When the largest running club in San Diego gathered for its weekly training session, members welcomed home some Boston Marathon participants and held a moment of silence for those killed and injured in Monday’s bombings.
Hundreds of runners filled Balboa Stadium showing strength and vowing to run the marathon next year.
“We're not going to let these terrorists win,” San Diego Track Club Head Coach Paul Greer could be heard saying over the public address system.
Runners held hands as they remembered those who were victims of the dual explosions near the finish line.
Faces that would normally be dripping in sweat at this time instead looked somber.
“There's only one other time I've taken time from practice to acknowledge some tragic event and that was Sept. 11,” Greer told NBC 7 San Diego.
The San Diego Track Club head coach knew he couldn't cancel the practice.
One member finished the marathon Monday, landed at Lindbergh Field the following morning and came to run Tuesday night.
“It was a real relief to get back,” said runner Hugh Molesworth.
He finished around 3:45 and ended the race before the explosions. He heard the blasts and called the attack on the event pointless.
“I came here for the solace and company of the track club,” Molesworth said. “San Diego Track Club is a nice place to be right now.”
And that’s how runners process feelings according to members Lisa Ryan and Candy Fink. They put on their running shoes and simply run.
Fink said she was tracking 30 people throughout the day. “Then to have an event like that disrupt everything, it really turned the day upside down,” Fink said.
“For all the runners who couldn’t finish and who had worked so hard to get there,” said Ryan who ran the marathon last year. “It must have been so hard for them.”
Since it happened, Fink said she has seen an increasing number of people say they want to be the first to sign up for Boston next year.
“As a running community, we’ll come together and deal with it,” she said.
It's the sense of community that's inspiring a nation right now.
Runners who've already qualified for Boston 2014 say they're not backing down.
Chambra Clifford, who ran in the 2012 marathon, said this year’s tragedy won’t stop her from traveling to compete in the marathon again.
“I'm still going to go next year and show my support because you can't live in fear,” Clifford said.