23| Kriste Peoples, trail runner & mindfulness teacher: “We are nature.”

Kriste Peoples is a Denver-based outdoor enthusiast and guide, runner, writer, and mindfulness meditation teacher. She is a proud board member of The American Trail Running Association and Running Start, a local nonprofit that helps women jumpstart their fitness journey. Coaching women’s beginner trail running clinics with Life’s Too Short Fitness has long been a passion of hers, and when she’s not adventuring along the Front Range trails of Colorado, Kriste is likely giving talks about it, writing about it, or recovering with carbs in a local eatery.

Connect with Kriste
Website: kristepeoples.com
Instagram:  www.instagram.com/kristepeoples
LinkedIn:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/kristepeoples

In this episode, we talked about…

  • Shifts within the outdoor industry in terms of who is welcome and what it means to be “outdoors” 
  • Where Kriste’s interest in mindfulness and mediation came from 
  • What she loved about the Southern Baptist church—and why she left
  • Her initial experiences with Buddhism 
  • The power of storytelling (and why it can work against you) 
  • How to stay present when you feel like you’re falling apart  
  • What it really means to be empowered (and it doesn’t include any buzzwords)
  • Why nothing is lost 
  • What nature can teach us about sport 
  • How being present and striving toward goals can co-exist 
  • Talking about it versus being about it 
  • Trail running basics 
  • What motivates Kriste to show beginning women trail runners the ropes 

The outdoors is outside your door.

Mindfulness is all about being able to meet what is happening in the moment.

I can really tell a story for better or worse  and if it’s one that I’m believing that’s not serving me then I’m causing suffering to myself because I’m stuck in some version of me that’s not true. Mindfulness really helps us create a foundation of awareness that says that that invites us to get curious and question, is that true?

Empowerment means taking space. 

Empowerment says I got to give myself permission to say no to some things. I got to give myself permission to piss some people off or let some people be unhappy with me. 

How much time have I lost to this idea or this memory or this thing that. sure not everybody remembers that event the same way that I do. 

We are nature.  

I can just notice my surroundings instead of always like gunning for that time or that distance, or being in competition with that other person or the, or being in competition with that person you were, when you weighed 80 pounds, like, what are you, what does that even mean?

there is an order to things it’s not all over, you know, things take different form. Nothing is lost.

And so calling people in for support looking at, and again, looking at your shit, being honest with yourself about your stories, are you more interested in talking about it or being about it?

When I started, there wasn’t a huge sense of welcome or an embrace of being, you know, a grown woman coming out to run trails because it seemed like, oh, this is some kind of niche sport for like pocket size  white dudes who were  leaping and bounding  up and down the Hills and stuff. And, and there’s some kind of like trail bro culture that I couldn’t access and it felt very isolating because I fought, you know, there, there was something in here for me. I really liked being out on these trails and just the winding paths and all that.

But I know there’s some stuff that I need to learn so that I can do it better. And so then when I found life’s too short fitness, it was this community of women that the founder Lauren Jones was starting up and, and it just spoke to me. And I said, you know, I really, I want to be part of this. And I want to extend that welcome to women that I  didn’t get when I started. 

And so people are faced with this real conundrum of like, wait. What do I do when I grow up, hold on a minute, I have to grow up really fast and figure out something to do, which comes first. Like, how am I going to really define and envision a life that works for me?

So that of course is not trail running specific, but all of this stuff that we’re getting into translates into daily life, like slowing down, taking a moment to notice what’s happening, really understanding that we can expect some challenges if we’re going to grow and we can meet those challenges, we can do hard things and we can thrive.

Success means being able to really stand in your own light to be able to say, here’s who I am.

I am a work in progress and I own that.

I understand my power in my right to choose and my right to be and belong anywhere I see fit.

Lifes 2 Short Fitness 
Running Start Ragnar 
Billie holiday song Good Morning Heartache 

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