SoleMate Spotlight - 2017 NYC Marathon: Gloria Noel

Today we're shining a special spotlight on our 2017 TCS New York City Marathon SoleMate, Gloria Noel! Gloria is a SoleMates Committee Member, and is running her first marathon for Girls on the Run NYC.

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Why did you decide to be a SoleMate for the NYC Marathon and fundraise for Girls on the Run?
Running the NYC Marathon has been on my “bucket list” since I graduated from college, so I was excited to tackle this goal while financially supporting an organization that I have volunteered with and gotten to know through my role on the SoleMates Committee over the past year. Knowing that I’m supporting Girls on the Run with my charity runner spot has motivated all parts of my training and kept me accountable!  

What does the Girls on the Run mission mean to you?
I love that Girls on the Run inspires young girls to develop social, emotional, and physical awareness. Feeling “healthy, confident, and joyful” is so important, especially at a young age. 

Favorite place to run?
I love running in Central Park. The loops make it easy to add mileage up and I have quickly learned where all of the water fountains are!

Favorite time of day to run?
I’ve recently become a morning run person. I love having my run done before most people are awake – it makes me feel extra accomplished (and occasionally justifies treating myself to an iced coffee).

Favorite post-run snack/meal?
After electrolytes and plenty of hydration, I love everything bagel breakfast sandwiches and Bloody Mary’s.

Favorite running accessory?
Bright pink sneakers.

Favorite pump-up running song?
Anything by Beyonce or Jay-Z works well, but all of my friends know that "Before He Cheats" by Carrie Underwood makes it onto any running playlist I make because it's just SO good.

Group or solo run?
I hadn’t been on many group runs before marathon training, but now I LOVE them. Training with other SoleMates and new running friends has made the miles go by quickly and easily.  

When you get tired, what makes you keep running?
Encouragement from other runners and the thought of brunch! I have also gotten into the habit of posting about my runs on social media (Instagram stories, Facebook, etc.) as an accountability tool. Since my friends know I’m running, I’ve got to get my miles in!

Tell us a little bit about your running history!
I ran cross country in high school in western Massachusetts but stopped running regularly when I came to college in NYC at Barnard. I started running again after graduation and decided I wanted to run a half marathon because it felt "just crazy enough" to tackle. Three half marathons later, I signed up for the NYC Marathon.

What do you do besides running to keep yourself healthy, confident and joyful?
I love other workout and yoga classes, but non-exercise related self-care for me includes spending time with friends, spending time outside in nice weather, and reading a little bit every day.  

Any other fun facts you want to share?
This summer, I went on an epic road trip from NYC to LA with two friends. Along the way, I squeezed in my training runs and workouts in Dunmore, WV; Louisville, KY; Austin, TX; Alpine, TX; and Santa Monica, CA. Seeing a city by running it is my new favorite way to explore!

What words of encouragement would you share with a girl starting with Girls on the Run?
Have fun everyday learning something new with your friends.

Any fundraising tips for fellow SoleMates?
Social media is a great way to remind your network that you are training. Quick posts or stories allow others to witness your marathon journey. When you make a fundraising ask, your friends and family will have already seen some of your hard work. They will also know that once they make a gift to your campaign, they can continue to expect to receive updates on social media. 

Thank you for all your support of Girls on the Run, Gloria! If you want to donate to Gloria's fundraising efforts, click here. You can also follow Gloria's journey to the marathon via Instagram @gloria_noel.