February Runner of the Month
February Runner of the Month

   Since it is Valentine’s Month, we are celebrating our 1 st featured couple- Angela and Paul Boyd of Conway, SC. Both in their 40’s, they have lived in Horry County their entire lives and have been happily married since 1995.  He works as a tool room machinist at Conbraco and Angela is a receptionist with Tyson Sign Company.              
  Angela was the first to get hooked on running. In the fall of 2012, she started a “healthy me” by joining the Conway Rec Center. There she was “talked in” to doing a 5K. Her fitness instructor thought it would be a good idea to follow the Couch-2-5K program. With 25 other ladies, she followed the program and in December completed her 1 st 5K in the Rivertown Reindeer 5K Race in Conway. She describes it as “a blast” and was hooked. Paul was there to see her cross the finish line and promised that he would do it the following year with her- and so, he began his journey in 2013 by joining the gym and running.
   They both have completed many miles since then, staying motivated by their desire to always improve in running, as well as in life. Angela’s long-term goal is to achieve a faster half marathon time but for now she just wants to run and enjoy it and get back to a healthier lifestyle. Angela has been dealing some medical issues for more than a year which has also affected her overall physical fitness. Since feeling better, she is back on track with her exercise routine and running. There are still days when she cries and feels like giving up but doesn’t. There is that voice inside her that keeps whispering “you can’t quit”. Even on the days when it is unbearable to finish a race, she keeps going. She may walk to the finish line but she’ll finish. She believes that there are many more miles left inside.
   Paul and Angela joined the GSRC in 2015. Paul loves this “great group of folks” and feels lucky to be part of it. He does a lot of races but finds its most rewarding to encourage others. Angela believes the club represents friends who have become family. It is people who ignite you with the passion to chase your dreams. It is filled with some of the loudest cheerleaders, who have the largest and sweetest hearts. The GSRC is welcoming to all and second to none. It is this amazing support from family and friends that won’t let her quit on those bad days and makes her forever grateful. You will find them at almost every race and club event- when they aren’t running, they are there volunteering, supporting or cheering the other runners.
   Their advice to anyone considering running or may have fallen away from running: don’t wait- today is a good day to begin! It doesn’t matter if you walk or run-just get started. Angela says “ask my Conway Crazies- they’ll tell you walking is always acceptable”. Ask a friend to join you or find a group to become part of- just don’t sit and wait. Angela was asked to oversee the running group that meets at the CCC every Tuesday night and she is their biggest cheerleader and as she says “the Head Conway Crazy”. She does an awesome job organizing them every week.
   Paul and Angela have run countless races since 2012. Paul’s most memorable was a few years ago at the Hell Hole Swamp (near the Francis Marion National Park). He won the overall race and received an alligator head as the trophy. He and Angela named him Gus. They had a parade that day and Paul rode in the back of a pick-up truck. Since it was his 1 st race as an official GSRC member, he wore his bright neon green GSRC shirt to represent the club. It wasn’t his best time on the clock but it was definitely his most memorable race. Angela recalls the Myrtle Beach Mini in 2016 where she earned a PR. What makes it her most memorable race is that she did not think she could finish but Paul saw that she was struggling at mile 9. Knowing that she had the potential to complete the race, Paul ran with her until she crossed the finish line. Why was that so special? He had just completed his own half marathon earlier and still came back to run with her.  They truly love that they have something special in common.

It’s like they say “the couple that runs together- stays together”.