Today we’d like to introduce you to Mandy Mullen.
Hi Mandy, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
Finding light in challenging situations has been a theme for me throughout my adult life. It began in April of 2013 when, as I held 9 months old tight, we experienced the unknown and fear of being at the Boston Marathon where bombs went off after my husband crossed the finish line. The moment froze me in time, and the experience motivated me to become a better runner and honor the sport and the people impacted that day.
I went on to dream big and attempt to run more half marathons with the goal of one day being good enough to run the Boston Marathon myself. My running growth led me to become a UESCA Certified Run Coach, creating a women’s only run group in Windsor, CO to support other women in their journey. I eventually gave a run.Windsor home when I opened a group fitness studio, FusionFIT in 2019, while also taking over small 5K Races the town put on which became the run. Windsor Race Series.
Things were amazing that year- putting on four 5K / 10K races and an upcoming Half Marathon, running the women’s run group, and a budding Group Fitness Studio that (I like to think) also changed so many lives. Unfortunately, the weekend we celebrated the first anniversary of FusionFIT our doors were closed due to COVID. Rather than curl up and give up (which crossed my mind), I once again turned to my entrepreneurial spirit and hopped on the virtual workout bandwagon, performing zoom workouts three times a day to keep my clients paying while also homeschooling our two boys.
We didn’t give up on the gym and fought to not give up on the inaugural Windsor Half Marathon scheduled for October 2020. It would be the first official half marathon event in Windsor – ever- and we knew it was what our community needed most. So, on Oct. 8th, 2020, 300 runners (in masks) toed the start line- from 15 States and all across Colorado – to run, and celebrate the movement, their health, and our community. That race solidified it for me- I was meant to be a leader in this community, connecting runners, and walkers to businesses and organizations that make Windsor great.
Fast forward to today: The run.Windsor Race Series now holds seven large races annually, I closed FusionFIT (because owning a brick-and-mortar gym through Covid just got the best of me and I’m okay with that), and no- I haven’t qualified for Boston but instead turned my sights on ultra running. I found that amidst the stress of keeping so many things going, trail running was more relaxing even though much more challenging.
In August of this year, I ran (and finished!) the Leadville 100, with my husband and the support of our family and friends. I am still doing hard things, finding light amongst all challenges, and doing my best to make a small positive impact in this world.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Oh gosh… I guess I wrote that in the last answer. There have been incredible struggles the entire way, but overcoming those has taught me that I have what it takes to do hard things. With the right mindset, support, drive, and grit- we can all do hard things! Whether it was a lack of financing, know-how, resources, covid, doors shut in my face…I have seen many challenges but now accept them as stepping stones and opportunities to grow.
Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
On the surface, I am an entrepreneur, small business owner, and race director performing 80% of marketing, PR, advertising, finance, web development, social media, course management, permitting, etc… Beyond that, I see myself as a leader in the community who’s passionate about making a difference. I serve on the board of directors for the Windsor Area Chamber of Commerce and North Range Behavioral Health, chair the Tourism Commission, active member of the Chamber Events Committee, and volunteer regularly.
My experiences as a small business owner through COVID made me realize the importance of banding together as businesses and organizations. I’m firm that the mission of run.Windsor not only serves runners but our entire community. Our races allow in-kind sponsorships of small businesses so they can use our marketing power to reach customers. We also donate to a variety of local non-profits without asking for anything in return.
Is there anyone you’d like to thank or give credit to?
There have been hundreds of helping hands along the way and nothing I do could be done alone. My husband is my number one supporter and even became our Timer along with other race-day roles, along with my children. I have an incredible team who work part-time on a project basis outside of their full-time careers: Shawn, Lisa, Barb, and Ann.
We rely on the help of so many volunteers from my tribe of chamber members and friends, to our dear friends and family who show up on race day ready to make the magic happen. I also have to give. a shout out to the Town of Windsor who has had to do their hard work alongside my side to learn to navigate the race series, as running events of the level and quantity never happened before run.Windsor.
- Website: www.runwindsorco.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/run.windsor/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/run.WindsorCo
John Robson Photography