Self Love: A Yoga Challenge

February is the month most often associated with love. A time for chocolates and flowers, whispers of sweet nothings to our significant others, and extravagant and shiny gifts.

If we can take the time to indulge in these frivolous, but albeit fun things, shouldn’t we also take the time to indulge in a bit of self love?

It is important - nay - imperative that we lavish ourselves not only in the tangible things in life, but also through our internal affirmations and the care we provide our bodies. What better way to do so than to take a few moments every day to breath deep and hit reset?

Starting on February 1st I am partnering with JasYoga for fourteen days in an effort to show how athletes hit reset and also show my fans and folks how to incorporate yoga into their fitness routine. Check out the article about me on Jas Yoga’s site for more information!

Each day I will post a video on my Instagram demonstrating a new move with details on how that move will impact your fitness in a positive way. Keep up with all of the moves on Insta with the hashtags #14daysloveyoga and #athletesforyoga and on @JasYoga with the promocode ALYSIARESET. This will grant you a full free month of videos on JasYoga’s site!

The event will end on Valentine’s Day, the ultimate day of love, and will leave us all with an idea of how to better ourselves through fitness with the helpful moves in yoga. Be sure to tag @alysiamontano as you follow along!

Remember: Love your neighbor. Love yourself. Love your body.

- AM, flying flower

Letter to Linnéa #InternationalWomensDay


(Not a tomboy…Just a little girl that likes what she likes. Not a sissy just a boy that likes what he likes.)

You can like pink,                                                                                                                          you don't have to like Pink.

You can like dolls,                                                                                                                          you don't have to like dolls.

 You can like dresses,                                                                                                                      you don't have to like dresses.

You can like bows  and flowers in your hair,                                                                                   you don't have to like bows and flowers in your hair.

You can like dresses,                                                                                                                             you don't have to like dresses.

You can like fingernail paint and make-up,                                                                                     you don't have to like fingernail paint and make-up.

You can like kitchen sets and cooking,                                                                                           you don't have to like kitchen sets and cooking.

You can like ballet,                                                                                                                         you don't have to like ballet.

You can also like...

Blue,                                                                                                                                               you don't have to like blue.

You can like Ninjas and superheroes,                                                                                             you don't have to like ninjas and superheroes.

You can like pants,                                                                                                                         you don't have to like pants.

You can like hats,                                                                                                                           you don't have to like hats.

You can like face paint and dirty hands,                                                                                         you don't have to like face paint and dirty hands.

You can like tool sets and fixing things,                                                                                          you don't have to like tool sets and fixing things.

You can like contact sports,                                                                                                            you don't have to like contact sports. 

I only separate these lists to show you the way that Momma has seen these things grouped together in growing up and in raising you. Momma notices, that people impose what a girl "should like" and they also impose what a boy "should like". My message to you, my brave, smart and funny little girl, is that you can like and be whatever you want. The options are all available for you to like, love, laugh, flourish, create and just BE. My hope for you is that the future continues to be bright and that you might recognize all life has to offer you. My hope for you is that you not be restricted by societal ideals of what a young girl can or cannot do, and on the same token, what a young boy can or cannot do. My hope for you is that you may see these separated list of things...because they are just that, things. They have no label for who may like them. My hope is that you may see this separated list... merge it... mix it up, throw in more things you find fascinating to you and throw out whatever you don't. Furthermore you are not bossy, you are assertive, you are not pushy, but rather a leader, you are not loud-mouthed, but rather outspoken.  The world is yours little one. You can DO and you can BE... YOU.

I Love you,

 - Momma

Welcome to Maternity Leave

An Ode to Coffee

Coffee... café, how I'd like to taste you today.

I gave you up to reduce a risk, sometimes in my mind I go tsk tsk.

How could I be so cruel, to hang you up and let my mouth drool.

I long to taste that first bitter bite, I'll do it early enough so I can sleep at night.

Although I usually only see you twice a week. It's those days I yearn for... Oh how I miss  that energy streak.

Dearest café, I'll see you soon, we will be back to our usual and together we will make it past noon.

Depends, it depends...

How much longer will this part last,

When I get up to pee every 2 secs, will it ever be a thing of the past.

I've highly considered at this moment in time,

If I should invest in adult diapers for my old urine pipers.

Maybe just maybe if I can make it through the night, we can put these sleepy pee pee nights out of sight.

Although the alternative would be an imminent diaper rash, and a heaping pile of urea trash.

To be or not to be, wet or dry. Either way one more night like this; I might just give it a try.

Come on sweet baby

Go for a walk they say; perhaps a run. That'll coax out that baby bun.

Been there done that, nothing works you see, than to sit back and wait to meet baby.

39 weeks and 5 days, the last few weeks are all a haze.

I feel your movement as if you were on the other side, but somehow you see mommy as an amusement ride.

Well baby, it must be done, I'm swallowing an eviction notice my daughter or son.

I love you to pieces, to the ends of the universe and back, but it's room in my womb and space that lack.

Don't be afraid to come on out, I can't wait to hear those mighty lungs shout.

So what'll it be?

Will "Bud" be "its" fathers child? Slow and steady, but possibly on time? 


"its" mother's; lulling about, remembering they've got somewhere to be, and then quickly making their way but still arriving late?

Obviously the birth day of "Lil Bud" Montaño couldn't come any faster!

I can't believe the day is almost here where I will temporarily be trading in my gym bag for my hospital bag; where the main workout won't be a weight lifting, running, walking, yoga or any other conventional exercise; and where my main workout will be labor!!! I am sooo ready!
Here is what's in my bag: ( I can't believe all of this stuff is really necessary. )

  1. Newborn diapers
  2. Exfoliating gloves
  3. Burpee cloth
  4. Spare flower
  5. phone
  6. Nursing bra
  7. Burrito
  8. Headphones and iPod
  9. Toothbrush
  10. Toothpaste
  11. Babyganics moisturizing lotion
  12. Facial cleanser
  13. Towel
  14. Babyganics hand sanitizing wipes
  15. Heating pad
  16. Nursing pads
  17. Camera
  18. Bag of mixed nuts
  19. Chapsticks
  20. Credit card, ID and insurance card
  21. Camera Charger
  22. 22ounce water bottle
  23. Baby's coming home outfit (not pictured)
  24. Hair ties

Cheers and here is to my official maternity leave... I will miss my perma-table.

Alysia Montaño the Flying Flower.

The Shift...Training For Labor

With my due date being just a few weeks away, I have seen drastic changes in my body. My belly is now resting on my thighs comfortably also known as "lightening" and it takes a whole lot more work to keep my body upright. Thank goodness for the back exercises I have been doing to keep my back strong for this exact moment (when I have become belly heavy). My pelvic bones are definitely experiencing the magic of the relaxin hormone. It now aches a bit to go faster than a shuffle pace, so I don't push it and I walk/shuffle my way through some cardio days. Days like those I feel like mentally I am running, when in reality... well, in reality, my husband is walking leisurely next to me, so that should say what my reality looks like. Although there have been random days where I felt like my lil bud has shifted allowing my pelvic region relief. But now I am sure that where the baby has placed itself, it's there for the long haul. SO now... NOW... I am officially slooooooow. It's crazy just what a difference the position of the baby can make.

My "training" has shifted from keeping up with runs, to training for my main event this year, NO... not the 800 meters... LABOR!!! Think about it, people train for marathons, Ironman's, 10k's, you name it, but when it comes to the most crazy physically demanding transformation a body will go through, people don't really consider training for it!? Labor is an athletic event, it is not only emotionally demanding, but it is highly physically demanding.

Many women have been able to run everyday up until their due date. I, however have had to modify my routine a bit in the last week, and it includes less running... My training bud really needs to pull his/her own weight here, especially because we are gaining half a pound each week! Instead of maintaining a running regimen I have devised a plan to keep up high intensity cardio workouts, using the ElliptiGO, but modifying it's use by putting it on a stationary trainer. I also incorporated hill walk/shuffles either outdoors or on my treadmill. Additionally I included weight and strength circuits, swimming and hikes... and kegel exercises.

Above is the ElliptiGO (Google it!) It's awesome, can't wait to take this baby for a spin off of the stationary trainer post  delivery!

Louis and I headed for a swim

While I know you can only plan so much with these sort of things, I still think it is important to make a plan and to adjust accordingly and as neccesary. Here is my plan on how I plan to stay physically fit for labor.
Not to be neglected are the amazing people that I get body work from. My PT, Nina Patterson at SOL PT and Cyrus Poitier at Elite Pro Sports Massage. I see these two once a week to keep my body in line and operating as efficiently as possible. With my changing body, my team of specialists also help me to detect any imbalances I might be creating.

My goals in preparation for my little one's arrival are;
1. To maintain cardiovascular strength to endure labor more easily ( I said more easily)
2. To maintain strength in my abdominal and leg muscles. As I understand the transverse abdominis muscles and obliques help push the baby out and many women rely on varying squatting positions to help facilitate the baby's entrance in a more comfortable manner.
3. To practice waves of intervals, as I know that when women go through labor contractions come in waves and I feel like interval training can help prepare me mentally for that. It's  not the same pain, but mentally I feel like it will help me understand my responses to physical demands.
4. To continue working as a team with my BFF. Mine just happens to be my husband Louis, but I think that everyone needs someone to support them physically, mentally or otherwise. I understand every situation is different, but if you can find a friend or a loved one that can share a dream or help you through life's journeys, you will find yourself grateful. Humans are innately social we are most often better off with support to help us through the most demanding events of our life.

I am certainly happy to have my husband supporting me and helping get through these workouts in such a very fun and bonding way!

 Here is the my other training buddy/husband/ man of many hats, Louis, crushing it on treadmill and waiting for me to take my spot beside him on the ElliptiGO! He's easy on the eyes too... ; )

             Alysia Montaño, The Flying Flower

So That Just Happened

Wow! It's been a little over one week since  I "raced" while 8 months pregnant at USA Track and Field National Championships. And what an exhilarating week it has been! I've received so much positive feedback, so many touching stories, and such an out-pouring of loving messages from people all over the world! I can not express my gratitude to have been contacted and supported by so many awesome people!

Like so many things in life, there are going to be some naysayers. While it is disappointing to know that there are still misinformed people who think that exercising while pregnant is harmful to the baby, my experience has been extremely positive. I did my homework. I consulted with my doctors, sought advice from many exercise professionals, and spoke to tons of women who have exercised during their pregnancies. The overall consensus from my medical/professional team was, "GO BABY GO!" Or should I say, "GO MAMA GO," since this Mama is carrying the weight for the both of us!"

But my goal here isn't to focus on the very few negative comments out there, especially since they have been heavily outweighed by the positive. My goal is to share some of my personal experience, with the hopes that it might teach some about the benefits of exercising during pregnancy.
 So here it goes;

 Before my pregnancy, I generally exercised at a very intense level. I am an Olympic athlete who consistently ranks amongst the top 800 meter runners in the world.
I was always training my body to push the limits, and then surpass them. This was done all in the hopes of getting fractions of a second better to compete in a race where the slimmest of margins mean victory or defeat. I trained to reach superior fitness levels for my event. It is a life I am used  to, and a life I've learned to love! Contrast that with my life during pregnancy. I simply could not train at a very intense level. That didn't mean that I couldn't amp up the difficulty, I just couldn't be as aggressive as I was used to. In my world when I say "very intense," I mean all out 11's on a scale of 1-10! Throughout my pregnancy, I was still challenging myself physically, but my intensity  was modified and taken down a few notches. The first thing you learn when you are pregnant and pursuing fitness is that no matter how hard you try, you literally WILL NOT BE ABLE TO TRAIN AT THE SAME INTENSITY. It's like your body has an automatic "no go zone", not to mention all those loose and stretched ligaments prohibit your body from any snap that might have been there beforehand. I must exclaim that the body is truly remarkable! It is made to adapt to its conditions.

On average,  I ran about 5 days a week during my pregnancy until I reached about 24 weeks. Around this time I began to "pop out" and could feel a little bit of discomfort with the changes to my body. However, almost as quickly as my body changed, this amazing biological machine adapted to the excess weight and I was able to maintain a fitness routine. It was a modified routine, but a routine nonetheless. I was able to balance my fitness and body adjustments by cutting a day of training out, and ensuring I gave myself at least one day of NO RUNNING in between my run days.

Many weeks, my pregnancy fitness regimen looked like this:
SUNDAY: Run then Sunday Funday
MONDAY: Easy weight routine
FRIDAY: Easy weight routine

When I was planning to get pregnant, I had set a goal of trying to run until my 30th week of pregnancy, body and health permitting. By week 28, I was still feeling relatively good. I only say relatively because how good does any pregnant woman feel with third trimester fatigue, hormones pumping through the body and carrying a baby who uses their bladder as their personal squeeze toy!? Seriously, my baby would sometimes use my pelvis as a custom hammock, and this isn't to mention constantly satisfying the ravenous hunger beast with random food cravings! Even so, so many new changes were happening while entering the third trimester that I decided to take a rest week to relax, adapt, and then see if I could keep going. Instead of running, I went for hikes and ran only twice that week. Whelp, that rest week really worked and I felt rejuvenated enough to continue my runs for the following 2 weeks!

By week 30, I felt GREAT!!! Again, as great as any pregnant woman who has put on 22 plus pounds and counting! I thought about how good I was feeling emotionally and physically and about how well my pregnancy was progressing. I thought about how grateful I was that I realized early on my secret to dealing with the uncomfortable parts of being pregnant, and how to feel revitalized when I felt low on energy. The secret was simple: the days that I was able RUN or EXERCISE AT ALL, I FELT AN AMAZING BOOST OF ENERGY IN MY MIND BODY AND SPIRIT. It has been incredible to see how different I felt on days when I had been exercising compared to days when I had not. While rest is really important, the blood flow and keeping my heart rate up has made my pregnancy nearly (I said nearly) a breeze!

With all of the benefits I was feeling by continuing to keep this body moving, it made sense for me to keep going as long as I was able to run, and my health care providers continued to give me the thumbs up! I'd reached my goal of running until week 30, which as a side note is why I feel like it is important to set goals. I felt so happy to know that I had made it to my 30th week! Around this time I assessed how I felt about running at the USA Track and Field National Championships that were just 4 weeks away. My husband Louis and I had discussed this idea of running in the meet a while back, but didn't want to force it. Honestly, we weren't even sure if it were going to be a real possibility. We really felt it was important to listen to my body, and let it be the defining factor on whether this would be feasible. By the time the deadline to enter came around,  I was in really good physical and mental condition, and that fiery desire to compete was getting HOT! Additionally, I had the qualifying time and I was the defending champion 5 times over.

Lastly, I was fed up. I had it with the people that really did not understand exercising while pregnant. I felt like this would be a really good way to show people what it looked like. Not only that,  I wanted people to see that  professional women often continue their careers even while pregnant, and I could do so also even in my line of work. There were so many reasons TO RUN! I thought to myself, I've been running this entire time and the pace I would run would be less rigorous than my training, and much shorter. I literally just needed to assess if I could easily run faster than 2 minutes for 1 lap to ensure I wouldn't get lapped in a two-lap race. I could do that easily... SO, I entered. I started tapering as my race approached. 

Here is what my pregnancy taper looks like:
WEDNESDAY:(the week prior): OFF traveled back from Eugene, OR
THURSDAY: 5x5sets of a 30 second run w/ 30- 60 seconds rest on WOODWAY treadmill @9.0-9.5 w/3.0 incline with 2 minutes rest in between sets.
FRIDAY: Easy 30 minute swim.
SATURDAY: 4 mile run
SUNDAY: Easy 2mile walk and WORLD CUP!!!
MONDAY: 35 minute stationary ElliptiGO
WEDNESDAY: travel and PRE- RACE 2 mile walk!

The morning of the race I got up for my usual breakfast . All the inspiration I needed to go forth and prosper came by watching the USA Men's Soccer team make it out of the GROUP OF DEATH!!!
 I went for a walk to get my blood flowing, especially since those guys had me and my baby super hyper! Following that, I went back to the hotel to get rest and some chow. Gotta fuel myself and this baby, so I'll take a hot sandwich (not a deli sandwich) EXTRA PROTEIN PLEASE! (Looks down at the belly and rubs it as ordering).

I killed my lunch in a matter of seconds and then patiently waited in the hotel room before heading to the stadium to compete. When I arrived at the stadium, I ran into some familiar faces. People who noticed me started to ask, "are you really going to run?" I simply smiled and replied back "how are you?" (nice change of subject, right?)

 Generally I warm up about one hour before my race. This time, I knew I wasn't going to do the whole kit and caboodle because frankly, for the pace I was running, it wasn't necessary. The main things I needed to focus on before completing the two-lapper were warming my loosey goosey relaxin' hormone havin' muscles, and making sure I stretched those bad boys well. No one has ever looked good getting a cramp, especially not an eight-month pregnant lady! I'm sure I looked ridiculous doing a light jog to the staging area where athletes get their hip/lane numbers. After checking in, I jogged back to the warm up area, ran a few 100 meter strides. I then sat and stretched while watching the other runners complete various exercises my pre-pregnant body would have loved to participate in. I couldn't help but smile though. I was so happy to just BE THERE and to share this love and this passion for this sport with my baby. I am pretty sure my baby felt all of the good vibes because as I sat there before the final call for my race, I felt my sweet little one bumping and kicking. I imagined my baby was warming up with me, and it felt so amazing to be there in that moment and have my baby responding to all of my belly rubs.
In the final staging area, as the race officials were taking the athletes to the track, runners popped fuel chomps and various different gels, GU's and energy products. I am sure I was the only one who was eating a full on sandwich just before heading out and an oat bar immediately following. (Eating for two). I continued to hydrate as I waited to be called out, but since my baby loves to push on my bladder, I wondered silently, "am I going to be the pregnant lady that has to pull over to the side of the track to pee?" Luckily I was able to do a final bathroom run before I took my lane... The rest is HISTORY, literally.



Much love,
              Alysia Montaño AKA The Flying Flower AKA The Pregnant Runner

Whats up 2014

2013... Old news.... What I left behind.
1. Companies that did not fit my brand (namely my former shoe sponsor and RedBull)
2. The Olympic hangover
3.  Training Alone

2014... New news... What I picked up!
1. Companies that fit my brand and that I truly believe in, that stand behind me 100 percent the same way I stand behind them. (This started in 2013, but you get the picture.)
2. A new desire and passion
3. A new training partner

Last year had its fill of emotions, and what a journey of emotions that was, but I am excited to leave that all behind. In case you are not sure what the Olympic hangover is, it is more of a mental thing. With the huge build up and pressure that goes into an Olympics. It is very hard to stay ON mentally post Olympics and stay physically healthy. I went through a roller coaster of mental hardship last year post Olympics, with all of my physical ailments and the emotional fight, of what we all know very much about, with my former sponsor and wanting to leave, it was a trying year for me. Not to mention I had now spent 5 years training alone. My wishes for the next year was to ONLY partner with companies that truly fit my brand. Create an environment where training/running could and would be fun again, and to acquire training partners.

I have made some changes with those who I am partnering with. Redbull and I are no longer together and that was a hard decision for me. I thank Redbull for all of their support, but I am excited for the opportunities ahead of me.  When I originally signed with Redbull, I was really excited for the marketing opportunities that their company would provide. They do a lot of really cool media stunts, and I was happy for the opportunities that might come in that department. Somewhere along the way though, the message became confused. Instead of focusing on the athletic side of things, and the preparation involved in becoming a world class athlete, the message shifted to focus on consuming the product as a means of success. For me, I was extremely conflicted about saying I consumed the product before training or races because I didn't and I did not want the message to be confused as an explanation for why I ran the way I do. I am a firm believer that hard work, and a healthy balanced lifestyle focused on organic and "green" dietary choices are the key to success. I know that people can be influenced and I never wanted for people to think there are short cuts and more importantly that I take short cuts. One day I saw a magazine I was featured in and they explained that I drink Redbull before races. For the reasons above, I was mortified, and that is when I knew that I wanted/ needed to pursue other partnerships. Although I respect them and cannot thank them enough for the many opportunities, I could not go through with what I perceived to be deception. Feeling confused as to what I should do, I asked for change in the direction of our marketing, but they couldn't give me that change. SO with long and hard thought, we split officially just after I did a show on the Discovery Channel and here I am....

I have been working very hard these last few months,
I have partnered with Women's Sports Foundation and Safe Kids World-Wide as an ambassador... and there are a few other great and positive companies I believe in that I would love to get an opportunity to work with, we are "talking", so hopefully I will have updates for you soon.

Other affiliates...
1. NYAC (The New York Athletic Club). I am so honored to announce that I am the newest team member of the New York Athletic Club. New York is where I got my beginnings, I mean the slightest inkling of my being takes root in Queens, New York, where I was born and lived through my early years. A place that will always be with me in my heart and place where my family and I visit often. New York serves as a reminder, as do many other places for me, of where I come from and where I am now.
2. Mountain Professional Services Group AKA MountPSG, MountainPSG or MPSG- This a marketing and  talent agency, that I began working with in 2013 that has helped me make these vital transitions in my career and brand. They are a company that not only services and caters to "getting me into track meets", but they help look out for opportunities that interest me off the track as well, which has been a huge NEED for me.

I have a new training partner...
How it's been going-
We started working together in November, and in the beginning we did not know each other very well, but my new bud kept making its presence known. Around our 1st month together I started to notice this relationship was going to have a very strong bond.
My new training bud challenges me in new ways that I had never experienced ever before. In the beginning months I quickly found a new level of exhaustion that would have me laid out after our morning sessions. My training bud was going HAM on my energy levels. This new addition to the team had me breathless on mere 30 minute runs, and was getting me dropped on any sort of tempo paced run. Here we are going on our 4th month training together and things are turning around, I have a new desire and love and my energy that was nearly non-existent has returned and then some. I FEEL SO ALIVE with my new training buddy and I couldn't have asked for a better buddy!


CHILLIN' LIKE A BOSS (arms behind the head!)

First Public Appearance scheduled at a hospital in Berkeley, somewhere around August 13, 2014


   Alysia Montaño


Tis The Season

What I love most about the holidays is the reminder for people to be giving, thinking less of themselves and more of others. I certainly don't think that this is the only time of year that you should give to others, but if you need a reminder to carry you into the New Year, than this time of year is the perfect time to jolt the giving into action.

Today on the this Tuesday afternoon I will be headed to Sliver Pizzeria in Berkeley,

First off, I love Sliver Pizzeria for its year round giving nature and of course it's amazing pizza. Sliver is unique in it's kind because they are a pizzeria whose mission statement is as follows:
" To use the freshest and finest quality ingredients on our pizza as a means to promoting human health and empowering the fight against human trafficking around the world."
How could you not get on board with this company!

Meet Willy (above.)

What I am doing to help them out:
Today December 3, 2013 from 2-5pm, I will be volunteering to make pizza pies with the help of the expert himself and the owner, Willy Perez. Hopefully I prove to be a good pizza maker. What makes today even more special is that we will be hand delivering the pizza to the Boys and Girls Club of Oakland. I grew up going to the Boys and Girls Club, where my dad headed the Sports program before I, myself worked there as one of my first jobs in High School. This is very near and dear to my heart. TIME TO GO MAKE SOME PIZZA!

I will update with photos and maybe a recap after the event!

Christmas Boom!

Thanksgiving has passed and December has finally arrived. In our normal fashion, my husband and I were up first thing on the morning of December 1st retrieving our Christmas boxes from the attic. Accompanying our hustle to set up our house in to an acceptable Winter Wonderland was Pandoras Holiday Station to which I am singing at the top of my lungs. With Holiday music blaring my mood is at the top end of joyful. I am a holiday freak, and I like for all of the holidays to stay in their lane,  I have to admit I was some what disappointed with the über early Christmas shelving displays at select stores, mainly because I like the build up to the Christmas BOOM! Regardless, we kept our Christmas decorations sealed up until we felt was appropriate, we wanted to let Thanksgiving have it's time too. This year we were going to celebrate Chanukah (Hanukkah) , but with leaving town and all, we couldn't get those decorations up since Chanukah and Thanksgiving shared time this year, next year!

Here is how we set up our home thus far, this will be about a week long ordeal! 

It's just the beginning!

 Dinner table is set up… (trying not to be anal about messing it up for 25 days will be a challenge!)

 Time to let her loose!

Free Willamina!

Isn't she lovely?! 

Now to dress her, she's naked! Sorry for the indecent exposure.

The Teacher Learns more in the process of teaching.

Next up...

Congratulations to all!

Today was the High School Footlocker Cross Country NE Regionals also powered by Asics, to which I had the most honorable opportunity to partake in congratulating and encouraging these athletes. This meet was a race that qualified the top 10 athletes a bid to race at the Footlocker Cross Country National Meet held in San Diego, CA on December 14, 2013.

They had to conquer this 5,000 meter course (200meters over 3 miles) for their spots.

There were amazing wins, fights for the first 10 spots in the championship race, there was the devastating 11th place finish and there were the athletes that were fighting their own battles and celebrating the small victories. What I love so much about youth sports in general is the sheer innocence that is involved in competition.

While these youngsters were asking me to give a few inspiring words as they asked advice, I sat steadily learning from them being inspired by them myself.
A mentor of mine, once told me: "The teacher learns more in the process of teaching."
After these interactions, I always remember what he means. I always find myself inspired and eager to sit down at my own personal drawing board.

The people I met and the corresponding advice I gave;

(The advice I give comes as I put myself in their shoes having worn them all myself in varying sizes.)

1. The "I'm happy with the win,but I feel so nervous of the expectation of winning next time."
Advice 1. Focus on your accomplishment right now, don't let this victory pass you by, appreciate it. The truth is, it may not happen again, but you now know that it CAN happen. Don't worry about tomorrow, you have no control over it. When you get to that bridge to cross it, fear not, you are the one who has built that structure laying down all the planks yourself so you can cross it. That does not mean you will be guaranteed to be the first person to cross it, but you can do everything in your power to lay your own planks to get to other side. Yes, it is a fact that there is another person that is building a bridge to get to a similar point as you, dwelling on the "what if's" disables you from seeing the "what is".


2. The "I used to win all the time, but I can't quite fight the mental demons and the pressure, how do I make it fun again, I worry about everyone else's times and who might beat me."
Advice 2. Truth is you can't win all the time, but you can certainly try! Try and get back to the basics, set aside a positive for every negative thought that comes to mind. If worrying about other athletes, whose in the race and what time they have run before throws you off, DO NOT LOOK AT THE ENTRIES, get off of forums that direct you to links about your upcoming events or past ones that might throw you off. Let family and friends in on how you feel about it, so they know that it effects (you won't be able to stop everyone from infiltrating your thought process, but who cares because those people don't matter, and what do they know anyway, the truth is "Haters or gonna hate" and they should probably be worrying about themselves.

 Remember all stats are just recordings of events on paper, you can't record heart and courage. All favorites are just predictions and no body can predict the future. Anything can happen on any day, no one is immune to fortune, disparity, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and so on! Encourage yourself by focusing on the HERE and NOW. Don't blame yourself for not winning, it really isn't what it is about at the end of the day. In life things will often pan out differently as YOU planned, the best you can do is take it in, think it out, move it on. In, out, on… repeat that. Before you know it you will have taken the pressure off of yourself and will allow yourself the opportunity to have fun again, these feelings may return on and off, but it is a practice, keep at it!


3. The "I'm just so happy to be here!"
Advice 3. Um… GREAT!!! (HUGS!!)


4. The "I'm just not good enough."
Advice 4. What does "good enough" mean. Never tell yourself you are not "good enough" for anything. You are your own entity, therefore you write your own standard of what is "good enough". Maybe you are not a 5K runner, at the end of the day, it's what your doing now, but it may not be your future. That is OK, but the truth is YOU FINISHED THE RACE, you are GOOD ENOUGH. Be a team leader, be the inspirational guru. If you feel like you lack in the physical ability at the moment, but you still want to be on the team, don't worry you don't have to miss out on the fun of being on a team in High School because you are not one of the top scoring runners, everyone on the team has an important role… including YOU!!! Cross Country is important to build overall strength and fitness, so don't give up, ask you coach if he thinks there any other events you can try for the track season, but please don't give up on cross country.

Cheer up, you are somebody!

5. The "But, I'm a middle distance runner…"
Advice 5. Great you are already ahead of the game, the longer distances and training you are getting now in Cross Country will give you a better base of strength endurance as you move towards track season. You will thank me later. Stick with it.

6. The "I'm trying, but I just can't seem to get better"
Advice 6. Sit back and look at your training from the outside. Talk to your coach, is it a training issue why you are not getting better or are you being impatient. Sometimes improvements come very quickly and then we ride a plataeu for a little bit until we get better OR sometimes we ride a plateau, drop drastically or gradually before climbing back up again. It is all apart of the process and everybody goes through it. Again, don't give up and know that you are building tremendous character. 

7. The "I was so close, and and… I don't know, I just missed it (sobs)"
Advice 7. Ah, I knew this would come up, I know how you feel. This one race does not define you. You are great, you know it's there inside of you. Maybe there is a piece of your race you can tighten up for the next time you give it a go. But there is a possibility that everyone else ran out of their minds too, don't discount the ability of the other runners. Don't over think what could have been or what wasn't, your sure to get another chance in another area at another time. Don't let this put you in a funk or a depression… Don't kill me when I say the words I dread to hear myself, but it is "JUST A RACE", one that you put in a lot of time dedication and passion, that's why you feel the way you do, but at the same time the reason I mention it is "JUST A RACE" is so that you see that there is a much bigger picture to this race. Who you are isn't based on what place you finished, but in the fact that you cared, you tried, you want to be better, you set a goal and went after it, whether you hit the exact goal you were working towards doesn't matter to the character you built in that process. Now, sit down at your drawing board and make a plan. This race has made you hungrier than ever, and the hunger of an ambitious being, is a force to be reckoned with.. USE IT!!! It' is not about the destination, it is about the journey.

I get it, I know it, I've been there and it is all so familiar when I am talking with the athletes that are searching for answers. I am thankful to have these questions come my way, as I was able to remind myself.


  • Build your own bridge, know others may be building one to get to a similar spot, don't tear others bridges down and don't take short cuts to building your bridge.
  • You can't win all the time. (If, you're anything like me, you are probably thinking WHY NOT!) Good thing is…
  • You can always TRY! "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
  • Remember the basics "Take care of the small things and the big things will take care of themselves."
  • Don't worry about other people. When it comes to affecting your performance and something that may be hurting you mentally, forget em… And really they should most likely be worrying about themselves, don't listen to the "Haters". If you can't figure out a polite way to tell them, "my coach and I got it"… send them this video link. 
  • Be happy
  • You write your own standard for greatness, don't try to fit in someone else's box of "good enough" 
  • Anything can happen on any day!
  • It is not about the destination, it's about the journey.
  • IN, OUT, ON- Take it in, Think it out, Move it on. 



-Alysia Montaño


Give Thanks

To... Exorbitant amounts of food for making you feel guilty about your fitness progression or goals.

Ok, thanksgiving is about more than food, right? 

But isn't it?
Let's face it… You can't deny that being around family and friends, enjoying their presence and the food they have prepared for you to scarf at your leisure is very much apart of the Thanksgiving equation

For your convenience:
I've put together a method of how to enjoy yourself on this day with all the pleasure and less of the guilt.


I just can't take the day off...

Set aside a time in the morning for you to sneak away. Maybe normally on Thursdays you do a 2 hour gym session or a 3 hour bike ride or a kickboxing routine that was meant to shame the likes of Jackie Chan. But this year, you've been asked to contribute a dish or you are somewhere you can't continue your normal routine. My advice is to… shall I say it… relax. 

There are several ways to go about this depending on your demands.
1. You are a fitness lover or just started your path to reach your fitness goals and you don't want to lose your streak- Join in on your local Turkey Trot.

2. You are a Professional athlete or someone who has been training for an upcoming event- Plan to wake up earlier to get your workout done. (in the future see if it is possible to regiment your workout week to have an easier day on Thursday.)
3. You are not competing in an event any time soon- Maybe you can plan to have only a 1hour gym session or run an easy 30 minutes instead of an hour and add core and strength to the last half hour, or perhaps going on an hour ride. Try your best to limit that endorphin flow to 1hour to allow time to be giving on this day.

I know it sounds easier than it really is, but try to remember BALANCE.
It's really simple, and I wouldn't freak out about not getting in the whole kit and caboodle of your normal routine. But if you are one of those lucky few that can wake up to their alarm set earlier than usual, then... resume as usual, the holidays shouldn't handicap you, but enhance you.

But I want to enjoy ALL the food!

Do IT! 

Be more of a taste tester than a gorger. For instance, you see.... Potato salad, Macaroni and cheese, tuna salad, mashed potatoes, stuffing (my mouth is watering), then you see.... ham, and of course that beautiful stuffed turkey. To top it off on the dessert table it seems like 'Mr. Spoil Your Hard Work' himself has come to bury you in a world of mouth watering insanity. 

Just remember your plate clock.  

Plate clock n.: A method used to remember how to properly portion your food groups for more healthful eating at meal times.

How to structure a plate clock:

Using a side plate load half your plate with veggies, and eat that first... This will help satiate your hunger and add some substance to your tummy so that the juicy stuff doesn't even have room to infiltrate your system and your only choice really will be to enjoy it in moderation. 1/4 of the clock should be your protein and if that means instead of eating a whole 1/4 side of turkey because you want some ham then have an 1/8 of ham and 1/8 of Turkey (you get it?) For the carbs do the same thing… 1/4 total of Mash potatoes and Macoroni and cheese or its relatives.
Make it a rule that just a little of each and your 1/4 should serve you just fine.

Look at it this way:

Taste it all, but keep the size of your food groups in the clock the same.  

Ah now for dessert… 

If you are one of those people that must try all, Imagine one slice of pie and treat your dessert portions as such.  If you're not …Find your "to die for" dessert and stick to it.

Most of all don't let the food part stress you out, socialize and focus in on the people you are with, that'll be sure to burn some time and should distract your brain from gorging and exploding your tummy. 

...You never know it could happen.





Montaño Time

A few years back, in 2011 I married my longtime friend from the 8th grade, Louis Montano. Life has been a bit different, but in the best way possible. Going through my day to day life with work and spending good quality time with my man has been a very fine balancing act. 

How do I do it? 

I focus on the here and now, the present, and I make sure to be certain I am present with Louis when I am off of duty… still a work in progress, but it’s coming. I make sure that the time away from my job/passion, isn’t still so stuck on ME, ME, ME.

On a day to day basis when working hard towards any goal and morphing your YOU to your needs as life keeps moving and changing ever so slightly. A degree of self-time, often misinterpreted as selfishness, to say the least, is important. When it comes to putting in the grunt work, nothing else seems to matter when you spike up, hit the pavement, sweat your blood, whatever it is that you do… It can not be denied that it has to be you, squeezing every ounce out of your physical and mental capacity on any given day. For me, now that I have another half, doing that and then coming home to warmth and love requires both parties. I therefore, put off anything that may hinder me from taking that ME first attitude home, because the second I walk up to the door and take off my work shoes its US.

Methods used to be less selfish in times where selfishness is prohibited/ frowned upon (i.e with your loved ones, husband, wife or children… this also includes good friends) you may want to call this after hours. There is a time and a place for everything, or so they say… I miss the boat on other areas of my life, but I try very hard to catch this ship as it sails.

1. We turn off our work phones after 6pm (it's really just our cell phones, but we don't do work calls), from dinner time on, anything work related after this time is now tomorrow related… sorry, we are closed, its MONTAÑO time.

2. We also turn off all forms of technology that are separators rather than bonders, unless we do it together… like video games, movies, sporting events.

3. We find things that we both like to do and do it together. Working out together, hiking, biking, running.

4. We spend a lot of time with our friends, playing board games, going to the beach, watching movies… and best of all READING, sometimes even out loud to each other before bed. (embarrassing? maybe… but its true.)

Alysia Montaño

Truth is... A new start, but there are plenty of those to com.

I want to share my what I am involved in and what I am wanting to get involved in.


Truth is…

I have a hard time sitting and posting what I feel when I am feeling it, and for some reason having a blog on my website that involved me encoding and embedding and all of the stuff I am not good at made sharing a lot less fun for me.

I can write.

Truth is…

I really am not a blogger.


I have signed up for a "blogger" Blog Spot.

Truth is…

I am more of a performer, a creative being, an aspiring entertainer of sorts.

(Live the life you've always dreamed of, be fearless in the face of adversity, never stop learning, be true to who you are, recognize, the beauty that surrounds you, be the architect of your own destiny, this life is yours to CREATE.)

One day…

I would love to have a regular video blog or be involved in some sort of series whether it be acting on the big screen or a reality show

Truth is…

I felt this was a better route for me.


The way I have my website now makes the blog a MAIN STAGE.Not to worry though, I have transferred previous blogs.

Truth is…

It really is not.


it's more of an additive.

Truth is...

I want for my blogging experience to be more of an informative place to read about all the pieces of me I choose to share... if you so choose to click on my blog spot, rather than it be a space on my website, ,where I feel like a blog is really expected to be there (No duh), rather than it be more of a bonus.


It might not make sense, but I feel like I can hide not posting regularly or posting very regularly if I want to.

Truth is…

It feels more about "ME" on this blog spot than it does on my website, which is weird, and again, might not make sense logistically, but that is how it feels to me. I think it might have to do with the fact that I feel like everyone else, a normal person who talks about whatever, and isn't always talking about one subject that is a part of their life, but is very much apart of their life.


It has to do with having to leave my page (I dunno) but I hope this is a start of opening up on a real person that exists behind the mask of "a runner", because there is more to know about me than that..

Truth is…

I have actually never really been "a runner".

My hope…

To show the multi-faceted pieces of my life that make me….

Alysia Montaño

The Way of the Kiwi

Talk about a refreshment of mind body and spirit! New Zealand is one of the most beautiful places in the world hands down, not to mention a great place for spiritual grounding. I embarked upon this journey for my honeymoon celebrating my March Nuptials. My husband had this brilliant idea of visiting this beautiful land, and if I wasn’t certain I picked a winner I am definitely now. We had the most hands on experience of the land, along the way we got a slice of several different parts of the world, meeting people from all over and sharing love, appreciation and laughter. With our not so conventional honeymoon experience we took away better parts of ourselves that has strengthened our relationship. Adventure adventure adventure, I am certain that our relationship is full of so much more! There is only one thing I can say, I will not miss road trips, early mornings and 4 hour bus rides!

Sadly I had to leave and return to my old stomping grounds in the US of A. As it is now, I have carried the chill way of the kiwi’s over here with me and I love it. Rush not want not. Here it is the beginning of November and my body still has no idea what time it is. I think I need a few more weeks to digest my trip and allow the trips splendor to sit and be with me before I jump into the way America does things. WORK WORK WORK and NOW NOW NOW. I’m gonna miss that. Trust me when I say I will not let what I have learned from this trip leave me. We all just need to breathe. That’s all I have got for now, like I said, this is my time to digest.
- Alysia Montaño

New Adventures

Winding down to the end of my season officially, I find myself sitting and planning all the things I want to enjoy before I have training goggles on again. This year my mind is on one thing and one thing only as my off time approaches… My honeymoon!I married my Jr.High School mate in March and right after the wedding I did not have the opportunity to do our ideal honeymoon. Don’t get me wrong the mini-moon was absolutely amazing and courtesy of my good friends, The Schmitt's. Where we were able to stay in a beautiful beach home in La Jolla just seconds away from the beach! Awesome??? I think Sí (I’ve been practicing my spanish since my In-Laws are spanish speakers, so in case you were wondering that means yes). But, during my mini moon I did not have the liberty of completely relaxing and not worrying about having to get a workout in.

Although my coach was nice enough to allow me 3 days off for the day before my wedding , the day of my actual wedding and one more day of rest the following day after my wedding, but on day 2 of my 5 day mini-moon I had to resume training. I did not have any track workouts, however, I still had to train instead of playing alllll day! 30 minute runs with one 60 minute run, they were runs none the less. Greatest thing about that was I got to go on my first run with Louis as husband and wife on the beach!
While I am grateful for the opportunity to spend that time with my husband immediately following my wedding, I am really looking forward to spending time with him without a run looming in the back of my mind. That’s why we planned an extensive mini-moon to New Zealand!! We will be spending a full 3 weeks touring the entire North and South Island of beautiful New Zealand via the Magic Bus. What’s the Magic bus you ask? It’s a bus touring company that is partnered with YHA, the youth hostels association, that allows you to plan a trip without worrying about how you are getting from point to point or where you are going to stay when you get there! The greatest part about it… You can wing it and stay at any destination as long as you’d like, just tell your representative the night before and they will reserve a hostel for you at your next destination and also a seat on the bus that comes every morning so you can get there! I am so excited I’ll have to show you a map of all the spots we plan on touring in a future note, but I can’t tell you our schedule because we don’t have one! Spontaneity.
Before we depart on Wed, Sept 28. I still have a few things to take care of in the United States of America! One of those things happen to be the 5th avenue Road Mile in New York City on Saturday, September 24, 2011. So here I sit in Manhattan on this muggy and foggy Thursday afternoon of September 22 awaiting my run with the amazing, Sally Kipyego whom I am meeting in 2 minutes. 2 minutes!!! Oh snap, I gotta go! Central Park here we come!

My Trip to Zurich

(The blog is written in a letter form, because this was originally an email, I sent to my coach)

Dear Tony,

            Sorry I am just writing an in depth note about my journey from 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea to Zurich Diamond League that took place just 3 days later. First off, I am really happy that I went to the meet, even happier that we made the decision to stay calm after we missed the flight from Los Angeles to Europe because there would have been no point to continue on with the travel if I was not composed, so I got to work on the mental… 

From the moment we spoke about laughing about this later I began to have a great time and was enjoying the ridiculous process of getting to Zurich! Once I arrived to Canada I went and bought two turkey sandwiches for Louis and myself. I did this to limit any worry as to if the food would be enough on the plane, or if it would even be edible. Also once I got on the plane I wanted to go to sleep once we got in the air, this way I was as rested as possible since I was arriving into Zurich the morning of the race! Oops! 

So the seat I was originally getting would have been in a cramped space that had two seats side by side, I looked on the screen as one of the receptionist was helping me find another seat and decided I would just sit in one of the empty seats that had another empty seat right next to it. I scanned my neighbors and assessed their demeanor to see if they would be the type that would oppose me lying on both seats. The woman next to me noted that she was hoping there would be an empty seat between her and I so she could sleep and I was like “Crap! I suck because this seat was empty” then I was like I am just going to tell her flat out what I am trying to do…. So I did and she was all for allowing me to lie down on the seat beside her. About an hour into the flight I was super uncomfortable trying to lie down on the seats, so much so, I made my legs numb. I had to come up with another plan. So I crawled into my sleeping bag, yes I brought a sleeping bag… (sometimes havin to sleep in an airport happens.) … And I asked the gentleman to my right and the woman to my left if they minded if I slept on the floor in the foot space, neither opposed. So I grabbed my pillow I brought from home, layed a blanket underneath the pillow to protect it from foot grime and I went to sleep for the duration of the flight, well just after I ate half of my sandwich. 

7hours later we landed in Zurich, it was 11am, I went straight to the hotel via hotel shuttle. It took us only 5 minutes to arrive, I checked into my room and slept until lunch time ( 2:30pm), grabbed lunch and then went right back to bed before waking up at about 3:45pm for my 3:50pm shakeout run/ activation (5hours before my 8:50 pm race). By the time I finished the whole thing I had to shower and get ready for a 45 minute tram ride that was leaving at 6pm… no time for another nap or visualization so I improvised, I got dressed and headed to the tram meeting spot and decided I would take a mini snooze and visualize on the 45 minute tram ride, I figured that was plenty of time… 

I arrived to the stadium very well centered with the attitude of “Well I made it, I traveled all the way out here from Los Angeles laying over everywhere, I had several doubters as to whether I would perform well with the circumstances of my hectic travel. At one point one of those doubters was me, but when I decided to go forward, I made the decision to go forward , I made the decision to go forward with authority, I even had the meet director try and take my lane! (I don’t really blame him, he was probably like “Ok well if she is not here now, she can’t possibly still be trying to come, let alone thinking about racing”) WRONG!!! I fought to be here so I began fighting to make a statement… I did everything in my power to remain even keel… If I am going to do this, I thought, I want to do it well. 8:50pm the race goes off and I had every intention of winning and running very fast… I didn’t win, just got caught at the line by the World Champion, but I beat everyone else in the field that pretty much made up our World Championship Final plus a few and I managed to run a 1:58.4 and grabbed my 6th time running under 2:00 minutes this year (pat on the back). Although on paper it doesn’t look like I won, I in my heart, know I had won the most tremendous battles and am so delighted that I fought it out. I made it to the line and competed for me. I was able to learn a lot about my mental strength as well as my physical. I learned to be able to find the victories in what feels like defeat. I learned to take hold of the positives and let go of the negatives… I learned to let go of rocks and NEVER EVER give into limited thinking.


Special thanks to Tony for helping me keep my head on, my awesome mother for getting me to the airport and helping fix our travel errors, my loving husband for dealing with me and loving me the whole way, David The Peruvian Punisher for the pump up talk about going forward and just crushing, my cousin, Mikhaile and Samara for allowing me to stay with them on our long long long lay over in Newark and also for ordering us a box of Papa Johns Pepperoni pizza to devour upon our arrival.