TRL Member Sportlight: Kristin Shaw

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1. How long have you been running and why did you start running? On and off for over 20 years. Prior to that, I played tennis and rode horses. At the behest of my mother who did not want me riding horses during the school year and the encouragement of a gym teacher who thought I might take to it, I began running cross-country instead. I synced with the team quickly and found that I greatly enjoyed racing and learning how to run different types of workouts.

2. How long have you been part of TRL, and what drew you to the club in the first place? I joined the club soon after moving to Portland from Boston and have been a member of the club for one year now. I reached out to several clubs in my initial search for teammates, regular workouts, and an experienced coach. TRL offered all these, so I have been showing up every week since then unless Rick tells me not to. So far, so good.

3. What do you do when you’re not running (job, family, school…whatever it is you’d use to introduce yourself outside of running)? I am the dermatopathologist for the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Portland. This means I am a physician who is subspecialized in interpreting skin biopsies and excisions using a microscope. I otherwise enjoy listening to music, being a “girl”—i.e., hanging out at home and wearing fun outfits—, driving my fun, sporty car, and (when I make time for it) drawing.   

4. What’s your favorite distance/type of run (5K, half-marathon, marathon, ultras, relays, track, trail, etc.)? I am training for a marathon at present, so my favorite distance at the moment is the marathon. I think I would have liked being an 800m/1500m runner in years past. I used to love mountain running and may pursue that again down the road.  

5. Where is your favorite place to run in the greater Portland area? Crown Zellerbach Trail and Leif, depending on how far I’m going. I am still looking for the perfect sweet spot of land, tree cover, and (safe) solitude for 20-mile runs, but the CZ Trail has been my favorite so far.

6. What’s your most memorable running experience (or experiences)? There are a lot. I often remember the winter runs I used to do back home in Frederick, Maryland. I used to bundle up and just jog in the snow as much as I had time for on snow days. There is also a foothill mountain back home that I could have lived and died on because I loved it so much. Just about any run out there was a good one with the nature and quiet, rugged double track, steady climbs, and loops of country backroads.

7. What’s the best running advice you’ve ever received? Be consistent. 

8. Tell us one fun fact, hidden talent, or something we don’t know about you, but should? Outside of wanting mild and clear temps for training and racing, and much to the consternation of my people with Nordic ancestry, I love heat and humidity. I maintain balmy (some might say tropical) conditions in my home year-round.

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