Our Valentine’s Day Crush

Let’s face it. Valentine’s Day is pretty great when you have a passion to share. When asked what it is about our sport they love, the finest, fittest athletes on the planet were not shy about crediting the races, the relationships, and their slammin’ bods.

Take a walk with us down lover’s lane and see why this sport is so special to so many.

To share some love of your own, click on the Store_Heart2 next to any athlete’s name to go their store for some great gear while supporting their journey!

Johnny Gregorek

I love running because it is a great listener. I can go for solo runs just rambling on to myself like a madman and running never judges me. Also it keeps my killer physique intact.

Liz Podominick

What I love about this sport is the people I’ve meet along the way, resulting in some lifelong friends. This is more valuable to me than any other success I’ve had in track!


Genna Hartung

I love track and field for what it has given back to me, after all I’ve put into it. Track has always provided me with an outlet to be myself, to excel, to develop, and to push my limits. It was through track that I became confident in high school, a time when everyone could use a little extra confidence. Track also taught me that I was a lot tougher and stronger than I had previously thought, and that you can improve in anything if you keep at it. I learned that while practice doesn’t yield consistent or instant results, continual hard and consistent work will pay off. Track gave me an outlet for energy, both physical and mental, and it brought me some of the best friends I’ve ever had. There’s something about tempo runs that really brings everyone together, huh?


Even now, as I am only coaching and not competing, I love this sport more than ever. I’ve seen it inspire people, create friendships, and provide people with a source of confidence they might not have had otherwise. I’m looking forward to watching (and hopefully helping) it continue to empower the future athletes of our sport.

Neely Gracey

What I love about being a runner is that it becomes a characteristic of who we are, and that is what defines us as a community.

Kyle Merber

I love our sport because of the fans! Nothing makes you want to run fast like a crowd roaring in your face down the home straightaway!


Photo: Jason Suarez, HOKA One One Long Island Mile 2016

Maria Dalzot

Running and I have been together for about 18 years now. Running is always where I turn when life gets tough. Running motivates me and inspires my best ideas. Running takes me to some of the most beautiful places in the world. Though it’s not always sunshine and mountain peaks. Sometimes we get lost; but we always get back on track. Sometimes running hurts me; but we are quick to make up. Running never judges me and always cheers me up. Running teaches me patience and compromise. Running challenges me, humbles me and makes me a better person. I would not be the person that I am today if not for Running and for that I am truly thankful.

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Brandon Hudgins

Dear Track and Field,
This year we celebrate 20 years together. It’s hard for me to remember much of life before you arrived. When we were young it was all playful and fun, as we grew older it became a lot more serious and real. You have been there for me through thick and thin and I hope I’ve been there for you. We have celebrated some of life’s highest achievements and cried through our lowest moments. While we may only have a few years left where we can really be physical, you will always be in my life. I look forward to taking each other to places we never imagined, and getting old together. While we may have our spats from time to time, always remember that I love you!


Olivia Mickle

In Fitzgerald’s novel “How Bad Do You Want It?” he writes, “In mastering my fear of suffering in races, I acquired a greater level of respect for myself, a sense of inner strength that has helped me me tackle other challenges, both inside and outside sports.” I love running because it is hard. I love running because it has and continues to give me the opportunity to not just push myself physically, but also to assess who I am as a person.


Caroline Boller

I love our sport because of the ethereal days when all the hard work comes together, knowing that every member of the running community shares in the joy of these breakthrough moments.


Heather Kampf

I love more than I could concisely list about my sport, but lately I’ve loved the camaraderie amongst not only my teammates, but my competition- a shared sense of chasing after similar goals and an understanding of the hard work and sacrifice it takes to achieve those goals. What can I say, other runners just “get” me, and I really appreciate the comfort in knowing that when we toe the line to race.

Greg Ahlswede

I love orienteering because it is a true lifetime sport. I started when I was eight and I am still going strong. It would be a beautiful thing if I still get to explore maps around the world when I’m 80 years old.

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Cecilia Barowski

I love our sport because running is universal; no matter what country you’re from or language you speak, running needs no translation!

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From the 2015 Princeton in Cuba trip

I also love our sport because I can share it with my Valentine 🙂 (featuring the dashing Gregory Leeper)


Reid Buchanan

Sometimes it’s hard to put in words why you love something so I decided to steal someone else’s.

In a sport like this–hard work, not much glory, but still popular in every century– well, there must be some beauty which ordinary men can’t see, but extraordinary men do.

~ George Yeoman Pocock (infamous for crafting the perfect racing shell)

He was talking about the sport of rowing but I find a lot of truth in this for running and it’s exactly why I love it.

Mookie Salaam

The reason why I love track and field is I get to push myself pass my limitations and create new ones everyday. When I’m out there it’s me vs that clock and when the gun goes off it’s show time.


Kendra Chambers

Why I love our sport: I love track and field because it pushes you to your limits everyday. It forces you to choose to settle or to do something amazing. It’s a bittersweet kind of love because at the end of the day it’s just between you and track.


Amy Cole

One of my favorite things about the sport of running is its accessibility for so many people. I can’t think of another sport where tens of thousands of people, from first time racers to Olympians, can compete together on the same course at the same time. Running is truly unique and beautiful in that regard.


Kayla Caldwell

I love track and field because of the energy! There is so much energy at a track and field competition, whether you are in the stands or out there competing you can just feel it! The people you meet and the friends you make along the way in your track and field journey are relationships that you will never forget and you will hold them in your heart forever.


Tyler Andrews

I love the opportunity that running gives me to travel! Meeting tons of new people and exploring different parts of the world is part of the joy of the journey for me.

I attached a photo which is my 2016 flight map, including travel all over the USA, several trips to South America, and a trip to Doha and Dubai for the 50K World Championships.


Jess Tonn

Dear Running,

Because of you I wake up every day excited to go to work.

Because of you I have learned that nothing is more fulfilling, has made me happier, and my life more full than being on the same mission with my teammates and coach every day.

Because of you I have found families, lifelong friends, and homes in the places where you have taken me.

Because of you I have learned that whether I am lacing up my spikes, putting my race kit on, warming up for a hard workout, or coming back from injury, I am always a part of something bigger than myself.

Because of you, I have learned to love the process – every grueling, beautiful, fun, easy, and hard part of it.

Because of you I have pushed my my body to the point where it has broken; but, I’ve also pushed my body just far enough to where I busted through walls and barriers that I once thought stood as indestructible.

Because of you I have experienced some of my highest highs and lowest lows; but, I learned some of life’s toughest lessons along the way.

Because of you I love my body – I fuel it well, take care of it, understand it, work to better it and make it stronger every day.

You have a way of weeding out the weak, only leaving room for the tough ones – thank you for making me a person and athlete who refuses to be complacent, mediocre, or settle.

We’ve been through elementary school, middle school, high school, college and a tough first year as a pro together. So here’s to the past 13 years – may there be many more, full of many fast (and fun) miles ahead!

Keep loving me back.

With love,

Kaitlin Goodman

I’ve been in love with running for over 15 years. I love the sport for the places it takes me, the trails and cities around the world I get to explore because of it, the people I meet through the sport and the wonderful running community I get to be part of, and for the opportunity running provides to challenge myself.


Rebeka Stowe

I love our sport because of the way it has the ability to draw you in and provide a reprieve from life. Be it by going to watch a meet and allowing yourself to be sucked into the drama and poetry that is watching athletes perform. Be it simply the refreshment of the daily run, on a trail away from the worries of the day, processing the worries of the day. I love our sport because of the way it has the ability to serve every individual in a different way from day to day.

Andrea Geubelle

I love the sport because it has provided a platform for me to hopefully influence the next generation. Track is such a black and white sport and your success is dependent on you and your performance. You work hard, have respect for yourself and your coach, have confidence…you succeed. This translates into everyday for others and within track I have been able to build these qualities and then share my story with others. If I can help one person get through a hard time or set their dreams a little higher and begin to push for them, my heart is happy. I love that Track has written my story, through heartbreak and success, it’s been a love hate relationship and I can only hope it teaches someone to dream big and never give up, because they too can love what they do every single day. To embrace the journey and write their own story.

Je’von Hutchison

I love Track because it gives me a unique opportunity to travel and meet others who not only have a passion for running but also have so many other talents and come from different backgrounds. Track and I have an ongoing love hate relationship. But no matter the temporary pain and suffering that may come from an intense workout or the nerves that creep up while standing at the start of a race, it all goes away once that gun is fired. Nothing can beat the joy and excitement of winning that big race, running a new PR, and after it all just thinking about when you will get to do it all again and how can you go just a little faster!

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Michael Mannozzi

I love our sport because the skills I am constantly working on and improving upon are directly correlating to life off the track. This is enriching my life overall, far beyond what it would be had I not been a Race Walker in Track and Field.


James Harris

I love track and field because my success and outcomes are dependent upon what I put in. A lot like a relationship.


Turquoise Thompson

I Love my sport because it is a resilient sport, you wont win every race. But still, you’ll try again and again to get that win again. That’s the definition of competition.


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