“I can teach you how to set a course. I can teach you how to build a tent. I can teach you how to put up a structure. What I cannot teach you is if you walk past a piece of trash on the ground, you pick it up and throw it away. Or to snip the end of a zip-tie. Or slow down enough to chat with some of the participants or volunteers. That is the care. I can teach you a lot but I can’t teach you to care. And that’s the big divider between just doing your job—or JE, ‘just enough’—and that little bit more. The slow down and check-in goes a long way. And that’s [what I mean when I say that you] ‘can’t teach care.’”
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Ted Metellus is my former Competitor Group colleague, current race director for the New York City Marathon, and just one of the best people in the entire running industry. Ted, who was born and raised in the Bronx, is the first Black race director of an Abbott World Marathon Majors event. He’s also an avid runner with 34 half marathons and two marathons to his credit.
In this episode, we cover all sorts of ground. I learned when running first came into Ted’s life, how his relationship to it has evolved over the years, and what it’s meant to him over the past two years that we’ve been navigating a pandemic. Ted told me about the path he’s followed in event operations, logistics, and management, what it’s like being a Black man in an overwhelmingly white sport and industry, what he means when he says that “you can’t teach care,” and a lot more.
Ted Metellus: Twitter
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Mario Fraioli: Website | Strava
This episode is brought to you by:
— Tracksmith. Tracksmith is a brand for committed runners like you and me. They aim to celebrate, support and contribute to running’s distinct culture in everything that they do, from offering considered and original products for training, racing, and recovery, to creating experiences that make running more rewarding, more connected, and more meaningful. When you shop at tracksmith.com/mario and/or if you use the code Mario22 when you check out, you’ll get free shipping on your order and 5% of your purchase will go to the Tracksmith Foundation, a nonprofit that aims to give more people the opportunity to participate in Track & Field.
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Music and editing for this episode of the morning shakeout podcast by John Summerford.