New Oldfather Group Realtor Realtor Nick Cruz likes to compare buying a home to running a marathon, with a huge dose of patience and a certain amount of due diligence required to find just the right property, or run the best race.
And as one of only a handful of “ultra running” real estate agents in the mid-Atlantic, he certainly knows what he’s talking about.
A very goal oriented individual, Cruz always keeps his eyes on the ultimate outcome. Whether it’s running marathons or finding ideal homes for his clients, it’s the hard work and the commitment to excellence that drives him on a daily basis.
“I love to feel exhausted at the end of the day because it really makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something. And when you combine that with successful achievements, it becomes an even more gratifying experience,” Cruz says. “I love working harder than everyone else, that’s just fun for me.”
A native of Orange County, New York, Cruz today lives in Milford, having moved to southern Delaware in May. He worked as a college running coach after graduating from Stony Brook University with a degree in psychology.
Of Puerto Rican heritage, he began running in high school as a way to stay in shape for soccer season. That later morphed into running for his high school’s track and cross country teams, which soon became such an obsession that running just a few miles was no longer enough of a challenge.
“Running just became a passion of mine and it became more and more ingrained into my daily life,” Cruz recalls. “It’s to the point now where it’s as important to me as eating a meal or sleeping at night.”
The former Washingtonville High School Wizard tried his first ultra marathon as a 16-year-old junior, a decision that ultimately changed him forever and became a driving force in his life.
That commitment continues to this day, but running 30 miles one morning as a teenager was a mere precursor for things to come.
Though he has yet to run a 100 mile race or participate in an Ironman Triathlon, two goals he’s set for the future, he’s continued setting the bar higher and higher for himself in recent months.
Summoning the spirt of the great Yiannis Kouros, Cruz’s running hero affectionally nicknamed the “Running God” of Greece, Cruz signed up and ultimately won a special running event in May of 2019, in Augusta, New Jersey.
For non-runners, the type of event Cruz ran on May 18 boggles the mind. But for the 23-year-old from New York State, it was simply another challenge to overcome, a chance to push his body to new levels and come out victorious at the end of the day.
The rules of the event were simple – line up on the starting line and run as hard as you can for 12 hours. Whoever runs the longest distance over the course of the half-day event is the winner.
Cruz ran a remarkable 64 miles that day, stopping only to grab the occasional granola bar, bottle of water or peanut butter and jelly sandwich and to use the restroom, before returning to the course and continuing on his way.
His reward for logging more than five dozen miles in just 12 hours – a mere trophy to display in his home.
“Honestly, I didn’t really care about the trophy. It was just the achievement of doing it and the personal challenge of it,” Cruz says with a chuckle. “I was in a constant flow that day and it actually went by pretty quick. I loved it!”
Now a resident of southern Delaware and a local Realtor, Cruz ran the Rehoboth Beach Marathon on “Delaware Day” in early December. Logging less than half the miles he did in May, Cruz finished first in his age group at the annual event, logging a time of 2 hours, 40 minutes and 53 seconds.
A bit of a running perfectionist, he was anything but satisfied with his performance in Rehoboth Beach, saying he “ran a lot slower than I wanted to.”
Cruz now spends a good deal of his days in a shirt and tie, working to find clients their own piece of the “American Dream” at the Delaware beaches. But his running shoes will certainly not be getting a break any time soon.
He goes through a pair every couple of months and will continue to do so, while also working full-time as a Realtor in Delaware’s coastal region.
“I went into the real estate business because, just like in running, you get out of it what you put into it,” Cruz admits. “Nobody can put in the miles for you in running, just like nobody can put in the work for you in real estate.
“You have to get out there and make things happen for you. The more you do that, the better you’re going to do in this business and the better your team is going to do as well.”
Nick Cruz obtained his real estate license last fall and is focusing on residential real estate sales at the Delaware beaches.
“Nick is a bright light and rising star in real estate. His warmth, passion and commitment are evident in all that he does,” says Dustin Oldfather, founder and chief executive of the Oldfather Group. “We are delighted for him to be a part of our team and to grow his business with us.”
Cruz’s running career will continue, with many more goals to reach in the years ahead.
Nick Cruz can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by cell phone at 845-857-8659.