With last week’s good weather breaking the seal on the cold season, something new has shown up around PSU’s park blocks: runners. The cold never stopped the university’s running club, Run Around Portland, which offers a place where students can come together to do regular running activities for fun and exercise.
“We’re non-competitive, so that’s what makes us different from other sports clubs,” said Rasena Meier, a long-time club member and leader. “We don’t always have time for coaches and stuff so we just like to encourage people to compete against yourself and just set goals for yourself.”
The club was founded by Young, Meier and a third student two years ago, when Young was a freshman.
“So we started running together every day, during the week and then we were like, ‘Hey, we should get other people to come run too,’” Young said. “Because I had talked to Campus Rec about joining other clubs and I was like, ‘Do you guys have a running club? Or do you have something for runners?’ and they were like, ‘No, but you should start something!’ and so I was a really ambitious freshman and started a running club our first term.”
The club meets once a week in the winter, on Saturdays at 10 a.m., but Young said in the spring the club will return to its usual schedule, which includes daily workouts and longer runs on Saturdays.
“People don’t like to run in the cold and the rain and the wet,” Meier said. “We do try to go to the gym and do some workouts there and encourage interval workouts, but wintertime is the hardest time to get people to show up, because nobody wants to go outside.”
Meier said the only prerequisites for joining the running club is having a set of comfortable running clothes and being comfortable running.
“It’s not fun to run in jeans,” Meier said.
Meier said the club is usually pretty barebones during winter quarter, but that she expected it to pick back up in the spring.
“People will start wanting to get outside,” Meier said. “The days will be longer, it will be nicer. It will be sunny, and people will feel a lot more encouraged to get outside and get into the sun and start getting back into shape, so they can go and do their summer activities. It definitely picks up in the spring term.”
The running club does road races every quarter. Running club members get a discount at these races from club funds, which are raised at club fundraisers and through the support of Campus Rec. The last road race the club participated in was the Jinglebell run in December, and their next slated event is the Cinco De Mayo run in May.
“This term, we’re volunteering instead of running at the Shamrock run, [Sunday],” Young said, “and so we’ll be going down bright and early with 10 volunteers to work at the run, which also helps fundraise for the two other races that we do this year.”
Young said people interested in joining Running Around Portland club should feel free to just show up at a meeting. The club meets every Saturday in the lobby of the Stephen Epler Housing Building on campus.