Ashley is a geologist at Schlumberger, specializing in geologic modeling software. She completed her Masters degree in geology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is an avid runner, cyclist, and rock climber. She will pretty much race anything and everything. You can find her hanging out on White Oak in Houston, TX or climbing and running in Austin.

Jun 122013
Houston Meet

Funding?  Check.  Waiver forms? Check.  Singlets? Check.  Tents and chairs?  Check.  Food and Gatorade?  You bet.  But did we have a team?  I was able to account for the 20 or so folks who had been coming to practice 3 times a week for the past 2 months, but we would need double that number to fill our roster for A and B teams for every race and relay.  Two nights before our big meet, my co-captains and I sat down to pick relay strings and determine who would be running each event.  We had received 42 entry forms(!) and each of those 42 had told us which lengths they wanted to race.  We faced the monumentous task of aligning the lengths people wanted to run, how old the person was, their gender, and my knowledge about their speed to place them into relay strings which had certain restrictions as set by USA Track and Field.  For example, in the Master’s Relay, all racers had to be 35 or above and a woman had to run the first 100m leg.  After a long night that included a matrix filtered excel spreadsheet, we had our top individual racers and our A and B team relay strings picked.  We were ready! Continue reading »

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The Challenges of Coaching

 Posted by on May 29, 2013  No Responses »
May 292013
Our home! Lamar Track in Houston.

It’s been a month now since I started coaching my corporate track team.  Practices are held every Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday, with about 20 runners coming to practice.  I have been faced with several unforeseen challenges and with leading a group of runners with a huge variety in athletic backgrounds. Needless to say things have been…interesting.

“Ashley…This is so hard…”

I’ll admit it.  I made our training schedule way too difficult.  I made a schedule that an active racer like myself could do, but I overlooked the main problem – most of the folks on this team are not racers.  Our upcoming meet may be the only running event they participate in every year.  I’ve been truly humbled when it comes to telling people what they should do.  I’ve realized that not everyone can do the workout we have planned for the day and I have to be ready to provide options.  Even so, the dedication to the training is inspiring.  Some of my runners have never run this hard in their lives, but they give 120% every practice.  I often hear the classic line, “This is too hard”, but I encourage them to try, and at the end of practice, when it’s all over, I always hear “Oh, that wasn’t too bad!”  And then I jokingly ask them if they want to do a few more repeats! Continue reading »

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And So It Begins…

 Posted by on April 9, 2013  No Responses »
Apr 092013

Well, I never thought I would coach a track team.  Never in a thousand years.  Yet, here I am, up super late trying to put together a workout schedule for the month of April, trying to order spikes and singlets, and thinking what in the world am I doing?!

Every year, Schlumberger competes against the top oil companies in Houston in a throw-down style track meet in early June.  Success in this local meet can mean advancing to regionals and even nationals in the corporate track circuit.  Unfortunately, the Schlumberger running list serve hasn’t been too organized in the past.   And we have some serious competition.  Think Edina in Mighty Ducks, or the rich boys in The Karate Kid.  Instead we’re talking about the Exxon Mobil Tigers with matching uniforms and having won the past gazillion local meets, they are the enemy.

And that is where I come in. Continue reading »

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Apr 032013

 When I discovered I would be testing a pair of Hokas, I first wanted to figure out what “Hoka” actually meant.  This is what I found:

“hoka” (in Japanese) = the other

“hoka” (in Hawaiian) = baffling

“hoka” (in Swahili) = mania

“hoka” (in Maori) = to fly (the actual meaning behind the shoes)

You could say I was ready for anything after reading that.  And true to words, the Hoka Stinsons I received were out of the ordinary. Continue reading »

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Nov 262012
Be visible at night

As the days get shorter and shorter it becomes inevitable that some runs will be started or completed in the dark.  At night, or in early morning hours, running on sidewalks or on the street can become a major safety hazard.  For many years, runners who wanted to be safe in the dark had to wear yellow or orange reflective vests, similar to construction workers.  Times have changed; with the integration of the LED and with new reflective technology (such as 3M Scotchlite), standing out in the dark has become a lot more stylish and a lot more fun.  I’ve assembled a list of some of the coolest visibility products on the market today; many of these would make great Christmas gifts! Continue reading »

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Oct 082012
Sad Runner

Having run quite a large number of races at this point, I knew it was only a matter of time before one of them was going to be pretty awful. The last race I ran gave me a PR, but the instant I finished I felt as if it was a waste of time and I was ready to go home. So what was it? Why didn’t I have any fun? I realized it was the demeanor of the folks putting on the race; they really did not seem to care. There were only cookies and fruit at the end (for a dinnertime race), the guy supposed to be handing out waters at the halfway point was just sitting on top of the cooler (what?! we have to pour our own water while racing?!), and there were no awards, not even for the first place finishers (and it was chip-timed? Why?). To add to insult, the race cost $35 (for a 5K!) and that was the “no-tshirt” option! Personally, I feel as if a race is not only about pushing your body to its limits, but getting the chance to socialize and enjoy the company of other runners and running-minded people. So, after a little research, I’m going to share a few ways to not end up running in (and not wasting money on) a poorly put together race. Continue reading »

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