Tag Archives: running

Seattle, WA – January 17, 2017

Ever since Maggie had to stop running with me (or me with her, I should say), my motivation to run early in the morning has declined. She used to get up early and drag me out of the bed and it always seemed to me that if I must get up, get dressed and take her for a walk, we might as well run. After all, getting out is 90% of the work, right? Lately, I’ve been trying to run over the lunch break 1-2x week instead.

When work schedule allows, my running buddy Kathy and I run around Queen Anne. This time, I had my Garmin with me to record the run. This route is not very long, about 6 miles, but it has quite a vertical component to it. After a brief, flat part by the lake, we take stairs up to the top of the Queen Anne hill. Rocky’s got nothing on us. Each time I feel like I conquered Machu Picchu. From there, we go around the whole hill, enjoy great views going by Kerry Park and then come down and back to South Lake Union via Mercer.

Seattle, WA – January 16, 2017

It’s been a while since I took sunrise pictures while running around Green Lake. I must say that the GL sunrise pictures I took over the years, are probably some of the most spectacular pictures I’ve ever taken. During the winter months, I mostly run in the pitch darkness since days are rather short. Slowly but surely though, the Sun is coming out earlier and earlier. This picture was taken at the very end of my run, probably close to 7 am.
I am still getting used to running by myself. Maggie is having more and more trouble walking, so running is out of question for her. For a while we used to run around the neighborhood during our walk before my GL run, but even that is not possible any more.
She loves coming to lake though, so whenever I have time, I drive with her down to the lake, and then back up. She is fine to walk by the lake for a while, but her hind legs are way too weak for climb up to Phinney Ridge.

West Seattle, WA – August 18, 2016

This was the first time I run in West Seattle. The most obvious place to run there is by the Ocean, so that is what I did. It was quite a warm and sunny day, so this was not an easy run. A light breeze from the water was making it a bit better, but still, it was way too hot.
This was pretty straight forward, albeit slow, 6.1 mile run along the water’s edge and back. I did stop few times to take pictures of the Ocean.

Arlington, MA July 29, 2016

I stayed at Homewood Suites in Arlington, MA. This was a short trip, so I only had time for one morning run. As usual, I did my research online, night before, eat a light dinner, set my phone alarm for 6:30 and went to bed early.
Alewife Greenway Bike Path runs just behind the hotel. I went straight to the bike path (it does not smell like herring) and went North. It was early morning, but the temperature was already over 75F and very humid. Bike path goes by St Paul Cemetery and continues along Alewife Brook Parkway. After crossing Mystic Valley Parkway, bike path turns left, continues as Mystic River Path and goes (appropriately) along the Mystic River. I went over the River Street Bridge, continued West on the Mystic River Path, then along the East side of the Lower Mystic Lake. At the top of the lake, just below the Upper Mystic Lake, there is a small park area and a very nice beach. At this point I was running out of time, so I had to turn back. I figured, I was about 3.5 miles from the hotel. I went back the same way to the River Street Bridge, and from there continued South on the River Street, to Massachusetts Avenue which brought me back to my hotel. All in all, the run was about 7.1 miles according to my phone and I’ve completed it in 1h 8min.

Belgrade, Serbia – May 25, 2016

Final stop in my 2016 Europe trip was Belgrade, Serbia. I went running few times, but recorded on my GPS only one of those. This was a slow 6 mile run, but it was quite scenic. I tried to take the shortest way to the river Danube, turned to the right there to the end of the boardwalk, and then looped back. From there, I followed the boardwalk around the old Kalemegdan fortress and then back up to the city center. From there, I made a long loop around the Parliament House and then back to my aunt’s place where I was staying.

Zurich, Switzerland – May 20 and 22, 2016

I stayed in Zurich for 3 days and managed to go out for a run twice. Both times, I went South from my hotel (which was near the city center and train station) towards the Zurich lake. Once at the lake, I went along the East side (on the 20th) or the West side (on the 22nd). In both cases, I came back to the hotel more-less the same way. Nice thing about these routes was that they are all flat, there is no up/down hill which was nice. Surface was mixture of pavement and gravel (more pavement than gravel).

My first run was 5.2 miles and I run just under 9 minute mile. The second one was 6.4 miles at about 8:30 minute mile. This is much slower than I used to run, but considering that I’ve been struggling with the hamstring injury for quite some time, it was not that bad. Both days weather was relatively cool, in the 50’s, with moderate to heavy rain on the 22nd. No wonder I was faster for that one, it is much easier to run when you are nice and cool.

This was not the first time I was running in Zurich, but it was the first time I had my GPS with me to record it.

Tromsø, Norway – May 18, 2016

It took 3 flights and almost 24 hours to get from Seattle to Tromsø. I arrived there just in time for the Norwegian day parade in the afternoon of the 17th. Despite the time difference and the lack of darkness (midnight sun!) I did manage to get good night sleep, so next morning, I got up at 6 and went for a run.

Weather was great for running, mid 30’s and cloudy with some snowflakes in the air. My friend (and host) Tor went with me and I got a grand tour of the Tromsø early in the morning. Tromsø is located above the Arctic Circle (69.6492° N, 18.9553° E) on an island which is shielded from the Atlantic by a thin strip of land. We run 6 ½ miles in just over an hour and covered the southern third of the island. This was not a fast run, but I felt great afterwards. What a way to get to know Tromsø.

London, Ontario – July 12, 2015

I was in London for a virology meeting. This was the first time I was in Ontario; so naturally, I wanted to use this opportunity to run there. Before arriving, I used Google maps to plan my run and found a trail that goes by the river (Thames River of course).
From my hotel (Hilton on King St.), I run West to the Ivey Park and then over the King St. bridge. From there I found my way to Terry Fox Parkway and run along the river for few miles, then went back exactly the same way. During my stay there, I went running twice, approximately 7 miles each time. My speed was not great though, I barely averaged ~ 9-minute mile. I had my camera with me and I took few pictures of the trail and the river. Turns out that this Thames River is quite different than the one in England.

Santa Clara, California– July 01, 2015

No matter how hard I tried to find a nice place to run here, I was unable to. There were no trails near by the hotel I stayed in as far as I can tell. I did not want to drive somewhere to run, so I did my run here on the streets, something I avoid doing as much as possible.
Still, it was an OK run, 4.9 miles at the average pace of 8:30 minutes per mile. Not very far, not very fast, but still a decent run none the less.

Santa Clara, California. 4.9 miles, 8:30 minutes per mile
Santa Clara, California. 4.9 miles, 8:30 minutes per mile

St. Louis, MO – June 01, 2015

I was in St. Louis for the conference, so naturally, I used this opportunity to run at a new place. St. Louis is on Mississippi so I wanted to run along the river (I stayed at a hotel right by the Gateway Arch). I did online research before coming here, and found that there is a Riverfront trail that starts near my hotel and goes quite a ways North.
First day, I went to the Gateway Arch park, thinking I can get to the trail from there, but that did not work and I had to go back and around the park. When I was looking at the map, it seemed possible, but I just could not find the way through. I run back, went by the hotel, under I-44 towards the river, and got on the Riverfront trail by Ashley St. Once I was on the trail, I was running by the river few miles, then came back the same way. This run was about 7-8 miles.
For my next run, I went around downtown first, then down to the Riverfront Trail and then along the river to the Merchants Bridge. I made a U turn there and the followed the Trail back to my hotel. Total distance was 9 miles and the average pace 8.34 minute/mile.

Seattle, WA – April 28, 2015

We had another good run around the Green Lake. This time of the year, when we go out at our regular time (6-7), we are there just in time to watch the sun come out. At times, the colors of the sunrise are just breathtaking. This time, we stopped by the dock so that Maggie can look at the ducks. As always, she was on the leash, so no duck chasing, but it seemed to me that she enjoys, pointing.

Long Beach, WA – April 15, 2015

This year, Maggie and I went to the Long Beach for her birthday. I really like it here, although I am a bit nervous about the whole tsunami thing… Still, this is one of my favorite places to go running and I try to do that any chance I get.
We stayed at the Adrift hotel this time and went running on the beach few times. This year, we had to share the beach with millions of jellyfish that got blown to shore by the wind. Those are called purple sailors (sometimes by-the-wind-sailors). We tried to avoid stepping on them as much as possible, but both of us had to scrub well after the run, to wash out the smell (running shoes and paws). The weather was great, we had some rain, some sun, rainbow, clouds….
I took a lot of photographs, so I will just let them speak for themselves…

Seattle, WA – March 06, 2015

As Maggie is getting older, most days we either walk through the neighborhood, or go for a short run on the ridge. She really likes to go to the lake though, so every now and then, when we go out, she just pulls towards the lake which I take as a sign that she feels good and is OK to go for a longer run. Those are the good days. At this time of the year, we often have very pretty sunrises, so I usually take my camera with me as well.

Belgrade, Serbia – August 16, 2014

This was not the first time I run while visiting Belgrade, but it was the first time I recorded it with my GPS. While there are many parks in Belgrade, it was actually quite challenging to find a good running route near the city center. Running very early in the morning does help though, as the streets are mostly empty of traffic, the air is much cleaner and that is generally the coldest time of the day. The street names in Belgrade have changed over the last 30 years (since I lived there), so I might get some of them wrong as I try to describe the route as best as I can.
On the 16th, I went down Queen Maria St. which continues as George Washington St. and then becomes Tsar Dushan St leading to the Belgrade zoo. When I got to the zoo, I turned right onto Tadeusz Kościuszko St. which goes under the railroad track and ends on the bank of the Danube River. At the river, I turned left and run for a about quarter mile, then took another left at the Tower of Nebojsha and took the zig-zag (and a very steep) path up to the Kalemegdan Fortress. From the Fortress, I took Knez Mihailo St. turned left at Despot Stephan Blvd and got back to George Washington St. All this ended up being only 5.2 miles at roughly 8:30 minute mile pace.
On the 18th, I run straight up to Tashmaidan Park to a running track (a very short one though). I went around and around the track, the St. Mark’s Church and then around the other areas of the park. I exited the park near the main post office, went down Takovska St., turned left at the Botanical Garden and ended up near the Vanizelisova St. This run was about 4.9 miles

Seattle, WA – September 28, 2012

In the summer of 2012 there were devastating fires on the Eastern side of the Cascade Mountains. At times, we could smell the smoke in Seattle and most days we could see the haze over the North Cascade range. Seattle is far enough to the West, and the air quality was not affected, so Maggie and I went running most days.
As bad as all this was, the haze made for incredible sunrises. As if the spectacular sunrise was not enough, Maggie and I were treated to a double rainbow as well.
Below are some pictures from our Green Lake run from September 28, 2012 (total run distance is about 4 miles).

Portland, OR – June 21, 2010

In Portland, I stayed at Residence Inn Downtown/Riverplace, just off the I 5, right on the Willamette River. Weather was decent and I went for an early morning run along the river front.
From the hotel, I went North, following the river, under the Hawthorne Bridge, Morrison Bridge, Burnside Bridge and then I crossed to the East side of the river on the Steel Bridge. For some reason, my GPS does not seem to be synchronized with the map and shows me as walking over the water to the other side and back. Rest assured that I actually went over the bridge. I am guessing that all that steel interfered with the GPS signal. Once on the other side, I run South past the East side of the Burnside Bridge and then pretty much took the exact same route back. Had I planned this a bit better, I could have probably run in a circle or something. I generally do not like to go back and forth the same way, but this is how it worked out this time.
Generally, this is a pleasant run, nice scenery, river views. There was some noise from traffic, but not too bad. If you are ever in Portland, you cannot go wrong with this route.

Portland, Oregon, 4.4 mile run, June 21, 2010
Portland, Oregon, 4.4 mile run, June 21, 2010

Amsterdam, Netherlands – February 21, 2007

For some reason, on this business trip to Amsterdam, I had trouble adjusting to the time zone difference and I was quite exhausted. We did go out night before, something I usually try to avoid before my run, but on a business trip that is not always possible.
I had to be at work early in the morning, so I got up even earlier and went running in the nearby park (Vondelpark). That turned out to be quite a decent place to run. Vondelpark is not huge, but still a decent size park with a large number of trails through it. As I long as I am not running on the crowded sidewalk, next to cars, inhaling exhaust things are OK.
Run was short, just over 3 miles, barely worth mentioning. It was cold and rainy and I was quite tired. Still, this was the first time I run in Amsterdam, and running in a new place is always exciting. I did not have my GPS with me to record the run, but I tried to reconstruct the route as best as I can from my memory using Google maps. The exact path might be a bit off from the actual run, but overall, it should be quite accurate representation.

Harding Ice Field trail, Seward, Alaska – September 10, 2004

My climb to the Harding Ice field was between a hike and a run. I was trying to decide whether to include it or not, but once I took another look at the pictures from the climb, it seemed quite obvious that I’ve been mostly running so here it is…
Earlier that day, I took a boat tour of the Kenai Fjords National Park. After that was done, driving towards the Anchorage, I noticed a sign for the Exit Glacier and I went to check it out. Harding Ice Field trail head was near the parking lot. I have not heard of this trail before, but the sign said it was only 4 miles to the top and I figured it would have great views. I had little over 3 hours of daylight left, which I thought was plenty. Back then, I’ve been running routinely 6-8 miles, and I was in decent shape.
I signed the log book and took off (by myself). After a first ¼ mile or so, it became obvious that this will be quite a challenge. Calling this trail steep and strenuous is a major understatement. The elevation gain is about 4000 ft over the course of 4 miles! On some parts I almost had to scramble on all fours. Still, I kept running and running. I took few stops along the way to take selfies and pictures of the ice. I finished my run/hike and logged out 2 hours and 58 min after I started. That included some 30 min at the top, chilling out near the ice field, and few minutes here and there to take pictures. I have to say, this trail and the views are out-of-this-world. It was really worth it but I was very tired. I can definitely recommend this hike, but please, take it easy and give yourself a lot of time. I almost broke my leg on the way down.
Looking back now, I realize how insane this whole thing was. Since then, I’ve tried to reach the Harding Ice field two more times with my friend and both times we failed to make it to the end of the trail. Once we had to turn back due to the very bad weather and near 0 ft visibility, and the second time we had big problems with Grizzly bears on the trail, and then, my friend fell through the ice and injured his leg so we had to turn back.