1st week!

It's been a great first week. Incredibly busy, but great.

I started with Red Wing Shoe Company on Monday. I love it! It's such a great fit for me, personally and professionally. Everyone here is SOO welcoming. It honestly felt like home! The job will be challenging, but in a good way. I'll be looking at basically every aspect of a small company -- supply chain, brand management, products, strategy -- and trying to find ways to help it grow. Should it have a distributor model, subsidiary model, or an independent rep model? Should the model we employ be different country to country? What product lines should we branch out into, and how much can we afford to invest in them (and what amount?)? How much are we making off of each of our customers (big box vs. small mom & pop stores), and which of our marketing or sales promotions are the most effective at each of these stores? A lot of challenging questions -- all of which I'll be analyzing and providing recommendations for. I'm a little nervous about that, just because... well, I don't think I know THAT much :). I just hope I'm a quick learner!

The only downside to the job is the commute. It's actually not bad, I don't hate doing it every day, but it makes the day SOO short. Take Wednesday, for example. I got out of work at 5:00 (which I don't expect to be able to do too often). I made the drive up, stopping at the grocery store on the way (it's double coupon Wednesday!!!). By the time I was done there, drove home, and packed everything away, it was close to 7:30. I quickly grabbed something out of the fridge, changed into my running clothes, and set out on a run. Wednesdays are typically my medium long run -- luckily I'm early enough in the cycle where they aren't super long, but they're still time consuming, nonetheless. Today's schedule called for 10 miles. By the time I finished with that, it was 10:00. Sad! Where did the day go???? If I added any overtime at work to that equation... well, I can't even imagine how crunched the day would be.

But, I'm confident that I can make it work, at least in the short term. We're starting the process of selling our home, and once I'm down in Red Wing, it won't be a problem at all. So, I know the short weeks are only a short term problem. Plus, it sounds like RWSC (Red Wing Shoe Company) is really flexible with your time and will not have a problem with me running during the lunch hour.

What else is new? I did my first time trial with Vakava last night. 3:59. It went OK, but made me realize how much I have to work on. I don't feel like I should be working that hard to go that slowly! :) We then worked on double pole kick, which requires BALANCE... something I have next to nothing of. :) I was just glad a fellow teammate was there in the back with me. Otherwise I would have been WAAAY behind.

This weekend I'll lace up the racing shoes for the Back in Shape 5K. Should be interesting. I haven't done a VO2 max workout since before the marathon. I have no idea how I'll do. Should be interesting!!

Nichole Porath

Nichole is a blogger, elite level runner, and coach. She ran professionally for Brooks for two years after qualifying for the 2012 US Olympic Marathon Trials. During that time she founded TNC endurance, where she coaches and motivationally speaks to organizations large and small. This blog details her rise to national-level racing, and continues to follow her as she gets back into racing after starting a family. Read on, friends!

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