Monday, October 15, 2012

Nike Women's Marathon Race Weekend

This weekend's events began on Thursday with my flight to San Francisco. After a 3 hour delay I finally arrived in San Fran to discover that my luggage had been misplaced. Since I was late for my photo shoot I signed up for luggage delivery to my hotel and off I went to the Sir Frances Drake hotel near Union Square. 

Waiting for the plane in SF. 

Luckily for me the Nike Women team had me covered as far as clothes go. I can't think of a better time to lose my luggage then when Nike is giving me clothes. After a quick change in my room and styling by Robin from Team Epiphany, I was off to a rainy photo shoot in historic San Francisco! 

New gear from Nike! 

After a few scenic pictures around local historic spots, Nike chose this fierce pic of all us ladies in the streets of San Francisco. This is a great shot of the city in the background. We were all so cold by this time since the rain kept sprinkling down on us, we were ready for a warm dinner that evening.

Fierce photo on the streets of SF!

Following our dinner out with the other four Nike Women Ambassadors, Lydia (our Nike Women rep)  and Robin from Team Epiphany, we came back to our rooms and discovered that we had all been given the limited edition Nike Tiffany's shoes! 

Limited Edition Nike Tiffany's Shoes

Friday morning we had a stretching session with Nike Master Trainer Marie Purvis at the pier. It was a gorgeous morning and we had a great photo shoot around the city with Nike Women and the Nike+ FuelBand team. I learned some great new stretches from Marie that I am going to use from now on. 

Stretching at the pier.

After our stretching session it was time to check out the Expo in Union Square. We picked up our racing bibs and goodie bags and I found out I was a VIP for the weekend! That meant an invite to the exclusive Nike Ice Lounge event on Friday and access to the VIP tent pre and post race on Sunday. After packed pick-up I headed over to Nike Town SF and found my name on the wall as a racer in NWM 26.2! Fun to see my name up!

My name is on the wall at Nike Town SF!

Our group also had fun finding our tweets and Instagram photos in in the live Nike+ Fuel Stream. Each photo tagged with #runnwm had a chance to be featured. You can see mine in the middle of this picture. Very fun to see my name up in lights! We were also followed around by the Nike Fuel team from Nike and interviewed about how we use the Nike+ FuelBand to track our daily activity and compete with our friends. 

Photos from Instagram tagged with #runnwm

We went to the Expo quite a few times throughout the weekend and there was always something new and exciting there. I got to see Olympian Allyson Felix, Kara Goucher and Joan Benoit Samuelson! It is so inspiring to see such great athletes here enjoying the event and inspiring us to push ourselves on race day! 

Elizabeth, Tiara and I at the Expo!

We did another photo shoot in SF and had a lot of fun working with the photographer and practicing our fierce faces. Some of us never quite got it. The buildings in San Francisco are gorgeous and the hills are so steep. Building must have been a challenge!

More photos for Facebook!

Friday evening we attended the Nike VIP Ice Lounge event at Nike Town. It was a fun event where Nike had Ice Sculptures and Nike Shield Trainers encased in Ice. It all ended with a special unveiling of the Tiffany's finisher necklace by Joan Benoit Samuelson! Dressing up in cocktail attire and shopping in Nike Town being treated as a VIP with food, drinks and waiters in Nike Cold Weather gear was a great experience.
Fun at the Ice Lounge!

On Saturday morning we had a shake-out run with Marie Purvis. I had a blast running with her and she gave us great race day advice. She is so down to earth and cares about how we do on the race. It was great being able to work with her over more than just Twitter and email. She is so knowledgable and motivating!

Shake-Out Run with Marie Purvis!

After another photo shoot of stretching at the bay with the Nike Fuel team we were off to enjoy the rest of the afternoon pre race. These ladies have been amazing to work with and were great company before the race and incredible motivators.

Bring it on NWM!

 Stretching and loosening our muscles for the race tomorrow!

Saturday afternoon I toured some of San Francisco with my parents who came to cheer me on during the race. We checked out the wharf and the Golden Gate bridge. It was fun to get out and take in some of the sights.

Enjoying the bay with my parents!

Sunday morning race day arrived all too soon. After a quick pre-race Fuel Check and picture with the ladies we were off and running! Tiara and I ran the full 26.2 and Elizabeth, Nerissa and Renisha ran the half.


The lovely Nike Women Ambassadors before the race! We all set out to crush San Fran and I am so proud of everyone who completed the race! I was able to finish in 4:29 and set a new PR. It was a weekend to be proud of and I made new friends and am ready to set and crush new goals. 

Best group shot of the weekend. Heading to the start line.

We all finished the race with great times and celebrated in the finishers village! I can't wait to come back again and improve my time! Way to go ladies! Best race I have done by far. Great atmosphere and great people made for an unforgettable experience. I will be back SF!

Tiara, Elizabeth and I at the finish!

A prize well worth those 26.2 miles!