Hitting the Ground Running

With Peter Sagal and the Seattle Running Club

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Peter Sagal, host of NPR’s “Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!,” runs. He runs a lot. He’s run fourteen marathons and logged tens of thousands of miles on roads, sidewalks, and paths all over the United States and the world. His feet are landing him at Seattle First Baptist Church on November 11 to discuss his new book, The Incomplete Book of Running.

Aaron Roche, Seattle Running Club’s Director of Communications, runs too. He runs a lot. He recently talked to Town Hall’s Jonathan Shipley about the emotions one gets while running and a few good spots that Sagal can stretch his legs while he’s in town.

JS: What are the benefits of joining the Seattle Running Club?

AR: What I say is that it is a community dedicated to empowering the runner in all of us. It’s a low-pressure environment that encourages camaraderie for runners of all shapes and sizes! A club with some seriously kind-hearted and genuine volunteers who dedicate much of their time and energy to ensuring each member has a positive Seattle running experience. Also, free Tech t-shirt OR a racing singlet with each membership! 10% discount at partner stores! Registration discounts to local, club-sponsored races! Trail work parties! Group runs! A cross country team and access to associated workouts! Sunday trail runs! Destination runs! A lot of running!

JS: What are some of your most memorable runs?

AR: The Enchantments through-run this past September from Stuart Lake to Snow Lake. Doing that 19-or-so mile adventure with about a dozen of my Seattle Running Club family is an experience I’ll cherish for a lifetime.

JS: What are some good Seattle spots for beginning runners?

AR: Seattle’s city parks and pedestrian/bicycle trails offer the perfect terrain to lace up and get out there for your first ever run, your first run in five years, or your first run in Seattle. Living in the South End, I’m partial to anything that combines the Lake Washington Boulevard Trail, Chief Sealth Trail, and Seward Park! My go-to park runs are Seward, Woodland Park, up to and around Green Lake, Magnuson Park, and Lincoln Park.

JS: What are some good Seattle spots for more established runners?

AR: Once you’ve explored the aforementioned trails and urban parks of Seattle, it’s nice to spice things up with some trail and longer runs out on the Eastside and in the mountains. My favorites are Coal Creek Parkway to a loop around Cougar Mountain, the Redmond Watershed Preserve, East Lake Sammamish Trail (and the complete circumnavigation of Lake Sammamish), anything between I-90 and Hwy 2 on the Pacific Crest Trail (Kendall Katwalk and Lake Valhalla come to mind), the Enchantments, and the Snoqualmie Valley Trail between Duvall and Fall City.

JS: What has running given you emotionally?

AR: Running has always been a therapeutic outlet for me. I get angry on runs. I feel vulnerable on runs. I lose my mind on runs. I experience tremendous joy and clarity on runs. The spectrum of feelings during a run can span from one extreme to the other and can be like taking a drug. People say running is their drug of choice and I would agree.  Running gives me purpose. I can turn to running to explore my physical limits. I can use running as a way to satisfy my need for competition. But the best part is the runner’s high. It is no myth! Also, it’s an excuse to wear split shorts!

JS: What are the next events for Seattle Running Club?

AR: Check out our website for the latest!


Don’t miss Peter Sagal’s event on 11/11.

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