When we found out that Sseko Fellow Pam Cooke is training for a marathon in her Sseko sandals, we could hardly believe it! Disclaimer: our sandals aren’t made with the intention of being running shoes, but Pam is taking her #ssekostyle to the next level! Check out what she’s doing…
What do Sseko Designs and long-distance running have in common? Answer: Me!
About a month ago, I was visiting with a long-time family friend who was home visiting her parents. Joy recently moved to Portland and was working at Sseko Designs headquarters. In the midst of the ordinary “How have you been?”, “What’s new?” back-and-forth small talk I said, “Tell me about your new job.” Little did I know that this simple conversation would lead to a thrilling and deeply satisfying new chapter in my life.
As Joy described the vision of Sseko and the impact the company has on workers and University-bound women in Uganda, my heart resonated with a feeling of homecoming. “Yes!” I thought. “This company is doing what I know will make a difference. This is where I belong.” Before I had ever seen the website or a single product, I knew I had to join Sseko. About four days later, Joy interviewed me to become a Sseko Fellow, assigned me to an awesome mentor (Laura McCarley), and I ordered my starter kit. I was launched!
‘So where does running come into this story? Several years ago I ran a trail race with a co-worker who was a “barefoot” runner. All she had was a thin pad tied to her feet with cotton shoelaces. She said getting rid of running shoes improved her form and put less pressure on her knees and hips. I was skeptical. However, when I received my ribbon sandals, my first thought was, “These look a lot like what barefoot runners wear”. The arrival of my sandals just happened to correspond with me thrashing my feet (long story) so I couldn’t put on regular running shoes for about a week. So I thought, “Why not give it a shot! I’ll try to run in my new sandals.”