One of our favorite things about being the Official Recovery Footwear of XTERRA, is meeting the passionate athletes and ambassadors that make up the XTERRA community.
We had the opportunity to chat with Atlanta, GA resident and teacher of 25 years, Nozomi Wade about her XTERRA experiences, training around a busy schedule and OOFOS!
- Name: NOZOMI WADE
- Age Group: XTERRA AG 60-64
- Hometown: Born in Tokyo, Resides in Atlanta, GA
- Favorite XTERRA Race: XTERRA worlds at Kuala ranch, Oahu, this will always be one of the most memorable races ever because I went for the first time in 2012 and I won worlds ag! Wow! I was ecstatic!
- How long have you been competing in XTERRA races?
“My very first XTERRA race was in October of 2009. It was XTERRA Georgia and it was a super steep 5k. I still remember falling in love with trail running at that time.”
- How long have you been an XTERRA ambassador and why do you enjoy being one?
“I have been an XTERRA ambassador since 2012. It is truly a pleasure and honor to be an XTERRA ambassador because I love sharing the beauty of running trails, because I deeply respect and cherish nature. Before races, my husband and I get up super early to volunteer at packet pickup. We chat with all the racers, experienced and new, wishing them well for the day. And after we help, we race! I also share my love of racing with my students. I have been a 1st grade teacher for a long time. I now teach 2nd graders. My students truly love hearing about my races. Some students and parents have gotten into running because of me. They also eat healthy snacks because I talk about the importance of healthy eating. It's great to see 7 year olds choose an apple over junk food!”
- How has participating in XTERRA changed you as a person?
“Trail running has truly changed my life. I never knew I could run and be competitive until I got into trail running. I’m also a more relaxed, happier person. I used to worry about every little thing before I started trail running, but now I just clear my head in the woods on a single path trail. It has strengthened my relationship with my husband, James, as well. It gives us yet another interest in common. James is the off road triathlete and I am the trail runner. We root for each other at races and support each others efforts.”
- What does your typical training week look like? I GET UP AT 4:00 EVERY WORK DAY MORNING.
“I have a cup of coffee and I go out for my run. The distance is usually 5 miles unless I am training for a marathon. After the workout, I shower and go off to school to teach 27 energetic 2nd graders. On Saturdays, I either race or do a long run. On Sundays, I recover. I just walk my dog! However, during long school breaks, aside from running, I also cross train at the gym.”
- Where did you first see, try and hear about OOFOS?
“XTERRA Eastern Regional Championships at Oak Mountain on may 20, 2017! I’ll never forget it!”
- What was your initial impression and how has that changed as you've worn them more and more? How has wearing OOFOS affected your training.
“I have had other "brands" rave about their sandals and how great they were. And with these other brands, either they did nothing to help or worse, my feet or ankle started feeling bad. When I put on the OOFOS sandals, they felt unique. Then they started feeling really good. I was running/walking/standing all Saturday waiting for my husband and our friends to cross the finish line for the tri. Then there was the ambassador picnic after. It was a long day and normally my legs would be tired for the half marathon the next day, but holy cow, my legs felt fresh!!! Usually the tri happens the day before my marquis race and if I am rooting for my husband, I am running a race with tired legs … but I won my ag and I had a super awesome half! Since then, I’ve been mixing up my training and you’d think I would be sore from all the circuit training and stuff, but I still run strong. It must be the OO factor! “
- How many pair do you own and which is your favorite?
“I have 3 pairs, my husband has 1 pair, my dad in japan has 1 pair and my mother-in-law has a pair! I have a pair of OOFOS for the house and on weekends I wear my "outside" OOFOS to run errands, etc. My legs are never tired now - nor to they cramp in the middle of the night like they used to.”
- When/where do you wear your OOFOS?
“At home! We do not wear regular shoes in the house. The moment I wake up in the morning, I wear OOFOS. I wear OOFOS on weekends and during teacher workdays. I would love to wear OOFOS to work every day but we teachers are not allowed to wear flip flops. But … when I get the OOFOS shoes (OOmg!), I will be all set at school!”
- Do you think every XTERRA athlete should own OOFOS and why?
“Absolutely! Why? Because OOFOS really works. These sandals are so good for you. I have not looked at my foam roller for months, thanks to OOFOS. My feet, ankles, legs, and back are thankful to OOFOS.”
Photos Courtesy of Trey Garmin