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Meet #teamsparkle – @valarieddennis is a self proclaimed running grandma

December 6, 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 Valarie, aka @valarieddennis on social media!

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Tell us about your past race/running experience:

Valarie: I’m a running grandma. I started “running” in January 2013 when I signed up for the Disneyland 10K. I trained my butt off as I was terrified of the “Balloon Ladies”. Jeff Galloway is my main guy. Someone asked me if I was going to wear a costume and I responded: “Yes, I’m going as a runner.” After that race, I got the runDisney bug and signed up for the Star Wars 10K. The rest is history! I had no intention of ever “running” a half marathon, much less a challenge of running a 10K and 1/2 marathon on consecutive days. I had signed up for my own “mini” challenge, Tink 2015 5K and 10K. The 2 Pixie Challenges came available and with the support of my younger real running buddy, Amy, we took the plunge and haven’t looked back. I just finished 1/2 marathon number 10.

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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?

V: My 1st sparkle skirt was for the Star Wars 10K and was the cosmic blast. Still love that skirt.

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What/Who inspires you to continue running?

V: My grandkids were the inspiration to start and to continue running! They are amazing and are getting old enough to join grandma in this lifestyle.

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

V: I’m not a sweet eater, but get out of the way if there are chips and salsa out! I will mow you down.

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

V: I love a good skirt and own several, I’ve bought capes for the grandkids because they are all about being super heroes, I always wear a hat or visor, because of skin cancer, BUT Shwings – I LOVE them. I wear them on ALL my running shoes. I match my grandkids’ shwings so we can be twins. They make me feel like I can run fast!

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

V: I never had an issue wearing my sparkle at any Disney race and all the local races have a sparkle component, however, I was scared to wear my sparkle to the Nike 1/2 in San Francisco. When I saw folks wearing their sparkle at the Chicago Marathon I knew life would never be the same.

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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