“When Alina walked out of my life in 2009, despite me feeling that I found my soulmate, I felt lost, and I didn’t know what to do. I decided on running across a few countries for Alina in order to prove my feelings to myself and to her. But, I didn’t tell anyone, except my grandpa, until after I’d run across my first country.
I had already run across multiple countries when I told her what I was doing. She thought it was crazy and didn’t know how to react as we hadn’t seen each other in four years at that point. But, she was definitely interested. It was unique, and we started a relationship after I came back from running across Cuba. This was an eight-year long journey, and I never expected it to work or to win Alina’s heart. I proposed as soon as I finished the sixth and most recent run across Switzerland. Alina said yes, not because of the running, but because she said I have a big heart.” – HOKA Fan Slava Koza
Slava is wearing the Stinson ATR.
“I came into the final aid station, and I sat down. My body had lost the ability to move — on the climb up to the aid station, I couldn’t even step up a few inches without full-body cramps. It was a bit of sadness tinged with a lot of comedy, laughing in bemusement as I waited out yet another cramp in the bushes as the race passed me by. So when I sat down, I was not planning on getting back up. For an hour, I did not move a muscle. Then my wife and fellow teammate, Megan Roche, came around the corner. She was having her own version of a full-body shutdown, but she looked determined. When she got to the aid station, she made it simple: ‘You’re coming with me.’ I got up, cramped, then waddled off behind Megan a few seconds later. Every minute, she’d wait for me when she heard a yelp of pain. She never stopped believing in me, even when my muscles clearly did not agree with her assessment. I planned on those last five miles taking just over 30 minutes — they took closer to 90. But, with a bunch of “I love you” and “You got this” statements, she got me to the finish line. We crossed hand-in-hand, smiling and laughing, hours behind when we were expected to finish. But, I don’t think I have ever been happier. And that is how love turned my worst race into my best memory.” – HOKA Athlete David Roche
David’s favorite shoe is the Clayton.
“As a couple we aren’t each other’s ‘halves’ as we came into this as ‘whole,’ and I love that about us. We will never be perfect nor will our lives. We are independent, but look forward to being together. We have our own personal goals and will help each other reach them. We drive each other crazy (the good kind and the bad), but in the end, I truly love and respect who he is as a person, and that’s how I know he’s my one.” – HOKA fan Heather Rose Scott
Heather is wearing the Hupana.
“She stepped out of her big pick up truck and I instantly fell in love. After a nice trail run I was certain I’d marry her one day. I quickly packed up my house and moved to Flagstaff, and after a few years together we tied the knot in September of 2016. Best day ever.”- New HOKA Athletes Alicia and Chris Vargo