Wake Up & Smell The Coffee

Run All The Streets: 0041

The Highland Park Running Club, shockingly known as HPRC, is the new kid on the block when it comes to Pittsburgh area running clubs. But the members are NOT new to running and have generally been involved with the other running groups in Pittsburgh for years. They bring a lot of running expertise and speed with them. Their signature weekly event is the “Coffee Passport Run”, a run from different, local coffee shop. This run started from Delanie’s Coffee shop in the Southside.

This was a bright Saturday morning. By consensus, we stayed on the flats. The going was quick for me, but we all stuck together as we started toward Station Square. The all star line-up included Corbin, the organizer; Jaye, who would be heading to Boston in a few weeks; Aaron, super speedy at all distances from 1 mile to 100; Josh who has just gotten faster and faster and Emily, who also coaches soccer and keeps up with all these fast folks. Sean, the car guy, and I tried our best to keep up. But it wasn’t a killer pace and everyone was in a good mood, so I was happy.

Then, as it happens so often in Pittsburgh, I saw another little group I know, Bob and Mira! They had started earlier from the Steel City garage and were doing big miles, albeit at a slower pace. Bob, the slow and steady, who, in spite of getting injured last year, managed to pull out a 100k race in October. Mira, who almost never follows a traditional training plan for marathons, but year after year, pops out one marathon after another between her martial arts bouts. These two are both close friends and I stopped for a few minutes to chat with them, letting the group sail away. A hug and a fist bump later, I was off to catch those speedy HPRC folks.

And catch them, I did. Running happy allows me to run fast. The run was uneventful, winding up West Carson Street ramp onto the Fort Pitt Bridge, running round and round Point State Park and bolting up the Jail Trail to the Hot Metal Bridge. Once on the Southside, I soon showed 8 miles on the Garmin and slowed to a walk for the rest of the way.

As good as the run was, the post-run coffee and socializing was even better. Delanie’s was delightful, with an upstairs loft in which to spread out. Very enjoyable, HPRC! I’ll be back for another cup soon!

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