Hello. I am glad to post about a recent event I participated in. Last week, Sat. July 20th, I ran a half marathon in Banks Oregon. The half marathon was part of the ‘Oregon Summer Event 2019’, (part of a series of runs hosted by Uberthons). The Saturday event also had a Full and Quarter Marathon. I chose the Half Marathon to fit it into my current training schedule for the Portland Marathon in October.
Banks Oregon is about 25 miles North East of Portland. It is a beautiful country area in the Tualatin Valley. The Marathon and Half Marathon were actually run on the Banks Vernonia Trail which is a State Park and Trail. The start line of the Half Marathon was at Stub Stewart Park, about 13 miles north of the Finish line in Banks. Participants were able to park their vehicles in Banks and buses were provided to shuttle us to the start line at Stub Stewart Park.
It was nice and cool at the start line, with a steady breeze, almost too cool because I didn’t bring a sweat shirt, but I did not want to carry it with me as I ran and I knew I would warm up plenty once I began. The run began at a higher elevation than the finish, with a downhill start. The first 4-5 miles were mostly at a decline, leveling out after mile 5 and remaining mostly level for the rest of the course.
At the start I felt good and was able to gain some time on my pace on the downhill portion, though just because it was on a decline doesn’t mean its not a workout. I was still able to conserve some energy and after mile 5 when the course leveled out I still felt good and was able to maintain a steady pace with a nice quick push when I was closer to the finish line. They say that it is best to finish faster than you start, but it seemed the other way around for this run. But I maintained a decent pace for myself and enjoyed the run. My total time was 1 hr. 55 min. and 27 seconds (1:55:27). My pace was 8:48 per mile, which is good for me, and an improvement to my time at the Half Marathon I ran a month ago at the Pacific Crest Sports Festival. Of course the improved pace had something to do with the course, but it was still a good workout for sure and the training is important.
Much of the course was through forested areas, with part of the track going through some farming areas. I thought it was very pretty. A nice thing about the forested areas was that it was shaded and cooler, so that helps to maintain a decent pace and energy levels.
The finish line was at a park in Banks and finishers had a nice cheerful welcome by spectators. Once I finished, I had to drive 3 hours back to Bend Oregon (where I live) and make it to work. The sitting on the 3 hr. drive home seem to have caused caused my legs to be extra sore the next several days. When I run the Portland Marathon, as it will be a Full marathon, I will probably stay the next day in Portland and let the legs recover better.
All in all I am pleased to have run this Half marathon, and it was the day after my birthday (July 19), as I just turned 49…not bad for a 49 year hold huh…
I would like to mention on a personal note that this day was a good day and a sad day. It will always be a special remembrance for me. Later that night I received news that my dear Grandmother, Bridget McGrath, had passed away. My Grandmother was quite the character, always with a sharp wit and great sense of humor. She was 95 years old and had numerous health issues due to her age, so the family knew that her passing was eventual, but it was still sad news and we are never ready for a loved on to pass away. As a friend expressed to me ‘We never want to let people go, there is never a good moment…even at 95’.
My Grandmother lived in Ireland, where much of my family is and though I did not live close to her, I loved her and will miss her. Her passing is sad but not tragic and I know she is at peace. I will always remember her for who she was. So, this particular Half Marathon will have a special place in my memory because it was such a good day, but bittersweet at the passing of my Grandmother. I am so glad for the loving family I have in Ireland that were close to her and always took care of her.
Well, that’s it for my post. Thanks for reading and check back for more posts.
I had my GoPro with me and was able to get some nice footage of parts of my run. I will edit that into a short video and post it when I am done.