Fun Running at the Mall

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Remember when Carrie Bradshaw said she doesn’t want to shop online because shopping is her cardio?

You’re probably looking at the picture below and thinking, Look at all these women (and man) in their sporty outfits, taking Carrie’s words way too seriously. You’d be wrong, though, because they didn’t come to the mall to shop: they came to the mall to run!

Yesterday, the 408K Race to the Row had its first (and, hopefully, not last) group training run. We met at the Athleta store at Westfield Valley Fair (known in my house as “the Good Mall”) at 5:30 p.m. — that’s when I showed up, anyway, and the party had already started: Now, unlike Carrie Bradshaw, cardio is my cardio, so I hadn’t set foot in a mall for at least two months. And this was my first time ever walking in an Athleta store. Oh hey, their stuff is really cute! Also, purple and lime green seem to be the hot colors of the season? My phone took this picture by itself, I swear. It must be trying to tell me that my running wardrobe is horribly outdated.

In agreement, I quickly dropped my name in the raffle bowl, hoping to win a free head-to-toe outfit and lifetime free entry to the race… [SPOILER: I didn’t.]

The race organizers introduced themselves (from left: swimsuit mannequin, Alisa, Scott in the white trucker hat and JT):(I am, indeed, familiar with the crop function, but I really like this purple swimsuit. If it’s going to make my butt look like this, I’m totally getting it yesterday.)

Back to the run, though. The store was packed with runners. I didn’t do a headcount, but possibly 40 people showed up? Group picture done, and we headed out to run. We did three miles out and back, covering about 1.5 miles of the actual race course. Obviously, we couldn’t close the roads to traffic, so we had to cross carefully and stick to the sidewalks.As I was running at a comfortable 9:30 min/ mile pace, I hand-painted an impressionist painting of JT high-fiving everyone:Seriously, you need to step at least five feet away from your screen if you want to view this one properly. (Canvas prints available upon request; you’re welcome.)

Less than thirty minutes later, we were back at the store (I did get lost in the mall trying to find it, what is wrong with me?) AND:

An Athleta headband for everyone! I was so excited when I saw it, for some reason I’d been thinking when they said “free headbands for all” they meant that sort of thing:

…which also would’ve been cool, seeing how it’s purple – the hot color of the season, as we established earlier. But yes: this Athleta headband is way prettier, has a silicone lining on the inside so it doesn’t slip off your head, and it costs only $10. I need to get more of those, pronto.

And who was the lucky winner of the free outfit and lifetime race entries? Selected by a blind drawing supervised by representatives from Ernst & Young…

Meet Melissa Shafer, a mom of three (go mother runners!) whose first-ever race was last year’s 408K Race to the Row. How cool is that? I chatted with Melissa a little before we even knew she’d be the lucky person of the evening. Melissa loves argyle Pro Compression socks (has two pairs) and running skirts. I love her already!

Many thanks to the 408Krew for organizing the run and to Athleta for hosting! It was a blast!

Yesterday’s run:

Today:
Ran to the gymThen swam a little. It was weird running with my swim stuff in a plastic bag, but not too bad. I did this workout, minus the counting of the strokes (tried but kept losing count). I’m not at all sure if I did it right, either. Tacked on some laps in the end to bring it up to an even 80.

9 thoughts on “Fun Running at the Mall

  • February 22, 2013 at 5:02 am
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    Looks like it was SO much fun. Yet one more good thing that doesn’t happen in NYC…I’m seriously growing mega jel of your west-coast lifestyle. Am going to self-soothe with a little Athleta shopping, methinks. The Gap (parent company of Athleta) thanks you. :)

    Reply
    • February 25, 2013 at 7:45 am
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      You should check out the group runs at Niketown – they used to have them twice a week (and on Saturdays), probably still do. And Lululemon most likely have group runs too (but that would be really risky, at least for me… I’d bankrupt myself in that store…)

      Reply
  • February 21, 2013 at 10:40 pm
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    That looks so much fun….and Athleta stuff is beautiful but waaaay beyond my budget!!! Lucky Melissa!

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    • February 25, 2013 at 7:45 am
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      Oh yeah… I looked at a few price tags. When I win the lottery, though, I’m definitely going back!

      Reply
  • February 21, 2013 at 12:40 pm
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    Aw, wish I could have gone to it! It sounds like it was a lot of fun. Especially meeting other runners before the race itself! Very cool. And now I am eyeballing that swimsuit. . . hmm. The Athleta store inside Valley Fair? I have never actually seen the store itself. I usually stick to the upper level…

    Reply
    • February 21, 2013 at 12:54 pm
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      I think the store is new – at least on the maps throughout the mall, you could tell they added it recently, the name was written on a piece of duct tape or something like that and stuck on top of whichever name/ retailer was in its place before :)) It was on the lower level, yeah…

      Reply
  • February 21, 2013 at 12:03 pm
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    Aww! That run was so much fun! And it was great to meet you, too. Anyone that rocks the pink argyle ProCompression socks has to be cool. ;-) I need to branch out an pick up some solid colors… maybe the purple ones because I *need* that Dodgeball headband.

    That was the first time walking into an Athleta store too… Have only shopped their catalogs before. Can’t wait to go back and shop! (Still am in shock)

    Will see you at the race, too.

    Reply
    • February 21, 2013 at 12:45 pm
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      It was great meeting you too! If you live in the area, check out the SJ chapter of MRTT (Moms Run This Town; can find us on Facebook). It’s a free group, we meet to run together often, it’s super fun!

      Reply
      • February 21, 2013 at 1:07 pm
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        Yay! I just checked it out. It would be fun to do more group runs in the area.

        Reply

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