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Brett Favre

I wish there was an easier way to break this news, but sometimes it’s better to be direct and straight to the here we go.

Today, we are ceasing operations for The Stride Report.

Truthfully, this was a long-time coming, and while I’d like to say that this decision was based around one specific reason, it was ultimately a culmination of numerous life events that have brought us to this point.

The biggest reason behind this decision is exhaustion. We’re simply burned out...or at the very least, I’m burned out. Scheduling, writing, editing, creating graphics and updating the website has worn on myself and the rest of our TSR crew over the past few years.

Trying to balance our intensive website requirements with full-time jobs, athletics, academics, freelance opportunities and life in general has been a major challenge. It’s been an incredibly rewarding challenge, but it has still been a challenge nonetheless.

It would be one thing if our content wasn’t as wildly detailed as it is, but that’s what separates us and helps us to stand out. That’s the biggest reason why it takes so much time and energy to produce our articles. That’s why, after a while, we decided to make a drastic move and implement our BOOST subscription model.

When it comes to our paid subscription service, our numbers have been very solid over the last five(ish) months or so. However, those numbers were not going to make The Stride Report a sustainable project -- something that we truthfully anticipated could happen when we launched BOOST.

Simply put, we wanted to give this website a fighting chance. If we didn’t implement our BOOST subscription service, then this website would’ve been shut down a long time ago.

Details regarding refunds can be found here. Over the next two weeks, we will begin cancelling subscription plans. All articles on the site should now be free.

* * *

When I launched TSR in the bedroom of my junior year college apartment, I had massive aspirations for the website. I knew that it had the potential to be big and exciting. I knew that we could do something different and unique. I knew that this outlet could be something that wasn’t already found in the running community.

And for the most part, I like to think that those suspicions came true.

However, what I couldn’t have possibly anticipated were the learning curves that this website required, the time it took to establish a network, the design skills we needed to hone and the attention to detail that we needed to adopt.

But honestly, all of that was what made this so much fun.

We loved creating, we loved analyzing and we loved being a part of the running community. We loved interacting with our readers and hearing your insights, both good and bad. We loved being able to "nerd out" about a sport that rarely gets its time in the spotlight.

Simply put, we loved it all.

I may have expected a good number of visitors to eventually read the site, but what I didn’t expect was that our following would turn into such a loyal one. Readers of TSR weren’t just fans of the sports, they were (and are) die-hard consumers of our product who rallied behind what we were doing. They saw the vision and got behind it. That doesn't happen all that often.

To the athletes, parents, coaches, alumni, prospective college students and fans of the sport: thank you. You have made this project wildly fulfilling. We have only ever wanted to serve you with the best content and analysis that we could. I like to think that despite some hiccups, we were able to do exactly that.

I also have to give a big thank you to our writers, both past and present. Without them, this website would have never reached the level that it did. They produced wildly detailed content off of pure passion (and very little pay) for years. That’s a rarity, but it goes to show just how much they love this sport and just how talented (and hard working) they are as writers.

However, more importantly, they are phenomenal people who all have an internal drive to be different and to be great. I am incredibly excited for what they will do in the future.

* * *

As I hit publish on this article, I am eight years, one month and two days removed from when my favorite running writer (and mentor) Jarrett “Etrain” Felix stepped away from his website.

Jarrett oversaw a blog that covered Pennsylvania boys high school distance running. Despite the niche nature of his site, he had great success, with young athletes clamoring for any sliver of a mention on his site.

When you really break it all down, Jarrett is the reason why The Stride Report exists. He was inspired by Bill Simmons and I was inspired by him. Without him letting me incoherently ramble about NCAA distance running on his blog for two years, I’m not sure I would have had the fervor to start The Stride Report.

When Jarrett made his official “retirement” announcement, the post was titled, "Brett Favre".

In that post, Jarrett explained how although he was retiring from his site, he may never be able to stay away from the sport. He even theorized that he would come back and still write every now and then (a prediction which ultimately came true with the revival of a new site).

The more and more he explained -- and the more familiar you are with Brett Favre, a famous NFL quarterback who came out of retirement to keep playing football -- the more appropriate the title of his good-bye post seems.

And maybe that’s what will happen here.

Maybe one of our writers will begin their own project. Maybe I'll do my own freelance reporting on transfers and other NCAA news. Maybe we’ll try to find a more sustainable model for coverage. Maybe we’ll never really be able to stay away from writing content.

Maybe we’ll be another Brett Favre.

But for now, it’s time to hang ‘em up and see what else life has in store for us.

Thank you to everyone who has supported The Stride Report over the past four plus years. It has been an absolute honor to provide you with content for as long as we have.

Your Loyal Admin,

Garrett Zatlin

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