One day, my friend Jasmine Pierce called me and asked me if I wanted to run a 5k with her. I thought “why not?” and ever since then running became a part of my life. That moment was the start to something that would change my outlook.
I first met ultra-runner Nikki Kimball when I was the coach for The North Face Endurance Challenge in NY. I had to speak on a guest panel with her. I was very nervous and she could tell but she helped put me at ease. We became instant friends.
When Nikki told me that she was planning a quest to become the fastest person in history to run America’s oldest hiking trail, the 273-mile Long Trail through Vermont’s beautiful but brutal Green Mountains, I got involved because I believed in the purpose and message Nikki wanted to send with this project. Nikki’s journey became the center of an incredible documentary called “Finding Traction.” I’m honored to have been a part of this. Nikki’s story is sure to inspire, and I’m glad I could be at her side along the way and help keep her going strong.
This film is about more than running and pushing to break a record. Nikki used this experience to raise thousands of dollars for Girls on the Run and to help motivate girls and people in general to get active and be healthy. Additionally, she speaks openly about her struggle with depression and using exercise as a way to cope. For me, it was a life changing experience and one I will never forget. I truly hope that this project will inspire people to become active as well as bring more attention to equality in sports.
“Finding Traction” is a part of the 2015 Trails in Motion trail running film tour. The film will be screened at several documentary-film festivals around the world this year and will be played a couple times on a Montana PBS station. The film is also expected to be available on commercial DVD release and online streaming via the Montana PBS store this spring. Here is a list of live and TV screenings for the next couple of months:
- February 23, 8 p.m. – Public broadcast across the state of Montana on Montana PBS/KUSM-TV
- February 25, 1 a.m. – Public broadcast across the state of Montana on Montana PBS/KUSM-TV
- March 3, 6:59 p.m. – Public broadcast across the state of Montana on Montana PBS/KUSM-TV
- March 18, time T.B.A. – Tokyo, Japan, screening is part of the Trails in Motion tour at Sakaiya Sports
- March 21, 1:15 p.m. – Sheffield, United Kingdom, screening at the Sheffield Adventure Film Festival
- March 22, 3:30 p.m. – Sheffield, United Kingdom, screening at the Sheffield Adventure Film Festival
- March 28, 12 p.m. – Montpelier, Vermont, USA, screening at the Green Mountain Film Festival
- March 29, time T.B.A. – Amsterdam, Netherlands, screening is part of the Trails in Motion tour at Lab 111
Learn more about the film and everyone involved by going to findingtractionfilm.com.