Anne Crispino-Taylor is this issue’s featured trail runner. Anne works for the City of Portland as a Project Coordinator, currently with the grants team providing financial assistance to small businesses impacted by the pandemic. Anne completed her 100th ultra in 2021. When not running, Anne gets in walks with her husband and Potomac, her career-change guide dog. She enjoys kayaking and camping when time allows for it.
How did you get into trail running?
My husband was training for the Portland Marathon when we lived in Grants Pass, and we’d run together in the evening after dinner. When we moved to Ashland we belonged to the local Ashland Hash House Harriers (a drinking group with a running problem). Several of the members were ultrarunners. My good friend, Ben Benjamin, convinced me to sign up for the Siskiyou Out Back 50k after running my first race, the Mt. Ashland Hill Climb run, and I was hooked.
What is your favorite trail to run on?
I love running the Timberline Trail on Mt. Hood. The views and flora are amazing.
What is your favorite trail race?
I hold a special place in my heart for the Siskiyou Outback 50k course. It was my first ultra and after all the races I’ve run I believe the course is one of a kind. The wildflowers, the meadows, the views, and the cowbells. It’s really indescribable.
What are your weekly average running miles and ascent?
Miles usually average about 40. I still don’t’ use a watch so have no idea of my average ascent. But, I run regularly in Mt. Tabor and one of my favorite routes has about 1,300 feet of gain over 8.5 miles.
What is a typical weekday run?
When I work in the office my typical run is either to and/or from work. It’s not trail, but my runs to/from work are special Only about 5 miles, but my runs home allow me to leave work at work, and my runs in seem to give me some peace before work.
What is a typical weekend run?
There is nothing typical about my weekend runs. It really depends on what I can fit in, where I am, and what time of year it is. Sometimes it’s with my friend Laura, who is awesome with creating runs in the Tualatins. When I’m in Ashland my runs start from my front door and can be two to five hours. Weather permitting I’ll drive up to Mt. Ashland and run on the PCT. From Portland, I’ll head to Forest Park or Tillamook during the winter or head out to the Gorge or Mt. Hood in the summer. It also depends on what I’m training for. Shorter races I can train in Mt. Tabor. For longer races, I’ll head to the Gorge or Mt. Hood.
What shoes do you wear?
I have so many shoes. I have always been partial to Saucony Peregrine, but currently, I’m trying out a pair of Salomon as well as a pair of Scarpa. The Scarpa shoes seem a bit stiff, like running on 2x4s. But I think I like the Solomon. Because shoemakers change their models so frequently I’m always trying out new shoes.
What is your favorite trail running apparel?
I love lightweight vests. In the PNW we have weather that’s not too cold, but having a lightweight vest over my base layer is perfect. I like a vest because they usually have pockets so can take off gloves and hat and easily stash them when they aren’t needed and quickly grab them when the weather changes.
What watch do you wear?
I’m old school. I did purchase a Garmin second-hand about eight years ago. But it was mainly to measure my usual runs. When I realized my internal measurements were pretty accurate to the watch measurements I stopped wearing the Garmin. When I do need a watch, I wear a Timex, but I find running by feel works best for me. I suppose it would be nice to know certain aspects about my runs but after 20 years of running naked if figure why change what’s working.
What nutrition do you like to use on runs and races?
I have a lot of issues with nutrition. I have eating limitations due to oral cancer, so I try to get most of my calories from liquids. Not that I can’t eat solid foods, it’s just that it takes a lot of time. So for longer races, I tend to carry instant mashed potatoes and mix them with hot liquids at aid stations. As a general rule at most ultras, I carry Ensure Plus and Kerns Nectar (the nectars of the gods). On training runs I’m less limited on time so will use trail mix, bars, and other items with higher calories. But for races, I stick to easy options like gels, soft foods, and liquids.
What do you like most about the trail running community?
The trail running community is the best. I used to run the Portland Trail Series regularly but took a break for a few years. This past year I signed up for the summer series and even though I was the matriarch and pretty dam slow, everyone was so positive and supportive.
Follow Anne on Instagram @annecrispinota and on Facebook.
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