Tuesday, November 19, 2013

JunoActive Famed By Trail Dames

Thanks to Trail Dames' founder, Anne Huthmaker, for writing this weeks blog for JunoActive. Her experience as a plus size hiker has inspired us! Keep doing what you love, Anne. Or should we say 'Embrace Your Active Life!'
Last weekend, I was asked to be part of a panel discussion on hiking and backpacking for women. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s Biennial Conference is a really big deal and I was very excited to be a part of it!  As three other women and I fielded questions and shared stories about our outdoor experiences, the topic turned to beginning hikers. 

One of the participants asked what to do if you were new to hiking and needed a place to start. A woman in the room raised her hand and said, “Look online and find your local Trail Dames chapter- that is a great place to start." I was stunned. I looked closely and realized that I did not know this woman. She was not a friend, or a Trail Dame. For her, Trail Dames was the first thing that popped into her head for beginning women’s hiking. Can you imagine how exciting that feels?  When I created the organization six years ago, I dreamed of the name becoming synonymous with women’s hiking. I knew that it was happening slowly but surely, but I was still touched and excited to hear it being suggested outside of my own circles.

Later, as the conversation changed to clothing, someone asked about plus-sized outdoor wear. This time, several people spoke out. “Junonia!” The name was repeated many times, with requests for the website.  It got me thinking….do you think that Anne realizes that the name of her company has become synonymous with plus-sized outdoor wear? The website says that when she founded the company in 1995, she did so wanting to provide excellent, long-lasting quality that would engender customer loyalty for years to come. That is the Junonia that I have always known. But I wondered last weekend, if she remembered her first moment like this. The moment where her dream had become a reality outside of herself and her community. That moment where she realized that it really was happening.

You know….. I have never met Anne Kelly, the founder of Junonia. I don’t work for her or the company. I am just a long-time customer that was completely flattered to be asked to contribute to the Junonia Blog. But sitting in that room last weekend, I felt a kinship with Anne.  Her company is much larger and well known than my Trail Dames, but I would be willing to bet that we share a lot of the same thoughts and dreams about our creations. And I hope she knows that all of the hard work she has put into Junonia is echoing out there in the words of women that she has never even met.

Thank you Anne for everything you do!

Anna Huthmaker, Founder
Trail Dames

JunoActive Plus Size Hiking Clothes

JunoActive Plus Size Hiking Clothes

Monday, November 11, 2013

Mud Run Mud Fun

This week we got a blog entry from Andrea. JunoActive sponsored her team in the Lozilu 5k mud run for cancer in Minnesota. Her inspiring story tells us that sometimes you have to get your hands dirty to support the ones you love. And that getting dirty can be fun exercise. Way to go Andrea!

Andrea (far right) after running 5k in the mud
"My friends asked me if I wanted to participate in a mud run back in April.  I wasn’t sure, but it was for a good cause-to raise money for lymphoma and leukemia patients. This was a cause near to my heart. My mom had gone through two bouts of lymphoma within 1 ½ years and rounds of chemotherapy.  Since the lymphoma came back so quickly, her doctor wanted her to have a stem cell transplant to hopefully destroy the cancer cells. After a three week stay in the hospital she was home in February.
So, when my friends asked me to run I had to do it.  I had never done anything like this, I wasn’t sure what to expect. JunoActive.com sponsored us for the event. The pic of our T-shirt is below, as well as pics before and after the event.

It was all in fun. They had many obstacles along the way, walking through slews, and walking/running through the muddy trails.  It took about 1 ½ hours to complete the course. At the end, they had black mud pits that you could crawl around in if you hadn’t had enough mud yet. Then to wash up-the choice was either go run into the pond to rinse off, or use the hoses that were dribbling water. My friends and I had a great time helping each other through the obstacles and laughing along the way.
It was a wonderful experience and I will most likely make it a yearly event. The most fantastic news of all; 2 days after the event, my mother was officially in remission!  So far so good!"

Submitted by Andrea 
Find more info about the mud run at lozilu.com

JunoActive sponsors lozilu mud run
JunoActive sponsors lozilu mud run

Get your own plus size running and walking gear at JunoActive - plus size womens activewear

Monday, November 4, 2013

Get Away From It All

This week we go on vacation with one of our bloggers on a Carnival Cruise. The cruise went to the Grand Cayman Islands, Roatan, Belize and Costa Maya. Janet tells us all about how accepted and loved she felt being apart of the people and places she visited. Of course, she brought along her JunoActive's swimsuit on the cruise. Below, she tells us how it helped her feel more at ease and comfortable sitting on the beach or by the pool.


"That was such a fun day! What a special place. It must be filled with the happiness of all the people who have played there, walked there, sung there, danced there, loved there. And, now our laughter will blend into the mix to add another dimension to its song. I wonder how many visitors choose to hear its unique and rhythmic voice -- the voice of peace and harmony; the voice of joy.

I had forgotten that there were places that could make us feel so good about ourselves, about life. It was really magical to just sit back and relax and allow the day to happen. I believe that allowing the cruise to take me so far away from daily pressures and thoughts has change me somehow, made my world a better place to be in. At the very least, I feel so much more relaxed and that is a wonderful thing. It was like a gift, all wrapped up with the colors of life, of friendship.

We should take more time to get away from the busy lives we create for ourselves, to find another way of looking at things and to just take in the beauty of a place so far removed from our normal environment. I hope I can do something so special for you, one day.

Thank you so much for helping me find the magic. "

- Janet