Do you know Oiselle? In 2007, a passionate woman named Sally launched this company that declares we should go fast. take chances. As a woman who also started a company with women, I am so enthused about Oiselle. This is part of Sally’s story:
In hindsight, it would be untrue to say that I haven’t cared deeply about running fast and even winning. But for me, and the small family that makes up Oiselle, the sport has always been about something more. At various times it’s our therapy, escape, religion, and girl time. But perhaps simply enough, it’s been our sense of freedom. And thus the name Oiselle (pronounced wa-zell). A French word for bird, it alludes to that feeling of weightlessness that most runners know and love. That sense of flight – when the legs go fast and the heart goes free.
I love that. The idea of freedom. That we all have it in us. Whether you’re a runner or not, we all have the ability to find freedom for ourselves. It just takes confidence and commitment.
A few weeks ago, almost on a whim, I inquired about becoming one of the running ambassadors for Oiselle. Yes, I understand that I’m a middle aged-only been running about 3 years seriously-5’1″-mom of two who is a busy entrepreneur and volunteer, not a hard-core trainer. (I know some of those people. They’re amazing. I’m just normal!) Presumably, that is not a profile for a running ambassador. Sure, I love to race – and often joke that I run to race, and that I race to win. And sometimes, I do, but most often I’m just racing against myself.
Running ambassadors are people who strive for nationals titles, for olympic trials, who have been collegiate runners…right? Well, the women at Oiselle certainly do attract some of those people, but they also seem to realize that a passionate pursuit of freedom and a supportive group of women united through running is what is most important.
And they picked me. Ah, the honor.
As I write, I’m still in my running gear, which today includes arm warmers embellished with a small bird. They are perfect gear for a damp, upper 40s early morning run, and they even have thumb holes (I love thumb holes). So much to be excited about – in a pair of arm warmers! They came last night in the Oiselle ambassador kit with all kinds of gear that make for a runner’s Christmas! Giddy.
The point is, to me, Oiselle stands for community, freedom and a sense of accomplishment. Those are great things. To be fortunate enough to find these through running makes my soul swell. We all have something we love to do, something that gives us a sense of freedom, honor, accomplishment and joy. This is mine. What is yours?