"It's Yours"

Trainer and Wellness Coach, Outdoor Lover, Rene Wiley

Born in Trinidad and raised in Venice Rene Wiley is not only a highly accomplished trainer and wellness coach for Nike he is also a fountain of positive energy and community builder. Over the last few years Rene has focused on spending intentional quality time outside, as an avid surfer, hiker and road biker he has a deep appreciation for the inner joy that getting intimate with nature imbues. Meet Rene Wiley.

As an accomplished fitness and athletic trainer and outdoor lover can you share your perspective on the key differences of working out in a gym/studio versus engaging in outdoor activities?
I feel that working out both indoors and outdoors have their benefits but when it comes to outdoor movement there is more of a challenge to be adaptable to whatever nature's conditions are. Adaptability is something that I feel is rarely talked about in fitness yet it’s a big part of not only our fitness but our existence.

What are the key benefits to you of being active outdoors, surrounded by nature?
There are many benefits to being active outdoors. We get to activate all of our senses with almost every activity and through that we get to learn a bit more about our surroundings and ourselves. We often make the mistake of separating ourselves from nature when we ourselves are nature.

A couple of years back you took up surfing, why, having lived in West LA most of your life hadn’t you hit the line-up before?
I love this question. Surfing has become my staple morning ritual. I can’t tell you what exactly drew me to the water but what I can say was that the calling was hard to ignore when it called me. There were different things that I felt in the process leading up to me starting surfing such as the way I felt running down the Venice Boardwalk or even just being inspired by open water ocean swimmers out there in the morning. One thing I know I wanted to feel was a sense of flow and I feel surfers are one of the best representations of that, so I asked my best friend from high school who’s also a West La/Venice local to teach me since he’s been consistent ever since we’ve been little, and it took off from there. Even though I sometimes wish I started surfing sooner I think there’s a level of awareness and gratitude that one can attain at a later age that allows the experience to be that much sweeter.

Surfers can be a little territorial. Was Venice welcoming to you as you went through the learn?
To be honest I was lucky to have already been a local to the area and have good friends be part of the surf community as a beginner. As for the people I hadn’t met until I got in the water, they were chill for the
most part. I think the biggest thing I’ve learned as a beginner is that you need to have a respect for the water and respect for the people that have paid their dues and been there for much longer. It’s not just a “earn your spot” thing but it’s more a safety thing. As a beginner you can be clumsy and if you’re clumsy around a bunch of people with a 9 ft board someone’s gonna get hurt. So, you learn to go off to the less populated side of the break and practice. The respect comes with your commitment and consistency. When long-time locals see you there every day, they’ll start to make conversation and pointers then when they think you’re ready they might invite you over to share some waves with them. 

You are also an avid hiker, what draws you to the hike? 
Hiking is one of those activities that if you don it right you can fully immerse yourself in nature. No city sounds, unpopulated territory, just complete oneness between you and nature. I love it because In can fully hear myself think and sometimes my best ideas come to me as I’m working my way up a long steep incline. Depending on the trail your only focus is your next step and sometimes it feels good to only must worry about that.

You mentioned you have started to focus on your skin health? Can you tell us what made you think more about your skin.?
Well for me growing up there was never much of a focus on skin care. I never thought it was as important up until recently talking with my peers that also take their outside time and skin seriously. It was almost a no-brainer for them and given their experience and some research I decided that it was probably best to start taking care of my skin if I’m going to be outside more. As fate would have it, that's around the time I was introduced to Utu.

What are the key essentials for your daily skin approach?
I keep it simple. I’ve a good face wash at home and right before I get in the water to surf or go on a pretty long hike I put my Utu 50 SPF is now a top priority especially with the frequency of my outdoor time. The Utu 50 is easy to take everywhere which is a plus because I strive to do more with less. It makes my skin feel great and most importantly I trust it.

Plans for 2024?
I'm very excited for this year. I hate admitting this, but I am not so well travelled but I am changing that. I feel through all the activities I’ve become passionate about I would like to meet others around the world and learn their perspectives of the modalities. I’ve also taken a great interest in tea culture. I drink tea every day and I know a lot of cultures take their tea rituals very seriously and with great pride. I would love to connect and learn from them how they share and the benefits from a wellness standpoint.

Here at Utu we have felt very inspired by your ‘It’s yours posts’ tell us about this message you share and how it has grown
It's something that I've posted consistently every morning since 2020. It's a message that came to me during some hard times and now it's a daily mantra of sorts. It's taken on a life of its own with people all over the world posting "It's Yours”. No one knows what that phrase means to me, but I know it has so many interpretations and meaning for those that post it. It's a simple yet moving message. So, when someone posts "It's Yours" there's a shared connection as well as a shared in ownership.

It's mine, It's Yours.

We love that, Rene.

Liquid error (layout/theme line 325): Could not find asset snippets/custom-fonts.liquid