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Meet #teamsparkle – @irisheyes1982 proves doctors wrong

November 29, 2016 by The Girls

We think THE best part about Sparkle Athletic is the AHH-MAZING people that make up #teamsparkle. We are so incredibly lucky to “meet” (IRL and virtually) so many team members, but we thought it’s about time we introduced the people that make up this inspiring & motivating community.

With that being said, it’s time to meet a member of #teamsparkle. Up next is Dani, or as you may know her from social media, @irisheyes1982!

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Tell us about your past race/running experience:

Dani: Running and I haven’t always gotten along. In fact, we were bitter enemies for a majority of my life. I mean I was a softball catcher to avoid doing some of the running drills needed for other positions. 😉 While trying to lose weight in the mid-2000s I decided to give running a try. In January of 2005, I started with 1/4 of a mile on the treadmill & each week added another 1/4 mile to that until I found myself doing my first 5k in March 2005. My dad – a runner – fed into my journey and did a bunch of local races with me. He always let me cross the line ahead of him so I would be above him in the standings. I know. He’s awesome. I did the 5k, completed my first half marathon in February 2006 and my first full marathon in September 2006. The experience of the marathon wasn’t what I thought and I swore off running. That was until it was almost taken away from me. In January 2011, I had back surgery and the doctor said I wouldn’t run again. Well, time to prove him wrong. Since June 2011 (when I was cleared to workout), I’ve completed 40 half marathons, 10 marathons, 11 triathlons (including a half ironman) and an ultramarathon (40-miler). I think we can officially say I am addicted and looking towards my next challenge. 🙂

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We are so glad you are a part of #teamsparkle. When did you first join and what color was your first skirt?

D: Thanks to social media I can remember when I got my first Sparkle Athletic skirt. For my first Run Disney race – Half Marathon at Disney World – I wanted to dress up as Jessie from Toy Story. For the costume, I ordered my first Sparkle Athletic skirt. It kicked off my addiction. 20+ skirts, 6 visors, and 3 pairs of Swings later – I never run without my skirt.

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What/Who inspires you to continue running?

D: Everyone I come in contact with through social media and my blog inspires me to keep running. Deep down I still have the thought of running being taken away from me that it pushes me to get out the door. Additionally, I run in honor of those that can’t, especially my Stroke Heroes – who I have run 4 marathons for with Tedy’s Team. But really I do it for me. Running has saved my life in more ways than I can share.

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We all know how much #teamsparkle loves their treats as much as they love running… What’s your favorite indulgence?

D: Beer. Well when you are co-captain of a brewery’s run club, I think that becomes an obvious answer. My run club – Slumbrew Happy Soles – loves my skirts as much as I do. When I completed my first ultra in August, a group of them surprised me by showing up while I was on the trail and bringing enough Sparkle Athletic skirts for everyone! Seeing this sight as I came in on one of my 4 loops was just what my emotionally fragile self needed. How awesome do these people look?

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Which Sparkle Athletic product is your favorite “go to”?

D: I would say my Gunmetal Sparkle skirt is my ultimate go-to. I have actually worn it for every one of my triathlons. I am not sure why, but I pick it to wear every single time.

What is one of your favorite parts of racing in a Sparkle Athletic skirt?

D: The confident feeling I have once I slip it on. I can feel the inspiration, motivation and the empowerment of #teamsparkle radiating through me from the skirt. It pushes me to find the positive in each race even when it isn’t going my way. Plus they are a crowd pleaser & always help get me extra cheers. 😉

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Thank YOU so very much for “joining the team.” Individually each & every one of you is amazing but as a “team” we ROCK.

Everyone has a story, and we want to hear YOURS! The #teamsparkle community is such a loving and inclusive group, but often times we are tackling our runs solo. Knowing your teammates can help you to feel more a part of the running community.

If you would like to share your story, whether it is about how you got started running, what motivates your running, why you love running, or how running has changed your life, please let us know! We would love to feature you on an upcoming “Meet The Team“ post – so email us at meettheteam@sparkleathletic.com!

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