Running has given me the world. My dad got me involved in athletics when I was 7 years old. He believed that it would help my sister and I make friends, stay on the right path and be healthy. The first time I ever raced I felt like nothing and everything. Nothing mattered. Nothing existed except for that moment and my body performing what I was created to do. I felt empowered. I had found my purpose.

I became addicted to running, and started to become more competitive running club track in the summer training with the best coaches in Arizona. In high school my relationship with running evoked fear and determination. I was afraid that if I wasn’t the best I wouldn’t be able to get a scholarship to run in college and I wouldn’t see my dreams of being an Olympian through.Screenshot 2016-02-03 19.03.44

In college running was like that terrible relationship where you spend a majority of your time wishing you weren’t in it but see the potential so you stay. Being removed from the collegiate-athlete life, I can honestly look back and say I wasn’t nearly as focused or mentally ready as I should have been. I had the best team, the best coaches, I had the marks that when on paper you would think I would be nationally ranked, but I wasn’t.

Now, running is something that I’m learning to love again. I needed to rid myself of it for a while to see if I still loved it and I do. For me running is so effortless. It’s me in its entirety; grace and intensity. It’s the foundation of the woman, the athlete I am today. I learned so much more than how to be explosive. I learned how to handle adversity. How to push myself, to be accountable, to be a teammate, to be the woman I am.  

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When I’m on the track nothing is going through my head which is vary rare. I’m truly in THAT moment. Inhale. Exhale. Ready.Set. Go. 

Post workout I’m exhausted mentally and physically. Half the battle is having a positive mental game, the other half is making your body perform. It takes a while to look at what I’ve just accomplished and be proud of myself. I’m usually critiquing my performance. I always find myself thinking the workout wasn’t bad as I thought it was when I was in the middle of it. 

#TamsGoinHam whenever ‘Hit ‘Em Up’ and ‘Go to Church’ come on, I’m a West Coast baby. Outside of the workout arena 90s Mariah is my jam.

During the week it’ll be hard to find me in between coaching at Tone House NYC, training pre/postnatal mamas and trying to get in a workout myself. Look for the girl speed walking in leggings with a fro in the USQ area or the UES. Probably me.  

A typical morning consists of wishing I could sleep in longer (I’m usually up by 6:30am). Once I get up I have to shower in order to really wake-up. I’ve usually checked my phone at least three times for important emails/texts. I’m trying to get better with making and IG worthy breakfast but I typically just grab oatmeal from a bodega. 

Mentally: I feel my sexiest when I’m in a routine and organized. When the results of working as hard as I do, professionally are manifesting.

Physically: It’s when I feel and look strong and healthy. Curls are poppin’, skin is glowing, muscles are on display. 

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My goals for this mini track season are: 

1. Introduce a sport that often gets overlooked to old and new friends

2. Teach people proper sprinting technique

3. Help people understand where my intensity as a trainer/athlete come from 

4. Challenge myself to be a better trainer/coach 

5. Make people fast(er)

In The City there’s a strong running culture that has been cultivated over the years. No matter whether your Uptown, in the LES, or somewhere in Brooklyn, you see people getting their miles in. What I haven’t seen is anyone focusing solely on speed. Speed is the key to all sports (in my opinion). Think about it: Serena needs speed to react to her competitors shots. Ronaldo needs speed to pass his opponents and score…Having that extra gear in your final miles of a marathon make all the difference and that’s what I want to give to the participants of this track series. 

I want people to have fun, but I’m going to make you work. I’m about pushing your boundaries, embracing fatigue/pain and learning how to become mentally and physically strong. I don’t do fake fit. You’re going to have to run your ass off. There are going to be moments where the lactic acid is building up on set two with three more sets to go and I want to see if you’ll arise to the challenge or not. I want people to experience the purity of sprinting. I’m going to give you the taste of my world as genuine athlete. 

In Health,

Tamara Pridgett

Head Coach

Tone House

Photos: Ray Eugenio

 

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