portland Running Company and get you what you will need for the marathon. He said there other stores that are closer. But I told him, Portland Running Company is the place to go. He got everything he needed and goes there now. I also have a friend who was looking for shoes. And I took her to Portland Running Company. Now she goes there, too.

We owe you one, Carol! PRC and RWP wouldn’t be the same without you.

I Am (Was) PRC: Jim Ney
  • Get Off My Lawn 90%

I Am (Was) PRC: Jim Ney

PRC Rock Star, Emeritus
JimHayley

Jim & his daughter, Hayley

 

Jim Ney has been one of the most recognizable faces around Portland Running Company and Run With Paula Events for years. This winter Jim called time on his illustrious shoe-slinging, course-measuring career to spend more time on his other job: teaching. We debriefed Jim before he left. Read on to get to know the man behind the shades a little better.

How old are you? Weight? Inseam?
I’m 58, 5′ 10″; 165 in winter, 155 in summer. What’s an inseam?

When did you start at PRC?
I think I started working July of 2006. I worked 8.5 years. Brent [MacDermot] has worked a year more than me, Staci [Bielenberg] and Rob [Crow] came a little later.

What shifts did you work?
Usually Sundays and then one or two weekdays. A little less the last year.

How did you get connected with Dave and Paula and this store?
My friends used to work at the store and after a Sunday run I’d sometimes go to the store and hang out a little.  Someone said we should get me on payroll. I emailed Dave, and that was that.

What is your other job, and why are you leaving this one?
There is just not enough free time to to spend with my family and friends. I have taught high-school and middle-school math for 35 years. I retired from full-time teaching three years ago, but now I’m back to full-time.

You’ve been involved with Paula’s events for a while; how long? What have you done for Paula?
I’ve done Run With Paula events for about 5 years. I used to race a lot, and I enjoy well-run, accurately measured events. It seemed natural to try to contribute for the organizational side. I set up directional signs and mile markers. Highly rewarding, but extremely stressful. We always worry about the leader taking a wrong turn and getting everyone off course. We breathe easier when the leaders get to the finish line.

Tell us about your running history. What keeps you going? Any races or PRs that you look back on as particularly proud moments? How has running changed for you over the years?
I ran cross and track in HS, played rec basketball at college.  Started running competitively in 1980 when I started teaching and coaching at St. Mary of the Valley High School, my first teaching gig. In 1984 a friend suggested we put together a Hood To Coast team, and then I was really hooked. Only 63 teams the first year we ran the relay. Claim to fame: 1:12:58 Rock Creek half-marathon (precursor of the the Helvetia Half). I enjoy the ORRC Dual Duel, running cross country events. I’ve run 27 Hood To Coast Relays. Only four marathons; 2:42 my best. My daughter runs pretty well now; she carries the family racing mantel.

The goal now is to enjoy running and staying healthy for as long as I can. I ran about 1700 miles this year. Pretty healthy.

How has our business changed since you started?
Since I’ve started there are more casual runners, runners that have come to it late in their lives—people who see a need to change their lifestyle. I enjoy these customers the most. The Neil Young/Pink Floyd demographic. They want advice and not just shoes. I get a kick when I’m watching an event and someone comes up and says they’re doing great and thanks me for the help.

How has it been working with your daughter at PRC?
My second teaching job I went back to my old high school that I graduated from and worked with some teachers that taught me.  Thirty years later I get to work with my daughter. Both experiences were really cool. I think Hayley knew more than I did about shoes and accessories after working at PRC only a couple of months. She’s a little bossy.

What do you do outside of PRC for fun and fulfillment?
I run, read, hike, and travel a lot. My partner Nancy and I have beento Europe a couple of times and we spend a lot of time at Black Butte Ranch [in central Oregon].

Most people might not realize it, but you are a famous model, at least within the PRC staff ranks. How did that get started?
Alex DeCino just started using my image from a cross country meet in some of his advertising. They all make me laugh; kinda cool. The Grease and Obama ones are my favorites. The big royalty checks are a bonus.

Why do you wear sandals all the time?
I don’t know how/when I started wearing sandals exclusively. My students get a kick out of it.

Anything you’ll miss in particular about PRC?
The customers the most.  How can’t you admire people who want to better their lives?  I’ve worked with some pretty cool folks. Brent and I have run and worked for PRC and RWP for a long time. Jerret [Mantalas] was fun to work with. I like working with people who are connected with the local track and cross-country scene.

What’s your favorite smell?
Barbecue.

How much can you bench?
I doubt I can bench my weight.

You’re still going to work the sales, right? You’ll be back. They always come back.
I’ll work Run with Paula events for a while longer.  May make cameo appearances at PRC, but not until the summer.

I Am PRC: Dominique Lopez-Stickney
  • Eating Her Greens 100%

I Am PRC: Dominique Lopez-Stickney

Team Dietitian

We first met Dominique Lopez-Stickney three years ago at a meet-and-greet for new members of the Portland Running Company Race Team. Since then, she has become a valued teammate, on the roads, on the trails, and even in the store, where she works part-time on top of her full-time job as a health coach. She’s a fantastic resource for all of her friends and running partners who have questions about the nexus of health, diet, and exercise. We love her for her boundless curiousity, her empathetic, listening nature, and her goofy sense of humor. But make no mistake. This former Cincinnati Bearcat is a ferocious competitor as well, and she has unfinished business with the marathon. Read on to learn more about this familiar face from the front of the pack.

Where are you from?
Delaware, OH, home of the Little Brown Jug [harness race] and Rutherford B. Hayes, our 19th president.

When did you move to Portland?
I moved to Portland in 2009 by way of Texas, by way of Minnesota, by way of Ohio.

Why?
I grew up in central Ohio, which is known for its flat cornfields, humidity, and mosquitoes. The mountains and ocean of the Pacific Northwest seemed as different from that as I could think. I wavered between Seattle and Portland, without ever visiting either. I’m so glad I moved to Portland. It’s a village. And Seattle traffic scares me.

Tell us a little about your running history? How’d you get started?
I was pressured to run by my friends in high school—that, and I was so bad at other sports where you actually needed skills. We used to run laps around the goal posts in soccer practice, and I was one of the fastest runners. Running makes me feel so energized, I definitely feel the endorphins when I run. After high school, I went to college near home and worked. I decided to run a marathon because I had nothing else going on. I told myself if I could do a marathon, which at that time I thought was probably the hardest thing out there, then I could run in college. So I did. I walked on to the University of Cincinnati’s team, and I had a great experience that changed my life. I had one of the best coaches out there.

Who was that?
Bill Schnier. He has these classic sound bites. We even had a shirt made with the Top 10 Schnier-isms. He also holds multiple masters degrees and believes there’s more to life than running, so he was really supportive of scheduling conflicts with classes.

Why are you still competitive? 
I feel like I haven’t reached my potential. I don’t have a lot of raw talent, but in running, or work, school, etc., I have a pretty good work ethic. I’ve gotten this far in life through hard work, and accomplished everything I’ve set out to do. Why should running be any different?

What’s the focus of your running, now? Goals?
My focus since that first marathon has always been the marathon. I’ve PR’d every time I’ve run one. Maybe that’s why I’ve had a hard time this past year; I haven’t PR’d. I’m not giving up, though. I don’t think it matters what your time goal is, whether it’s 5 hours or 2 1/2 hours; from talking with other runners, we think the same about doing our best and feeling proud from a good time as a product of hard work. I have lots of goals! My “A” goal is to go under 3 hours…then I’ll think about “B” through “F.” I’ve been working on the sub-3 goal for over a year. I feel like once I get below that, I’ll pick up some momentum again.

[Editor’s Note: Dominique ran a sub-3:00 marathon at CIM in Sacramento in December!]

What do you think your strengths are as a runner?
Well, I love running. I don’t get the “running sucks” T-shirts. Running is the best thing since sliced bread! And you don’t have to worry about getting a flat tire or equipment malfunction with running. It’s simple. I guess specific personal strengths as a runner…maybe it’s that I don’t really consider myself a runner. I constantly feel like I’m one off day from not being a runner. I just run, I’ll probably always do it. I’ve been running and racing for 15 years now, but I could fall off the wagon any day.

What are your favorite types of workouts? Favorite races or race distances?
Until recently I had a lot of anxiety about track workouts, and I realize that they’re some of the best things that I can do for my running and my health. I love 800s, 1200s, 400s, especially in that order. We’ve been trying to end workouts with 200s or 400s for some speed. For racing, the half-marathon is kinda fun. I can still run the week after, unlike a marathon.

Favorite place to run around here?
Last year after getting totally burned out on the downtown Portland Waterfront loop I discovered Alameda. I’ll run there and over to Mt. Tabor then to Laurelhurst for a longer run. For trails Crown Zellerbach is unbeatable.

How did you come across PRC? 
I found out about PRC through the Race Team in 2012. I started running with the team, and then started working weekends at the store as a second job. I think I started March 2012, and it’s been on again/off again since. I worked a summer sale a few weekends ago.

What’s the best part of working here?
One of the best things about PRC is the co-workers. They’re now my running partners, which was something I was looking for at the time. I like to stay in the loop on who is working there, because they are always the most awesome people. I tell my current co-workers [at my full-time job] to go there and get fitted or go for running advice. I also love talking to people about their running and health goals. People come to the store for shoes, etc., when they are motivated and ready to take action on a health change. It’s gratifying to be a part of that!

Do you still fill-in for Shasta when she can’t lead PRC’s weekly core class? What is your favorite kind of cross-training or ancillary training?
I do when I can. My work schedule is pretty flexible, but some weeks are kind of busy. An hour of core is a lot, so I’m always sore for a couple of days after. I love yoga! I’m not trying to be competitive, but I’m pretty good at the poses. I’ll do yoga at 24 Hour Fitness in the Pearl or Yoga on Yamhill on my lunch hour sometimes. I’ll do yoga in the kitchen at home to reach for something.

What keeps you involved with the PRC Race Team? Is “team” important to you?
Most people can probably identify with this, and for me having someone to do a track workout with at 5:30 a.m. is the difference between doing it, and maybe not. I also love going to local races and seeing teammates with the PRC jersey at a turnaround, and we wave or say “good job,” even if we don’t really know each other. I also think it makes races less intimidating, and can help calm nerves if we are joking around before the start.

What is your current career? Are you a dietitian, a nutritionist, or both? What’s the difference? 
I am a registered dietitian (RD) and licensed in the state of Oregon to practice. A registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN)…well, I’m that, too. You think I would know, but it’s a new credential. Maybe we shouldn’t get too caught up in labels. Right now I work for Moda Health in downtown Portland as a health coach. I have a masters of public health in nutrition, but I’ve carved out a niche for myself as a health coach, which isn’t really public health focused, but I think I like it. I’ve been doing that for a total of five or six years now. A registered dietitian is really the expert in nutrition. We have to attend at least a 4-year accredited university, internship, pass an exam, and keep the credential valid through continuing education. Soon we will be required to also have a related graduate degree.

There’s a lot of people out there giving nutrition advice. Most fad diets were not created by dietitians, because we would probably just tell people to eat more vegetables. I’ve had so many jobs related to nutrition and research. One job was at the University of Minnesota, where I went to grad school. I called research study participants whose dietary intake we needed for all sorts of nutrition related studies. I’ve collected dietary recalls from so many people, from city bus drivers for a health intervention, to mom’s of newborns for a Gerber study.

Let’s talk a little about nutrition. Are the runners you know good eaters—by that I mean, do they eat a healthy diet in your estimation? What are the mistakes we make? 
Wow, this has gotten really deep. It depends on the runner. We as runners can probably get away with a little more discretionary calories than the average American. In general, we tend to overestimate calories burned and underestimate calories consumed. We’ve all heard of runners who train for marathons and gain weight, proof that it’s a lot easier to consume it than to burn it off. Evidence from research studies we hear in the news may be taken out of context or be flawed. We also may just want validation that the coffee and beer we drink are good for us.

Do you feel that diet affects your performance as a runner? What’s the biggest change you think someone can make in diet to improve their running?
Personally, I do. There are professional runners who eat a diet of McDonald’s and who knows what other processed foods. Just because we exercise, doesn’t mean we can fuel with garbage. For me, a change that has been huge was to drink more water. Every morning, before the coffee, I chug at least a pint of water. Gravitating towards more real, whole foods prepared at home from in-season choices is not only a healthy change nutritionally, but on so many other levels for the environment and local economy.

Is it easier to eat well in Portland than elsewhere? Why or why not? 
We’re all kind of foodies in some way, right? Maybe Portland just brings out the inner nerdy dietitian in all of us. It’s part of the culture, it’s socially accepted and admired. There’s a TV show about it…”Is It Local?” From what I hear, other parts of the country are also catching on to it, and I feel in Portland it’s all so geographically close to us that it’s natural that we want to eat local, fresh foods and support our farmers. I mean, we grow the hops that is in the IPA we drink. Tell me what’s more local than that?

What’s going on in your backyard these days? 
Oh, well, I’m glad that you asked. We just finished up grape season with three different varieties of grape jam. The basil is out of control, we are on pesto overload. We have enough frozen basil to last until next summer. [Editor’s note: Dibs!] We’re really enjoying squashes and green beans. We keep some beans on the stalk through winter and harvest to cook the bean as a legume for soups. As always the chickens and bees are doing their job by producing.

Any other hobbies or pursuits of yours we don’t know about? 
I’m studying for a personal trainer certification. That’s been valuable to help with my knowledge of strength training to have a more balanced body. I also just commissioned as an officer in the Army Medical Corps as a dietitian. I’m looking forward to what that may bring.

Everything Paleo is super popular right now. Do you embrace that diet? Can it work for endurance athletes?
Oooh…Paleo. I’m not going to offend any paleo followers here. Fad diets are like fashion, they come and they go. But there are staples of a healthy diet that never go out of style. Like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. I don’t go on diets. I tried once and it was too hard. Eating intuitively has been my best bet personally. I’m sure there are some endurance athletes who have embraced the paleo diet, and it may be healthier than what they were eating before. Paleo may just be the 2014 version of Atkins, with a twist to fit the whole food, local movement.

If you were something from the backyard, what would you be and why?
I would have to be one that is really organized and productive. Maybe I’d be a bee colony.

Naked Bike Ride: How many years have you done it? Any tips for beginners?
Twice. Each year has been different so far, but still very naked. It’s a protest. This year we were protesting in support of body acceptance, your right to bike on the road, and enviornmental conservation. All things I absolutely support. Tips would be to wear warm clothes there, stash them in a pannier or bike bucket for the ride, and get 100% naked. Also, beer doesn’t hurt. So wear a helmet.

Is Minneapolis or Portland a better running city? Why?
I am very certain Portland is a superior running city due to the mild climate, abundance of trails, sporting goods companies based here, and elite and locally competitive athletes that live here. On the other hand, I am also certain that Minneapolis is a better biking city due to the off-street bike highways and the fact that they don’t flaunt the bike scene—very unassuming, non horn-tooting. Portland has a great bike infrastructure for street biking, but who wants to bike on crowded streets with cars?