I know I'm supposed to be writing a Vineman 70.3 race report - but I haven't downloaded my HR data - so I don't want to just yet. Instead I am covering something far more spectacular than my race - visiting the home of Nike and Pre.
Eugene is a college town, not much different than Durham, NH where I went to school. But there is something different - it's the home of all things running in the US. More awesomeness happened here in the running world than just about anywhere else in the US or World for that matter.
In order to better understand how awesome Hayward Field is, you should read Bowerman by Kenny Moore and then watch Without Limits (DVD). Kenny Moore is a fantastic writer from Sports Illustrated - not to mention, he ran for Bill Bowerman and ran with Pre. I knew OF Pre before I read and watched, but after spending a month or more immersed in it - I had to go visit the University of Oregon.
Luckily I had my chance today!
After Vineman, I had to drive home with another car and knew Erich was in Eugene - so it was a great time to visit! We got up about 7am, grabbed some breakfast and headed out to downtown Eugene - some 2 minutes down the road. I got to see Hayward field where we walked on the nicely resurfaced track - recently updated for the Olympic trials held a short while ago. After a magical lap, we headed up the short hill to Pre's Rock - the site where Steve Prefontaine was killed. People (runners) leave stuff of all kind at the spot - there is a small memorial and then the painted on note that someone anonymously keeps re-painting. It was awesome and good to have someone local to show me around at that hour.
It was awesome. Even though it hurt to walk, I still mustered my magical wonders to pose for an early photo. I hope you're able to look at the other pictures before you are transfixed and unable to take your eyes off of my calves. It's ok if you just spend a few minutes. I've probably spent a bit longer wondering why they don't make me go any faster.