Trail Running Retreat with Mirna Valerio
We’ve met Mirna last year during the previous edition of The Azores Trail Run Whalers Great Route. We were immediately attracted by her aura. And by her talent, intelligence, culture and ability to break the walls of preconceptions and stereotypes. She is one of America’s greater ambassador for the Outdoors, inspiring people to get outside, to be active and to enjoy and respect nature and each other. She is saying that sports and outdoors are not only for the privileged with a perfect genetics; that you don’t need a certain type of body in order to be active. She is saying you just need to get out and be active. And the people are listening and becoming better selfs.
Last year after the race, Luís took Mirna and other american friends for a ride. While having fun and getting to know each other, Mirna came up with this crazy idea: can Our island help to organize and run a Team Mirnavator Slow As F*** Trail Running Retreat for the 2019 ATR edition? The answer was: yes, absolutely! So we worked together to plan a week long program leading to the race day.
Mirna’s team of ladies was just amazing, eager to learn, to explore, to hike and to run from day one. The scheduled was packed with trails previewing a few segments of the race. Luís shared his experience in the trails and in the Azores terrain. Teaching helpful progression techniques to allow them to better manage and save energy during the race. He also helped mastering the use of poles by exemplifying how to use them in different situations. In and out of the trails, Pedro and Luís shared Portuguese and Azorean culture and history. We’ve been together for picnics and group dinners. And we’ve visited Pico island, swam in the ocean and even made whale watching with our partner and friend Pedro from Azores Experiences.
The big day came and it was a big party: lots of athletes throughout the trails, having fun, competing, celebrating life, nature and mutual respect. On that day Luís worked as Team’s Mirnavator private sweeper, helping the slowest of the slower to reach to her objective. By the end of the day, Team Mirnavator succeed with 10 out of 12 crossing the finish line. Everyone smiling, sheering and grateful for this experience. Team Mirnavator was slow but was strong, healthy and prepared.
Thank you Mirna to make us realize that anyone can run! #themirnavator