When I started running again just after college graduation, I had super old, hand-me-down tennis shoes from my cousin (literally, I think they were shoes for tennis). But I ran in them, camped in them, hiked in them and didn’t know any better. I probably had them for about 5 years, and who knows how long she had them before me. Then at the very beginning of 2009, I realized I needed new shoes after some knee and foot pain. I researched online, tried different brands on in store and read reviews of not only the shoes, but the company themselves. What was the final pair I chose? The Brooks Adrenaline 9’s. I ordered them online and when they arrived, it was like Christmas!
The next year I was accepted into the Brooks ID program and advocated the company and products to anyone who would listen (and probably some that weren’t!). When they refined the parameters for the ID program, I unfortunately didn’t make the cut, but was placed in the newly formed Brooks Fanatics program in 2011. It was a small group of awesome runners, many from the ID program who just loved to run and loved Brooks.
The Fanatics group grew and grew, especially as the parameters for the ID program were refined even more. We were each others support systems, talked about injuries, great runs, not so great runs, accomplishments, failures, vacations, family, you name it.
It felt really awesome to be even just a small part of an awesome company. I was able to volunteer at events for them, and even run two consecutive years of the Rock n Roll San Francisco 1/2 marathon thanks to them. I made some great online friends and even met a couple in real life. When I flew up to Seattle to run the Rock n Roll Seattle 1/2 in 2013, I was able to stop by Brooks HQ for a private tour and lunch.
Midway through last year, we all found out that the Fanatics program wouldn’t be moving forward in the new year, and as of December 31st, 2014, we would no longer be Fanatics (except we will always be Fanatics, even if there is no official program!). It’s been a weird almost 8 months without the posts, group chats, photo posts, etc.
Thank you Brooks for 5 amazing years and I can’t wait to see what you come up with in the future!
Forever a Fanatic,