This is a story about how my fitness journey, running journey, atheleisure journey and collection of kicks began. It’s also a story of how brands (Nike, Adidas) interact with fans, fitness trainers and the genius in their marketing. Finally, it’s a story of thankfulness and learning to be open to opportunities and not put myself in a box. Even if that box is pretty dang comfortable!
Let’s start at the beginning.
Grade school, yes, I was the girl with the feet two sizes too big all through school. I was constantly looking for “cool shoes” that made my feet look smaller, or at least fit the female frame. It was hard to do, luckily, I had pretty high confidence for a grade schooler.
I remember back then, Adidas Superstar sneakers were becoming very popular. Lucky for me they came in unisex sizing, finally, shoes that I could wear that passed for “cool.” I proceeded to get a pair of the white kicks with silver stripes. I remember first ordering them from Foot Locker, waiting for them to come was painstaking. When they finally arrived I was ecstatic!
I was finally, in! I couldn’t stop at just one pair either. I had to get them in every color. The red stripes, the blue stripes, green stripes and black stripes. It had to be the three stripes.
For running, I could only find my size in New Balance and then soon, around 6th grade I discovered that Nike made special, larger sizes, for women! And their shoes came in fun colors and prints for women.
I don’t know when the transition began, I think it officially occurred in high school when I discovered that Nike made women’s basketball shoes in size 11.5. They became my go-to brand. They got fitness, they got sport, and they got the need for female specific shoes in ALL sizes.
My long time goal has been to work for Nike. I’ve had amazing opportunities to work with them as an ambassador and influencer and have loved every moment. They increase my desire to make a difference in other girls lives, like Nike did for me growing up. They are the world leader in sport and innovation and I have been in awe of their rise and continued innovation for years. As a personal trainer, group fitness instructor and business graduate, I feel like my passion and training all meet in the perfect arena to be great working for a major sports apparel company.
So how does this lead to Adidas?
A message from Adidas Running
Last month, I received a well written tweet from Adidas Running by direct message. They had noticed my passion for sport and female fitness. And while, granted, they want to turn me away from Nike to strictly becoming an Adidas girl, I feel like both brands have played a crucial role in my life at many different times.
Adidas offered to send me awesome running gear and welcomed me with open arms (or open feet perhaps?). I’m not sure exactly what they saw in me, but I am so glad they saw something. I have been working to promote fitness and running in my own time because it is my passion. I don’t always get paid to train others, I do it because I love it and I believe that everyone deserves to know how much sweat can change their lives. It truly is an empowering thing. New gear is nice, but it is honestly the meaning behind the new gear that gave me chills. To have a brand like Adidas reach out to me and recognize that passion, it’s humbling, inspiring and makes me want to prove that I am deserving of their faith in me.
I’m not an elite athlete. I am just a girl with a passion for fitness. I’m faster than the average runner, but I won’t be winning any marathons soon, let alone qualifying for Boston, though that is my new (secret) goal. I guess it’s not so secret anymore! It scares me, but if a goal is big enough it should scare you, right? That’s where the magic happens.
New Opportunities and a New Perspective
This year I have been working on being open to new opportunities, open to working with multiple brands. I want to expand my reach and focus to the people that can be inspired. Fitness has been my passion and is how I found my confidence at a young age. When you have power over your body, you feel in control of something, even if other things in your life spiral out of control.
One of my inspirations since 2012 has been Robin Arzon. She was working for an agency for the Nike Women’s Marathon when I was a race ambassador in 2012. From that gig she created a brand that was her alone. She became an ambassador of sweat. In fact, this last year she has blown up in the health and fitness world and Adidas now sponsors her! You may have seen her on a billboard, around the world. Pretty freakin’ awesome.
What’s so awesome about her story? It’s that she created the life she wanted to live. A life lived in sweat and brands, people, friends, took notice. It catapulted her into her dreams. She lives to inspire others her own way and it radiates around her. That’s true passion. It’s living for your beliefs and being open to opportunities that present themselves.
I tend to put myself in a box sometimes, it’s safe, it’s comfortable. But what could I really do if I just let go of fear, of failure, of holding onto what I’ve built up in my head to be the ultimate?
I’m ready to find out. 2016 – let’s do this! I am #HereToCreate