For better or worse, Portland has a reputation for being a little on the weird side. Bone broth bars, a unicyclist who plays flaming bagpipes, adult soap box derbies and urban goats and chickens all add color to the unique city that Portland has become.
With a little thought and effort, it’s not too hard to incorporate some of that singularity into a normal workout. Here are five weird workouts that we put together that capture some of Portland’s weirdness but also some of what makes it a place all its own.
Keep it Weird — Part of Portland’s weirdness has been conveniently corralled under the phrase “Keep Portland Weird,” which shows up on bumper stickers and posters around the city. One of the most well-known versions of the phrase was painted on the back of Dante’s, a favorite rowdy music club in downtown. It’s not that far from Tom McCall Waterfront Park, so plan a run, walk or ride along the waterfront and hop over a few blocks for a photo with the iconic slogan.
Get Charged Up — Portland’s known for being a green and sustainable city. For a workout that syncs well with that ethos, check out EcoPower Fitness, which has two Portland locations. The gyms, one of which is outfitted with solar panels, take sustainability and fitness to a whole new level with spin bikes that actually generate electricity for the grid and other low energy use cardio machines. Throw in recycled toilet paper, LED lights and other green features, and you’ve got one of the most sustainable — and Portland — workouts around.
Feel the Plane — You might not break much of a sweat on this one, but walking through the woods to a find a 727 jetliner that Bruce Campbell is converting into a home will likely get your heart pumping. Located on forested farmland in Hillsboro, the airliner is a pet project of Campbell, who has worked on turning the plane into a residence for years. He doesn’t live in it — yet — but he does welcome visitors, assuming they arrange a visit with him first. Find out how at www.AirplaneHome.com.
Turn up the Heat — The Portland region’s volcanic past is visible all over the place. Get up close and personal with it at Mount Tabor Park, an extinct volcanic cinder cone that’s now a favorite city park for riding, walking, running and shooting hoops.
Bare it All— Not for the timid, Portland’s annual World Naked Bike Ride is an offshoot of a world-wide event initially held to protest oil dependency. The festive ride, which also aims to bring awareness to cycling and share a little good cheer, finds thousands of brave riders clad in their birthday suits (or, sometimes, a little more than that) as they pedal around the city on a roughly 7-mile nighttime ride. This year’s ride takes place on Saturday, June 27.
Do you have any weird workouts to add? Share them in a comment!