Guest Blogger Charlie Johnston
On Friday, November 4, 2011, just as I was leaving home to run my first New York City Marathon, I got an email from The San Francisco Marathon’s Marketing Coordinator, Jojo. The message was to inform me that I had been selected to represent the marathon as an official race ambassador. I was ecstatic and carried the excitement all the way to a then-PR of 2:48:23.
At first glance, the relationship looked pretty cut-and-dry: In exchange for promoting and representing the race, recruiting runners in and around Reno, Nevada (where I live), and contributing to a blog, I would receive entry to the race, San Francisco Marathon logo attire, and various running-related goodies. From the onset, I had a hunch that being a San Francisco Marathon Ambassador would be vastly more rewarding than just a free race and some cool swag, but the depth to which that premonition would prove accurate, however, surpassed even my most optimistic hopes.
Not to downplay the awesomeness of my collection of San Francisco Marathon sweatbands (they’re pretty awesome), but the single best part of being an Ambassador for such an incredible race is all of the equally incredible people I have met along the way. There’s just something about runners, their stories are always interesting and inspiring. And the 33 runners who comprise the 2012 San Francisco Marathon Ambassadors—and the two San Francisco Marathon staffers who keep us in line, Jojo and Maddie, of course—are no exception.
Whenever an Ambassador does something especially cool, inspirational, or otherwise noteworthy, we call them an “Am-badass-ador.” We use the term A LOT. From sharing their life-changing running stories, supporting myriad charitable causes, completing insanely long ultramarathons, braving the nightmarishly hot 2012 Boston […]