10th Anniversary Tributes

It’s been 10 glorious years of the Gomers and they have brought an entire “nation” of runners, movie enthusiasts, and regular Joe’s along with them as they attempted to do something they never thought possible. Not only was it possible, but they have improved at a sport to which they were originally reluctant to tell people they were part of. But that’s not the whole story here. Anthony and Steven have given to the nation an inside peek at their friendship, their faith, their personal stories, their feelings about getting older, and their thoughts on some significant current events that shape who they are. Most podcast attempts only last a few episodes, but these guys have stuck it out for the long “run”. They don’t just do it for themselves, they certainly don’t do it for money, they do it for the nation.

As a gift to our beloved two Gomers, Adam and Mackenzie came up with a plan to reach out to the nation and get a few letters of appreciation together as a tribute for what YOU have done for US. We know you are not fans of self-promotion but we are posting this directly to your site anyway so others can see how you have affected them over the years.

Before we get to the letters, here is a response from friends of the show and fellow podcasters, Trevor and Angie from the Marathon Training Academy Podcast.

“Hi Anthony and Steve!  We know first hand how much effort it takes to keep a podcast going.  The fact that you guys have been doing this for 10 years makes you podcasting rockstars!  Mad respect and keep up the great work!”

 


Tribute Letters from the Nation

Original post 11/15/2018

Last Updated 11/24/2018


“Thank you Gomers for years of entertainment and inspiration. I found your podcast a few episodes into season 1 and have been listening ever since. I have taken you along on countless runs and love seeing an episode show up in my feed before a long run. In particular, you helped me get through the toughest year of my life. Last year, my wife was diagnosed with lymphoma while my dad was already in treatment for pancreatic cancer. We spent 6 months in and out of hospitals, doctor appointment and PET scans – just trying to get to the next day. One of my few escapes was listening to your podcast. I felt like I had friends sitting there cheering me up through those challenging days. Thankfully, both are in remission and the outlook is good. Thank you for the escape, the entertainment, and the inspiration.”

Best, Scott “Eat the Frog” Schneider (Gomer #40)


“Dear Gomers

It’s difficult for me to put into words how much your podcast and journey have meant to me these past 9 years (I came on board a year after the podcast started). In late 2009, I was a depressed law school student feeling pretty aimless and hopeless. Looking back, I was in a darker place than I realized at the time. A friend had the idea of training for a spring 2010 half marathon. Very out of shape, I found a Couch-to-5K program, searched for running podcasts, and stumbled upon the Gomers. That moment would very literally change my life.

I listened to y’all every time I ran. You guys got me through all those tough early training runs. Trudging to the treadmill time after time was so much easier knowing I had a Gomer episode to look forward to. No matter how bad I felt during a run, I could take solace in knowing I wasn’t running in khaki shorts or experiencing code browns on a college campus! It helped to hear all the things that “hurt more” than running. My running journey mirrored yours in so many ways – from half marathons, to marathons, to triathlons, and back to pure running.

I credit those early days of running with saving my life. Running has set me on a path of radically increased physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. I’ve discovered who I am, which has resulted in other positive changes — in my career, lifestyle, and even values. And the one constant — besides running — has been the Gomers. Y’all have been with me the whole time, without even knowing it.

I really can’t thank you two enough. Your self-deprecation, sense of humor, highs, lows, struggles, triumphs, friendship, vulnerability, faith, and willingness to challenge yourselves has inspired me and, to some extent, saved me. You’ve played a significant role in my journey the last 9 years of discovering who I am and why I’m on this earth. My wife and I are expecting our first child in January — a girl — and I tell my wife regularly about Gomer 1’s experience, as shared on the podcast, of having and raising two girls. It’s like I’m talking about a good friend. She thinks I’m a little nuts.

I hope the Gomers continue to podcast for another 10 years, but I realize it’s a massive investment of time, energy, and resources. Just know that you are changing lives by what you do. Your moms are definitely not the only ones who listen to and are proud of you.

Thank you for everything!”

–George Gaskin


“Dear Gomers,
Congratulations on 10 years of making an excellent podcast, and 10 years of letting us in on your running, fitness, health, and friendship journey. I began listening to your podcast in early 2014, when I was going through a particularly tough time in my life. I was just starting my nursing career, and remember listening to you before working stressful night shifts; I found, and still find, your experiences and your banter so funny and yet so comforting as well.
I binge-listened and caught up right around the time you were running your first triathlon. Since then it has been a joy to follow what you’re both up to in real time, as well as listening back through all the episodes, which I have done several times. I always catch something new to ponder or laugh about as I re-listen. Though I’m not sure exactly why, one of my most favorite moments is when Anthony is explaining what it’s like pre-audition in a room full of bassoonists – that it is quite collegial, and everyone is practicing their “round tones”. Then Steven pipes up about what it must be like at a trumpet audition and how folks would be aiming to play the highest and loudest – “Watch this! WHHEEEE!!” I belly laugh every time I hear that.
While your podcast has certainly motivated me to continue running and provided entertainment for longer runs, it is the connection between the two of you which truly comes through to your audience and is the cornerstone of the Gomer Nation. Two Gomers Run for their Lives is my #1 favorite podcast, and something I listen to often, especially when I crave familiarity and inspiration. The two of you feel like my old friends. I wish all the best to you and your families, and sincerely congratulate you on your 10th Anniversary!”

–Mackenzie Weibe


“I had just figured out how to download podcasts onto my new iPod Shuffle and decided to go for a run. Running wasn’t normal for me, so I figured I’d listen to someone else trying to figure this out and found Two Gomers Run a Half Marathon. As I struggled to get in more than ten steps, I was laughing and knew I was hooked.

Here were two guys that were as authentic as you can get. As the years went by, I faded in and out of running, but the Gomers were always there to welcome me back. As Steven’s kids grew up and Anthony started a family, I felt like I was watching old friends evolve. That feeling continues to this day.

They love nerdy movies, TV, and fast food. They love to find the best in themselves and others. They were how I saw myself or at least how I wanted to be. Man, I’m a Gomer!

Anthony and Steven inspire me by their clear love for their families and each other, and their hope for a better world. The joy, angst, passion that they genuinely display draws me in. The fact is, when I get to listen to Two Gomers while I run, my life is better. This is why I continue to turn so many people onto the podcast.

Thank you both for making us laugh, cry, think, and reflect. We are truly blessed to be a part of the Gomer Nation!”

–Kindest regards, Pete D’Amico


“Steven and Anthony,

Just a quick note to say thank you for sharing my running journey this past decade. My wife and I began listening to you from the very beginning and for the past ten years you have remained our favorite “running” podcast.  Along the way you have made us proud, cringe, laugh, cry and we may have even shared a few code browns. Two regular guys that have inspired a nation. Thank you for all your efforts and we wish you nothing but the best that life has to offer in the future.

Congratulations on your 10-year anniversary and we can only hope for many more.”

–Jeff (Gomer #51) & Gerri Plain   Huntsville, AL


“Steven and Anthony,

You had no idea when you started sharing your health and running journey what an influence for good you would be to the Nation. Whether we have run a long time or a short while, like me, care about movie reviews or not, like me, your charming and friendly banter as propelled many of us over the finish line. You choose to be transparent with us, you trust us with your lives and intentions. It’s why we feel like we know you both – oh, and LOVE YOU BOTH EQUALLY. (Oh, yes we do. Differently, but equally ❤️) Hearing the lead up to the podcast makes me smile so big, folks observing me must think I’m insane. I’ve had to stop on runs because I’ve have been laughing too hard to run and breathe and laugh. Your efforts bless, encourage, inform, and bring this potentially imposing sport, a safe place for all of us. I keep your mementos on my fridge, because you are my friends. I started running after you both did and learned of you late. But I ran my first marathon listening to season #2 and your first marathon, crossing the line as you shared your race in review. You keep running fun and happy and I love having you both ‘with me’ on my runs. I’m proud to be part of the Gomer Nation, to be affiliated with such as your dear selves and I’m praying for a release of Gomer SHIRTS. Thank you for your efforts, your sacrifices, your families’ sacrifice of time and money. Thank you for this awesome podcast, for sharing your quirky love of movies and La Croux with us. Thank you for being a light in a crazy world. We love you guys. #ifnanacandoit”

-Marion Syversen


“Shortly after my wife and I were married she introduced me to the world of podcasts. At the time running was one of the most important things in my life at the time so a majority of the podcasts I listened to were about running.

I tried a few podcasts that were just music created for a specific tempo but those didn’t really stick. If I was going to listen to music while I ran I wanted it to be music that I knew, the music I enjoyed.

Then I came across a few other podcasts. Running from the Reaper, Trilogy Running, Running to Disney, Dirt Dawgs Running Diatribe, Vegan Running Mom, Never Run Alone, Four Feet Running, and Marathon Talk were ones that I listened to off and on. Some of them I binged listened to even while I wasn’t running. For a time Megan Storms from Vegan Running Mom was even my running coach. She helped me prepare for a very warm Saint George Marathon sending me my weekly training runs. I’m still very grateful for the time and effort she put in. I really appreciate it.

Over the years a lot of those podcasts have gone away. The online podcast running community has changed dramatically for me. A lot of that has to do with the fact that running became less important in my life for a number of years and some of the podcasts I listed stopped production. I can understand why it takes a lot of time and effort to create a podcast especially some of the ones that I mentioned.

At some point during my running podcast prime, I came across one called Two Gomers Run a Half Marathon. The first episode I remember listening to Steven or Anthony (the Two Gomers) talk about getting a big exercise ball and laughing about having a big ball.

Big ball. Big balls. Get it?

Anyway, I thought it was funny. I downloaded everything they had released. Which was quite a bit because they had completed their half marathon. They did what no one thought they could do OR so they say at the beginning of the intro to the episodes to that season. Yes, season.

Two Gomers Run a Half Marathon turned into Two Gomers Run a Marathon. Which turned into Two Gomers The Sub Five Strive.

Since that inaugural season, the Two Gomers are currently on their eighth season that has spanned the last 10 years and have changed their name to Two Gomers Run For Their Lives. A great name if I do say so myself since I helped come up with it. I’ll pat myself on the back later.

I have been amazed at the transformation these two friends have gone through and was excited to take part in helping them prepare for their 10 Year Anniversary Episodes. I volunteered to go back through their first season to help compile what they called Gomers Tips. They are what you would imagine, tips that they learned while preparing to run their first half marathon. But they aren’t what you are imagining. They called themselves The Gomers after all.

As I went through and wrote these tips down it brought make memories of laughing and even crying (mostly from laughter) as I ran with Anthony and Steven in my ears like they were running beside me. Most of the running I do, I do alone. But these Two Gomers have joined me on hundreds of miles and hundreds of hours not spent running. While they don’t know much about me or my struggles I have come to learn about them and their struggles. They are really great husbands, fathers, and friends. Anyone, runner, seasoned runner, new runner, or just someone wanting to challenge themselves can learn a lot from them.

It was an honor to take a few hours of my time help them with their project of multiple podcast episodes celebrating their 10 years or running and podcasting. Celebrate your 10 Years Gomers! You deserve it.

If you are just finding these Gomers you will soon consider them friends just as many of us long time listeners do. Even though I have run a few half marathons and marathons I still learn news tricks and tips as I go back through their past episodes.

Gomers you have truly invited a nation….the world along for the run. We are truly grateful for every episode and everything you have shared along the way.

Happy Running!

–Seth Mathers


Gomers,

I can’t even begin to describe our “relationship”. I am pretty sure my wife thinks I am borderline creepy because I talk about you as if we hang out all the time.

About the same time I took up running I discovered the podcast. I would come back from runs telling my then girlfriend (She married me 6 days after I ran the Minneapolis Marathon with you) about what Steven said or what Anthony said. It took her awhile to realize we didn’t actually run together, and you didn’t even know who I was.

At my first half, the Gopher to Badger half, I was a total gomer and didn’t think about the fact that finishing in 90 degree heat meant I should slow down a little. But having you in my ears kept me from just plodding to the finish and I pushed through and ran the last couple miles.

You were with me when I finished on the red carpet at the Hollywood Half for a PR. (Did I mention I met Kimmy Gibbler there). Then 3 weeks later when I PRed again at the Lajolla half, you were running and joking with me the whole way.

I will never forget actually running with you guys at Minneapolis for the first sub-five strive. I wouldn’t have even ran if you weren’t running it. It was 4 hours before of my Bible College graduation, and I had developed ITBS about 5 weeks before the race so I only got to run one run the month before the race. But that was one of my favorite races I have ever run. The whole 9 miles we ran together until the half marathon turn off, you guys were encouraging me to just run the full. I don’t know if you realized but you came very close to convincing me to skip my grad and just do the full with you.

I have particularly enjoyed hearing you guys talk about Anthony’s spiritual journey in the recent episodes. I am very glad you have taken the risk to share it with us. I was really pulling for Anthony to get the Cleveland gig since I moved to Northwest Ohio recently but I guess being where God wants you is better.

You guys are about the only thing that consistently makes me laugh out loud. I get a lot of strange looks when I am running and I burst into laughter, but what can you do when you are running with your friends?

Thank you for the memories and here is to many more. 😉 Can’t wait to run with you where the streets are golden.

 

–Gomer 610 – Tim Lucas – (the one that almost ran the full at Minneapolis)


“Anthony and Steven,

A few years ago, I discovered that my time out on the road was exceeding my propensity to listen to the same music on repeat, so I looked for podcasts to pass the time. I looked for running related content, but I knew I wanted something a little different. Somehow, I stumbled upon you two Gomers. I started at the beginning and, at first, I honestly thought I probably wouldn’t stick with you.

But something happened. All the sudden I was all the way through the first season. Then I found myself listening in the car or before work just to see what happens next even though it happened years before (future Adam always laughed when future Anthony came on to announce something from the past). The jingles got in my head, the ‘running’ jokes made me feel like they were inside jokes that I shared with you, and somehow I felt as though I were part of this friendship with two people that don’t know me at all. Then there were times I had to stop on my run because I was laughing too much. I started referencing stuff you guys said to other people like you had told me directly. By sheer coincidence and my love for Jurassic Park I got to meet both of you guys and found you are as genuine as anyone would expect.

I look back at the letters from others I was fortunate enough to compile with the same sentiments as mine without surprise. In ten years of podcasts you guys have motivated me to keep running, inspired me to try new things, created laughter when I needed it most, caused me think more deeply, and always improved my mood.

Thank you for what you guys do and the time you dedicate to it. Thank you for letting me become a small part of it. Congratulations on 10 years of tremendous achievements!”

–Adam Dilling (Gomer #209er)

 

Want more feedback on how the Nation feels? Just go out to the iTunes reviews where you will find 400+ positive review and a few one-star reviews that are hilarious, “I am out”.

If you would like to have a letter published to the Gomers, please reach out to the web admin, Adam at adam.dilling@gmail.com