Two years ago I started this journey as a pacer. I didn't know what I was doing (I still don't). I remember showing up at my first run scared shitless. Here I was, just finishing my first half just a few months ago pacing people that have run dozens of halfs and marathons. I remember asking Ryan, "What am I supposed to be doing?". Sixteen weeks later and Shamrock weekend over, my life was completely different.
During those sixteen weeks, the elite group of individuals that I ran with each and every week steered me along. We had some really crappy weather days during that training cycle. I still remember the feeling of one January run at Seashore and every step felt like ice daggers into our feet because it was so cold and rainy. But we got through it. We weathered the storms. We weathered injuries. And together we became #teamawesome.
Before pace group names were a thing, there was just #teamawesome. We were the last ones back and the ones always cheering and smiling. For 64 Saturdays in the last two years, I paced these kids. And they changed my life forever.
Saturday brings an end to me pacing #teamawesome. It is very bittersweet. I take my job as a pacer very personal. When they PR, I PR. When I race, I always race for them. Both my marathons I ran for them. When I was hurting, I would think about them. But tomorrow brings an end for me but not for #teamawesome. #teamawesome is more than one person. It is a collection of individuals who I admire and respect. #teamawesome will move forward with another amazing pacer. As I have said before, "Next one up".
To #teamawesome (old and new), Thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything you have given me. I will miss our Saturday runs more than you will ever know. There is too many of you guys to name but I love you all. As we move forward to Norfolk Harbor weekend, I can't wait to celebrate your accomplishments.
I just ask one thing, to keep #teamawesome awesome. Everyone of you guys made our group amazing. You are the reason our training team is so special.
So tomorrow, One Last Ride.......