Sunday, May 17, 2009

Running in Norway

Haugesund Bridge Run on Constitution Day

Me running near Arnt Ove's house. This was my warm up everyday.

As my tour of Scandinavia approached I worried that I wouldn't have the time to fit running into my music schedule. I packed my running shoes anyway, sacrificing a few more clean shirts and another pair of dress shoes to do it. I'm glad I did.

The first week overseas has been spent in Norway. Fortunately we've been staying at one house that belongs to our host/manager Arnt Ove (Andy) so it's been easy to just put my running gear on and head out the door. Our shows don't start until 9pm usually so there's still enough time to squeeze a run in and take a short nap before the gig.

The weather has been perfect for running and so has the geography. There are paved bicycle/walking paths that will lead to almost anywhere you want to go. The day we arrived I set a goal for myself--to run from Arnt Ove's house, up and over this huge bridge and back again. The first few days were shorter runs and some speed and hill work and I had to take a day off because we were playing in another town so I didn't have time to run there.

I tried to run the "course" yesterday, but after Arnt Ove showed us the sights and cooked dinner when we got back, I really wasn't in the mood. But today, I had to put up or shut up. I had been talking about running that dang bridge all week, so when Nathan mentioned it today I knew I had to.

After attending this morning's Constitution Day parade in downtown Haugesund we came home and ate breakfast. I answered some emails and uploaded photos, allowing my food to digest then I put the gear on. I had been trying to think of a way that I could prove to Arnt Ove and Nathan that I actually made it across and that's when Arnt Ove suggested I bring a napkin back from the McDonald's which is just about 100 yards on the other side of the bridge. Perfect! Except that today being a national holiday, McDonald's was actually closed along with all the other stores around it. The 7-11 nearby was the only store open, but when I started to think about the route I thought it would be a waste to only bring back a napkin from 7-11. So I decided that I would take my camera. This was probably the only time I would ever bring a camera running. I put it in the little pouch and slung it around my shoulder and hit the road. I was glad I took my camera:

On the way to the bridge

This is the point where I had to decide if I still wanted to run it.

On the way up. The head wind was INSANE! I'm a little afraid of heights and the wind gusts felt like they were going to blow me over the railing.

View from the highest point on the bridge.

McDonald's! Just about 100 yards on the other side of the bridge. Proof that I made it over.

View from the other side. Heading back over.

The view of the community coming back over the bridge.

Heading back to Arnt Ove's house.

Coming back into town.

This hill killed me. I know it doesn't look like much in the picture, but my quads sure felt it. This was within the last two miles of the run.

The route turned out to be about 10 miles round trip and took my about an hour and twenty minutes to complete. When I got back to the house Arnt Ove said, "You look so relaxed. I can't believe you ran over the bridge. You are INSANE."

1 comment:

  1. Hi Ben. I believe that I have mislead you on the facts of the constitution day. May 17th 1814 Norway broke out of the 400 years old Union with Denmark. Later that year we started a union WITH Sweden. Keep on running and playing the blues.