And then I got a call about two hours before the VIP dinner from the PR team. They wanted to find out if I knew that Mike Tomlin was the keynote speaker. I had no idea. It was brand new information to me. Now I was a little nervous. Not because I was unsure of my speech, but because I was speaking before Mike Tomlin at a dinner in Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh loves the Steelers. Pittsburgh loves Mike Tomlin. To me, it felt like I was walking into church and giving a sermon before the Pope. Everyone knew who Mike Tomlin was. Only those that had previously seen my video knew who I was. Turns out I had nothing to be nervous about. I said what I had to say. We showed my video and it was great.
I also had the opportunity to meet some of DSG team as well as some of the folks they work with to help promote, their social media influencers (I think that’s what they’re called), the “Run For” campaign. As it was and is an
honor to be part of the campaign, it is really cool to meet the people behind it and to see that they do care and are truly interested in the stories they are sharing. That it’s not only about building a brand. That it’s not only about business and a bottom line, but that they are interested. That these are people I can continue to build friendships with, share training and race stories, and hopefully race next to one day.
And to the race itself. They’d changed the course a bit since I ran the full-marathon two years ago. Added some more bridges, really living up the nickname “Running the Steel City” (bridges there are made of steel). By the end of the half-marathon, you run over a total of 5 bridges, all painted yellow to signify the spirit and pride of Pittsburgh. A little hillier than I remember, but that’s was probably because of the additional bridges. The weather was perfect; organization and logistics was top-notch; crowd support and course were great. I finished in 1:40:28 – a 7:41 minute/mile pace. Very happy with my effort and result.
All in all, a great opportunity to share my story. A great race. A great weekend. As for what’s next, training continues for the San Francisco Marathon on June 16th. As always, Run Fast. Speak Loud. Breathe Easy.