Last week when I ran the St. George Marathon four times in a row I went through some tough times. There were moments of despair and discouragement. In those times where you are hurting or exhausted or sore, it's understandable that you would have thoughts like "How am I going to keep going for another 50 or 60 miles?!??!"
What was really touching was that it seemed like whenever I hit a low point, someone would show up and provide an amazing boost in my spirits. I wanted to tell you about those people who were a positive influence in my race:
John Bozung drove up the course to meet me and bring a popsicle. It was hot outside and that popsicle was a welcome treat. Wrap your head around this one - John ran the St. George Marathon as well....and it was his 388th MARATHON! So, so incredible.
Amylee Nicoll ran her first St. George Marathon in a smoking 3:27. She drove up the course Friday and provided fist-fulls of gummy bears. Pure heaven.
My friend Clint Lamb found me on Friday and brought an Icee. I first met Clint earlier this year in the middle of a near death experience dodging lightning at the Bryce 50. By the time we helped each other get to the end of that race we were the best of friends. You won't meet a nicer, more supportive person. I love this man.
I had just finished my second marathon, more than 54 miles into the adventure. I stopped to change my shoes when Amber Farmer, Amanda Jocelyn, and Nicole Stout showed up with some Twinkies, kind words, and lots of encouragement. I thought that was so nice of them.
On the fourth marathon I ran past this random stranger. I loved his sign.
At the finish line I was greeted by Kami Ellsworth who is the amazing race director of the St. George Marathon. Each year I am continually impressed by the organization of the race and the army of volunteers that make the race a well-oiled machine.
Some of the most influential people in my running are Steve and Kendra Hooper from St. George Running Center. I bought my very first pair of running shoes from them many years ago and they are always a great source for tips and encouragement. Steve came out and ran the first few miles of the quadruple with me because he is awesome like that.
I ran the last 8 or 9 miles with my friends Rick Whitelaw and Turd'l Miller. It meant so much to me that they wanted to run the last section of the race together.
Rick and Turd'l ran a double marathon. Here is a video that Amber Farmer shot at the end of the race with our celebratory finish line jump.
My biggest support was my wife and kids. Mel crewed all day Friday for the first two marathons, then volunteered with my daughter Kylee at an aid station during the race. I can't tell you how thankful I am for such an amazing wife and family.
Each of these people played a role in helping me accomplish the quadruple marathon goal. I feel so blessed.