Black, female and in charge of Baltimore

Alberto Salazar

'An adrenaline junkie's dream'

'An adrenaline junkie's dream'

Next weekend, while sane people in Baltimore are barbecuing in the backyard, I'll be in Oregon with 11 friends. We're going for a run.

The route starts at 6,000 feet on the slopes of Mount Hood. Twenty-eight hours later, we expect to finish on a wide, wind-swept beach at the Oregon Coast. In between, traveling in two large vans, we'll be running along highways and on trails and back roads for 198 miles. One runner then another. Day then night then day.

The much-anticipated occasion is the 32nd Hood to Coast Relay, a colossal adventure in people-moving and the largest running relay in the world. Alberto Salazar, a three-time New York City Marathon champion, calls Hood to Coast,...