Interview: Tom Daly of District Vision for Distance

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In my continuing work with the brand Distance, which has stores in both Paris and Lyon, I manage a share of the web content that goes up on their Journal, notably the interviews they conduct with English speaking partners and creatives. Below is a selection of the interview they undertook with Tom Daly, founder of the New York-based brand District Vision. Personally, I’m very fond of the brand’s approach to mindfulness and how they connect mental growth to sport and specifically running. It also helps that their glasses frames are 🔥

With my copyediting for Distance, I aspire to maintain the interviewee’s natural voice while creating a readable flow that presents well in web format. Keeping this informal tone matches Distance’s approach to the community they are trying to build, which is human-driven, transparent, and relaxed.

Some of the interview below, the entire piece can be found here.

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DISTANCE : How did you get into running? Was there a certain point in life when you started, or have you always run? 

TD: When a person gets into long distance running, it probably means they’ve experienced a problem at one point in their life. I think the sport attracts a kind of addictive personality. For me, I went through a particularly destructive phase in life. Then I got into long distance running and the team structure here in New York. From there, once you subscribe to the collective energy of running, it becomes something bigger. It’s not necessarily about one race or another, rather it helps navigate through life. And when you see how it helps other people, you get locked into the system in a beautiful way.

That’s how I became a runner. For Max, it was a similar conduit of applying yourself to one thing over a long period of time. For him though, it was much more about meditation. When we were considering starting the brand, we had to make some choices. We both have fashion backgrounds, but we didn’t want to make more leather jackets and jeans. We felt like that was being done pretty well. We began to apply ourselves to sport and how we might help people by building a mindful sports company geared towards well-being. That concept is still evolving.

We are trying to connect things that maybe haven’t historically belonged together. That has been our path. On paper, it’s perhaps a lovely marketing idea, but in reality, there was also a fair amount of luck involved in reaching that point in our lives.