“Make your own kind of music, sing your own special song, make your own kind of music…even if nobody else sings along.”
~Mama Cass Elliot
Good ideas are born on runs. On a particular run this past October, I was moody, melancholy and blah. Kinda like the way some runs start out when you are feeling dumpy, or stressed. Hubs has always thought of himself as a Blue Collar Runner, as did I. It’s not about job status, it’s how we go about fitting in training and our overall running philosophy. We work hard at it, but we also have a pure love for running, while balancing other interests in our life. We train around work, family time, kids activities, animal chores, and volunteer work. Nobody is paying us to train or log in the miles. Nobody is flying us to events or paying for our shoes. We do it because we love it and it brings us such happiness and a sense of accomplishment. It also blesses us with an amazing sense of community. Runners are a different breed, some folks call us crazy, some tell us our knees will be shot later in life, but we keep coming back day after day to catch that runners high. It’s with this sense of community, that hubs and I wanted a deeper way to connect to runners, ones we have met in passing on the trails, ones we’ve known for most of our lives, and others we’ve yet to meet.
So on this run, where my mind was muddy, we dreamed up Blue Collar Runners . Running has a way of clearing the mind and allowing curiosity to emerge. Guy has always been a beautiful writer, starting when I met him in high school, our college days and to that note he wrote me that changed my outlook on my injury four years ago. He has a way of telling a story, someones story, that if you know them, you can hear them through his words. And if you don’t know them, you’d love to. We created the website, with the help of our friend’s son, Finn, and decided to launch Blue Collar Runners a few weeks later. We felt there was a need for the everyday runner to shine. Let’s face it, we read a lot about the elites, don’t get me wrong, I love seeing what Walmsley, Dauwalter and other top runners are up to, but I also crave the stories of everyday folks. What is their why, what drives them to do the things they do. Those who are battling their own demons, raising awareness for something they believe in, folks who just want to finish something they started, or those who want to start something they never thought possible.
It’s been almost four months and we couldn’t be happier with the progress. We’ve interviewed twelve runners, all from different backgrounds and beliefs. From streak runners to hundred milers and everywhere in between. People coming back from major illnesses, or fighting their way through sobriety, these folks have made us cry, inspired us, and made us laugh so hard. With each interview, we love the running community that much more. We look forward to meeting many more of you through this journey together.
If you haven’t checked us out, give us a follow on IG https://www.instagram.com/bluecollarrunners/ We showcase runners from all over the world, asking them what running means to them. It’s a place to feel connected and part of something. Every runner has a story.
Be on the lookout for our monthly column on Ultra Running Magazine’s website… http://www.ultrarunning.com Each month, we will be featuring a new Blue Collar Runner. These stories will undoubtedly inspire you to go after your dreams. Thanks to those who have reached out and supported us in this endeavor. We’ve had such a ball and can’t wait to share more amazing stories with you.
Happy running folks…looking forward to meeting more of you on the trails…….