THE ATHLETIC LIFE High elevation adventures with Peter Graf — a man on the run
The Good Life|November 2020
THE ATHLETIC LIFE  High elevation adventures with Peter Graf — a man on the run
I had heard that Pete Graf runs all over the place, up high mountain peaks (that I have hiked and they are steep) and that he can run for hours.

So we wanted to learn more about Pete, what running accomplishments he has had, what his interests are, and what is the best thing he has seen on the trail.

Question: Pete, please tell us a bit about yourself.

Answer: I am originally from Illinois, but I moved west as soon as I could and have never looked back. I love the mountains and try to get out running, biking, or skiing as much as I can.

These days the highlights of my outdoor life are with my son Bishop, 8, and daughter Stella, 7. They love skiing, biking, camping and really any adventuring outside, so my job is to get us out the door and let’em loose.

Question: What do you love about running, and how did you get started with it?

Answer: As a family, we often have debates around the dinner table over which is our favorite sport; biking, running, skiing, hiking, etc.

As a general rule, skiing is No. 1. But for me, it’s hard to top running because of the freedom and simplicity it offers. I love running from the front door, unencumbered by gear or roads or trails.

I wish I had discovered running earlier in life. I started running in 2013 when we moved to Wenatchee.

Prior to living here, my wife and I were really into racing bikes, mostly on the road. But we had Bishop and road racing no longer seemed like a great idea for us. It was too much time, and I kept ending up in the emergency room.

So I started to run for the exercise. Three mile runs turned into five miles, then 10, 20, etc…

The foothills and mountains in our area were my inspiration to keep running farther. I’d run to the top of Sage Hills or Castle Rock and look west and want to keep going. So I just kept going to see more and explore.

Once I got comfortable running for four-plus hours everything changed: I felt like I could go anywhere on foot and see some really amazing places.

Question: Do you train year around for your runs? Do you do ultra-races?


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November 2020