Olivia Harkness

oliviaMember since 2019

Hometown: Essex, MA

Current city: Portland, OR

Occupation: Woodworker & Designer

Racing highlights/PRs:
Echo Valley Trail 10k 2019 (4th overall Women)
Ochoco Trail 10.5 Mile 2019 (8th overall Women)
Wy’east Howl 1/2 Marathon 2019

Best race experience: I went to an Art college. I didn’t race track or cross country after high school. However, I did end up getting into mountain biking and was urged to enter some races via my local bike shop. The first race I did was super technical. Some bad weather made the terrain even more challenging. Bikes were locking up with mud and miles of the route became a little wild for the “sport” category. I won. Race officials suggested I should upgrade. Little did they know, I won because I was able to RUN with my bike for those miles. I kept myself in the lower category for the rest of the summer and eventually upgraded once my technical riding skills were more developed.

Best running experience: I spent two summers working in the Smoky Mountain range of North Carolina, in walking distance to the Appalachian Trail and beyond. The pay was not great, but we got free housing as part of the deal (no luxury amenities. Like the internet or reliable electricity). Night running became a regular affair for a few of us. First, because it was too hot and humid to enjoy running midday. Second, we had jobs. The simplicity and beauty of running into the darkest hours of the forest, punctuated by fireflies, distant thunderstorms and foot our steps remains a vivid memory and a strong influence on my affinity for trail running.

Passion(s) outside of running: Mountain biking, Surfing, drawing, playing guitar and finding new music. I’ve been listening to lots of Cherry Glazer and Emma Ruth Rundle this year. I also recently finished reading “Heavy” by Kiese Laymon. I highly recommend it.

Favorite post-run meal: My favorite post-run breakfast is Bobs Red Mill oatmeal with raspberries, honey, and chia seeds or almond butter. I would be lying if I didn’t mention coffee with oat or almond milk!