#LocalRunner: Why Portland Is One of the Top Cities for Running

Portland is one of the most active cities in the country. It’s also ranked as one of the top running cities.

Portland is home to one of our Road Runner Sports stores, so we love the over 300 miles of bike paths, 200 miles of running trails, and non-motorized modes of transportation. It’s not surprising that it’s often ranked as one of the top running cities! Plus it is the home of some of your favorite shoe companies like Nike, adidas, and KEEN. Since it is such a popular running community we want to share some of our picks for running groups, trails and races:

Popular Running Groups

Run Portland Running Group Watch any local road race and you will see finishers wearing Run Portland shirts sprinkled throughout the field, from the lead pack to very end of the field.  Run Portland is a running club for everyone – from the post-collegiate competitor to the novice first-timer. Join the Run Portland community for group runs, weekly track workouts, and social events throughout the year.

Oregon Road Runners Club Founded in 1970, the Oregon Road Runners Club (ORRC) is the second oldest and largest Oregon running club, hosting annual running events and training, as well as supporting runners dedicated to promoting running as a competitive sport and as healthy exercise.

Runner Chicks Clinic at Road Runner Sports

Runner Chicks This is a women’s only Running Clinic that is geared toward the beginner/average runner. This Womens’ training clinic is different than most……Runner Chicks is all about girls! “We are focused on fitness, fun, and friendship.”

Portland Fit is a training program for runners and walkers of all abilities, each with a goal of completing events including the Portland Marathon, Helvetia Half Marathon, Hood to Coast, Portland Half Marathon, and many more.

Portland Run Club at Road Runner Sports. This club is for those who love running or those who want to start running. They meet every Wednesday and have different levels of running with runs of 3 to 5 miles. This club makes running fun and motivates people to push through their goals and set new ones. When you attend 10 runs/ walks, you’ll receive a free tech Portland Run Club shirt.

One of our Tuesday Trail Groups

Trail Day Tuesday at Road Runner Sports Come explore the beautiful trails of Portland! Meet every Tuesday at the store and run starts at 6 pm and runs until 7 pm. Miles are between 3 to 5 based on pace. All running levels welcomed.

Favorite running Trails

Portland’s Forest Park is the largest urban forest in the United States. There are 80+ miles of soft-surface trails, fire lanes and forest roads so you have many options. The popular Lief Erickson Road is also a part of this massive park.

 The Wildwood Trail, is designated as a National Recreation Trail, and meanders for 30.2 breathtaking miles. The trail is marked every quarter-mile by blue, diamond-shaped blazes stenciled onto trees. This is a great trail running option. Hilly.

Washington Park Council Crest the highest peak in the city can be reached through Washington Park. This park is also home to some of the more scenic landmarks in Portland. Run through the winding trails, and turn around at any point for a shorter, less intense hill run. Council Crest is approximately one mile from the south edge of Washington Park.

Trail along the Williamette River

Waterfront Esplanade This is the signature run along the Williamette River in Portland, within blocks of downtown hotels and near the Convention Center. This trail takes you past The Fountain is located at Waterfront Park and changes the patterns of its water display, plus you will see many signature landmarks.

Springwater Corridor extends along eastern part of the waterfront and curving south east, and runs through downtown, following an old rail line into the suburbs of Boring and Clackamas. Popular among cyclists, this route will pass by many of Portland’s famous bridges.

A Few of our Favorite Races

 Hop, Hop Half and 5K This fun, Easter-themed event features a unique, flat & gorgeous half marathon & 5K course that takes participants all along Marine Dr. with views of the beautiful Columbia River for the entire race!

Portland Marathon Practice runs from RRS

Portland Marathon and Half Sign up early if you want to run the half – the race usually closes by January for this October race. You have a little more time if you’re thinking of the full, but that usually sells out too. And it’s no wonder – this is an awesome race. You get to run through the heart of Portland, treated to music from dozens of Portland musicians as you go. Get in some training runs at Road Runner Sports on some Saturday mornings.

Fueled by Fine Wine This hilly half is not for the faint of heart. But if you register in time to be one of the 1200 runners in this race, you should count yourself lucky. The scenery is beyond beautiful, and – best of all you get to taste wine at the end!

BRIDGE TO BREWS:  WILL YOU RUN FOR BEER?  How about cider, wine or spirits?  If so, check out the most unique event in the Northwest.  Participants will return from this incredible run or walk (the only one that takes you over the Fremont Bridge) and be treated to tasty libations This hilly half is not for the faint of heart. But if you register in time to be one of the 1200 runners in this race, you should count yourself lucky. The scenery is beyond beautiful, and – best of all you get to taste wine at the end!

 You never know what you will find here!

For pure fun, Run Like Hell is the way to go. Because the race takes place around Halloween, you can expect to see people running in tutus, bunny suits, and everything in between. Lots of crowd support on this one, and a great, friendly vibe. Around Halloween.

Jingle Bell Run is a fun way to get decked out and be festive, while racing to raise funds and awareness to cure America’s #1 cause of disability. Put on your favorite holiday costume. Tie jingle bells to your shoelaces. ’Tis the season to live it up and be jolly for a reason!

For more races check out Best Portland Races. Stop by the Road Runner Sports store to see Luci C and her team, let them know what your favorite place to run or hike is!  See you on the trails!

Cheryl Petermann is a 6+ year member of the Road Runner Sports social media team.  After a life altering experience she has spent 15 + years studying Alternative & Complimentary forms of medicine with a focus on Reiki. Which is an Eastern complementary health approach based on an energy that supports the body’s innate or natural healing abilities. Cheryl & her husband also are a foster home for the California Labrador Retrievers and More dog rescue group.



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