- Access to several training plans from the 5k to the ultra distance on Final Surge for multiple races and general training plans. Some people pay as much as a membership or the same per month for coaching. So this alone pays for the membership. I put in dozens of hours to create these training plans, and they are made just for Arete. It’s a killer deal for great workouts (many people by $150 + a month just for coaching)
- Team meet-ups. It can be confusing because it seems like workouts, Saturday runs, launches, free summer events and free clinics, and race meet-ups just happen. But with the feedback from leaders, I organize these events and meet-ups and then create the calendars for every chapter. I think these are the “behind the scenes” things that take time and energy that often seems effortless
- Access to several discount codes. I work to build partnerships along with your leaders and with various brands so our team can get good deals on various products and races.
- Uniforms every other year. We order a custom color fabric from rabbit and buy enough yards to fill the team. We get new tops every two years. This year we get nice track bags with membership (made by Aruna Project– a business that supports women in India that have escape sexual slavery, check out their site pretty amazing business model). We work hard to find partnerships like these and believe in quality and good ethics.
- Website administration (building, updates, paying web designer, etc.)
- Customer service. Like all great businesses, we believe in great customer service. I spend many hours supporting the team through email, forums, and in person.
- Inspiration/ team/community. The highest rated item on “why you joined Arete” on the survey was “community.” Many people are stoked to pay $15-20/month (about the cost of the membership broken down over 9 months) for the inspiration the team provides through its leaders and teammates.
On this Green Friday and just weeks before a new season, we thought we’d use this time to share some exciting news for our new season. After many requests, we will be adding #AreteTrail to everything we love about Arete.
What does this look like? With the help of master ultrarunner Jec Ballou and other badass ultra runners like Angela and Makiko, we will be adding ultra races, trail meet-ups, optional training plans, and a trail running camp, hosted by these women. Thank you ladies!
We caught up with Jec to hear more about why she loves ultra running, why everyone should try trail running and what to look forward to for Arete Trail for 2020. For a list of races and events, scroll below her comments.
“I love ultrarunning because it brings me so much peace. I get to spend hours in nature experiencing all kinds of magical scenery, blending with the terrain. After a few hours in the forest or the mountains, I feel positively uplifted. I believe everyone should try trail running because it is so good for the body. The ever-changing terrain avoids repetitive motion, the elevation gains/losses develops strength, and the ground underfoot delivers far less impact than roads. PLUS, I believe everyone who lives in an area as spectacular as we do should try trail running because, otherwise, you are missing out on some of the treasures of living here. We are surrounded by breath-taking natural spaces and many of these remote backcountry areas are only accessible by foot or bike.
#AreteTrail in 2020 is going to be all about building energy and momentum among our teammates who want to tackle some trail adventures, whether that means meeting up with us in Santa Cruz, Marin Headlands, Yosemite or beyond for training runs, or entering their first trail ultra. Together, we will share that truly badass feeling of charging down a dirt path, sweaty and euphoric after navigating all the unknowns of a trail outing. We’ll encourage newbies to try some trail running of any distance while also supporting experienced runners at 50k distances and beyond, hopefully targeting a fall 50-miler for anyone interested or curious enough!”
Thanks, Jec! We can’t wait
Arete Trail Schedule:
APRIL 18, Saratoga Trail Run 50k/30/21k/10k (Saratoga, CA)
May 31: Big Basin-Skyline to Sea 50k/marathon (Saratoga, CA)
JUNE 20: San Lorenzo River Run 50k/30k/10k (Santa Cruz, CA)
June 19-21: Trail Running Camp in Santa Cruz! Details TBA
July 18: Rodeo Valley Trail Run 50k/30k/half-marathon (http://insidetrail.com/calendar/rodeo-valley-trail-run/)
August 2: Skyline 50k/half-marathon (https://scenaperformance.com/events/skyline-50k/)
August (TBD): Trans-Sierra run with Jec, running from Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite National Park to June Lake (approx. 22 miles; bus shuttle to starting point from finish).
- Trust your training. It may not be perfect, but you’ve been doing the work, and the plan is coming together.
- Stay positive. Picture yourself in Boston, on the starting line, in your race kit, soaking up all the energy of the crowds and all the hard work you earned to get there.
- Prepare to be flexible. Part of the anxiety leading up to races is not knowing what will happen. Will the weather be bad? Will I sh*t my pants? What if race pace feels hard? Acknowledge those uncertainties and say to yourself “it’s fine, because I can handle anything that comes my way.”
- Keep grinding. You have two more tough weeks of training. And after that, it’s taper time. If you can see the light at the end of the tunnel, you can remind yourself that this brutiful part of training will be over soon. With that said, if any niggles are popping up, do what you need to get yourself healthy.
- Stay present. While looking ahead toward taper, stay present. Sometimes we look at a hard workout and psyche ourselves out before we’ve even started. I encourage you to stay present in whatever it is today – a rest day a hard day or anything – and take it one mile at a time. When you’re in it, you can do anything.
- When it’s time to taper, taper well. Instead of my usual favorite 3 week taper, we’re doing a 16-day taper since Boston is on a Monday. So when it’s time, get ready to cutback and own it. No extra miles or new workouts or weird diets. Stick to the plan.
- Do the final touches that make you feel good. Do the things – massage, meditate, visualize, etc – that will make you FEEL good- mentally and physically. If you’re in a good mental space, you’ll be ready to roll.
- Plan your race strategy. Plan your race in a way that is open for flexibility. Add in goal paces, how you’ll run strong on hills, how you’ll feel, mantras, fueling plan, and an image of you at the finish line being absolutely stoked.
- Write down your best workout from the training cycle and meditate on that. What did you do to stay strong and what did you do when it felt tough? Bring that strength with you race morning.
- Practice gratitude. Remind yourself that you’re about to embark on an experience of a lifetime, something others would kill to be a part of, so you might as well make it epic!
We’re with you these next few weeks, and all the way to the legendary finish line. Keep showing up and we’ll see you out there!
At a certain point, you may find yourself getting comfortable and ready to add new stimuli to your training in order to take your running to the next level. It’s fun to experiment and see what little tweaks you can do to your running in order to get the most out of yourself as an athlete. These suggestions are ways to add minimal adjustments to your training that won’t add strain to your already productive life.
My 5 suggestion to level up your training:
- Don’t treat training or racing as an indication of your self worth. I need to get this out there first. For many, it’s easy to dive in deeply and wrap our sense of self into running. If you find yourself doing this, step back, and remind yourself you’re a whole person without running. I promise you that while your friends and teammates love and support your goals, they don’t care how fast you ran that 5k. If you find yourself doing this, take a day off and go explore something else you’re good at. Okay, now that that’s I’ve got that taken care of…
- Add strides to the end of at least one easy run per week. Anyone else ditch the one thing that seems unimportant? Me! While strides might feel useless, they really are a crucial ingredient to leveling up your performance. Add 5-6 times 50-100 meter surges at the end of an easy run. It’s a simple way to teach your body to finish strong and run economically.
- Add a progression run to your training. During a progression run, you start comfortably and increase the pace as the run progresses, teaching your body to pick up the pace when you’re tired. There are many ways to execute a progression run, but my favorite day during a training block is on a Monday where you start at an easy pace and increase 5-10 seconds per mile every 5-10 minutes. The great thing about progression runs is there’s a bit of art to it and no pressure. It doesn’t need to be exact and you’re going more on effort as opposed to an exact time.
- Take your recovery runs seriously. Recovery runs are a critical component to fast running and they’re all too often neglected. These runs allow you to properly recovery–mentally and physically–so you can bring your A-game to your next workout or race. How do you execute a recovery run? The first day or two after a workout, race, or long run should be at a pace that feels very easy. Feels is the key word. For example a 6:45 marathoner should be recovering at at least 8:00-8:30 pace and some days, 9:30-10 pace might even feel good. Many elites who run 5 minute per mile marathons are known to jog at 10 min pace for recoveries. If you find yourself getting swept up into faster paces on recovery days, remind yourself the big picture and that running slower will allow you to run faster when it counts.
- Consistently do a tiny bit of the little things that matter. I’m all about the path of least resistance in order to have the result you want. So if your life is full and the thought of adding 20 minutes of core work and a cross training class and a brand new diet sounds bonkers, then don’t do that. Maybe do strength training for 5 minutes twice a week, eat some more greens, see your PT once a month, and make the effort to consciously breathe when you’re in the car. If you consistently do a dash of the little things and create the habit, then you’ll see improvements in your training.
Hope this was helpful! If there are other topics you’d like me to touch on, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I always love to hear from you!
Seriously…how lucky are we to know Maygan Cline? As the Remote Team Leader, she connects women across the country and helps everyone know they are an important member of the team community. Let’s dive in and learn more about Maygan…
Who are you?
I’m a geologist-science-geek, dog-mom-animal-lover, big hugger, and fun starter. If you don’t find me running trails or cooking healthy food, consider checking the nearest dance floor where I’m likely starting a dance party 😉
Why did you want to bring Arete to your city?
In 2016 in Santa Barbara, I was watching through social media how Arete and SIB were growing in Santa Cruz (my hometown). I found myself wishing for a similar community of supportive women runners here in SB. I kept replying to their social media posts with supportive and encouraging messages, saying how much I loved what they were doing. I grew up with Melissa and she was supportive of me leading a chapter outside of Santa Cruz and eventually the Remote Team with members across the county and a local Santa Barbara chapter were started 🙂
How has it impacted the local running community?
There’s plenty of other running clubs in Santa Barbara, but they are all coed. Bringing Arete to Santa Barbara has offered up a new outlet for women to train and race together and support one another. Occasionally our male runner friends or significant others will join us on group runs, and that’s lots of fun too! But I have to say, there’s something special about bringing together a group of fast, dedicated and fun women to challenge and support each other as we chase our running and personal life goals.
How has Arete impacted your own running?
I ran with only my dog for years and years and loved it, but through Arete I’ve learned that I also love running with training partners and friends. I still cherish my solo miles to think, reflect, and create or chase my personal goals, but there’s nothing like the motivation of meeting fellow training partners at o’dark thirty in the morning to get me out of bed and put in work. Arete has inspired me to be more consistent and dedicated in my own training, and many of the remote gals have said that my cheering (virtual or in person) does the same for them. There’s just something contagious about the Arete team support, even if we’re miles, cities, counties or states away from each other. I’ve noticed that when we respond to each other in real life, or to a social media post with real words and true compassion or empathy, we remember that we are not alone. Even though I’m part of the Remote team, I feel connected to the women across the Country in Texas, Ohio, Florida, New Jersey, Colorado, etc., and that’s a great feeling. Like I said earlier, the good vibes are contagious in the absolute best way 🙂
A couple good memories from the year…
Wow. There are lots of good memories from the year. Can I give you my top 5? I’ll try to keep it short but there’s a lot of good stuff!!
1. The All Chapters meet-up races in Santa Cruz: She Is Beautiful Race in March and Wharf to Wharf in July;
2. The All-Chapters meet up at Mountains to Beach Marathon in Ventura. Cheering our teammates on at that race and then brunching afterward was SUPER FUN. There were some amazing PRs at that race and everyone was just giddy. Super fun meeting all of the significant others after that race too!;
3. Meeting all of the Santa Barbara girls this summer and realizing that Arete was growing in my own town! Followed by weekly runs through summer, fall and winter!!!;
4. Brunching with gals from all over CA in Santa Barbara after the September She Is Beautiful race in Santa Barbara (www.runsheisbeautiful.com);
5. Cheering everyone on at CIM in Sacramento just a few weeks ago on December 2.
And of course, now I’m wrapping up and reflecting on all of the good stuff from 2018 and getting psyched for 2019.
What would you like to see happen with Arete in 2019?
I’m still creating goals and getting psyched for 2019, but I’m truly excited to see the team continue to grow and expand across the Country. I’m also excited to incorporate running with teammates into my out-of-state travels plans next year when I visit friends and family (see you soon Colorado Springs Gals!!).
In terms of running, I feel like I’m coming back home. Historically I always ran trails with my dog, rarely pounded pavement and pretty much never did speed workouts. My goal for 2018 was to get comfy on the road and doing speed work and I feel like I conquered that goal. In 2019, I’m ready to get back to my beloved trails where I can enjoy nature with my pup, however, I will continue to incorporate speed work to keep me challenged and engaged and let’s face it, speed workouts are FUN! 2019 will still include the She Is Beautiful and Wharf to Wharf races, but the rest will likely be trail races. I’ve got my eye on a race in Montana this summer and there’s talk of doing an ultra with one of the Santa Barbara gals, but we’re still working out the details and I’ll share more on that later.
Thank you Maygan for your leadership and insight. We are lucky to call you our leader. If you’d like to join Maygan and women across the country, Arete membership opens January 1 and we’d love to share the journey with you. You can join January 1 at runarete.com.
Together, Leilani, of Arete Sacramento and her daughter, Heather, of Arete Oakland, are running California International Marathon December 2 to fundraise for a cure for Huntington’s Disease–a debilitating genetic disease which affects Leilani and which Heather has a 50% chance of developing. These positive and inspiring women have focused their energy on healthy choices, friendship, enjoying life, and finding a cure. READ MORE below and support their fundraiser here: https://www.gofundme.com/cure-hd
- Heather, why did you decide to join Arete? I had just started to train and still am a new runner, so I wanted the push and community to stay committed and to continue to enjoy the process. Another big reason was moving to an entirely new city, Oakland, with few friends, and even fewer than ran. It was a great way to get connected right away and find a meet an amazing community! It’s also the best way to get to know a new city; run around in it!
- Heather, after watching your Mom run and do marathons for so many years, did you ever think you would be tackling one yourself? Ha! That’s the funniest part to me. It wasn’t till late in high school that I would even consider myself “athletic” as I rowed for Capital Crew and then rowed in college. Running always felt like the necessary cardio part of training and never something I looked forward to. I had a few friends in college who ran and they almost even convinced me to sign up for a half. When I saw the training program though, I turned it down. Running was the occasional thing, but nothing to look forward to. It wasn’t until I graduated college and got an office job that I started to get into running. Feeling less healthy and athletic and just wanting more balance in my life, I started going to the gym more, then going on short runs on the American River. Over more time, I realized I liked being outside far more than on a treadmill. I started to run more outside and skip more and more gym days. To make a long story short, I realized that even though it hurt, it was fun to see my times get faster, explore new neighborhoods, and see the beauty outside. My boyfriend would run time to time and he was always a lot faster than me. In time, I was able to keep up and started to like the challenge. My mom’s good friend Tina, an ultra-marathoner happened to be my neighbor in Curtis Park too. She was the one who got me out of bed at 6am to get a sunrise 6 run, slow, but steady. Starting my day that way was maybe the real thing that hooked me. I loved having someone to run with, and it was such a good feeling to be accomplished by 8am. I’m rambling, but as I ran more and more, my mom encouraged me to start racing, and now I really can’t picture my future without running in it. To not run would be devastating, it’s so rewarding.
- Leilani, what does it mean to you to see your daughter train for a marathon?This will be my 13th (lucky 13?) marathon and my 5th time doing the full CIM. This year is special, because I’m so excited to get to run this with my daughter Heather. I never pushed her into running, so to see her transition in less than a year from a casual, occasional jogger to a marathoner is quite amazing! Having her on Arete with me is fantastic, even though she lives in Oakland. We don’t often get to run and train together, so to have the opportunity to do her first sub 2 hour half at Urban Cow with me was great. She ran her first ½ earlier this year, but I was injured so had to cheer her on instead of run myself. We normally don’t get to do our long runs together, so she drove up from Oakland to run her first 18 miler with me on Saturday. In spite of falling at mile 15, she finished it off and ran a great time. I’m super excited to see how CIM is for her, and also excited that she’s joining me to raise money for Huntington’s Disease. It’s a genetic disease that my brother and mother have (symptoms are a combination of ALS, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s) I have tested positive for the gene, and each of my kids has a 50% chance of also having it, so needless to say it impacts our family tremendously. There is no cure, but we are hopeful that there will be one soon. Funds we raise will go to the HDSA which supports the amazing HD (Huntington’s Disease) clinic in Sacramento at UC Davis.
- Heather: I think my mom really captured a lot of CIM right there and nailed why CIM is so important to me too. If I didn’t have a motivator like HD it’d take a lot more convincing for me to have signed up, in fact, I’m almost positive I wouldn’t have! Running CIM is important for me because not only does HD affect me and my family, but it’s also not very well known. Being able to bring awareness and share what HD through running CIM is even more special. There are so many incredible organizations and research centers that have supported my family and are striving for a cure, so any way we can support them, we will. Knowing too that people are supporting us and willing to learn more about the cause will be a huge motivator when my mom and I are out there running CIM. Like I said, It’s really the only way I’d be able to commit!
- Both of you, what is it like being on the same team/what does it mean to you? Arete is wonderful because it means there is always an amazing community of strong and driven woman who are looking out for us. Whether it be running, training, friendship, or brunch, we’re all supporting each other. This is also so motivating when you’re pulling through a race or trying to think of an excuse to skip a workout.
- Both of you, what is your favorite thing about running/what do you get out of it? Definitely meeting people and also discovering beautiful places that otherwise, I’d never see. I love being outdoors and we’re so lucky to live in such a beautiful place with countless running trails. -Heather My favorite thing about running is feeling like I can achieve things through running I never thought possible. To be able to compete in races and run faster and farther than I ever thought possible is amazing for this former non athlete! I started running when I was almost 30, so it’s never too late. I also love the camaraderie that comes with running. It’s fun to be able to hang out with people of all ages, education, careers, political and religious backgrounds, and share the common value of running. All the other things don’t matter when we show up with our running shoes on. Now with HD hanging over my head, I’m even happier I’m a runner because the one thing the doctors say works to fend off symptoms is to exercise. Running, combined with pilates and yoga is my recipe for a healthy life….completed by lots of laughter with good friends and family! -Leilani
- Both of you, have you been running and training together when you can? Yes! I love running with my mom for so many reasons. I’m grateful that she’ll keep my pace (she’s a lot laster than me ;)) but it’s also a great way to catch up and talk on our long runs since I really can only visit on the weekends. Since my mom is such an experienced runner too, she’s always suggesting different workouts, checking in on form, helping with speed, and the best part, all the stretches. Essentially, if I don’t get to run with my mom I miss out on a really valuable coaching lesson too. It’s so motivating to want to keep pushing when she can provide so much advice. Honestly if I don’t have my mom’s advice and the Arete community that she was already a part of, there’s no way I would have been able to meet my goals as quickly as I have.
Thank you for sharing, ladies, and we’re so happy to see your journey unfold! See you at CIM!