Last night, I had the privilege of attending Busse Woods Running Club’s Second Annual Holiday Party. In 2017, we were ecstatic about the 50 people who came to our holiday party. In 2018, we had over 100 people come out for the party. It’s been an absolutely incredible journey over the last year and we’re just getting started. This year I saw so many of our members grow in their own running journeys. Between new PRs that were set, some running their very first marathon or 5K, a few people who came back to running after a long hiatus, and so many other stories, I was so inspired this year and grateful to be a small part of each of these journeys.
It’s been said many times that this club is like a second family. My own experience has been nothing short of that. Like a family, we have our ups and downs, our own “drama”, and our quirks, but each piece of this family is valuable and makes the culture of the club what it is. This has been the most welcoming and inviting group I’ve ever been a part of and while we all come from different backgrounds, different places, and different walks of life, we all share one thing in common – the love of running, and that binds us together. When I moved back from St. Louis 2.5 years ago, I was looking for a training group to be a part of. My running had plateaued, I was missing the aspect of “team” in running, and I wanted to meet more friends who shared this obsession of mine. From the day I first step foot on Ost Field, I was welcomed with open arms. What has meant the most to me, however, has been all of the support over the last year that I received when I set out on a very individualistic quest to finally catch my unicorn and qualify for Boston. It required a lot of time spent away from my running family, but I felt like they were with me every step of the way.
After I finished the Berlin Marathon and secured my spot at Boston, the texts and Facebook messages came flooding in. Mind you, Berlin was run at 9:30 a.m. Germany time, which was 2:30 a.m. Chicago time. How lucky am I to have such an amazing support system that was up at 2:30 tracking my race, posting about it to one another, and sending so many positive vibes my way? I get goosebumps just typing this now. Although I crossed the finish line and the BQ was next to my name, it took a village to get me to this point and I am eternally grateful for the words of encouragement, support, and inspiration from so many of the BWRC runners that played a huge role in helping me achieve my goal.
Serving as the Director of Marketing & Social Media for BWRC has been such an honor and I am excited for all that’s to come for our club in 2019. We have big dreams and hopes for our club, but without each and every one of our members, we would not be living this dream.
Thank you, BWRC, for one of the best years of my life. 2019 has a lot to live up to after everything that happened in 2018, but I know that with all of you by my side and the new friends that will join our club next year, it’s going to be a fun ride.