"After you put in all that time, it really gives you a passion and a desire and reminds you why you're out there," U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials runner John Dewitt says.
That passion and desire has led John DeWitt to Olympic Trials in 2016 and 2020.
"When I finally got to that line, and coming through in 2:17.38, 22 seconds under the Olympic Trials standard, that was just such a joy and such a blessing to get to come through with that," Dewitt says.
Dewitt was 66th of about 150 runners in 2016, 90th out of nearly 250 in 2020, the upper half of those at the trials, the best in the U.S. But like many who chase the dream, he's not repping Team USA. So why does he do it?
"That's a great question!" Dewitt says. "You know, sometimes you ask yourself that question every day. But, definitely, it's one of those things that I've been given some gifts. And you want to use those to the best of your ability and I just want to make sure I go out and do that."
His priorities are in order.
"Obviously the most important thing is the things on the home front," Dewitt says. "You know you take care of your family and your faith and everything like that."
And his mustache? Spectacular.
"(Laughs), you know I started growing this in the quarantine," Dewitt says. "I was very fortunate to, during the awkward stages to have to kind of, to get to be alone. But yeah, we're working through it. It looks nice. I've really enjoyed it. A lot of compliments from the kids. A lot of insults from the kids. But it's all in good fun and I'm really enjoying it."
Now this Hale Huskies math teacher hopes the numbers come up in his favor, three years down the road.
"I plan on chasing it again in 2024 to go after it," Dewitt says. "I'm hoping everything goes right again. I hope you have that magical day that you can qualify again and then, once you're into the Trials, it's anybody's game."