Next month we head to Austin, Texas to bring our race to the city during SXSW. We sat down with Pam and Ryan Hess, the owners of The Loop Running Supply Co. and founders of the in house crew Go The Spoils, to talk about how they are building community, where they see the Austin running scene headed, and how Go The Spoils like to let their legs do the talking. Their energy is SO contagious, and we couldn’t help but feed off of it! Below is a condensed version of the interview. To listen to the full thing, head to Apple and subscribe to our new podcast, or scroll to the bottom of the page!

Zilker Relays - Photo by Austin KilCullen

Zilker Relays - Photo by Austin KilCullen

DARCY: “Tell us the story of the loop, how it got started, your intensions behind the store, and what you see it being for the Austin community”

PAM: “we wanted a running store that made people fall back in love with running....and also being so involved with with the community and elevating the rich culture the Austin run community has”

DARCY: “tell us the meaning behind the name ‘Go The Spoils’”

PAM: “The name means ‘The Winner Take All’. Its a latin phrase, and the entire phrase is ‘to the victor go the spoils’”

RYAN: “When we looked it up, the origin comes from a 1920’s campaign slogan, like the winner takes all in elections. But I think you can go back to battles of wars thats what they would say.  And it’s not suppose to be a cocky slogan, but its also suppose to humble people in the crew, that you show it off in your race, and to leave it all out there when your competing.”

DARCY: “Go The Spoils premiers at a local relay race call ‘The Ziker Relays’. And word has it, there was a team that won it year after year, and GTS showed up at the race, and just crushed everyone!”

RYAN: “no one expected it. Those guys had won every race for the last 6 years, and we came in and edged them out at the very end.”

PAM: “We want to compete with local run crews, and encourage it and have fun with it in a healthy way.”

DARCY: “We hear you have some speadsters on your team.  Tell us your secret sauce”

PAM: “We have really fast people. And we just started this crew in September, so its still very new. Leading up to Houston Marathon, what I loved seeing....the super fasties are jumping into my workout to pace me. And during the Houston Marathon there is another half marathon in Austin, and there are people pacing those people, and their people out there cheering for them. The comradely is getting even better as we get to know each other more, and we are helping each other out.”

The Loop is the hub for Go The Spoils - Photo by Junior Hernandez

The Loop is the hub for Go The Spoils - Photo by Junior Hernandez

DARCY: “What do you think sets Austin running apart from other cities?”

PAM: “The downtown trail around Ladybird Lake, its like being in the center of a trampoline, and everything just rolls to the center. And people live there, they run their, they jog there. Its just such a powerful force to have that trail in Austin. We start our runs at 5:30, and its this weird culture, we are just creatures of the night. We are running in downtown Austin, in the middle of a trail, without headlamps, and we have the trail completely memorized, and there’s no lights on the trail, and it’s pitch black, and we all do it. It’s just this group if people who wake up and live for it.”

DARCY: “we put the course together when I was in Austin, and we incorporated the streets to have a TTB vibe, but we also added trails, because its part of Austin culture.  How do you think you will fair on the streets vs. the trails?”

PAM: “we will definitely excel at the trail portion. And the added element of it being SXSW is gonna be a little tricky. But we will excel at the trails, and running in the streets will be a little risky, but a lot of fun!”

DARCY: “Is there anything we are missing that we should be adding in to make it feel more Austin?”
RYAN: “Making sure we’re like super inclusive in getting the word out to all the groups, like Rouge, Trail Routes, Gazelles , the Austin Runner’s Club, and Raw, and all those groups. I think we just want it to have that brand exposure. I think that will be the most important aspect.”

MATT: “who are your number one pics for male / females, that we need to get to that starting line?”

RYAN: “for the guys, I would say David Fuentes and from our team Ryan Normand”

PAM: “for the girls, Id say Rachel Baptista and Cate Barrett.”

DARCY: “I see this as being one of our fastest women’s field!”

Go The Spoils - Photo by Junior Hernandez

Go The Spoils - Photo by Junior Hernandez

MATT: “What are you really excited about as far as new things coming to the community?”

RYAN: “the Take The Bridge race will be a great way to elevate the culture in Austin, which is what we’ve been wanting to do the whole time we started The Loop to begin with.”

MATT: “Assuming The Loop is the start, what is the dream race you would like to host?”

RYAN: “I’ve always wanted to do a competitive mile.  The marathon, though its a great distance, it’s kind of over done right now. The mile is a distance that everyone in America can relate to.”



RYAN: The trail loop

PAM: The trail loop


PAM: The pedestrian bridge outside the store

RYAN: MoPack


PAM: Morning

RYAN: Morning (with a 3-4 hr nap after)


PAM: TACOS, breakfast tacos