321 GO!

John Anderson: Inspirational Stories from ESPN, Running Events, and his Journey in Sports Broadcasting

November 23, 2023 Carissa Galloway and John Pelkey Season 1 Episode 23
321 GO!
John Anderson: Inspirational Stories from ESPN, Running Events, and his Journey in Sports Broadcasting
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Ready for a thrilling ride through the world of sports broadcasting and marathons? Strap in! We've got John Anderson, ESPN's very own, unpacking his journey in the industry, sharing anecdotes from announcing at the biggest marathons, and even revealing his love-hate relationship with running. We delve into his career, the importance of local news in unearthing extraordinary stories, and his stint on the hit show Wipeout.

We also talk bananas and share an inspirational listener story!  Prepare for a whirlwind of stories, insights, and laughter in this packed episode.

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...

Speaker 1:

Welcome to 321 Go the Podcast. I'm John Pelkey.

Speaker 2:

And I'm Karissa Galloway, and we're bringing you stories from start to finish to keep the everyday athlete motivated to keep moving towards the next finish.

Speaker 1:

Karissa. Today we have John Anderson, one of the most recognized voices in sports broadcasting. He's going to share a little bit about his athletic background. He started ESPN, his career as a sports center anchor and what it's like to announce some of the biggest marathons in the world like oh I don't know the Boston marathon and my favorite because I'm logistically, I need to know all about it the New York City marathon.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and I'm a big fan of sports center. So I love how John shared the story of the very first time he got to be on that flagship show. He's got a lot of sports knowledge and he's you guys didn't know a massive track and field fan. So thank you for John for taking time out of his busy day to be with us. We're also going to share a listener story from Kathy. We're going to go bananas in healthier you and to all of you, Thanks for listening. The big skipper gave us a rating on Apple podcast. Please keep doing that, Keep rating, Keep sharing. We appreciate it. Let's do this. All right, Hello Johnny, Hello Turkey Day week Before we talk turkey. And we talked turkey last week. How was St Pete Runfest you were announcing with Jody, your lovely wife.

Speaker 1:

Lovely and more talented wife Jody. I'll get to it before you do. Yes, st Pete Runfest was a blast. All three races were sold out the 5K, the 10K and the half marathon over two days. We also had three different divisions of kids races one in two year olds, three and four year olds, and then the Pelly Kids, myler and this year, something new we actually had a doggy trot as well 25, 30 dogs and that was to benefit pet pals, which is a no kill shelter in the St Petersburg area. So always a lot of fun. I saw some running on Disney fans Chris Longtime, who's run the race before, our lovely friend Donna Quackenbush came down and ran on our recommendation and said she just really enjoyed it. And that is despite the fact that, chris, we ran into that thing we run into sometimes at a run Disney race, where Sunday morning it felt really great when we started, but the last 90 minutes it had jumped up 11, 12 degrees, was very, very humid. But still a lot of smiles at the finish line and I highly recommend anybody who's looking for a beautiful, fun run. Competitive because it's the little hilly over there as well, competitive but great run in a beautiful place in a town, that it's not your grandparents St Petersburg anymore, everybody. It's a great foodie town, great arts town. So just one of my favorite things to do, and then to get to do it with my wife. No offense to you, my favorite co-host, my wife, just edges you out slightly, mainly because she takes care of our finances and without that I'd be in some major trouble. But just a great time all around and we want to get you to run the half marathon. It's something that I'm going to work on.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I would totally, I would love that.

Speaker 1:

All right. All right, we're gonna get race director Ryan Jordan on the pod at some point and we're gonna get you to commit to that at some point. But thanks for asking. It's such a great race and it was such a terrific experience once again, Jodi's not listening because she's very busy with work.

Speaker 2:

I mean how she has erased her, announced her strengths, weaknesses. Can we break it down a little bit?

Speaker 1:

No, she's great because she's incredibly funny and she can get away with saying things I can't because she's an attractive woman and that's not down with the patriarch, I hear you. But she can do material that I could not get away with and she's terrific and she's eager and she really likes doing it and she pops up in Central Florida from time to time at a race when she has an opening in her schedule. So she does a really, really good job.

Speaker 2:

Well, I can't wait to. Maybe I just want to run the race so I can kind of listen to you guys. Maybe I'll pick up some things from Jodi, some little tidbits there, because she is very funny and very talented. And what's funny is I was listening to our podcast with Riley and he talked about, you know, when he came down and he hadn't performed, and I think a lot of race announcers don't think of it as performing, but in our sense at Disney we do, because so much more goes into it, but it truly is. I think to be a great race announcer you need a couple things. One you have to be and it's not a narcissist, but you got to be an outgoing enough to be a person that's confident enough to stand out there on your own kind of talk, because you don't have time as a race, you don't get a lot of direction, so you have to be a self starter that likes to be on the mic. But you also have to realize that it's not about you, it's about the athlete. So you have to be someone who is confident, standing up and talking, who usually tend to be those big personalities, but aware that the spotlight will never be on you and needs to be on the athletes. And the third thing is you have to effectively and entertainingly, and not awkwardly, fill space, because it's as you know, john, it's nerve wracking waiting to start a race. It's a little bit boring sometimes. So I take that role on as, like, let's make sure we're reminding them why they're here. We're inspiring, we're entertaining, and Jodi has that part. Just it's easy for her. She's so good at improv.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, she's a great improvisational comedian and she yeah, she's very helpful in that. Again, you know a little insight into race announcing you have to be flexible, you have to be able to handle curveballs because you may have everything. They have everything mapped out to the minute. This is what's going to happen and, invariably, in all the races I've ever done, it's never completely followed that schedule. So you have to be able to yeah to to skirt around that. The great thing about RunFest is it's right on the water when the sun's coming up, so people actually get wrapped up in how beautiful it is and everything and they're happy just to dance around. We have enormous they had enormous beach balls this year bouncing the balls around in the corral and having a little bit of fun, as opposed to us just having to yak on and on about things. But really, really happy that we sold out all of the races this year and that it's becoming. It's becoming a known race in the in the running community and really should, because it's a great event.

Speaker 2:

I love that the beach ball sounds like a very fun, fun environment, definitely, oh they were huge.

Speaker 1:

We had more normal beach balls every year and this year they brought beach balls that I literally I could have gotten inside the beach ball. So the large beach balls were a very big hit.

Speaker 2:

Please don't bring those to run Disney. They would not fit in the custom guidelines.

Speaker 1:

I don't think they don't allow me to do that.

Speaker 2:

All right. You want to talk about Christmas? Can I talk about Christmas or Thanksgiving? I'm not allowed to talk about it yet.

Speaker 1:

You can talk about it, sure I don't need to talk about it.

Speaker 2:

I just you know you never let me talk about it. So what I do want to know this is a crowdsourcing that we'll never hear back, and I don't know if you feel the same way with us. We have a lot of Christmas decor, right, and then we have the kids, so all the presents come and blah, blah, blah. I feel so stressed before that happens because I feel like I must purge my home and, like declutter my home and get that to-do list done before Christmas. Do you have any of those feelings?

Speaker 1:

No, none of those feelings at all I don't. I don't actually have any, but we have been, and we've discussed this. We have been decluttering, cluttering our home for years now. How's that going? Here is my stress. This year, we only. The only true tradition that Jodi and I have is that at some point a couple of weeks before Christmas we put up our tree and put all of the ornaments on, and the other we don't have a ton of reef on the door and a few other things. There's a crisp stuffed Christmas mousse long story that we put out, and then we have wine and cheese and smoked oysters and just very, very. You know I'm a bit of a dandy.

Speaker 2:

You know it's like a mad. I visualize like a madman, you know madman. Is that what?

Speaker 1:

it's called Type five. Yes, Christmas cocktails. That's the playlist without the patriarchy.

Speaker 2:

Yes, exactly All of that, without those undertones.

Speaker 1:

My only concern this year is maybe?

Speaker 2:

that's better. Oh, sexy, sorry. Sexy Christmas from Ted Lasso. Is that that swing in? Sexy Christmas from Ted Lasso? Did you see that?

Speaker 1:

I don't really resemble that, but sure I.

Speaker 2:

you know that's what I'm visualizing for you dressed up nicely, maybe, like you know, wine cheese, classy, classy little bit, little little classy, a little less sexy, a little more classy.

Speaker 3:

Make it sexy. That's what we shoot for we put.

Speaker 1:

We put the sweaters on the dogs and that whole sort of thing. They don't care for that generally, but we do that. Here's my concern this year because we keep our Christmas ornaments in our attic and we had additional insulation blown into our attic and while I thought that I had taken everything out and put it aside, there are some ornaments now hidden underneath a lot of fiber. Whatever they're using for my insulation, so I'll be digging around in the insulation. That's really the only, the only stress that I'm feeling right now.

Speaker 2:

Well, that might be a good time to wear like a onesie and a mask. Yeah, yeah.

Speaker 1:

I do, I do, I feel, like you know.

Speaker 2:

I was told don't touch the insulation, Don't look at it sideways Like it's not fiberglass insulation.

Speaker 1:

It's not fiberglass insulation. I have a history of working construction. Yeah, stay away from fiberglass insulation, that's the pink stuff. This is more of a biodegradable something. That's better, but it is. It occupies most of my attic at this point. So hopefully we'll be finding most of our Christmas ornaments, because we have we have a handful of them that are gifts from people or specific One of those where we, if we're in a specific place and there's a store getting, you know getting that ornament. But we keep it fairly, fairly light and mostly look forward to the days of cheese and crackers that we get after that first night, because we buy enough generally for about three dozen teamsters and then we have at it for weeks on end. It's great, so great.

Speaker 2:

Sexy Christmas. Bring it back. There you are.

Speaker 1:

Bringing it back.

Speaker 2:

But, okay, black Friday yeah, do you partake in that at all? Cyber Monday Black Friday.

Speaker 1:

No, here's the thing. I'm an only child and my mom is still living. She just turned 89. Happy birthday. Mom Jody and I generally don't buy. Sometimes we buy for each other. We set the like the spending limit. Other times we've gone with big presents, but normally we try to do something like for around the house. We bought a new oven. I know we're gonna talk about that.

Speaker 2:

You can talk about it now. We can get.

Speaker 1:

I'm just so giddy about it Go with the oven.

Speaker 2:

John texted me you guys, he was so excited about the oven, so this is a big purchase.

Speaker 1:

Our oven's like 21 years old and it's really time to move on. And it was also white, and over the years, stainless steel has become the color of all of our appliances Of with the dandy. So we wanted a stainless steel one, and so I got one. Not only does it have five burners on it, including a warming burner where you can move something Well, I guess people can figure out what that means, if not, ask a friend but it's also got the steam cleaning, which means it doesn't have that horrific self-cleaning oven smell.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

When you clean your oven and I and, as you know, people make fun of me because me, but I do cook a lot. I love to cook, it's my, it's my, my avocation, clearly. So it has that, which is nice, because it's easier and better smelling to clean the oven. And then this one, and you were impressed by this the oven itself converts to an air fryer.

Speaker 2:

I didn't know, I didn't know how that works, I don't even. I can't find them, but that seems so exciting.

Speaker 1:

It's got a huge fan on the backside of the thing that circulates the air so that I can, when you're doing wings, cause if we have a. We have a medium to large air fryer and sometimes making something something like wings, you're having people over, it's not?

Speaker 2:

really large enough. Five wings, you're making five.

Speaker 1:

Now I can do it in my entire oven.

Speaker 2:

You just became an infomercial John. Give me your 30 second infomercial voice about this oven.

Speaker 1:

Wow.

Speaker 2:

Okay, yeah, go.

Speaker 1:

I'm gonna go with a cult.

Speaker 2:

Oh like, do you sell me?

Speaker 1:

I believe it's a frigid air.

Speaker 2:

Okay.

Speaker 1:

The frigid air air fryer Ever run into this problem. You're having friends over for the big game. You wanna make wings, but you have to make them in 16 separate batches. No more. The frigid air air fryer with steam cleaning and five heat elements, including three with adjustable size. The frigid air air frying oven get yours today.

Speaker 2:

Is it really by frigid air? It was good.

Speaker 1:

I think it's a frigid air. Yeah, I think it is.

Speaker 2:

We're giving him a lot of free love. What I thought of is that we recently went on the carousel of progress and he's the wife yells at one point ovens don't just clean themselves. And Claire was her first time and of course I'm saying, yeah, claire, they didn't clean themselves. Blah, blah, blah, like that's exactly I could. Just I needed Jody to like yell from behind there to you Oven's just don't clean themselves. John.

Speaker 1:

And somewhere from behind her, Riley Claremont pops up and goes, and you can't teach chemistry and chemistry teachers all over the world. Yeah, teach chemistry, oven's won't clean themselves, and you can't teach chemistry people.

Speaker 2:

Hey the quotes from Riley's episode live on. All right, we'll shout out, though. Black Friday, we are doing a couple of fun things over at Team Galloway, so we've got a healthier you Black Friday code. It is gonna save you $200, which is more than the code podcast. So if you're getting ready for the new year, it'll save you $200. And then anybody who buys run, walk, eat from Black Friday through the end of November is gonna get to join a personal nutrition chat. It'll be a group chat so you'll get a little extra love there. So Black Friday all around, and for me I do. I have like those lists of things I wanna get for my kids, so I kind of keep an eye on those. And I have a friend who maybe I'll name her Her name's Megan text me about two weeks ago and says she's already wrapped all her Christmas presents and that and I'm still angry at her because who's already wrapped all their Christmas presents? Come on, megan.

Speaker 1:

Well again, see for me again. Just really just buy from my mom, unless we have something from folks at work and since I'm now a gig worker, don't run into that. You and I don't exchange gifts, We'd be the most likely. So my mom I just ordered through Amazon and my mother is my mother always wants another book. So I just bought her a book for her birthday. She will then get one for Christmas. I often get her a basket with a lot of her favorite things to eat in it some fresh fruit she's up in cold, frigid Pennsylvania, so getting some great pears is good for her and usually get her like flowers. She loves flowers. Stay away from the point set up because she dog sits from time to time and they're not great for animals, as attractive as they may be. So I really have it very, very lucky. I'm very lucky when, back when, I had to buy a bunch of gifts when, like my girlfriend in college and you're buying for your friends and stuff, I was the notorious Christmas Eve shopper. So this is much better for me, much better.

Speaker 2:

I like gift giving when it's something that I know someone will like. I hate when you're having to buy gifts for people because you have to buy a gift for them and you just don't have an inspiration. You're just spending money on something You're like I don't even think you're gonna like this, like I don't enjoy that, but I do like it for when it's you have that perfect gift and you're like more excited to give the gift and get it. And before we wrap I will say this I said this to my kids all the time I don't even need Christmas presents. Like I actually don't care for presents at all. I care for the Christmas season. So the Hallmark movies, the Reeds, and shout out to Matthew Desdys who sent me some Hallmark mugs. So for me I and my husband's here I don't need a gift, I just need, as a parent, I just want to be able to calmly enjoy Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. That's really the biggest gift for me.

Speaker 1:

So yeah, and to write, I also say this too, especially my gift giving when we traveled more and we haven't since COVID. We haven't had an opportunity to travel quite as much as we normally do, and we are gonna be going to Europe this coming year. That's often where I find gifts, because I'll be in a foreign country or somewhere else in a different city and something will strike me from like a friend of mine oh my God, so, and so would love this and I might pick it up for them. So I don't want to sound like I'm Ebenezer Scrooge and I don't get gifts, but, to your point, if something clicks with me, somebody's really gonna dig this as opposed to you know, oh, I'll give them a, and this is not a bad thing, but I'll give them a gift card to Best Buy, you know, because I have to get them something. If anyone wants to give me a gift card to Best Buy, we didn't doubt folks this holiday season.

Speaker 2:

Just give your friends a copy of Run, walk, eat and let them know there are sponsorship opportunities available for three, two, one go.

Speaker 1:

Is that how I'm getting mine? I'm getting mine for a Christmas gift. Is that the copy that I get?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I should.

Speaker 1:

I still don't have a copy, so I don't have a copy.

Speaker 2:

Also, john and I are gonna be on Cameo soon, so if you want a Christmas gift, you can pay John and I to send you a Christmas message on Cameo. Merry Christmas, happy holidays. And the gift that always gives John mentioned it the gift of travel. So a shout out to Katie McBride, our sponsor from TravelMation. We love you, katie, and Katie loves to help you plan those wonderful trips, whether it's Disney, anywhere in the world. She's gonna show your options, keep it in your budget and make your dream vacation come true. Follow her on Instagram at TravelMation, and her website is in our show notes. Merry Christmas, happy holidays, go shopping all those good things On with the show.

Speaker 1:

Ho, ho ho.

Speaker 3:

Okay, civilians, it's time for the goods. Let's get on to the interview.

Speaker 1:

Our guest today has been on the national broadcasting landscape since joining ESPN as an anchor in 1999. Highlights of his lengthy and impressive resume include broadcasting the 2020 Olympic track and field competition, manning the microphone for ESPN's Boston Marathon broadcast and hosting ABC's popular wipe out television show, which I'll try to spend way too much time on talking about on this podcast. Oh, and he was also a high jumper and captain of the track team for his alma mater, the University of Missouri. Go Tigers, welcome to 321, go John Anderson.

Speaker 3:

Well, thanks for having me. I'm excited to be here. This is terrific. I always like this because there's the intro and I think, wow, I guess I did all right in my career, because when you sit around with your wife or your kids, they don't care, they don't. You know, you don't go. Hey, I was the host of the immensely popular ABC summer series Wipe Out. You guys should go fill up the car with gas and like no, no, and while you're there, get the car wash. So it's always cool to hear that. And now you know I'm gonna be insufferable for the next week or so around the house. But that's okay, they can live with that.

Speaker 1:

Well, I always remember Bruce Springsteen saying his children didn't think he was cool and I thought how is that even possible that Bruce Springsteen's not cool? And he's like oh yeah, you know, when we're saying hey, you guys wanna go on tour, no, we don't wanna watch you and mom work anymore, yeah, or the other one is they're like hey, dad, I know, do you know Suts and Such?

Speaker 3:

And I'm like wait, you should like I feel like I'm okay, maybe I'm a big deal. Do you know, dad? Do you know LeBron? You know, do you know, you know? Like wait, do you really know Grand Holloway? I, you know I do, but okay, can you know, that's always when you're now become a conduit to people they think are famous is great, and so every once in a while I went down to my daughter's dad's day at her sorority in Arkansas and at that age now kids that are 18 to 22-ish I am way more known for wipeout than I am for, especially if you're at a sorority house where they're not all you know giant brewer fans watching Sports Center, you know they're like wait, you didn't say your dad was the wipeout guy and so I'm not gonna be over asked. They just said is your dad coming? Right? You know nobody, you know they don't. They don't introduce me as here's my dad the wipeout guy, or my son, who was in a journalism class and they asked where he was from and he was going through it, and then somebody kind of caught on. I mean, wait, connecticut, you do know he's. Is your dad, john Anderson. They're like why didn't you say that he goes? Because you guys asked about me, you know. You asked who I am, you didn't ask who my dad is, and so you know I love it. I'm glad. I'm glad that they have that fierce independent nature. I am glad that to them and especially to all their friends that like, hey, look, there's Mr Anderson, can you be all time quarterback? Sure, let's go.

Speaker 2:

I mean you've got a huge pedigree and we are so excited to have you here. I'm also excited that in like the same breath that you said LeBron, you said Grant Holloway in the same vein and that's why I think that I love you the most, because my husband makes fun of me when I watch track. I have like my boys. I'm like, oh, that's my boy. Like Grant is definitely my boy. And I'm a seminal, so that's giving a lot. Oh yes, but yeah. But let's start at the beginning. So for people who don't know this big career and John and I have dabbled in broadcasting and obviously we're not great because here we are on 321 Go the Podcast you started your ESPN career in 1999. Tell us a little bit about your story leading up to that massive milestone.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, because there's a few years before that. You know, I was in local TV for a long time and the one thing I always apologize for is when I say local news it makes it sound like oh, you're national, local news and somehow that's degrading. I love local news and done well. Local news is amazing. I am hoping that local news survives and local sportscasts, because all these great stories that we find all start somewhere and that's locally and they should be on. You know, I worked in Arizona before I came and the last story I did didn't air because the news director said well, that's a sports story, I know we have time. The story was a guy who had run a marathon on every continent, pictures of him running by penguins Stills because we didn't quite have the Go Pro and the whole thing. It was 1999. But every continent and you know the guy's like it's amazing story, guys. I add to sports story. I don't. You know, it's kind of like in the big chill where at one point Jeff Goldblum is fighting with Ed and he goes. Well, you wouldn't say that if it was the lost hope diet or, you know, if it was a blind baton twirl, you'd take it. So if this guy had been twirling a baton and run on seven continents, it would have been all over the, but the fact that he was running, wasn't it Anyway. So that's getting off that local news. So I started local news in Tulsa. I was a part-time news photographer. That was my first job out of school when I left journalism school at Missouri, first, best, greatest. I don't have time to go into all the things we love about Mizzou J School, but I was a part-time news photographer, edited during the week and helped produce some on Sunday. I had done in college, I had done some on-air work, but like everybody, I needed a job easier to find a job in and then out. So I ended up in Tulsa, thought I'd stay there, you know, six months to a year, whatever the lease was, and then go find next and work my way. And I was gonna go back and work at the time, early 80s. Where can I get a good job in local TV? Can I work my way back to Wisconsin? Maybe not Green Bay? Could I go? Minneapolis, chicago, detroit, milwaukee, good markets in and around home? And so eight years later that hadn't happened. I was still there. But I wasn't stagnant. I went from being a news photographer to a sports photographer, to sports reporter, slash shooter to weekend guys. So I had a bunch of jobs along the way and met my wife, some dear friends so I still have a strong attachment to Oklahoma Went to Phoenix, thought that was gonna be great and on my way out they traded Charles Barkley. You wanna talk about bad timing On two occasions. So I'm driving out and they fight about what I'm supposed to be. This is 1996, summer of 1996. And for people that enjoy track and field, so my one station is okay, we'll let them go one week earlier. And the other station said okay, we'll take them a week later. So now there's this two weeks that I had scheduled to be in Atlanta for the Olympics. So instead of being in Atlanta with some of my old college track teammates, I'm literally in Amarillo or was it Abilene, I don't know, and I get there different places, but I don't remember which one Sitting in a hotel room watching Carl Lewis win his fourth gold medal that I'm thinking I should be sitting there watching Carl Lewis watch in person. Instead I'm in, you know, west Texas, and then the next day I drive out and they trade Charles Barkley and I'm like okay. So my life right now is not exactly how we planned it. You know, we're like okay, we felt like we were trending up and now we're kind of like this way with Carl Lewis and now all of a sudden my boy Charles is gone. I've never let him forget that. I've been really fortunate to meet him now over the last 25 years and a lot and I never fail to point that out to him and spent some nice time in Arizona but was not a great fit with a news director. That was he was gonna win with weather. Okay, I could have been a weatherman in Phoenix. It's not that hard today, sunday, tomorrow, chance of sun, with more sun coming over the weekend. Everyone's so out of rain. But if you've ever been there, it's in the valley. You can see the rain coming. You don't need to be a weatherman. So, and he just didn't like us. He didn't like sports. We had a whole department. He didn't like any of us. We all are kind of got a survivors club. Everybody wanted to do much better things in Phoenix. There's a guy named Vikram Barty who's a legend now in Denver television, which is his hometown, and another guy that went off and was one of the early guys at Fox Sports Bay Area. It was just yeah, the guy was completely wrong, but we were all he, let us all go. Luckily I found a job before my contract wasn't renewed. There's a lot of ways we say fired. Now I saw the other day somebody else parted ways.

Speaker 2:

We used that for divorces too.

Speaker 3:

nice words Show us not to come back and so I just tell people I was not going to be renewed. And then I tell them, if you don't know what that means, that means I was going to be fired. I just assume if you want to come to work that day and they say, no, don't come to work, that's not really a parting the way, as they've told you, to be fired. But I was fortunate. I got a chance. I had an offer from ESPN, an offer from a station literally back in Green Bay, and one from CNSI. Cnnsi was lucky not to take that and then I just found the right place. Man Sports Center is just the right spot for what I do. I am not a huge play-by-play guy. Football, basketball, traditional, I love doing it. For track, I love doing it for the marathons, but that's a little different. Right over the course of a marathon, that's more of a conversation than it is. Just there's two guys split out wide and it's third and 10. But so I happened to get there at a time too when the company was, the wind was in our sails and we were headed towards 107 million homes, and I got to work with, at some point, all the old gang, the proper villains of the place, whether it was Dan Patrick or Charlie Steiner or Larry Beal and Jack Edwards and Kenny Main and Steve Levy and all these guys. So I've just been, I've been really fortunate for a guy who was a mediocre high jumper.

Speaker 1:

By the way, the euphemism we use here in Orlando at either Disney or Universal, where I work, for leaving the company is we're exploring opportunities outside the company, so that's a really good one. It makes you sound so much more important.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, there's a lot of ways to go, but in terms of Phoenix, yeah, I was going to not be renewed, no, right until I got the job. And then like oh, no, of course we were just about to start negotiations about yeah, okay, cool, got it.

Speaker 1:

Well, you've anticipated my next question because I wanted to ask what? Because you did. You moved at people, younger people. Now in today's media landscape I don't think they can really understand what Sports Center was for many, many people back then. What was that like when you landed in Connecticut? I know the campus wasn't anywhere. I've been up there a couple of times, wasn't anywhere near what it was today. But boy, I tell you, it was on a we talk about upward trajectory. It was still moving in that complete upward trajectory. What was that like coming from the desert?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, and it's funny because when I left college in 87, espn at the time was. So when I'm in college, 83 through 87, it's just kind of there ESPN is still showing literally cross country meets and lumberjack contests and Australian rules football with Bob Lee at halftime in the middle of the night. That was it what. And then fortuitously, a guy named John Walsh came in and kind of revamped Sports Center and really made it what it was, and so by the time I got there it was becoming kind of a cultural thing, thanks to Dan and Keith I always look at it this way Guys like Bob Lee, tommy, chris Berman, those guys, they were like Gemini and Mercury astronauts, right, they were up there when it was totally unsafe and you didn't know if they were coming back. And Dan and Keith were the guys that landed on the moon. So they were the space programs big. They had the ticker tape parades. They were the most famous guys in the world. And then those of us that kind of came afterwards. Some of these guys that I know, even I started on ESPN news. But when they started ESPN news, all those guys I would say like we're like space shuttle pilots, like we're astronauts, which means we're pretty good and we're smart, but it's not as sexy as the Apollo program. You're like, okay, cool, you're driving the space shuttle, it's neat, but no, like it's still. It's still pretty impressive, we're still astronauts. That's not terrible. But when I got there, the thing that always struck me, john, is that and I remember the first time I sat on SportsCenter I did it with David Lloyd I got a call and said hey, I know it's your day off. Would you like to come in and do SportsCenter? By the way, if you want to kill your career here, say no to that question. If you further your career, you say sure and tell your wife we're not going to dinner tonight. I have other, you know, and I can still remember sitting there and thinking, not that there is a hundred million people on the other side homes anyway, again, not everybody's watching it once. But I sat there and I thought I don't want Chris Berman or Bob Lee or Dan Patrick or Oberman in the morning to call the boss and go, who's the clown in my chair? And that to me, has always been how I've kind of approached that If you're in TV long enough, you discover that when I worked in Columbia, missouri, and was on set doing mornings on Saturday, or when I was in Tulsa, or when I was in Phoenix or in ESPN. There's just one camera and one guy behind it. Now it's changed, right. The same guy hasn't followed me the whole career, it's a new guy.

Speaker 2:

Or a robot.

Speaker 3:

Right, but there's just so, there's that one person. So you're always kind of talking in that vein. You don't have no idea how many people are there behind you, whether it's six or six million. So that never really bothered me. But I did think, boy, these guys, because by the time I'm there the company's now 20 years old Sports center is a thing and to be on it is amazing. And I just thought, yeah, I just don't want those guys to think who put Sparky in there for this thing that we spent 20 years building and I've still kind of done, I'm still now protective of that in the opposite way, right, I'm kind of like, as Einstein said, you think you're a rebel and then by the time you retire you're reputable and you're in authority on things you used to rebel against, and so I sit there now when new people come on, I would say listen, you're ready for that, just, but respect the chair you're in. There were a lot of people here that came, and not strictly for me, but just make sure you value what that chair means, because there are a lot of people here and even if we now consume the media much differently than when I showed up and everybody did appointment view. For that it still means a lot to those of us that have sat in that chair a couple of thousand times and over a couple of decades.

Speaker 2:

Do you still have recollections of that day? Can you see it? You know in your head. How'd you do?

Speaker 3:

Did I write you. The biggest thing you worried about then is because I did an overnight, so it went on at 1 am and it had. Then it re-aired right the big morning wheel. It reared till like noon, right, because no news happened then, or at least it didn't come out as quickly as you can now right on Twitter. So what it would happen is if I accidentally, if you flubbed a name, or if somebody gave you a score wrong, you said it wrong, you had to go back and fix it and that took under. With old tapes it took forever. So I'm like, okay, first off, you know A remember your name when it's called and I so I remember that. I remember thinking, okay, don't screw up, you know, because you don't want to be here fixing it. Espn News when I was doing those, you had the same thing. So you know the process. I didn't want to do that and but mostly I kept telling myself just be the same person that you have been right, like now that you're here, you're not, you don't have to do anything different. It's just it is. You know, sit down there. And you know David I'd worked with for the six months I was there. So I knew David. But there is something, chris, like when you're sitting there and you hear the music you're like wow, okay, so this is, this is the real thing. Like that, when you hear the music you're like holy crap that's. You know that that was really distinctive, is like the music. I remember coming on and thinking that was kind of a real gust of wind in your face, like wow. And then I remember David Lloyd had to write a lead in and it was about the Los Angeles Kings and they had they had kind of hazed their rookies in terms they'd they'll take them out to dinner and, you know, stick the rookies with the bill. And I heard him I can still hear use the word scrumptious, which is just not a word that you hear very often. Right, I love words like that. We're like there's the whole business's words as much as I'm protective of the chair and protective of words. So I can remember him talking about scrumptious meals that he wrote about that. I remember people that write. Well, I can remember you know Kenny main lead ins and Reese Davis lead ins off the top of my head, yeah. And then I remember when it was done because it was so late the time you get home. It went one to two, then you go two to three because there's some baseball games you still had to get in. By the time I got home it was three. Well, the rear came on at 6am. So, hell yes, I didn't go to bed. I sat around, occupied the house till it came on at 6am, and then watch it again.

Speaker 2:

I love that we're talking about this and I'm in that era where I think 1999 was like 10 years ago. I realized that it's not. But like you're still so excited about that moment and I'd love hearing that in your voice because it is such an amazing, huge moment I'm going to transition a little bit into running, which I guess now is a good time to talk about how that's maybe not your favorite thing. The act of running, not the sport I love the sport of track and field.

Speaker 3:

I love the sport of track and field and I run frequently, but that's because all the other options are terrible. I don't want to be on a stationary bike.

Speaker 2:

No, it's not for you, no.

Speaker 3:

In fact I walked in some time. Yes, somebody, well, somebody went in one time and said, don't go in, there's a spin class. I'm like okay, and I open up. Like wait, a spin class, that's just people on a. If spin class had been invented in Wisconsin, it'd just be people on stationary bikes. It's like Colin Cowherd once said if yoga had been invented in Cincinnati, we just call it stretching. So I feel the same way, but it's the one thing I can do. Right, I don't want to lift weights, they're very heavy. I don't want to play tickle ball. That's a pickle ball, that's just adult ping pong.

Speaker 2:

Do you want to play tickle ball? No, I'm just kidding.

Speaker 3:

Tickle ball. So running is always something I've just been able to do, and and so I'm convinced that I've run thousands of miles and have never once had an endorphin release. You know, never have I once go. Oh, now I have the runner. No, I get done and I'm like, golly. I just went around the block six times and I'm exactly where I was when I started. I just I'm in oxygen debt and I got some white ring around my mouth. It's terrible. I joked with a guy the other day who who, I'll get into it later but we were at our college track coaches, bob Teal and we were. We went to North Carolina. It was his 100th birthday, so we went. A bunch of us went to our college coach's 100th birthday party and one of the guys there was, a great runner had logged every run he did since he was in high school and now he's 70. He's run over 120,000 miles. And I said Jeepers. I said I remember when I moved my approach back from nine steps to 11. And I'm like this is too far, I am not going to do this, we are moving it back up. So that's, that's where I am on that right, and I admire runners. Oh my gosh, they're my favorite people and what they do. You know my son currently works with the track team at Arkansas. He's a student there. Both my kids go there and you know he's like dad. I had to go out on the early morning run with the guys. They ran 20. And I just went. My God, I might go throw up on their behalf sympathy pains. So I love runners and I run and I'm actually pretty good at it, but boy do I dislike it. It's work.

Speaker 1:

Well, you know, I think and I think it's Fitzgerald F. Scott Fitzgerald said about writers you can tell who a real writer is because he's the person coming up with every excuse not to write that he can. So, you're a real runner who would love to come up with every excuse that you can not to run. I consider you at the top of my list of favorite runners because you are. You're working in my ballpark with all of this stuff.

Speaker 3:

I read somewhere and it really is true. It sounds dumb at the start, but the hardest part of running is tying your shoes, because once you've got them on and you've made that commitment, okay, it's out the door. But I'm like that. Even when I had to run a bunch on a treadmill because that was just close to where we were, you know, in the work day at East Pianet it was easiest to go to the gym. I would find every excuse to go. Oh wait, I got to answer this email and I need to just say hi to this person, and so it finally became just man, I had my bag over my shoulder in our content meetings and then it was just put the walk out, turn right and get there. Because, like I said, once the shoes are on and tied, now I'm ready to go. But yeah, tying, tying my shoes is the hardest part of running.

Speaker 2:

Well, I love that you're pretty good at it, that you, that you keep doing it. So we love. I love that as someone who actually is obsessed with running, but I'm also obsessed with track and field. You were an athlete in college, high jumping what? What's your PR? Your high jump PR. And don't tell me a meters, because my mom does masters and she tells me in meters and I don't know what that means.

Speaker 3:

See, and that's how I always hedge, because if I just say I jump to 20, then people like OK, and that way it's not. You know, or I'll say well, I could jump over.

Speaker 2:

Shaq, but now Yao Ming. Well, that's impressive enough.

Speaker 3:

I jumped to.

Speaker 2:

OK see John, what's your? What's your high jump PR?

Speaker 1:

OK, I'm going to qualify.

Speaker 2:

So we both write it down and hold it up on a piece of paper to see who's here's my main.

Speaker 1:

my main event was actually the 220. Nice More of a sprinter, but we had to pick a field event because our coach was just that guy and I was. Actually I was only five, nine in high school Well, only now I'm five, eight and a half at this point in my life but I was five, nine and I jumped five, nine and three quarters. So I jumped taller than me and that was right for me. That that that was a big deal, but it was sort of an ancillary thing. I had a weird. I had a weird way of attacking things. I couldn't jump off my inside foot, so I had to start from the opposite side. I had to go off my outside foot, which already set you up for failure. Right, it was weird because my, it's just, we didn't have a lot of good, great coaching. No offense, mr Cooley, if you're listening. He didn't really know a lot about high jumping either and it was just find what you're comfortable with. And I just learned to do that, coming in from the left, jumping off my outside foot, and I was able to get taller than my height, which put me I was probably the third best high jumper on my high school. I jumped because we had that one guy who could do seven feet, and then it really kind of dropped off after that. Yeah, we had one guy who went on to, I think he had. He ran track for James Madison or something. We had one. You know, you always have that one guy that kind of destroys the curve for you.

Speaker 3:

I think I was that guy, but okay, fine, I'm not going to be offended by that at all.

Speaker 1:

No, no, no, no, no, I no, I. I take my hat off to those guys. But then there's the rest of us schnooks who were just like I'm taller than me, I feel so good about myself. And then Hensley's out there jumping seven four.

Speaker 3:

Listen.

Speaker 1:

I know.

Speaker 3:

I had the same thing that you did. When the first time I jumped, I told everybody fine, I all on my, really my whole goal in life. Well, I had a couple. One is I wanted to stamp out the metric system in this country, which I did a pretty good job of, but I wanted to be six foot tall. In my life I had two stepbrothers that were big six, three, six, four guys and I just wanted to be tall. I wanted to be, and so I was six foot tall. That's what I told everybody. And then when I finally jumped six feet, then I caught. You know, I'm actually only five, 11 and a half, so I know exactly what that feels like because I want to do that. And then in high school when I jumped six, eight and a half. I'm like all right. Well, I don't have to lie about how tall I am, like it's nobody's going to believe I'm six, eight.

Speaker 1:

We can talk about. We could talk about my high school track career for six, seven seconds, and it would be an interesting that's all it would take for mine.

Speaker 3:

I really only jumped my senior year, which was crazy, yeah, I was.

Speaker 1:

I was late to it All right, but but co captain apparently of your, according to the internet machine.

Speaker 3:

So I was captain of my, my high school team and I was captain of my college team too, which is extraordinary for a guy who the college thing, I always say, is kind of skewed. I ran with a bunch of guys who were from Nigeria, who were great, who were Olympians, who I saw a couple weeks ago and my goodness, we laughed so hard and had the best time. They were wonderful, great teammates. Guy named Chitty Emo, who one summer, you know, just spent a whole summer 84 ish, 85 was your after them just destroying Ben Johnson and Carl Lewis beat him, beat him like drums. Chitty was amazing. So yeah, we all got together. It was a great time. But but back in the day we didn't have advanced transportation, nobody flew anywhere, we didn't have a comfortable bus, we just had these vans. And I'm always like, the reason I was the captain my senior year was like Anderson, what you've got, a valid American driver's license, good, get in the front seat here, the keys, captain, anderson, and that's really. I might have had some leadership ability, but I think mostly it was because I had a valid US driver's license, but that's only when I copped to it. My kids don't know that, they just think, wow, dad, dad was captain of the track team. That must be a hell of a thing so well.

Speaker 1:

I'd be like, uh, general Leland from Tennessee, and I would demand that everyone call me Captain Anderson from now on. That would, that would definitely be see your your ego clearly not as run amuck as mine Captain Anderson All right well, listen, you've added the Boston marathon to your, to your announcing duties, and there is a rumor that you may and I don't I don't want to get you upset you may have lobbied for this, john. This may have been something that you wanted to do. Talk about how that came about, because that is people who know we we talk about this on this podcast all night people who know nothing about running and know the Boston Marathons the. Indianapolis 500, the Kentucky Derby it's right up there with those things. How did it come about?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I lobbied for that, literally like I did the New York City Marathon. When we got the New York City Marathon, I found the person at our place who was the conduit with both W ABC because we do it in concert with them and and the New York Roadrunners, and I just said okay, I would do anything. You want to be a part of that coverage? I will ride on the back of the moto, I will ride on the back of the truck, I will haul cable, I will stand on the side with a parabolic mic. I just would be like to be a part of our coverage. And, fortunately, in the New York City Marathon yes, by the way, from where I'm sitting right now, I can look and I can see my New York City Marathon medal from the year I ran it and then I have a picture of all 10 times that I've done it, sitting in the booth with the people I've done it. This is that's how important that event is to me. It's my favorite event. So 10 years and then what we had? Two washouts, the only washouts. Great, the first year. I'm supposed to do it, sandy. And then the thing. So you go back 12 years. What's that like? 2012. And luckily, at that point I had to establish myself as somebody right, like I was at that point. I'm a name people recognize, if nothing else. And they called and they said, how would you like to do the play by play? And I'm like, well, that's way better than riding on the back of the moto with the camera. And I, you know, jumped on and said Absolutely. And so now I've got some of that experience, and so when we get Boston, I'm already oh, here's the guy that does. And then, and then I added all our NCAA coverage and some of those other things and had been fortunately, said I was often, you know, did Tokyo. So people kind of went, I think that guy must know running. They don't know that I know running. They just think, okay, the end. And then the line is not very long, right, if you want to go to the masters, the line actually starts at my house and I'm 12 miles away from the station. And so in Boston came, but I found the same people did the exact same thing, you know, and I said I am not here because because both the local station and in this case it's WCVB and the people that put it on the BAA and New York. They hold quite a bit of sway over their deal and who they want. So they could have very easily said, hey, sean McDonough, nobody's more Boston than Sean McDonough, we want him to do the Boston Marathon. Luckily had some track, some hockey, but anyway, I went in the same way and I said, listen, I am not here to presume that I get to have the big mic, but I will do anything that I can. That you know. You want to put me in the moto, you want me to run a camera. You know, you want me to stand on the side with a parabolic mic, I'll do it to do Boston. And I was fortunate enough that CVB and the BAA were like nope, that's fine, we, we'd like to have him. And then ESPN said, there you go, giddy up, big boy. And so that's. You know, listen, I've done a bunch of things right. I've been really fortunate. I've been to Super Bowls, I've been to the NBA Finals, I've been to the British open at St Andrews and I wouldn't trade the New York Marathon and the Boston Marathon for anything. I go those, those to me, or the Instably Championships, like that's just. That's where my passion lies in terms of sports. You know, and I don't know why, and I got bit by a kid you talked about. You know, seeing the Olympics and in 70 like mine was 1976, I can still see that that I work with Dwight Stone sometimes still just is Hard to shake. Or when I go do the Bowman Awards, in the head of the Bowman's Kind of committee is Herman Frazier, who won a bronze medal in the open 400 there in In Montreal and was on part of the, the 4x4 team with it was him, maxi Parks, herman Frazier, maxi Parks, robert Newhouse and Benny Brown, and so like that I. But I remember that because I I'm sure you guys the same thing, right, I remember everything from when I was 12 and 15 when I was engrossed in sports. Then I do yesterday I'm trying to think who won the? You know who won the NL East, and I think it was the Braves because they won 104 games. But I just remember that stuff just sticks with you for whatever reason makes that imprint. And and so those guys were the. You know, those were the deal. And there was Dwight Stone's and I went downstairs immediately with my buddy, stro, and we took 2x4's and we put nails in him and we measured and found a bike flag and next thing you know we're high Jim in the basement. So it, you know it's just. Yeah, that's always been this, the sport a lot and I was good at other sports. I won the great basketball player but I played baseball pretty well and you know I could do things but for whatever reason track that was that. That was sort of the imprint on my, on my heart, that's in my soul.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's interesting. Yeah, sorry, chris, that that's really interesting. You bring that up because I, you know, you and I are essentially the same age. I, I believe I'm older. But the Dwight Stone, dwight stones, alberto Juan, terina there are all these names that come from back in that, in that era that I am so much better with than I am anything, and it's the same with with all sports. I, I could tell you the 79, uh, baltimore Orioles, because I grew up in the dc area and that was my team. I know everybody on that team, the Baltimore Orioles, that I can actually wear my hat again because of this year. Uh, you know, I name like four or five guys in that. It's such, it's so great that you got to do that too, because so when you say you know they're, most of us have like a blue sky thing We'd like to do and very few of us ever get to do it. So that was for you. So I'm gonna I'm changing up churris a question because I want to ask this is the follow-up. Uh, I'm obsessed with the new york city marathon, because I'm kind of obsessed with new york city, having grown up in dc and gone there a lot and hope that I someday live there but don't have that sort of earning potential. Um, but I what I'm obsessed with is the logistics of that race Versus really pretty much anywhere else, including boston, because people who don't know the geography. Boston is a much smaller downtown. It's spread out a little bit more. It lends itself probably to more easily putting a 26.2 mile race together. Um, what is that experience like in new york? And from the logistical standpoint, how? How different is it from boston?

Speaker 3:

Well, I've only done boston at one time. Um, what's I? The, the starting lines, is where I find the amazing contrast. New york, the bridge, and you've got these, uh, you know, corrals of thousands of people and it's so big now that you can run. There's the three corrals, or three different starts. You can run for about six miles before it actually marries up In in the road there in brooklyn, right, you kind of runs about somewhere on top of the, you know, somewhere on the top of the bridge, somewhere on the bottom, and they kind of. So you know, that's kind of what I'm used to. It. Now You're watching boston. You're like Wait, they're starting in some dude's front yard.

Speaker 2:

Oh yeah, you know, like they're literally at the cross, they're just like outside their house, like just in the middle of the street and it's not a wide street.

Speaker 3:

Oh, this is where we're. Okay, we're just going back. You know that you can do. It's like the guys got the wheel that he's measuring out. You're like we're gonna have to go back just a little. Yeah, here there's the other one, like, okay, we're gonna start at the bridge. So those, that's a fascinating kind of thing to me. How they pull off the new york thing is is staggering. To go through all the boroughs, all the security takes the way they have to block off streets. You know, uh, the wag. When you come off the the bridge, uh, what is it? The? The 59th street bridge, now it's the cosh bridge, got like nine names and and you come off and you're like, okay, if you just go straight, you're only like a mile and a half from the finish, but they make you go another 13, Like it's not the most direct route. You're like, can I just go right over here? You know, work for rosy ruiz, can I just? When it comes through? So it's, you know, in that regard, it's, I think. I think both marathons I've said this before. I think they reflect their city and their history. New york is global, it is everybody, it is large, it is Loud, it is which isn't to say people don't cheer in boston or whatever, but just if you're thinking about it like it reflects new york city and but I think boston Is seems much more provincial, it seems smaller, it seems we're not new york um it it? It seems why they both have Uh pride in their cities and what they have boston Is like we are. Like if you didn't know better, you'd think the boston marathon was run right, starting in 1776, like paul revere was the lead car back then and they all just followed and that's how the marathon went. So I think they both, in that regard, reflect their city and and um, what's the word I'm? I'm trying to find um, but but new york is just, it is literally like nothing else. The guy that described it best to me was like it's and I get, you have a couple bridge, but he goes, you know how, how loud it gets to the finish line, right, and he's it's a 26 mile finish line. That's what it literally feels like. It's like a 26 Mile finish line is that? You know, I had a little ipod the year. I ran a little nano and they're like you won't need it. And they were right, I didn't, didn't need it. It was crazy. Um. So yeah, how they pulled off, I don't know. But they, they just have a very. They both have a very distinct feel of what they are. They're very, um, new york. Boston feels very provincial, um, and new york feels very large. Everybody, they say one is less welcoming the other, but you know new york would like to. You know we're showing off to everybody.

Speaker 2:

Look at us and and boston doesn't either show up, because it's awesome Boston's like come see bosses like come see us.

Speaker 3:

Yeah come share with us. Where the other one kind of emotes more, the other one's like no, you're welcoming, we're here, but it's a little more intimate, come with us. Yeah, when you, when you see it.

Speaker 2:

So I've run the boston marathon. I've announced there New york is always on a run disney race and so it's like every 10 years. So I've it's on my list to run, but it's we. You know, we got it works. But I want to talk a little bit about superstars. Um, we had a superstar this year in boston, ellie kipchogi. How was that experience? Because the hype around him Is huge, obviously. There it didn't work out whether it was the hills, whether it was the absorption of the shoes, uh, but what was that experience like having the goat there?

Speaker 3:

Right, and that was the other part. So when I had done new york in november, um, some of the they they share resources on race day. You come help us on our race day. And so there were baa people. So I had I had known that kipchogi was coming sworn to silence, but I knew he was coming. So when we got boston and they said that was the other reason, I went like I need to go do this because I want to call a race with ellie kipchogi. Um, and now, right, I'm in the great minority. I've called a race that he didn't win. I don't know if I'm proud of that, I'm just saying I have a really unique experience of what that was. Uh, his presence in the city Was electric, was amazing. I've been to new york where he was. We were staying at the time at the warwick hotel. Um, which people in of great sports things in history are like in the warwick hotel is where they sign the nfl afl merger way back in. They like 67, they didn't merge till 70, but he's just in, he's just in the in the lobby bar restaurant and he's got his agent with him. And now you're in a town at this point that's saturated with runners in new york and yet he's still kind of, just Because he's not running, he's just hanging out, you know, shaking hands for nike, and uh, and you're like man just walked in, got a table and then some other gal with her shopping bags Just sat down next to him, you know, in the table next to him, and had no idea who he is. But when he was in boston, knew he was gonna run and what he had done, he, he walked around and he went down to the trails and he, he really immersed himself in the event. He still did his, his runs and he wasn't afraid to go out. Uh, he, he ran, you know, some down by the, by the charles and but people were stopping him. But when he just walked around, I was fortunate enough to do kind of a Bit of a session, an interview session, with him in front of me. He walked around like a head of state, with security and mobs of people trying to get him and there was just an electricity about his presence, merely being there. That was Astonishing. And to see him in the race, I know other guys probably had their race plan, whether it was, whether it was, uh, evans chibet who eventually won, or scott phobbel or you know whomever. You know, joe the trucker was running timberlands Like nobody. Everybody, for the first 13, 15 are just watching him. You know, and if he had gone out and decided I was going to try to run 153, they would have gone with him. And if he'd have sat there and and those guys were like we're on two, 12 pace, what are we doing? They were still sitting on him. You know, it's amazing to watch how just his presence controlled that race Until finally people kind of realized, okay, he's, he might not be the guy we know today, and and then they, then they decided to kind of pounce a little bit. But so whether it was his presence in the city and the excitement he drew, um and and put through the crowds and the people that watched, or whether just to watch him in a race and see how just his presence dictates everything, uh, both those things were fascinating.

Speaker 2:

I want to talk about another superstar real quickly that has a huge presence in new york and boston mehb. Can we talk a little bit about? About the great mehb kufles game, what he has meant to this endurance industry in america, what his wins have done.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, um, when he Ran his last new york. So here's, these guys are worse than boxers when it comes to retiring, like that's like I've retired from racing and then he's back running new york the next year. But he's like, well, I'm not, I'm just running with a friend and I'm just gonna run like 258 gross. So he's run like 12 more marathons after he got done running marathons. But he was, he was running and and you could see the people there and he kind of went over you know late and he, he was kind of touching hands and shaking hands and I said, like the thing about mehb is they they claim there's a million people Watching new york on the streets. Right, there's a million people. They're part of that and like a million of those people all thought mehb was their friend, because that's the kind of guy he is. He is literally a pied piper of those things and he is genuine, right, he makes connections with you. He comes back the next year. Well, I just helped a friend train and I wanted to run with him, you know, and he wasn't. He was I forget his name, but he wasn't. It wasn't like I just ran with the head of of ford, you know, to raise money for my chair, like it was pretty much a fairly normal dude. It wasn't, you know, um. So he's amazing in that regard. He's amazing that he's won new york and he's won boston and he has won an olympic medal. Like that's not a triumvirate you you get very often. So his greatness is sort of undisputed, even if he never ran 205, you know, I mean the idea is to finish first, which he's done. You know, um, like look at chabet, I mean he was running fast times. He's like, where's my breakthrough, where's my breakthrough? And he finally gets it, whatever, it was 32. So he won, uh, which is hugely important. Um, he is here. Here's the kind of guy is I before I worked with him in boston and, uh, full disclosure, I work with his, his brother, howie, and howie management a little bit. He kind of helps me, um, fine work. But I met him the first time in New York and because he had kids and they had watched Wipe Out there, you go, so kind of visited and we were chatting up and he became a decent friend and he's like here, take my number. And then we went to the New York City, the Fifth Avenue Mile, and he just was there because he was doing something for the road runner. I introduced him to my son who at the time was like in seventh or eighth grade how is Colin? He never fails to ask how Colin is Great. I said he won his cross country meet. Oh, send me a picture. So now Mebs tweeting out or X or whatever it was. Hey, colin Anderson, congrats on winning the Canton eighth grade, whatever. So like that's just the dude he is.

Speaker 2:

That's so cool.

Speaker 3:

He is remarkable in that regard and there isn't a better ambassador for it. And sometimes we think of ambassadors as like okay, here's a guy that people love and he was kind of in a lot of the top tens, but he wasn't like he's just, he's the deal, he's an ambassador and he's got all the goods to back. Like if you were zooming here with meb, have you done meb right? His little Boston wreath is behind you. You're like, okay, that's legit to me. Dude Like, okay, go ahead and flex. I see you've got your Boston wreath behind you. Nice, I've got a badger helmet and a Mr Salty.

Speaker 2:

You got some Emmys there, don't don't? You know, don't play it down too much. So thank you. I just think that it's amazing to be able to humanize these athletes that we feel are super human, based on what they've done.

Speaker 3:

I also have. I also have Zach Zimak's bib from the world championship.

Speaker 2:

Double Z.

Speaker 3:

Double Z from this bronze medal performance in Eugene. Yeah, his Boston guys, you all hang together.

Speaker 2:

I love that. Yeah, we want. We have so much that we want to talk about, so we do want to talk about your, your sort of track and field commentating. You were there in Tokyo, which was pushed back to 21 due to COVID. What was?

Speaker 3:

that like Empty Right it was. It was astonishing I had taken it to every day of track in Tokyo.

Speaker 2:

I had flights, I had hotels. I mean I know people lost more, but logistically I was there.

Speaker 3:

I felt for those people and I thought they did an amazing job for an empty stadium. There were a few, there were some people, but it wasn't this stacked up thing. They allowed some athletes to come, but usually, right, you're raised and they got you out of town. So the performance they gave were Olympic quality and conditions that were absolutely not Olympic conditions. You know that was there, so that was stunning to be doing. Before I did the track, I did some, I did three X three basketball and I got to do the opening ceremonies as well, which was amazing, and so there's enough lights and enough sound and music pumped in and pageantry that that maybe you don't recognize that, and most people I was with had done them before. So they had a much different baseline by which to judge. But there were times you're like this is, you know, a ghost town, and yet there was. Also, when you're watching Courtney Frerick's break away, you're so concentrating on her that I'm really not even worried about who who's missing. I'm just watching this performance of this wonderful athlete take off. And I pick her out because literally before I jumped on this, I was on the call with her father-in-law, who's a really good friend of mine from college, so, and we were talking, talking about something else. But when she's there, you know, it's just that those are the performances are. When you're watching Sydney McLaughlin run, you're just like okay, I get, there should be 60,000 people cheering but. I'm really engrossed in exactly what she's doing right there and the athlete, and then to watch them with their joy or you know a thing, Mo coming off the curve and the same gal that I literally had watched a few months ago, whether it was the NCAA or the SEC meet, you know, and you're like she, she came off the final curve at the Olympics, literally like she had come off the final curve at the SEC meet in the 800. And I'm like she's just still running away from people and it's just they're not from Ole Miss or from a zoo or from Florida. She's just running away from these people who are all from a different country and it was staggering. So that was that was amazing to be a part of and I did. I sat there at some point and I thought what is a kid? I've always done this Like I like to live in the moment, obviously. But the first sports center you're sitting, okay, Chris Berman sat here, take a minute, and it's okay. And the first time I did a Super Bowl, I took a minute, for I'm doing the Super Bowl, the post Super Bowl Sports Center, with Dan Patrick and everyone's like I like to take a snapshot. And I sat there and I'm like what? How does a kid from Wisconsin who was building high jump standards in his basement because he loved the Olympics end up here at the opening ceremonies in the Olympics in Tokyo? Like it's just a ridiculous story and path and route and good fortune mixed with, you know, adversity, like everybody has at some point. But to be sitting there and see them raise the Olympic flag and even though they weren't real doves, they just leave some paper, yeah, it is like I felt, especially the track felt like nine days of goosebumps moments up until my buddy lost in the hurdles. So you said you like Grant, like I feel like Grant's, like he's one of your boys, like he's one of my, I consider him like a great friend and we text and talk frequently and we do the Bowerman award things. Yeah, like I was done with the Bowerman and they said, hey, Grant's gonna do it. Would you maybe come back and like, how, how do I sign up? How do I not want to be with that clown?

Speaker 2:

Man well, I'm also from Chesapeake, so that also endears me to grant go he's got a.

Speaker 3:

He's got a friend in Florida that he yeah, so he's amazing, and so that was top finals. I was working with Rob Walker, who is a wonderful Brit and is my gosh so many global championships he's been a part of, but was just so so giving and we're willing to share the work. And he said are there any things here particular that you would like to do? He's like I would like to. You know, do Timothy chariot? And I look, I said I said, well, if I really had a couple, I'd love to do the steeple chase because Courtney's in it and you know kind of a feel like a friend and I'd really like to do Grand Hollowing, cool. And then I, you know, got to do some other great ones. I did Sid's race, which was was fantastic, it's only. But here we are and so I have Grant. I'm like this is gonna be unbelievable. I can't wait. I'm gonna save this you know my heat sheet that I've got all my notes on and I'm gonna put it there. I'm gonna put a picture of us and If it's not this one, he's gonna send me some pieces like I had it all framed right to go. And then he let Hansel parchment.

Speaker 2:

Oh my god, I still I was. We were on vacation. Yeah, you can see yourself in moments. I'm standing like two inches from the TV at this hotel in Clearwater and I'm like, and then I'm just frozen. Yeah, you know. Yeah, oh, and then parchment got them at the end of the Diamond League this year, but that didn't matter, that was fine, but it still upset me.

Speaker 3:

They had all shut it down by then they were having fun. That was, yeah, that was the best of who was like that look literally like these guys might all have gone out, you know, to a picnic afterwards, that's. You know, that was the intensity and they still all ran, like, you know, 1296 and 1301, but you could just tell there was a different intensity level for that thing. Then then there was for for Budapest, which is, you know, that's his thing, he's just, he's almost too good, you know, he's too big, too tall, too fast and that's why those last couple three hurdles give him trouble. Because if he, edric Florial, who obviously everybody knows, the Texas coach and and great hurdle coach, he's like, if you could take those last three hurdles for Grant and just move the Eighth one back six inches and the ninth one a foot and the tenth one 18 inches, he'd run like 12, six, but he's just so big and so fast that that they come up on him quick.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, well, thank you for all that. Thank you for so much time that you spent with us and sharing so much, and I hope that our Listeners got to learn a little bit about your amazing career and all the amazing things that you've seen and done and got some great perspective.

Speaker 3:

You're kind, I appreciate. Thanks so much and keep up the good.

Speaker 2:

All right, athletes, here's the drill time to shape up your diet. Marissa, give them the goods. Bananas, john, we're gonna go bananas. When's the last time you had a banana?

Speaker 1:

I actually eat a lot of bananas, probably four or five times a week, so I think it's been a couple of days. But there are some new bananas. I went grocery shopping yesterday so we have some more bananas. You know, the picking out of bananas is is is a difficult shopping thing because mainly they come in green and you have to catch them just as they're on that edge because they'll also go bad quickly. So the long, the short answer to your question which I've just given you, the long answer to it's been a couple of days.

Speaker 2:

All right, I'm not a huge banana fan. It's it's, you know it's it's in between. But bananas are good and we're gonna talk about some benefits of bananas. One In terms of food prices they're still pretty affordable. I feel like we're still under the 50 cent range. Bananas are affordable for the nutrients you get, for the calories you get. They're pretty much portable. You don't want to, you know, bang them around too much. We know what happens there, but they have a lot of health benefits to runners in the overall population. So just a reminder to give the affordable banana ago. They've got the potassium, which we know of. They've also got vitamin C, b6 and fiber. Now potassium we think about with electrolytes, but it actually helps naturally Regulate your blood pressure. So if you're someone who's on that borderline of needing blood pressure medicine, not not only bananas, but look at adding in more potassium to your diet. They got vitamin C for immune health oranges get all the love there, but they have it as well and then vitamin B6 to support your brain health. And then we also know them as an energy boost. So they got the carbohydrates. So keep picking them for a pre or a post workout snack and just know that they're good for your digestion too, helps maintain Regular movements of our digestive and all that kind of stuff. So I want to know about your banana love. So I would like you to share your banana recipe or selfie with us and Tag 3, 2, 1 go podcast on Instagram. We want to kind of give some love to the banana. What do you think?

Speaker 1:

I'll do, I will. I will do that. I like all, I like all things.

Speaker 2:

Banana we have to be the right mood. I don't mind them in like a muffin. Or I had an oatmeal pumpkin oatmeal bake today that I put banana in, but I don't know, I got to get back on the banana train.

Speaker 1:

No, I'm a big fan. What I like about them is if I'm peckage peckish I just made up a word, peckage if I'm peckish on a race day when we're announcing or something and you know me, I don't eat heavy in the mornings I just kind of weighs me down. Banana is nice and filling. That's the other thing I really like about it, versus maybe some other fruits, because I like eat it apple and everything but there's so much more water in that and it doesn't really sit on fiber.

Speaker 2:

I have a banana.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it'll carry me for a little bit longer, so huge fan of the banana and the little. Banana, I putting ice cream.

Speaker 2:

Yep, that's. That's the second shot up for that, so you know, maybe I don't do.

Speaker 1:

I don't do a lot of the ice cream. You're beginning some.

Speaker 2:

I. This wasn't really like the most nutritional nugget, but I just thought we'd have some fun with the bananas. But if you want more actual nutrition knowledge, healthier you is here for you. 12 week course Go to gallowaycoursecom, enter the code podcast to save some money and then, if you need any banana recipes, I'm happy to help you out there.

Speaker 1:

Alright, thanks, sarge. We were actually out of question nobody loved us. Well, and we should say that, like mmm, we get 150 questions on the costumes and we we've really kind of answered.

Speaker 2:

That's true.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, or tried to, so I was gonna make one up, carissa, but for the for the sake of time, I won't do that. We will just ask you to to ask us some more questions. Yeah, your question about anything, send it on Instagram at three, two, one go podcast. Or email three, two, one go podcast at Gmailcom. And and again, we're not skipping. You know we're not ignoring you, but we've done a lot of questions on our, on our costumes, so maybe if we could retire those for a bit, or just make them more creative. Yeah, well, okay, wow, now you're. Now you're insinuating that the ones we haven't used her are not creative costume questions. We just jumped on the costumes real early because that's what people always, always asking now we don't have a question, but, carissa, we do have a listener story.

Speaker 2:

We do, and it comes from Kathy, and she says she was listening to our podcast and was reminded of when she did her first Triathlon in Chicago and her open water swim coach told her this when you're in the swim course, take a few seconds, flip onto your back and look at the Chicago skyline. You'll only see it from that exact position during this race. And she was absolutely right. Her coach was that the experience was so Wonderful. So I think we do talk a little bit about that, john, in the podcast the perspective of not missing those moments, of opening your eyes, and a lot of the athletes can point out some of those, those key highlights, and that's what we want people to take away those little snapshots that stay with you. But she does go on, doesn't she?

Speaker 1:

She does. She or I, as she says competed in dopey 2023 and I'm currently training for dopey 2024. I'm constantly amazed at what my body can do. I've lost 200 pounds since 2016 and was never involved in any kind of physical activity until that fall, when I did my first 5k with the help of my trainer and a couple of good friends. I couldn't imagine being able to do what I do now love being a part of her on Disney and love Looking forward to January and what that'll bring. Congratulations, first of all at 200 higher journey that's remarkable amazing Kathy we say that you know often on this show and gladly, but I Don't want it to lose any of its if its power that is. That is really remarkable. Congratulations to you. You are an inspiration and, hey, you know what Kathy would Given what your journey has been. If you have any tips for folks who are running there first we have. We mentioned this on the podcast was the largest percentage people running their first Marathon, half marathon, probably 10k as well, if not 5k. In addition, and we want your, we want your tips and tricks because we can get them from the professionals that we interview. Carissa, who is essentially a professional. I can't be helpful, so we want to know how, how you navigate the difficulties and and the joyful moments of those days.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so email us, kathy emails. You know our email, kathy more tips or if you have a tip, a question, a story, we might feature it in an upcoming episode. Email us at 321. Go podcast at gmailcom. Is John Anderson the biggest celebrity we've had on this podcast? Maybe?

Speaker 3:

possibly Pretty good, no, I will say.

Speaker 1:

Chris, chris Nickage, yeah, what I? I was at my getting my yearly Exam from my doctor and she would ask me what I was doing and I mentioned we do the podcast. And I said you know, I've committed to running a 10k because she's she's very much about. You know, make sure you properly train. I deal with a lot of self-dissue injury, tissue, soft tissue injuries from people who don't train and go out and do the races. And I said, well, yeah, I'm gonna have to do this too, because this, this gentleman with Down syndrome who finished a Now he's finished more of those, but was the first with Down syndrome to finish a triathlon she's like, oh, chris Nickage, oh yeah, yeah, I know him really, really well. So I think John and Chris might be our most famous people. But thanks again to John Anderson who was very generous with this time and hopefully we'll have a chance to talk to him again because so many things.

Speaker 2:

I could spend an entire episode talking about his time on wipeout and we have to touch back, maybe in person, maybe, you know, you never know.

Speaker 3:

The.

Speaker 2:

Boston Marathon or the New York City, you never know. We'll probably be invited to the Paris Olympics probably.

Speaker 1:

I would think so, to do the podcast live from there.

Speaker 2:

I'm sure that that's blue sky. Blue sky because I said gracias to all the people in Nice every time they brought me something instead of mercy. Anyway, it's time to say au revoir. Oh, we're for our war war, war.

Speaker 1:

Oh, we're not be back.

Speaker 2:

See you next time. Thanks, guys oh.

Athletic Background and Race Announcing Experience
Christmas Traditions and Gift Shopping
Broadcasting Career and Recognition
Reflecting on Career Beginnings
The Love-Hate Relationship With Running
Running Marathons
Contrasting New York and Boston Marathons
Electric Presence of Running Superstar
Meb Keflezighi
Benefits and Recipes for Bananas
Thanking John Anderson and Future Plans