The Lou Fusz Subaru St. Louis Triathlon and Street Party Run finisher medals (right).
There are a lot of exciting days when designing and setting up an event. There is the birth of the concept, the approval of permits, the event launch, answering questions, and more and more and more. Of all of these kernels of excitement prior to the big day itself, there are few that I take more joy in than receiving and displaying the finisher medals.
Let’s make one thing clear – we don’t do “participation medals” – that’s not a thing I’ve ever seen in a race. I don’t think I would have a problem if anyone did that, but I have never seen one. Without being pretentious about semantics – a finisher medal is a different entity all together because you earn a finisher medal. Some people have enough finisher medals that these tokens of success lose some of their edge, but for me this has never been the case. In my eyes a finisher medal has far less to do with what happened on race day and far more to do with all the days before it. Every race is a journey – and fitness, while the biggest leg, is rarely the only one. The mountain to climb that is a finishline is built on the challenges of everyday life as much as the ones associated with how fast your legs and arms go. Be it sick kids, school needs, job obligations, or family commitments – your training is a larger balancing act than what appears on the surface.
I can break down why my finisher medals are important into 3 reasons. Let’s check them out.