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Fitspiration: Mom-of-Three and Athlete Nicole dela Cruz

"My body craves that movement and energy boost. Working out isn't just a routine–it's my way of nurturing both my body and my soul."

It's true what the old adage says—you become the company you keep. Such is very true for Nicole de la Cruz, a mom-of-three and athlete who has made fitness her lifelong passion. But this passion was not born out of a random whim—she had parents who supported her athletic activities and encouraged her to keep moving as she grew up. Her athletic pursuits are also supported by her husband Coach Rio of Runrio, who has his own fitness story to tell. As we will find out in this interview with this month's Fitspiration, fitness is not one-size-fits-all. You have to find what you love doing and keep at it. For Nicole, it's running. Read on to start getting fit-spired!

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Nicole de la Cruz


Metro.Style: Tell us about yourself and what you do now, your passions, and how you keep fit.

Nicole dela Cruz: I'm a proud mother of three incredible kids who finds joy in staying active, embracing fitness, and immersing myself in the world of sports. I'm also the woman behind Women’s Run PH as the Founder and President, my mission is to motivate, inspire and empower women through running. And witnessing the growth and empowerment that this event brings is truly fulfilling and I’m very passionate about it. My vision for this event is to be the most celebrated women's running event in the country, and I’m happy to say that I was able to do it.


As part of my mission, I also created opportunities for women, I organize FREE training runs and community sessions, including self-defense classes, all aimed at supporting and uplifting the ladies in our community. Seeing over 2200 new runners join us at the last event was a remarkable milestone that exemplified the impact we are making and let me tell you, it was incredibly empowering!


It's not just about fitness–it's my happy place!


My personal fitness regimen revolves around running and strength training, which not only keeps me physically fit but also rejuvenates my mind and spirit. I want to stay in shape, so you can catch me hitting the pavement for a run or getting my strength training on. It's not just about fitness–it's my happy place!

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Metro.Style: Have you always been into fitness? What kind of workouts do you love doing? How did you get into all these? 

NDC: So, workouts are my jam! Fitness has been a constant companion throughout my life. From my early days in grade school, where I thrived in various sports with a competitive spirit, to achieving milestones like a 3rd dan black belt and becoming the first female downhill longboard champion in the Philippines, the adrenaline rush and sense of achievement from these endeavors are unparalleled. I owe my love for sports to my amazing parents who always had my back and supported my athletic endeavors. Starting early with a focus on staying active instilled a sense of discipline that I still carry with me today. The workouts I do as mentioned are running and strength training and these are my go to workouts and when I skip a workout, something just feels off, you know? My body craves that movement and energy boost. Working out isn't just a routine–it's my way of nurturing both my body and my soul. 

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MS: How long have you been doing them and what are some challenges you've faced?

NDC: I've faced plenty of challenges in all the sports I've tried, but I've managed to conquer them all. Now that I'm really into running, my biggest hurdle is TIME! Juggling responsibilities like taking care of the kids, managing their school activities, and running the household, on top of working and ensuring Runrio and Women’s Run PH are thriving, can be quite overwhelming. We have events every weekend, which I'm grateful for, but sometimes it feels like there's just not enough time in a day! I'm still figuring out how to make everything work smoothly for me.


MS: Describe a day in your life, and how you manage to squeeze in time for a workout.

NDC: My typical day is all about maximizing every hour! I wake up around 4-4:30 am to get the kids ready for school, then Rio and I head to UP for our morning run and workout. We're back home by 7 am, and I rush to drop off my youngest at school before heading to work. My day quickly fills up with meetings, client presentations, checking school notices, and by the time we get home at 7:30 pm, it's time for our nightly play session with the kids, and that's a wrap! Time is really a luxury for me and that's why we workout early in the morning. 

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Nicole with her husband Coach Rio of Runrio

MS: What about your diet? Do you follow a strict regimen and how does it supplement your activities?

NDC: I make sure to fuel my body with the good stuff—vitamins and meals that won't clog my arteries or send my cholesterol through the roof! That’s why I pay close attention to what I put on my plate. Keeping an eye on cholesterol and saturated fats is key for me to maintain a healthy balance and keep my LDL levels in check. But that doesn't mean I skimp on taste. I savor every bite because enjoying what you eat is just as important as eating right and finding a balance that works for you and keeps you going strong.

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MS: How do you treat yourself?

NDC: I believe in treating myself like the valuable asset that I am because investing in myself is the best gift I can give to myself with all the hard work that I do! Whether it's a spa day, going out with friends or simply indulging in activities that bring me joy (workout), I make sure to prioritize self-love and recharge my batteries and I always try my best to carve out time for the most important person in my life—me!


MS: Your best advice for women who struggle to keep a fitness routine?

NDC: The key to sticking to a fitness routine is simple—do what makes your heart sing! Forget about following the latest fads or what everyone else is doing. Choose a workout that makes you happy, not one that's imposed on you by others. I’ve tried it and I always go back to the one that I love. To make it a routine: take it slow and steady, starting with just 10 minutes a day if that's all you can manage. Consistency is key, so make the most of those 10 minutes daily and gradually build up from there. Trust me, this approach worked wonders for me, and it can work for you too!


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