SoleMate Spotlight: Nicole Newlin

Today we are shining a spotlight on Nicole Newlin! Nicole is a GOTR Coach and will be running the 2017 NYC Half Marathon as a SoleMate to support Girls on the Run NYC!

Why did you decide to become a SoleMate and fundraise to support Girls on the Run NYC?
As a Girls on the Run coach and supporter I wanted to do something more for the whole organization AND as a former middle school teacher I have a special place in my heart for girls this age.

Why did you decide to sign up to run the NYC Half Marathon?
Honestly, I was afraid to run the full! I love the NYC Half and have run it a few times on my own. Running for this cause made perfect sense to me!

What does the Girls on the Run mission mean to you?
I wish I had known about Girls on the Run when I taught many years ago. Often the girls I encountered in my classroom struggled with many of the challenges that girls face today. I mentored many of these girls after school or during their lunch time helping them sort out their feelings. Girls on the Run reaches so many more girls than I could have back then or even today. It's the most important mission us "older" girls should be supporting.

Tell us a little bit about your running history!
I've been running since college but once I moved to NYC 15 years ago and did my first long loop around Central Park - that was it! Since then I've done several half marathons around the US and run four or five times a week. It's a huge release for me as my career in financial services is stressful.

Favorite post-run snack?
Peanut butter with raisins wrap. Delicious.

Favorite place to run in NYC?
Outer loop in Central Park... Bring on the Harlem Hill!

Favorite time of day to run?
Morning

Any other fun facts you want to share?
I was a Latin teacher!

Thanks, Nicole! If you'd like to support Nicole in her fundraising efforts, you can visit her fundraising page here.

SoleMate Spotlight: Bernadette Rivosecchi

Today we are shining a spotlight on Bernadette Rivosecchi, a Girls on the Run NYC Coach and a 2017 NYC Half Marathon SoleMate!

Why did you decide to become a SoleMate and fundraise to support Girls on the Run NYC?
Last fall, I was a coach for Girls on the Run at a school on the Upper West Side. Girls on the Run's mission of empowering young girls through running really resonated with me. I wanted to continue to support the organization in 2017 and I thought becoming a SoleMate and fundraising for GOTR was a great way do so!

Why did you decide to sign up to run the NYC Half Marathon?
I've run the NYC Half Marathon before and it's one of my favorite races. There is nothing quite like running through Times Square. My best friend, Jamie, and I have run together for years. She was signed up for the NYC Half Marathon so I decided to run for charity so we could race together. 

What does the Girls on the Run mission mean to you?
Running is basically my therapy. I know personally how much confidence and fun (!) it can bring you. That's why when I came across Girls on the Run, I not only related to the mission, but I wanted to help young girls have the same experience I have had. Given the current political environment, it's even more important that women are confident and strong. 

Tell us a little bit about your running history!
I started running a few years into my first job after college. The long hours coupled with poor eating habits was definitely taking its toll and I wanted to focus more on my health. When I first started, I could barely run a mile! I still remember calling my Dad the first time I completed 2 miles. From there, I really caught the running bug. I've run the NYC marathon three times...and I plan to run it this year as well (if I broadcast it on the Girls on the Run blog, I have to do it, right?!).

Favorite post-run snack?
This is easy: chocolate milk.

Favorite place to run in NYC?
There are so many places that I love to run in NYC. I live in the West Village, so a lot of my running is on the West Side Highway. One of my favorite long run routes is down the West Side Highway, over the Brooklyn Bridge, back into Manhattan over the Manhattan Bridge and then home. Central Park is definitely up there though...

Favorite time of day to run?
In the last few years, I converted to a morning workout person. It's STILL hard, but I love completing a run before work.

Any other fun facts you want to share?
Last year while marathon training, I planned long runs around what/where I would eat afterwards. Highly recommend as a motivator!

Thanks, Bernadette! If you'd like to support Bernadette in her fundraising efforts, you can visit her fundraising page here.

SoleMate Spotlight: Patricia Tirona

Today we are shining a spotlight on Patricia Tirona! Patricia is an avid runner, and is one of the captains and co-organizers of the established NYC local running group Dashing Whippets. Patricia will be running the 2017 Boston Marathon as a Girls on the Run NYC SoleMate!

Why did you decide to become a SoleMate and fundraise to support Girls on the Run NYC?
When I raced the NYRR Mini 10K for the first time in 2010 it was heart-warming and inspiring to see so many little girls and young women cheering on the course. At the end I asked a lot of them if seeing all of us run made them want to race as well and everyone said yes! My running team, the Dashing Whippets, as well as my running community is comprised of so many strong and dedicated women of all ages and backgrounds who inspire me daily with their running accomplishments. It goes without saying the support and camaraderie we get from the male runners who train and race with us is instrumental in our success. My hope is that young girls see what my friends, teammates, and I are doing, the strong friendships born of the sport, and want to be a part of this community.

Why did you decide to run the Boston Marathon?
For many runners, running a Boston Qualifying time is a goal that motivates them during their training. I can't deny how exciting it was to cross the finish line and hit the required BQ time in some recent races. I want to represent Girls on the Run during the 2017 Boston Marathon because it's symbolic of what consistent work and especially incredible support from my running community has helped me accomplish.

What does the Girls on the Run mission mean to you?
This is on the Girls on the Run website and it's a powerful statement, "Girls on the Run inspires girls to take charge of their lives and define the future on their terms." Accomplishing training and race goals gives girls and young women the confidence that extends far beyond running. It can be a key step in knowing and believing the sky's the limit. I look up to so many of the women in my running community and what they have accomplished in their careers, their personal lives, and how many go above and beyond to raise awareness in their own charitable work. I'm so grateful to be surrounded by these examples and Girls on the Run gives these young girls the opportunity to form bonds like this with their running mates and meet incredible girls and women who will hopefully inspire them too.

Tell us a little bit about your running history!
In August 2009, the NYC Half was the very first race I'd ever done. I hadn't yet met other runners and winged my way through a training plan. It worked and I crossed the finish line with a finishing time of 1:52. I had cleared my goal of both finishing and hitting a sub 2-hour time. In 2010 I would find the Dashing Whippets via Meetup and begin going to their Central Park practices. I became one of the captains and co-organizers the same year. I have met my closest friends through the team and running community and we travel literally everywhere to race and run. I've since been fortunate enough to have qualified for Boston, run in Tokyo, and trained while on vacation in Rio.

Favorite post-run snack?
Cocktail peanuts and pretzels!  I love the combo of salt and fat.

Favorite place to run in NYC?
I just moved to Brooklyn in January 2016 and since then I have a favorite run that takes me through Red Hook and Brooklyn Bridge Park. Being by the water in Red Hook at sunset never gets old. Every sunset run down by the water takes my breath away and reminds me to be thankful for having found the sport.

Favorite time of day to run?
Definitely sunset.

Any other fun facts you want to share?
I get a little (okay a lot) overzealous whenever I meet someone who tells me they want to start running. I immediately tell them about some of my favorite, incredible success stories from my team and let them know with hard work they can reach their goals. Hannah Ursillo, Megan Jones, Adam Balfour, and Martina DiMarco - these are the runners whose stories I tell the most!

Thanks, Patricia! If you'd like to support Patricia in her fundraising efforts, you can visit her fundraising page here.

SoleMate Spotlight: Kelly Dunn

Today we are shining a spotlight on Kelly Dunn, who will be running her first half marathon, the 2017 NYC Half Marathon! We are so excited that she is a part of the Girls on the Run NYC SoleMates Team.

Why did you decide to become a SoleMate and fundraise to support Girls on the Run NYC?
I have a young daughter and I'm trying to set a good and healthy example for her as she gets older. Girls on the Run just felt right!

Why did you decide to sign up to run the NYC Half Marathon?
My workout partner and I decided to enter the lottery to see what would happen. She got in and I didn't, but I immediately decided I would run for a charity so we could run together. Now that we are training I've really started to enjoy running. I wasn't a runner previously - I love a good spin class :)

What does the Girls on the Run mission mean to you?
The world around us is very critical on how woman look and how you should be, but we all need to understand that we need to be ourselves not what everyone thinks you should be. Empowering girls to be themselves is very important to me and something I try to instill in my daughter every day. As she gets older, it will be even more important for her and her peers to continue to believe in themselves.

Tell us a little bit about your running history!
So I really started running last spring when I started training with my local running store for a 5 mile race - by far the furthest I've ever ran. With all the spinning I was doing, I felt really strong after the first session. After the race, I signed up for my first 10K. And after a few more 5Ks, I took a chance on the lottery. I've really enjoyed changing up my cardio routine. This week in my training I have to run 9 miles which will be the furthest I've ever run!

Favorite post-run snack?
A CARBY MEAL =)

Favorite place to run ?
I live in Hoboken so my view of the city along water is one of my favorite places to run.

Favorite time of day to run?
I enjoy running in the morning when it's nice and quiet.

Any other fun facts you want to share?
I have a 4-year-old daughter; I'm a buyer for Macy's; I love a good book; I spin very regularly.

Thanks, Kelly! If you'd like to support Kelly in her fundraising efforts, you can visit her fundraising page here.

SoleMate Spotlight: Kelly Froelich

Today we are shining a spotlight on Kelly Froelich! Kelly is a Girls on the Run NYC Coach and will be running her 6th half marathon, the 2017 NYC Half Marathon, as a Girls on the Run NYC SoleMate.

Why did you decide to be a SoleMate and support Girls on the Run NYC?
After coaching last season and seeing the impact the Girls on the Run program can have on elementary and middle school girls, I decided that I wanted to be further involved and help bring Girls on the Run to any and all girls in NYC, despite a family's financial situation. Becoming a SoleMate and fundraising for Girls on the Run will provide the program to four girls who would not have the chance to participate otherwise.

Why did you choose to run the United Airlines NYC Half Marathon?
I love running around NYC, and thought the NYC Half would be another great experience to explore the city even more.

What does the Girls on the Run mission mean to you?
I wish I had been able to participate in Girls on the Run when I was growing up. The societal pressures to be skinny, pretty, and popular, combined with fewer female role models in leaderships positions than male, make growing up as a girl in our society difficult. I am so grateful that Girls on the Run exists to teach girls that they can grow into whomever they would like to be, despite what they might be told, and that they are strong, confident, and unique human beings.

Tell us a little bit about your running history!
Growing up playing team sports, running was always a punishment and never an enjoyment. However, during my senior year of college, I decided to delay taking the GMAT and instead, on a whim, train for a half-marathon. It was not easy nor pretty, but I finished my first race and was hooked on training and long-distance racing. The NYC Half will be my sixth half-marathon! 

And now, a few quick questions, starting with: Favorite post-run snack?
Peanut butter-banana smoothie

Favorite place to run in NYC?
My most frequented run spot is the East River. It's flat, less crowded, and right on the water.

Favorite time of day to run?
Morning - I think a morning run is one of the best ways to start the day.

Any other fun facts you want to share?
One for endurance sports, I also completed a century ride, biking 100 miles from Austin to Shiner, TX.

Thanks, Kelly! If you'd like to support Kelly in her fundraising efforts, you can visit her fundraising page here.

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