Come meet an inspirational coach!

It was either last November or December that I received a Facebook invite (or was it posted on a wall?) to attend Coach Israel Pose’s Inspiring Coach of the Year Finalist party graciously hosted by Brooks. How could I pass this up? I mean, really? I haven’t seen him in..well, years and the party would be a great time to surprise him, congratulate him, reconnect, and then challenge him. Say what? I’ll get to the latter later. 😉

The event was appropriately held at Village Runner. I believe they’ve always been a favorite of Coach Pose’s as well as supporter of its local community. Support your local independent shops today!

Who provided the dessert?! Next time, have them contact karolynh’s. 😉 I have to give them props for using the school colors. Nice touch, dessert designer.

While standing in line to get inside of the event, I overheard some kids saying nothing but good things about Coach Pose. I know he’s instilled a lot of great running energy into these kids because they asked each other “Did you run today?” What high school kids care about running, let alone ask each other if they ran today? His kids do. They love the sport just as much as he does.

As I got closer, there were two tables filled with Brooks giveaways and food. I entered a raffle, grabbed a light key chain, and pen that reads “run happy.” The latter couldn’t suit me better. After getting my freebies, I walked over to Coach Pose and waited until he was done talking with (what looked like) some very important people. Waiting is not one of my strong suits so I lightly tapped him on the shoulder and kindly said,

“Hi! I’m sorry for interrupting but I just wanted to say, ‘Hi’ and ‘Congratulations’!”

He could not have been more surprised to see me, which I was relieved with because I was deeply afraid he was going to immediately give me the face of “Oh, it’s the quitter.” I know he would never react in such a way because he’s nothing short of being the coolest coach on the planet but, well, for a moment I became that high school kid who had just told her coach she wasn’t going to run anymore. Instead, he said,

“Oh my gosh! Hey there, marathoner! How are you?!”

After much “Congratulations!” and “How the heck are you?!” talk, it was clearly obvious how much of an impact he placed in a lot of people’s hearts. The event was filled with so many fans as we kept getting interrupted with them wanting to congratulate him. He couldn’t stop smiling. I couldn’t stop smiling for him! He asked what kind of running I’ve been up to (of course he would! why wouldn’t he!) and I said I had another half marathon coming up. He said,

“That’s great! I’ve never ran a half marathon before.”

I’m sorry, what did you just say? The coach I’ve known to run miles and miles on end, all day, every day, with an amazing PR for a mile, just told me he’s never ran a half marathon before. How is this true?! It felt like he might as well have said “I have a twin and he’s the actual runner. Surprise!” I don’t know if he heard but I said “You should run one.” After various Facebook posts about his cousin running the LA Marathon, I would make sporadic comments about him running a half marathon this year and the LA Marathon next year. Challenge accepted, Mr. Inspirational Coach? Like everything he’s done in his running career, I know he’d do exceptionally well in a half and/or full marathon. I wouldn’t be surprised if he won first place at his first run, too. Seriously.

And here’s the man himself..

It’s too bad the picture came out so blurry! If anyone sees this guy running, you’ll want to kindly stop him and shake his hand for you’ve just encountered yourself with the Most Inspiring Coach of the Year (according to a million alumni and current high school students).

Until the next post..

keep on running!

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