Troy Harkness has been running both for pleasure, and competitively in marathons for nearly 30 years.
He’s competed in roughly a dozen marathons, but when injuries caused a halt in his training regiment four years ago, he set his sights on a new goal — to criss-cross Saskatoon. He’s hitting every runnable street, avenue, crescent and trail in the city.
“I said, ‘OK, I’ve got a project, I’m just going to run every street, every alley and every trail in Saskatoon,’ and that motivated me,” Harkness said.
For four years, Harkness has used a cellphone app to track his progress as he winds his way throughout the entirety of the city. Although he’s nearly completed his goal, he has a few streets left to go.
He usually hits the pavement four to five times a week, completing anywhere from 10 to 20 kilometres a jaunt. Currently, his favourite route is along the banks of the South Saskatchewan River.
Although, his feet often carry him far beyond the city limits.
“I run a lot of grid roads out in the country,” Harkness said. “There’s nothing out there except scenery; no people, no cars.”
While he gets great enjoyment out of the exercise, and enjoying the nature around him, it’s the calming effect that running has over him that he enjoys the most.
“It’s a place where I’m completely alone, and it’s quiet,” he said.