The 82nd Fartlek Friday™ – Happy Pie and (Root) Beer Day!

HAPPY PIONEER DAY! If there’s an outside chance that you don’t live in Utah or along the Mormon Corridor, odds are you have NOOOOOO idea what Pioneer Day is all about. So, here’s a little history lesson for you …

  • The Mormons got ran out of Nauvoo, Illinois after Prophet Joseph Smith was martyred.
  • The Mormons settled around Iowa for a couple years before heading west to the Rocky Mountains.
  • On, July 23, 1847, Mormons first camped in the Salt Lake Valley. But, the next day (obviously the 24th), the Mormon Prophet Brigham Young declared that “This is the Place” (or a variation of that).
  • So, yeah, basically today celebrates the arrival of the Mormon Pioneers to the Salt Lake Valley.
  • And, most us Utahns get the day off from work … sans Federal employees and other people who have jerks for bosses.
  • We celebrate it pretty much like the 4th of July … we have a parade in downtown SLC, along with fireworks, a rodeo and all that jazz.

So, if you didn’t know a lick about Pioneer Day … now you do. Consider this today’s history lesson. [CUE THE MORE YOU KNOW RAINBOW]

Today is also a special day for me. I am running the Handcart Days (our 24th celebration) Half Marathon here in Bountiful. This is going to be race #100 for me! I know that I have written A LOT about this milestone on here and I’ll probably be beating a dead horse by saying all again.

But, it should be said.

I am beyond excited. I am going to be running with two of my great friends, Tim and Elsha. I am really excited about this, because to me this shows what I’ve gained in the past four years it took me to get to this milestone.

When I ran my first half marathon, which was the Handcart Days Half, I did it alone. I didn’t really know anyone in the running community. My cousin was a runner, but we did a number of races together, but my training and involvement in the community was pretty much zilch to none.

Over the years it’s been amazing how many friendships I have made. Not just bypassing friendships, but meaningful and personal ones. That change really happened in May 2012 when Susette Fisher and I ran a 15 mile trail race together. We bonded and have had MANY other running experiences that I hold close to my heart.

Being able to be a part of other people’s running journey has been something I’ve cherished. Admittedly, the butterflies and nerves I once got before a race … are kinda gone. Mainly, because I know what to expect now.

But, being around others during their first races and other milestones is something I love. Because, I can relate. Coming from being over 400lbs. to here wasn’t a cakewalk. I had to work through a lot of … crap. I still work on it. But, I get what it takes and I’ve cherished the time I’ve been able to just be there for others to offer them that support.

Being able to train and run marathons with Becky and Jill has really been two highlights of my running journey so far. Being able to be with Jill every step of the way during the Big Cottonwood Marathon was a very special experience for me KNOWING what it took her to get to that point.

Whenever I need a pick me up, I love going back to the video I recorded of her finishing the marathon.

Jill finishing her first marathon …

This is one of my most favorite moments. Ever. This woman has FOUGHT to get to this moment. And, I am not just talking about the previous 26.2 miles of the race. She earned the title of “MARATHONER”

Posted by Joshua O. Snow Hansen on Saturday, September 13, 2014

This was probably my favorite running moment thus far in my 180 journey. The video really says it all.

Being a pacer has given me other opportunities to share my experience with others. Whether I am pacing or sweeping I love being able help other runners along their own journey.

I could share story upon story, but I’d need to write a book to share all the ones I’d want to share. Needless to say, pacing has enriched my running more than I realized going into it. No matter your speed I highly recommend that other runners look into becoming one, because it’s beyond rewarding.

But, enough of that emotional humble jumble. . Odds are I might be done once you get around to ready this, but I’m very excited to be able running race #100 and doing it with two close friends in Elsha and Tim. It’s going to be a great moment once I cross that finish line.

This upcoming week look for a YouTube video I’m in the process of making of a bunch of my race pictures and videos. It’s a much bigger task than I thought, but I hope to have it done by at least midweek.




The first episode of The Utah Runcast was released this past week. If you missed it, you can listen to it here …


Here are a few things that caught my attention this past week …



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