You guys ran your first marathon a few years back. What was that like?
In Run Club, we’re almost like peer-pressuring bullies. We can sense, you know, it’s your first time, we’ll bring you in, make you comfortable. That’s when we got you. We go, “Oh, sick, you love running with us, we’ve seen you consecutively the past three weeks. It’s time for you to run a marathon.” That’s our tactic. The first time we did it, I think we got, like, 30 people to sign up for the marathon, and they’d all never run one in their life. I’d never run more than five miles, so good fucking luck. That was the whole concept: if we can do it, you can do it. People busted their ass. It was a grueling couple months of training. Here’s the kick: I never trained. I got up to maybe 15 miles one time, and I was, like, “Fuck it, that’s all I need. I’ll figure out the next 11 miles on my own. It’s just all heart and grit.” The first one was the toughest I’ve ever done. Fast forward last year, I was, like, “I’m gonna fucking show everyone I still got this ’cause I’m a fucking athlete.” So I sign up for five fucking marathons. I don’t train for a single one of them. We got invited to China, I did L.A. twice, I did Chicago, and to end the year I did Hawaii.
I didn’t have any injuries, which is crazy. I should have. I don’t recommend anyone doing that. I couldn’t have done it without Duy, who’s my number one supporter, and he thinks I’m crazy. He thinks I’m gonna die because I don’t train. Two marathons, he sat me down and was, like, “Listen, this next one…I’m serious, you’re gonna have a heart attack. Don’t do this anymore to yourself.” I wanna do all these things and prove to people that I’m fucking crazy. But the flip side is: Hey, I can do it, you can do it too. Let me give you any kind of positive reinforcement or energy towards reaching your goal.
This past year we had our record number, I think it was 65 or 70 people that haven’t run did the marathon for the first time. It looked like a mob running out. Every year it’s gonna get crazier because we believe in them.
Do you do any injury prevention to try and cushion that blow?
My body’s beat up. For maintenance, I get a lot of massages. I used to do a massage once a week. After a marathon I’ll shower and go straight to a masseuse and they’ll just work on my legs and I’ll be fine the next day. I do a lot of cold showers, hot showers. I used to do a lot of saunas when I was sore. Right now, I have a roller that I use on my body, and I have one of those massage guns, which I use constantly.
You also run a bicycle meal delivery program for the unhoused in Koreatown. Does that mean you’re biking 24/7?
I ride my BMX bike seven days a week, mostly to run errands. Right now Bicycle Meals is Fridays and Mondays, but the goal is doing seven days flat-out. Recently one of the guys that rides with us was, like, “Hey man, me and my girl want to pack lunches on Sundays and ride out on Mondays,” so we added Mondays. We’ll need more people like him to come in and take more days, but it’s awesome having a small group and seeing it expand.