Lean in with The Kings with Dominique King
We’ve come across many great people from the start of this publication at various stages of their fitness journeys. One of my favorite things about this publication is when we come across runners that inspire as well as a couple thats bonded together through running. This month we chat with Dominique King as we discuss her inspiration, running, family, couples run Friday and most of all her journey.
MSM: I figure we can start this Q & A as if we were going through the days of the week. Let’s get into Marvelous Monday. For most of us Mondays can be a complete drag and/or a struggle which essentially is all mental. When it’s all said and done Mondays are the start of a new week, a new beginning, new goals for the week. What are Mondays for you and the meaning of Marvelous Mondays?
Dominique: Let’s do it so often we want to jump into the deepest part of the pool but there is nothing wrong with easing in one day at a time. Mondays look me dead in the eye like everyone else and lets me know it’s going to be a run for my money. The shift I made was looking forward to that very moment and figuring out how to embrace what’s ahead and extend myself grace when things don’t go as planned. Marvelous Monday is the morning mirror hype session you might have missed, or didn’t realize you need.
MSM: Running has a tendency to impact our lives in many ways with so many positive effects both physically and mentally. What I’ve gathered from you is the mental wellness that you gain from each run. For our readers explain how those positive runs impact your day to day.
Dominique: Running is this exchange of energy between every single cell in my body and the environment I’m running in. I completely let go out there. Everything goes silent and I am able to connect to that inner voice that gets drowned out by the chaos of the everyday. I approach people, tasks, and situations clearly. I’m not engaging with the world from a place of pent up un-dealt with emotions and stressors. I’m not lashing out yesterday’s mess, it’s been taken care of out on the trails. That’s mental freedom.
MSM: Where did your run journey begin? What was the moment for Dominique where you said this will become part of your lifestyle?
Dominique: I have always been a runner. Running has intertwined itself in my life at various stages. Growing up I used running as a way to escape my home environment. I used to run and walk between towns trying to make sense of why things shook out the way they did for me. In my older years Running was my way of maintaining an unhealthy view of what I thought my body should be. However, This beautiful chapter of my run journey began the moment I decided I wanted to live. Authentically extending myself the grace I tell everyone else to do for themselves. I knew the moment I stepped out and bet on my healing through therapy and running it was a done deal.
MSM: One surprising thing we haven’t discussed in this magazine is trail running as you seem to take most of your runs into the trails. For us city folks as myself, give our readers an idea of what the trails offer both from a physical standpoint since I’m sure the trails are much harder than the pavement.
Dominique: Trails is a different game. Nothing prepares you for trail running until you get out there and experience it. No matter your level of athleticism, trail will have your number at some point and that’s non negotiable. Trail is running knowing that way more is working against you than for you. I love the street but out on the trail no one is picking you up if you quit. There’s no stores to grab water, no bathrooms. It’s you and what you bring and if you are underprepared the trail will expose it. Trail doesn’t care that you run a 8 and under mile on the street. A mile out here may make you double that. Determination and humility is a requirement. All that said the pride you get, knocking out hills, hitting a summit, or seeing your car at the end…That’s priceless.
MSM: You’re a very consistent runner always logging a steady amount of miles throughout the course of the week. Give our readers a peek into your run journey, what has race life looked like for you?
Running is this exchange of energy between every single cell in my body and the environment I’m running in. I completely let go out there. Everything goes silent and I am able to connect to that inner voice that gets drowned out by the chaos of the everyday.
Dominique: Funny enough I wasn’t a huge racer pre covid. I started signing up for all these races right before covid hit and overnight they were gone. I love to race for the community aspect. The energy in the hustle and bustle on race day which is undeniable. When I decide to do a race I try to be intentional about why I want to do it. Don’t get me wrong I love a pretty medal but if I preach about running being this authentic action even when I choose races the rule applies. I am after a few Ultras so miles right now are a must.
MSM: Covid has essentially halted EVERYTHING from top to bottom, now that it seems as if we are moving into post covid life do you plan on signing up to get back into races?
Dominique: Yep. Signed up and ready to fly. I got work to do out here. I want at least two Ultras under my belt. I have scratched, clawed and worked my butt off for them. So not to sound cocky… They are mine and I want the medals for these.
MSM: IRUNWednesday, mid week runs tend to be somewhat of a struggle for most of us, we’re busy, we’re working, family, just life in general BUT when we do get out there to run we essentially can find ourselves getting that mid week reset. Take us through your IRUN Wednesday.
Dominique: IRun. Wednesday that’s me holding me accountable to my goals and showing through film what it looks like where I run. I want people to see what I’m doing and get curious about trying it out for themselves. Wednesday is for all the smoke the trail can offer. Wednesdays are knowing mentally I have a thousand excuses and choosing the why over them all.
MSM: The Runners lounge on Clubhouse hosted by the Kings, where you discuss various topics when it comes to everything running and life. For our readers where can we catch the show and what have been some of your favorite topics to discuss on the show?
Dominique: We are on Club House our House is The Runners Lounge. We are there every Tuesday 3pm PST Sunday 9:30 am. I love our Representation Matters Topics because that’s one of my passions. To bring diversity and inclusivity to the outdoors and the sport of trail running.
MSM: One thing I absolutely love is seeing couples that run together as you and your husband get together for couples run Friday each week which gives you both the ability to reset and reconnect. Is running something that the both of you have always been consistent with?
Dominique: No. Ken is a phenomenal boxer and martial artist but running really wasn’t his thing. He started running with me out of a need for us to spend time together and it blossomed from there. Friday is our way of connecting on a deeper level than surface conversation. Running with your spouse you will learn more about them just by observation alone.
MSM: Take our readers through Couples run Friday how you both came up with the concept and how it helps the both of you/brings you closer together.
Dominique: Posting our runs was my idea and Ken was not a fan. He was thinking, “Who is going to want to see this? Our goal is to show strong black families and marriages exist. We know that our way of spending time wont be everyones way but if it inspires couples to look for ways to connect then the goal is achieved. For us, it brought us closer because Ken can fully understand why running means so much to me. He has grown a love for it too, so all these new doors open up for us to explore different avenues together. I have learned about my husband in ways no dinner or movie date could show me.
MSM: I have to ask lol, who’s the real runner of team King and who’s faster (lol).
Dominique: I’m the runner. Fast hmm. Ken smokes me on the flat sprint but endurance and hills that’s mine.
MSM: Have the both of you ever discussed going for the big one and running a marathon together or any type of race?
Dominique: I would love for Ken to run a marathon, but I have to respect his boundaries and right now he is cool supporting me on the long hauls. He has moved up to 10k so I’m celebrating that.
MSM: What is Dominique’s inspiration?
Dominique: I find daily inspiration by seeing fellow runners you guys highlight but really the inspiration is being a healthy person physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.
MSM: What does the future hold for Dominique and the Kings?
Dominique: I don’t exactly know but I’m ready for what may come.
MSM: Any final words that you would like to say to our readers?
Dominique: I leave everything that I do with with two things, find your dirt and connect and more importantly be well; you are worthy.
MSM: From us here at Mid Strike we wish you nothing but the best and to keep doing what you’re doing, continue to inspire and spread positivity.
Dominique: Thank you for allowing me to share space on your platform and I truly appreciate the support. Platforms like yours are needed and I and many other runners appreciate you stepping up to give us the content.