Male Runner of the Year

Presented by Reikan Lin

Yo yo Gulf Winds, Reikan here. I’m really sad I can’t be in town for actual ceremony, but I am very honored to present the award for the 2016 Male Runner of the Year.

In any given year, some runners go for volume, and they run as many races as they can. Others race to win, get podium finishes, and take home the bling. Still others choose to focus on a few races a year and attack their personal records or train up to tackle new distances. Some runners are there for their friends, some for their family, and some for the community. And some are just very good looking people and run to look pretty for our new Facebook profile pictures. But the Male Runner of the Year doesn’t specialize in any single one of these things. Because in 2016, he just decided to do all those things.

In 2016, he competed in 71 races, which is well above an average of 1 race per week. Not only was he extremely consistent throughout the whole year in terms of participation, he was stellar in his performance. In these 71 races, he won 11 of them, took silver in 12, and took bronze in 5. He placed in the top 5 on 40 of those occasions (over half of the races) and in the top 10 on 51 of those races (over three quarters of the races).

In the summer, he remained competitive, placing 2nd overall in the Summer Track Series and emerging as the overall champion of the Summer Trail Series. He also represented Gulf Winds well on a national level, placing in the top 1.35% at the Gate River Run 15k championship and in the top 4.3% at the Boston Marathon. He also set 4, possibly 5, either way that’s freaking impressive, course records this year, and he had a breakthrough year on a personal level. He establihed 10 personal records, including the 10k, 30k, full marathon and 50k distances.

In total, he raced 374.75 miles, averaging 6:51 in those all those miles combined.

The Male Runner of the Year is a very active member of the Gulf Winds Track Club community. This year, he continued to coordinate and improve on the Gulf Winds Lecture Series, work on the Gulf Winds website, helped write some of the club’s bylaws, assisted with running groups, and was active in the community’s discussions on running at all levels. I know he will continue to bring his personal touch to all of his contributions to the GWTC community, especially now that he’s the club’s Vice President.

Paul Guyas was one of the very first people I met when I moved to Tallahassee back in the summer of 2012. He was one of critical few who got me involved with the Gulf Winds, which may have made an impact in my life—by all accounts, most people would consider me to be a running nerd, judging by the amount of running gear I now own and how obsessive my running Excel spreadsheet is now. Though I left Tallahassee in 2014, I brought with me the special essence and spirit of what it means to be a Gulf Winds Track Club runner, and I’m forever grateful for Paul in welcoming me to this special community.

So when I had the opportunity to visit Tallahassee back in March, I was really happy to be back in my former home and happy to see old friends. What I didn’t expect was to see a new Paul with a refreshed sense of energy. Granted, it was his wedding day, but I could see that his life really taking off—with the talented, smart, and very stylish Martha, his two wonderful daughters Kaari and Sade, but also Speckles the cat, buying a house, and even LeBron and the Cavs won in 2016. I just didn’t know at the time that he’d also totally kill it on the road, trails, and track all year round.

I’m really happy and proud to present the 2016 Male Runner of the Year, sent from Kent, Mr. Gulf Winds Vice President, Uncle Curly’s team member, the Pi Guy himself, give it up for Paul Guyas.

Seriously, congratulations on your special year. I love you, man. Okay, peace. Reikan out.