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TRL Member Spotlight: Michael Haynes

Editor’s note: Michael has been a long-standing presence at TRL’s Tuesday’s track workouts. He’s also done the Boston Marathon enough times that some Lizards think of him as “Boston Michael.” So, as they say in Law & Order. Dun-dun. This is his story.

Q: How long have you been running and why did you start?

A: I ran a bit in high school, took a long hiatus, then got back into it about 7 years ago. My dad is a runner so that got me interested in it.

Q: How long have you been part of TRL, and what drew you to the club in the first place?

A: I joined in 2019 when we moved to PDX. I liked that TRL had a variety of weekly group runs as well as activities like the Summer Series and Stumptown XC. 

Q: What do you do when you’re not running (job, family, school…whatever it is you’d use to introduce yourself outside of running)?

A: I am a metallurgical engineer and work at a company that has steel foundries around the globe. Outside of running, I enjoy gardening, our cats, and fish-keeping.

Q: Fish-keeping?

A: Yes, I have a koi pond outside and an aquarium with tropical fish inside.  The koi are about 3 years old now and are getting pretty large.  The fish inside are a fairly new addition and our cats have taken a keen interest in them. 

Q: What’s your favorite distance/type of run (5K, half-marathon, marathon, ultras, relays, track, trail, etc.)?

A: The marathon is my favorite distance. I really like the long training blocks building up to race day.

Q: Where is your favorite place to run in the greater Portland area?

A: Sauvie Island, hands down, is my favorite place to run. It’s flat, fast and scenic.

Q: What’s your most memorable running experience (or experiences)?

Probably running Boston in 2019 with my Dad. We both did horribly, but getting to run it together was a lot of fun.

Q: What’s the best running advice you’ve ever received?

A: A friend told me that they start marathons with a bottle of drink mix. They use that for a while, drop it, then use the normal water stations. I’ve done that the last couple of races, and it has worked well. I like it because I can mix up the same stuff I’ve been using during training and can avoid the congestion at early water stations.

Q: Tell us one fun fact, hidden talent, or something we don’t know about you, but should?

A: I may be slightly biased, but we have the world’s cutest cat. Don’t believe me? Let’s sit down together while I scroll through the one thousand pictures I have of her on my phone until you’re convinced.

Also, I can eyeball a stream of soda coming out of the fountain and tell if it’s a bad mix you’d rather not drink, or a good one that will make you happy. It’s a useful skill in convenience stores when you are eyeballing the stream of soda going into your cup and wondering if it’s excessively diluted. But, sadly, this hidden talent/superpower does not work well for clear sodas, like 7 UP. For them, what you taste is what you get.

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