Thanks to our line of work, Dimity and I have been fortunate to meet so many great women--Joan Benoit Samuelson, Kara Goucher, Deena Kastor, Kathrine Switzer, and Katie Couric. (Oh, wait, sorry, that last one was only in our dreams. Come on, "Katie,"have us on as guests!!) And last week I had the delight of running with Christy Turlington Burns, the supermodel-cum-super-mother-runner who founded a non-profit organization called Every Mother Counts, which is focused on reducing maternal mortality globally. Christy and I had connected via Twitter, then Dimity and I recorded a podcast with her (airing tomorrow on Pagatim.fm and Stitcher; available on iTunes on Friday), so the next logical step was going on a run with her, right? I thought so, too. So while I was in Connecticut for family stuff, I hopped a commuter train in my best mother runner attire and headed into NYC to meet Christy.
I'll admit: Walking from the subway I was suddenly seized with panic and thoughts of, "what am I doing?!" Here I was, about to sweat with a woman who had graced 1,000+ covers of fashion magazines. I was going to be trotting alongside a woman whose face had been the inspiration for the mannequinsin the Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Yet as soon as we spied each other through the front door of her two children's school, I felt at ease. Stray wisps of chestnut hair had worked their way out of her ponytail, and her 42-year-old face was devoid of any make-up. Christy was undeniably beautiful, but she was just another mother runner like the rest of us.
As we ambled a few blocks to the West Side Highway Bike Path, we quickly fell into a discussion of Garmin versus Nikeplus. Then the conversation turned to how our respective marathon training was going--Christy is doing her second consecutive ING NYC Marathon (she finished last year in 4:20, which included doing a quick interview at Mile 18. No lie.). Sure, we didn't trade neighborhood gossip or gripes about our husbands like my pal Molly and I do, but the conversation flowed fairly naturally.
The anecdote I must share before I get to the giveaway (I promise, it's coming!) involves Sting. As in, the lead singer of The Police. Christy and I were running north; the path was damp and there were few other people on it. A nondescript cyclist, who barely registered on my radar, passed us heading south. Christy exclaimed, "That was Sting! How cool is that?" I could only laugh: Here was a celebrity in her own right, getting all sorts of excited about seeing a celeb--who I hadn't even noticed. As I lamented not really seeing him, Christy assured me, "I'm sure he'll pass us on the way back," to which I replied, "Great--be sure to point him out ahead of time." And on we ran, talking energy gels, kids' soccer games, and marathons we contemplate running (her: Big Sur; me: Paris).
Sure enough, when we were about 4.5 miles into our 6 miles, a bundled-up biker zipped by us. Once again, I paid the fellow no mind, and once again, after he had ridden by us, Christy informed me, "That was Sting again." Do'ah! Here was a woman who had Bono at.her.wedding and she'd gotten the thrill of seeing Sting not once, but twice--then there was me, a chick who has some U2 songs on her iPod, getting to see the back of his fleeting head. Oh, well.
Now for the giveaway: Every Mother Counts (EMC) has partnered with the niftiest of boutique women's running brands, Oiselle, to make a clothing collection promoting the organization. Forty percent of the proceeds from the EMC Collection goes to EMC to support maternal health. (In addition, Sally Bergesen, the CEO of Oiselle, will be running with Team EMC in the NYCMarathon to raise funds for maternal health. No word on whether Sally will spy Sting along the route or not....) Oiselle has generously offered an EMC Hoodie for two lucky winners. I don't know about you, but I think this 50% poly/50% cotton, French Fleece hoodie looks like the perfect thing to slip on after running the Paris Marathon--or any other race (or run) you might be planning.
To enter for a chance to win, share with us: What famous person would you like to run with?To leave your comment, click on the orange “Post Comment” ribbon below this post on our website. (Read: Don’t just hit “reply” if you get this post via email.) Good luck (and to end this post, please join me in a chorus of, "Every Breath You Take").
[Some fine print for this fine prize.] This sweepstakes is open to those over 18 and residents of the United States. It begins on 10/3/12 and ends on 10/9/12; the winner will be announced on 10/13/12. One entry per person. The value of each prize is $78. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Void where prohibited by law.