I have been told that you "never look back on the 'year that was' but look at the previous year as the 'year that you had'". You may look at those to quotes and think, "Brad, I don't think you have had enough coffee and are delusional. They mean the same thing." Honestly, the first time I heard that I thought they were the same thing too, but look at the statements a little closer.

Just look at the world "was". It is the past tense of the word "be". Now, if you look at the word "be" it essentially means to live or exist. Got it? Now, let's explore the word "had" which is still a past tense but it is also a past participle of the word "have". If you aren't an English major you may need to look up what a participle is, but "have" means to possess or to own. You following me?

So when you look back 2014, did you have a year that "was" or a year that you "had"?

As I reflect on the year, I think of all of the successes that we had as a club:

  • We grew our membership base
  • We had dozens of people brave the elements and join us at our New Years Day Mitten Run
  • We created a new website
  • We had a great Annual Dinner with our speaker Jimmy Dean Freeman
  • We as a club were again voted top Running Club by the readers of Iowa Momentum Magazine
  • Sycamore 8 and Capital Pursuit were voted as runners up in their respective categories by the readers of Iowa Momentum Magazine
  • Loop the Lake was a great hit with our new post-race headquarters at Confluence Brewing
  • We installed 2 drinking fountains around the city at locations that aid runners, bikers and walkers with proper hydration
  • We handed out 4 scholarships to graduating seniors
  • We opened a new online store to order gear
  • Our Summer/Fall Saturday training runs have a new, easier to access home
  • We saw a lot of new faces at training runs
  • Our CS Turkeys led by Amber and Justin traveled the Mid-West representing our club at trail and ultra races
  • We welcomed a lot of new faces on the board
  • Capital Pursuit was recertified and named the RRCA 10 Mile Championship Race
  • Maffitt Lake saw some CRAZY fast times on the trails with great weather
  • Capital Pursuit celebrated it's 32nd year with a new course record for the females
  • We had some fun working the IMT Des Moines Marathon booth and water stop
  • 10 of our board members braved the weather to collect money during the Make-A-Wish Jolly Holiday Lights
  • And Sycamore 8 Trail Run capped off the year with the biggest field in the history of the race

That's a huge list and I am probably missing a lot of things. This isn't even including all of the time and funds that were donated to local non-profits like See Us Run Des Moines, Central Iowa Shelter, Boys & Girls Club of Central Iowa, Central Iowa Trail Association, etc. I would say as a club, you all should feel incredibly excited for all of this and what is to come for 2015.

Now, going back to the original question in regards to the Capital Striders as a club. Did we just exist this year or did we "have" a year? I can honestly tell you that we OWNED this year :)

Have a great time celebrating tonight and can't wait to see you at the 2015 Mitten Run!!!