Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter and of Course a Running Update!

First of all I want to wish you all a very Happy Easter. I hope you were able to spend time with your family, friends and loved ones. I spent the day making a delicious pancake breakfast, watching the Miami Open Men's Tennis final, playing tennis with my hubby, watching a movie and doing a little of Serena Williams New Nike Training Club Workout. It was a great, relaxing day before starting the new week.

Tomorrow I start my first full week working remotely from home. I am also going to join a new gym in the area and start my first triathlon training program. It is also the first day of April, which brings with it the Serena Williams NTC workout challenge. Care to join? All you have to do is download the Nike Training Club app and then do Serena's Core Power workout each day for the entire month of April. I'm excited to start this challenge since her fifteen minute workout focuses on abs! Let me know if you join and we can motivate each other.

In the running part of my life, the countdown to the Nike Women's Marathon in DC has begun. It's just 28 days away until I do this amazing race. I can hardly wait to run it with one of my Sister's in Nike, Brandy. I also am running it virtually with Sheena from Australia. I love you ladies, so glad I get to experience this race with you both. The best part of racing is training and running with friends and DC is going to be an amazing race to participate in. Bring it on April!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

I've Finally Moved!

 This past week I finally made the move to my new home. While I'm not completely sure of the area, I am ready to explore new places and find new running routes. I spent a few days getting used to the area and getting unpacked before I headed back to Roseville to film my Nuun Hydration Hood to Coast video entry. It was a lot of fun, and after a bit of editing, it will be ready to submit. I can't wait to see the final product. It's going to be amazing! I can't get over what a great opportunity this is and with some help from my amazing friends with filming, the video is coming together really well. I'll post a link to the video here so you can all see when it is done. And when you watch it, let Nuun know how much you want me to be on their team!

A few of the props from my video!

While my running training took a bit of a hit this week with moving, filming and so much time spent on the road, I may have needed the short break. It's good sometimes to give tired legs a rest. Yesterday with all the shots being filmed of me running I probably ran quite a few miles, too bad I didn't have my GPS going! 

I'm exploring San Ramon today and I spotted a great trail when I was driving in. There were a lot of running groups on the trail as well. I'm excited to give it a try! Hopefully, I'll get in a few miles today and breathe in some clean bay area air!

Monday, March 25, 2013

The Four Why's

This is my post of why's. Why Twitter is the bomb, why I love Athleta, why I love Nike and why you should come get Pretty Muddy with me!

Some people are scared of social media. Some people don't see the value in it. Why do you want everyone knowing what you are doing all the time I am often asked. It's not about what I'm doing, Twitter is about communication, about branding, about reaching out to others with similar interests and learning from them. It's about building relationships and using it for good. Are there spammers? Sure. Can it be dangerous? Absolutely. But anything can become dangerous, the important thing is to be careful of what you share, but still be open and honest with your followers. I'm not going to give out my personal address for everyone to see via a tweet, but I will communicate with others about my likes, dislikes, success and failures. It is a quick and honest form of communication and I have been able to build and cultivate numerous relationships by using this medium.

From my interactions on Twitter I have been able to meet new friends, partner with brands, promote my blog, learn new running and training ideas and win prizes. Twitter has been a place where I can go for encouragement on a bad day, or that extra push when I need to get out the door to go for a run. It's great fun and if you don't already have an online presence, I would suggest giving Twitter a test drive and then let me know what you think!

As for my love of Athleta, last night was my sponsored athlete party. I love representing the Roseville store and have really enjoyed all the relationships I have formed with the staff, Run Club girls and new friends I have met along the way. I really enjoyed the support last night, and had a blast shopping, eating and trying on some great athletic wear with my friends and supporters! Thank you to everyone who came out to enjoy the event with me. I'm looking forward to seeing you all again soon!

Nike, what can I say, I love running in your kicks! The new Flyknit sneakers I tried are amazing and super lightweight, they really helped me fly during the Shamrock'n Half Marathon! I can't wait to design my own pair of Free's on NIKEiD and represent in my next race! The pop of color on all my shoes really adds spring in my step.

As for my upcoming race with the Pretty Muddy Women's Mud Run, I am super excited to join together with women around the area and get a little dirty! This will be my first mud race and I can't wait to do it. Join me and my team "Sweat Pink" at 9am on June 29, 2013 in Granite Park. I'd love to see you there, it will be a fun time with friends, mud, obstacles and a rockin' race finish!


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Hood to Coast On My Mind

This is what awaited finishers of the Hood to Coast relay at the finish in Seaside in 2011. This is one of the reasons I want to take part in this race. At what other event can you bond with your team over a 24 hour race and each be running towards a common goal? Where else can you start in the snow and end on the beach? 

I was born on the Oregon Coast in a little town called Coos Bay. It just happens to be the very same town that the legendary track athlete, Steve Prefontaine grew up. Steve was one of the first athletes to be sponsored by Nike and he is a legend because of his incredible running skills on the track and his refusal to give up in any race. His life was tragically cut short, but his memory lives on. 

In short, I was born in a running town, a town with a fighting spirit, a town on the Oregon coast, not far from Seaside. My family moved to Salem, OR when I was young, just an hour and a half south of Mt. Hood. The Hood to Coast relay is a race that has personal meaning for me because of it's location and it's ties to four of my favorite things: Oregon, Running, Nuun and Nike. Over the next few weeks I will be making my video to earn a chance to run Hood to Coast with Nuun Hydration. Wish me luck! 

Friday, March 22, 2013

Reason to Run

I love to run for many reasons. One of the main reasons is that running makes me feel alive. On a good run, I feel like I can conquer the world. Even on a bad run, I feel so in tune with my life and the feeling of being truly alive, that I forget about the pounding of my feet or my sore calves and just live in the moment. It's those moments of struggle that have really taught me the power of running. Running is more than just a sport, the benefits carry over in all parts of our lives. 

I have found that the most disciplined runners also excel in work and relationships. These runners have found a way to live life to it's fullest and to tough it out through the good and the bad times. Things in my life seem less stressful since I became a daily runner and started pushing my body's limits. There is something that just feels right about taking to the streets with only yourself to compete with day in and day out. 

 Me on a run in the park - sporting my Athleta gear! #PowerToTheShe

I love racing and already have a few races planned for the coming months. Racing in itself is not where I learned how to push my body to it's limits. I learned how to push through the pain on my long runs, by myself, with no one to answer to but the voice in my head. Running brings out the best of me. It has taught me discipline, how to pace myself, given me confidence in all areas of my life and pushed me to do things I never thought possible. I have made new friends both in town and around the world, had the chance to work with brands that I love and admire, have built a strong network of like-minded individuals that I trust and I have seen many new places.

Watching the Sunset on the Bay in San Francisco.

Running for me is a lifestyle and a mindset. It's not always easy to lace up my shoes, or run when it's rainy, wet and cold outside, but I still do it. I run not because of what I feel that I can give to running, but because of what I know running can give to me. What has running given to you?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Running, Nuun and Tennis, Nothing Better!

The year is almost a quarter of the way over and I have been having a blast so far. If you have been following my blog, you have been able to see some of the exciting things I have been up to and been able to follow my goals and aspirations. I thought I would give you a recap today of some of the things this year has brought to me already and some of my new endeavors. 

Athleta Roseville Store - Come Join Me For Run Club!

So far this year I have been pursuing my passions and it has come to fruition. I have been loving my stint as the Athleta sponsored athlete and leading run club for their store has brought me many new friends and taught me a lot about life and running. There is something about running that is just different and breeds amazing people, people who seem to see life a little bit differently. If you're ever in the Roseville, CA area stop in for run club, I'd love to meet you! 

Meeting Sam Querrey! 

Also, I have been able to become a Sweat Pink Ambassador, Nuun Hydration Ambassador and as of today am starting my second season working with the Sacramento Capitals World Team Tennis managing their social media. I love tennis, if you can't tell from my goofy grin in this picture with my hubby and Sam Querrey (ranked #20 in the world right now I might add) after a match last year. I also really enjoy social media and have a lot of great ideas I am looking forward to working on this season. The team I am working with this year seems so supportive and I am excited to see how great we can make this season. 

Serena Williams Behing the Scenes for Nike Training Club

I also have remained in contact with some of the amazing women from the Nike Women team in Beaverton, OR and have had the privilege of helping promote their new Serena Williams workout for the Nike Training Club app for iPhone and Android. If you haven't tried these workouts yet, you need to check them out. I have been trying to network and learn more every day about the sports industry and Nike and have met some amazing people this year via Twitter, if you would like to follow some great Nike people check out @nikedigitaljobs, @heidiburgett, @leahkimyoga, @mariepurvis, @britthayley, @robinnyc, @nikerunning, @nikefuel, and @nikewomen. There are many more, but start here and you'll learn a lot! I had the privilege of speaking with a Nike recruiter and some employees on the inside regarding their path and journey to Nike and it has given me an idea of what I need to do to make myself more marketable.

I get to run and volunteer for the race. I am excited about that!

Also this year, I get to go to Washington D.C. to run the Nike Women's Half Marathon. I was heartbroken when I didn't get in, especially since the race is on my birthday, but when more spots opened up, I was the first to sign up. I cannot wait to visit this city and run with 15,000 other women! No better way to celebrate my birthday than to crush a race! I have a 1:53 PR from my half marathon this past weekend, so I am hoping to beat that and set the bar a little higher for my training. I am also volunteering to help with packet pick-up on Friday morning. I am excited to be able to help and give back to a race that I am so excited about. This weekend will be amazing. 

Nuun Hydration Tabs - I'm Hoping to Run Hood to Coast With You! 

So that is my year so far. Pretty good for only being two and a half months in. So what about my upcoming goals? As of this moment I am hoping to get to run Hood to Coast this coming August. As you may know, I entered the lottery last year and was not chosen. Two days ago, Nuun Hydration, the amazing sports hydration tab company I love, announced a contest they have to give twenty women spots to run with them on the 30+ hour relay event. The catch, create a video showing why you are a fan of Nuun, why you want to the run the race and how much fun you would be to ride in a van for 30+ hours with. I pretty much fit into all these categories, so for the next few weeks I will be working on showing Nuun just how great of an addition to their team I will be. If you want to join me check out the Nuun Hydration Blog and enter your own video. Hopefully we can run together! I'll post a link to mine when it is finished and let Nuun know how much you would love me to be on their team. I would love to have all of your support! 

The next few weeks I will be focused on training, work and showing Nuun just how great of an ambassador for their brand I can be. Please, let me know if you have any suggestions for my video or just want to offer me your support or a shout out in the comments! I would love to hear from you all! Remember to follow your dreams and never give up. I have passionately pursued my dreams and goals no matter how many times I have been told no and good things keep happening. The world truly can be yours, just remember to work hard and always put your best foot forward. 

Happy Training! 


Monday, March 18, 2013

Tennis Season, Training and Exclusive Serena Williams Content!

With the tennis season in full swing, the Nike Women team could not have released the Serena Williams Core Power workout at a better time. With the first Grand Slam of the year already completed in Australia and the conclusion of the BNP Paripas Open in Indian Wells, CA this Sunday, now is the perfect time to promote Serena Williams new workout! With the Sony Ericsson Open beginning tomorrow, I'm going to be rooting for Serena. 

To prepare for her upcoming tournament and to get me in the spirit, I am going to be doing her 15 minute Core Power workout for the Nike Training Club app for iPhone and Android this week. One of my favorite drills is featured below, the Stability Ball Transfer. I encourage you to download the app and do her entire workout, but if you only have time to do this drill, do it for one minute and repeat 3-4 times. Your abs will thank you! 

When you finish doing this drill, let me know what you think? Also, my fellow Sister In Nike has started a 30 day challenge with the Serena Williams Core Power workout. To join, just let her know on her blog and check out her challenge post here. What do you have to do to join, just commit to doing the workout once a day for every day in April. You won't regret it! Let me know if you decide to join! 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

I PR'd at the Shamrock'n Half Marathon!

I am happy to report that today I ran my fastest half marathon at the Shamrock'n Half in Sacramento, CA! I have been training over the last few months and today was the day I got to put that training to the test. I woke up at 5:45 to prepare and drive to the race. I was in the first wave and shooting for a sub 2-hour finish. Fueled by Nuun Hydration, Clif Shot Bloks, and my race wardrobe courtesy of Athleta and my kicks a gift from Nike, I was ready to make this my winning race!

We got to the start line forty-five minutes early and I was freezing until the sun finally came out. My training partner and I were near the front of the corral and started promptly at 7:45. The race was through downtown Sacramento, crossed a few bridges and then hit the bike trail. I stuck with my training partner until about mile four and then ended up getting a bit ahead of her. When I looked at my Nike GPS watch and saw how fast I was going I knew if I could keep up the pace I would beat my goal.
Me at the start line of the race!

The race was relatively flat with some rolling hills. I felt really strong for the first 5-6 miles, I did slow down and try to find my training partner around mile six, but couldn't see her so I kept going. Around mile eight I started to question why I was doing this. I told myself to keep pushing. It helped that I saw a sign on the side that said "Keep going unless you puke, faint, or die." Talk about motivation! I kept pushing and actually sped up during those final five miles. My fastest mile was mile 13, which I ran at a pace of 8:17. The race ended on the field of the Sacramento River Cats Baseball team and it was really fun to round the bases to the finish chute! 

Mid race, around mile 8! 

I finished the race with a time of 1:53:45 and I waited at the finish for my training partner to come through. She crossed with a time of 2:04 and I am very proud of her! We picked up our race medals, which I absolutely love and headed up to meet our friends and take some pictures! 

At the finish with our medals! 

This race was an amazing experience and I enjoyed it so much. I had a lot of friends that ran this for their first half marathon and I am so proud of their accomplishments. I am sure this is only the first of many for them. My next half marathon is only six weeks away at the Nike Women's Marathon in Washington, DC. I am excited to see how well I do there. 

Proof that this was my fastest half marathon! 

I love the Nike App because it keeps track of my previous times and records so well. I loved seeing this after my big run today! It's such a great feeling to be able to track progress and see the positive progression over time in my running. 

I hope you all had a fun St. Patrick's Day and if you raced, congratulations! 

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Shamrock'n 13.1!

Tomorrow is my first Half-Marathon race of the year! I am running the Shamrock'n Half in Sacramento on Sunday and I am shooting for a sub two hour pace. Training the last few weeks has been hard with my recent move and the uncertainty in my life, but I have still stuck with running short 4-5 mile training runs. Yesterday I stopped by my local REI store and picked up some fuel for the race on Sunday. Along with my trusty tube of Nuun electrolyte drink, I purchased two packets of Pocket Fuel for the race. I have yet to try the Chocolate Haze, but am excited to give it a try! Yum!

I still have to pick out my official race outfit tonight from my new Athleta gear. Unfortunately, I don't have a special green St. Patrick's Day outfit, but I love my Athleta performance Relay Capri's so I know I will be wearing those during the race! I will also be sporting my blue Flyknit Nike Running shoes! It will be perfect weather, I can hardly wait! 

I'll keep you posted with a full race report after tomorrow! 

Friday, March 15, 2013

Serena Williams Core Power for NTC

The Nike Training Club (NTC) app for Android and iPhone offers an amazing full body workout from the comfort of your own home. The exciting thing about the NTC application is that it offers real workouts from certified trainers and professional athletes that have been tested in the gym and on the field. These workouts are taught live at 24 Hour fitness locations, studios and Nike stores and events around the country. I first started using the app a few years ago and have since worked out with it for over 14,000 minutes. Yes, it keeps track!

I have had the privilege of doing a live NTC class at the Nike Women's Marathon in 2011, last year at Nike World Headquarters in Beaverton, OR, and have used the app for 3-4 workouts every week. I love how it challenges and changes my body. With constant updates and new workouts from professional athletes and Nike elite trainers, the Nike Training Club app has it all!

I teamed up with Nike Women for the Serena Williams NTC "Core Power" workout launch and can't wait to share this workout with you all. I did it for the first time last night and my abs were feeling it today. It definitely worked my core and abdominal muscles.

The Serena Williams "Core Power" bonus workout is a fifteen minute, high intensity workout consisting of five exercises that you perform three times. The "Stability Ball Transfer" is one of my favorite drills on this new workout. Check out the photo below for a breakdown of this exercise performed by Serena Williams herself.

Keep your eyes on my blog, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest for more exclusive content and my thoughts on this great new workout! Until then, enjoy this motivational photo from Serena Williams and go download the Nike Training Club app now, or check it out at a 24 hour fitness location or Nike store near you! 

Happy Training!


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Run to Opportunity

Running has become more and more of a movement over the past few decades. I just became a runner in the last few years and it has utterly changed my life. Some people will never understand the power of running, but it has fully permeated my soul. The beauty of running is that it bridges cities, towns, countries and people all around the world. I have learned so much from following runners in cities both far and near.

This April I will take my first official running trip. I'm headed to DC to run the Nike Women's 1/2 Marathon. I am looking forward to meeting with other runners from around the area, across the US and from different countries and cultures all meeting together to run free. It will be fun to see how the movement is spreading and enjoy a scenic race.

I recently read a post from the founder of the Run Dem Crew and it was incredibly inspiring. You can read it here. It basically gives a shout out to the amazing potential that running has to push you to explore the new. New things, people, places and careers. The potential of running is endless.

I have found running to be something that has brought a world of opportunity to my door. I have been able to work with Nike as an ambassador for the Nike Women's Marathon, am a sponsored athlete for the Athleta Roseville store, and have met so many new running friends in the run club I lead at the Athleta store and via social media. I couldn't ask for a better year in 2012 and am looking forward to my upcoming races and running events in 2013. How has running changed your life?

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Spring Surprises

So many good things have been happening lately, I feel like I must be doing something right, so I am going to keep on working hard to reach my goals. Yesterday I went down to the Athleta store in the mall and when I walked in I was greeted by an amazing display, about me! I had no idea this would be here and my friend had to snap a picture to remember it by. I am Athleta Roseville's 2013 Sponsored Athlete and the gig comes with perks! I must admit I feel a little bit like a celebrity. It was fun to see and I love how amazing all the girls at Athleta are. If you haven't stopped by the store in a while, be sure to check it out. I also picked up some great new gear for spring racing and am excited to try it out. I'll be sure to post pictures when I have some. 

This weekend also marked the second annual Nike Women's Virtual 10K race. I participated in this race last year when it was the half marathon distance and had a lot of fun. The exciting thing about this race is the fact that you can run with friends virtually and can run it whenever you are able to on March 9th and 10th. You just have to sync your run to the Nike Plus site to see your race results. I really enjoy this race because of the fact that I can run with friends from all over the world. I had friends in Australia, Canada and around the United States running this race so it was fun to run virtually with them. 

The virtual 10K that I ran was in Sacramento, CA. I actually met up with a group from Team in Training that had made this virtual race into more of an event. They had laid out the course on local trails, we met at the beginning and their were snacks at the finish. This made the race really fun and I met some great new friends at the race. I am even thinking I might join them to raise funds for the Nike Women's Marathon in San Francisco this fall. 

One awesome thing about the race was the great dry-fit tee I received for running it. I love the fabric and it was fun to see others out on the course and be able to cheer them one because we were all wearing the same shirt. I started out the race with the intent of running with two girls, but they began fading after the first few miles and so I picked up the pace and finished quickly. I was excited to see that I had done the final four miles all at negative splits! My speed is improving and I can't wait to see how it improves over the next few months. Those track workouts I have been doing are sure helping! 

How was your weekend? Did you participate in any races?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Nuun Just Made My Day!

Today I received an email from Nuun Hydration letting me know that I was selected to be a Nuun Hydration Ambassador. I am so excited to share my love of this hydration product and race to represent them. Not only do they have a great product, but they have an amazing team and support incredible events, such as the Nike Women's Marathon Race series and the Boston Marathon. They offer a great product and are constantly innovating and coming up with new flavors to keep my taste buds happy!

I can't wait to see what this year holds. I look forward to spreading my Nuun love this year at all my races, with my first race coming up in two weeks, this is perfect timing! Look for pictures of me racing to represent Nuun on the blog soon! 

With my first half marathon of the year only two weeks away, proper nutrition and hydration are key right now. I am excited to represent Nuun and look forward to sharing my experience here. Stay tuned!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Come Get Muddy with Me!

Come get a little muddy with me at the Sacramento Pretty Muddy Women's Mud Run! I am all about running, getting dirty, and having fun with a team of great girls! The Pretty Muddy Women's Mud Run is coming to Sacramento's Granite Park on June 29, 2013 and I will be there! I was lucky enough to be chosen as a Pretty Muddy Run ambassador and I want you to meet me at this race. What are some of the perks you may ask?

Perks of the Race: 
  • 5k Course
  • Women only (sorry boys)
  • Lots of Mud
  • Fun Obstacles
  • Epic Finish Line Party
Why wouldn't you want to do this race? Sacramento is gorgeous this time of year and it's the perfect way to welcome summer days. Join my team with my other Sweat Pink sisters online and register here. Just register under the team name "Sweat Pink" with the 9am start time and we can get a little muddy together. Hope I see you there!