If you’re on Twitter and follow a few fitness types, chances are you couldn’t miss the #ashmeiambassadors takeover for the past few days. Ashmei, a gorgeous running clothing brand branching out into cycle and triathlon clothing, invited applications for the third running of it’s ambassador scheme, giving a small number of athletes the opportunity to wear their gorgeous kit for a year, test prototypes and be involved in showcasing the brand.
I submitted an application, along with I suspect hundreds of others, and then promptly forgot about it- after all, such great opportunities are popular and there are some very worthy athletes out there.
So, imagine my surprise when an email from the lovely folks at Freestak landed in my inbox, informing me that I’d been shortlisted, and invited down for the #ashmeiambassadors selection day in Hertfordshire!
After bribing James with cake, the promise of bacon on the way and chance to seek out some monster climbs down in the Chilterns, he gave me a lift down, and after a long drive, I finally arrived at Ashmei HQ, which was packed full of fellow runners, cyclists and triathletes. Some were familiar faces from Twitter, finally met in real life, and some were new people to meet, with some pretty awesome experiences under their belts and races in their calendars.
After raiding their carb supplies, we settled in for a presentation from Ashmei owner and founder Stuart, about the ethos of the brand, the design process for the kit and the #ashmeiambassadors programme itself, before we kitted up in some of the world’s softest socks and headed out, half of the group with Stuart and Georgie for a bike ride, and the rest of us for a beautiful trail run around the grounds.
We ran, we chatted about upcoming races, and I think most of us would agree, completely forgot that we were ‘competing’ to be selected: there were world championship qualifying triathletes happily rubbing shoulders with complete amateurs like me, and admiring the beautiful scenery of the Chilterns.
We also took many selfies, of course- put a bunch of social media savvy athletes together and naturally selfies have to happen- kudos to James though, who took it one step further, running with a GoPro on a selfie stick and then creating this awesome video of our run. Isn’t it gorgeous?
Check it out- you might spot a familiar runner in a lilac top windmilling over the hills!
So whether or not I’m lucky enough to be selected, I had a great day learning about a gamechanging new brand on the sportswear scene, and met some truly inspiring athletes, from the weekend warriors like me all the way to the Kona qualifiers and the international ultra runners. Thanks Stuart and co for having us!