Saturday, January 30, 2010

Miles for Miss America

"She's got style, she's got grace..." Oh wait that's Miss United States from Miss Congeniality. But with Miss America 2010 being decided tonight, I'm not too far off, and I swear I saw a snippet of the Sandra Bullock flick on TV during the afternoon. Like the fictional Miss United States, Miss America has more than style and grace--she and all of the state contestants vying for the title have enviable bodies that seemingly make onlookers either drool or get jealous. They have some facts that separate them from the crowd, both those in this year's competition and previous ones. And my slightly selfish excitement stems from finding those with a fitness fact listed among their many accomplishments.

Take Miss California, Kristy Cavinder for example. Not only does she have dreams of becoming a doctor, but she's also training for her first marathon. She was also named the first runner up after Miss Virginia Caressa Cameron was named Miss America 2010.

Or check out the bio on Miss New Mexico, Nicole Miner. She serves as a run mentor with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Team in Training program. And we're not just talking about making appearances at events. Miner has run three half marathons and one full marathon with Team in Training and has mentored five women as they took on the challenge to run the P.F. Chang Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon in Phoenix two weeks ago.

Miss Hawaii, Raeceen Woolford, may not have the marathon miles like Miss California or Miss New Mexico, but she does have an impressive team sports resume--I wouldn't be surprised if I just couldn't dig up running accomplishments on her. This scholar athlete at the University of Hawaii - Manoa is simply high on active endeavors. She's surfed since she was 10, raced a triathlon, practices yoga and was a four-year letter winner at UH in volleyball. Love it!

Add another runner to the mix with Miss Indiana, Nicole Pollard. She ran cross-country for four years according to her bio.

But my favorite is a Miss America competitor from years past: Miss Utah 2007, Jill Stevens. The big news on Jill was that she served in Afghanistan, hence the nickname G.I. Jill, and ran marathons--coolness factor in my book since I always saw Miss America wannabes as women who had impressive voices, dance steps and musical talents and I knew nothing beyond that. Call me ignorant but I was enlightened--for lack of a better word (hey, it's late)--by the TLC show that went behind the scenes of the Miss America contestants in the weeks leading up to the competition. Talk about learning way more about the delegates than anything covered in the two-hour broadcast that selects the winner. Stevens' marathoning came up often in conversation that it was an easy fact to remember. She's fast too, clocking at 3:13 at the Deseret Morning News Marathon in July 2009. And that's not even her fastest time--she ran five minutes faster at the St. George Marathon in 2005.

Yeah, I'm a sucker for race results and random information. Gotta love finding who's involved in the sport--or any active pursuits, for that matter. I'm the dork who gets those "Ah Ha" moments when I find another runner or triathlete. For more details on the Miss America delegates, read about these at I'm sure I'm missing some runners among the 53 women. Photo grabbed from Posted by Kate

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