My guest today is the director of marketing and partnerships for the BMW Dallas Marathon Festival.
Running has infiltrated nearly every aspect of his life at this point.
I am looking forward to getting to know Jason Schuchard as we go a few easy miles today.
Inspiration In the Family
One of the earliest memories for Jason Schuchard was watching his mom compete in marathons.
His mom started running in the 80s and took to the sport quickly.
She didn’t come from a running background herself but found that she loved the challenge.
Jason credits his mom for being his inspiration to get into running.
He ran with his family early on and eventually joined the cross-country team in high school.
While in college, running took a backseat.
Jason was still active, but he preferred intramural sports above all else.
After graduation, Jason began to get into the sport more seriously.
The Marathon is Special
Jason ran his first marathon in 2004.
The distance holds a special place in his heart and is the highlight of his running career.
The decision to run a marathon started as an opportunity to compete in something a large percentage of the population hasn’t done.
As he progressed through training, he realized just how much he enjoyed the challenge.
Jason was nervous headed into the race due to the vast amount of unknowns that could go wrong.
The weather was ideal and he had a great experience.
He was hooked upon crossing the finish line and already looking ahead to what was next.
A Natural Progression
Jason typically ran one marathon per year, because his mom encouraged him not to overdo it.
He spent a few years traveling around the country with friends running races in various states.
Even though the marathon had his heart, Jason got interested in triathlons.
He watched his mom do some local triathlons growing up.
As a child, he even competed in an Iron Kids triathlon.
Jason was at a time in his life when he had the extra time to devote to training for 3 sports.
In 2008, he did his first Ironman Triathlon in Arizona.
Since starting down the triathlon path, he has completed 1 half Ironman and 2 full Ironmans.
Mindset Is Everything
Jason has done the marathon distance both as a stand-alone race and also at the end of an Ironman.
Each scenario presents unique challenges and requires different mindsets.
Once the bike portion is completed, it typically takes a few miles for Jason to get his legs back under him.
In triathlons, each participant has one thing that they excel at.
For Jason, the running was his strongest event.
He found that in an Ironman, it all came down to the marathon.
Thankfully, he had a great coach that helped him get the most out of himself.
A Sports Centered Career
Jason graduated with a degree in sports marketing and has always worked in the industry.
Prior to 2015, he worked with a local running business as a consultant for 3 to 4 years.
He worked closely with the Dallas Mavericks organization for a bit as well.
His boss challenged him to find a way to make the Mavericks stay relevant all 12 months of the year.
Jason, being a runner, leaned into what he knew.
He helped to organize a 5k that was tied to the Mavericks organization.
By Runners, For Runners
In 2015, Jason started working with the Dallas Marathon.
The Dallas Marathon started 52 years ago and is the largest running marathon in the state of Texas.
Over the last 5 to 10 years the event has rapidly grown.
It takes place the second weekend in December and has 12 different running and walking events over the course of 3 days.
One of the goals of the organization is to be more family-inclusive to all levels of runners.
All kids ages 14 and under can run any event for free race weekend, excluding the marathon.
Their efforts aim to introduce the sport to a younger audience along with keeping the price point reasonable.
New and Improved
This year the Dallas Marathon is debuting a new and improved course.
The new course changes eliminated a lot of turns and removed some hills in the hopes of making it faster.
Along with a faster course, the participants will also get a great tour of the city.
Celebrating the 20th anniversary this year is the half-marathon and the Oncor Kid’s Race.
The Oncor Kid’s race is expected to have around 6,000 kids participating.
In the past, the weather has been ideal with temps starting in the 40s and climbing to the 60s.
The Dallas Marathon is fortunate to have a number of incredible sponsors who work together to ensure a great experience for everyone.
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