by Jude Jacob Kayton September 05, 2019
About me: I’m a lover of life and of all things that add value. I’m an athlete, blogger, designer and ESPN Analyst. I love being creative and active. I played softball at the University of Oklahoma. I was a 2x National Champion, an All American, and the Big 12 Player of the Year in my senior season!
Becoming a Softball National Champion
I won the Softball Championship during my freshman year and then again in my senior year. When I started at Oklahoma University, I spent my time absorbing the championship mentality, and learning what it took to live in excellence. I wanted to master my craft and excel in everything I did both personally and professionally.
I became player of the yearand National Champion and All American. That’s how ESPN found me: they interviewed me through the Women’s First Series and after I won they called to hire me. Development as an athlete taught me so much in all aspects of my life including how to prioritize self care. I try to have a championship mentality in everything I do.
Working at ESPN
I am on-camera February through August and cover NCAA, as well as Little League. There’s lots of traveling involved, and I’m away from home 3-4 days a week. It’s high pressure and a lot like being an athlete. I find that I thrive in this kind of demanding environment and I love the all-in atmosphere.
Blogger, athlete and designer
I juggle a lot and a lot of my life is about staying organized. I thrive on a rigid routine - knowing where to be at what time - it keeps me humble and honest. I currently train 30 athletes a week during evening classes and I love the high demand environment. Softball is the sport that catapulted my life and career and I enjoy sharing my knowledge and expertise with young women. I didn’t have a mentor or someone “who’d been there and done that” when I was young.
Leaning in to curiosity
I don’t just have one passion. People often talk about “finding that one thing” that they surrender their life to. That is totally not me. I’ve always had many interests and wanted to pursue many things. This gave me a lot of discomfort and anxiety in my post athlete life so I did a lot of soul searching, listened to podcasts, read books and finally let the idea go. I started leaning in to curiosity instead, pursuing and trying things that sparked interest or made me feel alive.
“Be where your feet are”
My mantra is be where your feet are. I used to constantly try to seek out the next step and figure out what I should be doing. Then I realized I should be right here and now, where my feet are, and not worrying about the next moment and what it “should be” or “might be”. This is my advice for younger athletes! I remember wishing away moments but now, looking back, things are a blur. Today I try to live in the moment as much as possible.
I also try and fit some meditative activity into each day. This isn’t always textbook meditation - yoga is great or sometimes just sitting on my porch reading and being by myself works. That meditative moment can happen in a lot of different ways. It’s important to find the space and make it into a daily routine: a moment of clarity, thankfulness and feeling present. We all need to connect to that at some time.
Why I love FRÉ
The biggest thing for me is that this line and this formula are definitely made for active skin. There are products that say that won’t clog your pores but nothing hits the mark like FRÉ, especially for active, sweaty women. As an athlete it’s nice to have a brand you know you can count on to take care of your skin.
I love the night serumRECOVER ME. I use it like water - I drench myself in it at night. It’s affordable and it really is like a big glass of water for your skin. My other favorite isPROTECT ME. SPF is so important. I want to go back and kick myself for not protecting my skin when I was younger! Today this product is a lifesaver: I’m moisturizing and protecting at the same time, I can go run outside and I don’t break out.
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