Imagine spending a whole weekend surrounded by people that share your passion, excitement and enthusiasm for running. I had the wonderful opportunity to do just that at the Runner’s World Half and Festival and it was as amazing as it sounds. I kept thinking the event was like the Oscars of the running world. The pinnacle event for runners. Instead of a red carpet we had a running course. Instead of gowns and tuxedos we had Oakley tights and Free Motion jackets and tops. Instead of high heels we had running shoes. Instead of actors we had amazingly talented runners, authors and Olympic athletes. You get the idea.
There is so much to share about the whole experience. It was tough deciding where to begin. So, why not begin with one of the most memorable parts of the whole event, the people I had the honor and privilege to meet! People that came together with one thing in common, running.
Inspiring author of The Long Run, Matt Long.
Yes! That’s me with running icon, author and Chief Running Officer of Runner’s World Magazine, Bart Yasso.
Ambry Burfoot, Runner’s World Editor At Large and author of The Runner’s Guide to the Meaning of Life. RIght after this photo was taken I immediately texted my husband. “Guess who I’m sitting next to!!”
Meeting Amanda Louden, mom, runner, coach and writer of Miss Zippy, was a delight.
Laura Beachy, Runner’s World PR Coordinator and our leader extraordinaire for the weekend. She has an unbelievable amount of energy!
No, you’re not seeing things. That’s Shalane Flanagan! Only an Olympic marathoner!
Harold of A Veteran Runnah and Fitfluential Ambassador.
Jenelle, the voice behind Mile Twenty Eight.
Fitfluential Ambassadors. Amazing runners, talented writers and an all around great group of people.
Meet random runner girl, Octavia. She came up to me after the 10K and gave me a big hug and thank you. She said I paced her the entire race and she PRd by 7 minutes! The pride in her accomplishment was priceless!
Meet Katie of Katie Runs This. She has a determination that is unstoppable!
Have you ever heard of the ultramarathon man? That’s him…as if you didn’t know. My husband and Dean Karnazes are the inspiration behind me becoming a runner. I read Dean’s book, Ultramarathon Man and then met him at a small race in southern California. After that I decided if he can do what he does I have no excuse not to at least try. I signed up for my first race, The Grape Stomp Half Marathon!
I met up with Erin after the 10K. She is the blogger of Girl Gone Veggie.
Meet the author of the just released Big Book of Marathon and Half Marathon Training and accomplished runner, Jennifer Van Allen. You might also recognize her name as the manager of the Runner’s World Challenge.
This is only a glimpse of the wonderful people I met over the weekend. And it was a pleasure meeting them all!
Without a doubt, if I had to pick one thing that stood out more than anything else about the whole weekend it would be the people. People that came together to celebrate running.
Stay tuned. More on the Runner’s World Half Marathon and Festival!A close second to the people is the Hat Trick!
Given the opportunity who would you most like to meet running or otherwise?
Disclaimer: I participated in the Runner’s World Half & Festival weekend as a FitFluential Ambassador. I received a free entry to the race and participation in the events. All opinions expressed are my own.