Dear Running:Thank You For Introducing Me To Throwing

Brayden Hodgest is a senior at Brewer High School in White Settlement, Texas. Hodgest has been one of the top throwers in Texas since his freshman year and has been pursuing a state title. In this essay, the Arkansas signee talks bout how track and field developed into his love.

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"Unfortunately, I have many brothers and sisters who have not signed yet and I pray that they get the opportunity to "throw one deep" just one more time."

Brayden Hodgest, White Settlement Brewer senior

Dear Running,

Unlike the many runners who have sent their heart felt sentiments to you, I am a thrower, that's right I throw things!

I have not experienced the excitement of having thousands of fans screaming at my success. Nor have I had the luxury of competing inside of a fancy high school stadium, and I sure have not had the camera crews fighting to see who's going to get an award-winning shot of my latest performance.

Sadly, this is because I am a thrower.

Now do not misunderstand me, as I am proud to be called a thrower. You see, throwers possess a quality that is not comparable to any other event.Throwers are competitive, yet friendly, and in some cases, just down right arrogant. Not to mention, we are the biggest and most sexiest individuals at the track and field meet!

With that being said, as I reflect on this season, I can truly say it has been a blessing. Even with the uncertainty of what the remainder of the season will hold, I am still overjoyed knowing that I was able to compete with the people I hold dear to my heart…the Throwers.

The past four years of my life have been a whirlwind, and I refused to take shelter. I have completely engulfed myself in throwing the shot put and the discus, and as a result of hard work and perseverance, the throws events have changed my life.

Just like most young men from Texas, most of my life was spent pursuing football fantasies, and track and field was merely something to keep me active. Ironically, from the first day I picked up a shot put, I was intrigued by its ability to demand an individual's mind, body and soul. I have to admit, it took some time for me to develop the love that I currently have for throwing, as track meet coordinators often cheapen the thrower's track and field experience.

Unfortunately, it's not uncommon for the throws events to be rushed because no one wants to be way out in a field somewhere, chasing iron balls and flying discs. Nevertheless, for those of us who have dedicated our lives to throwing, it means the world to us. That is why competing in the UIL State Track and Field Meet one last time is so important to some of us.

Inevitably, I will be okay one way or the other, as I have been blessed with the opportunity to continue throwing in college. Unfortunately, I have many brothers and sisters who have not signed yet and I pray that they get the opportunity to "throw one deep" just one more time.

Well Running, even though we've only met on brief encounters, I want to thank you for introducing me to throwing…an event that will always be a part of my DNA.


For whatever your passion, be it running, jumping, throwing, hurdling, etc., if you are a track and field and/or cross country athlete or coach interested in contributing to this series, please send your essay to