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Tough Girl Podcast

The Tough Girl Podcast is all about inspiring and motivating YOU! I will be interviewing inspirational women from around the world, who’ve faced and overcome difficult challenges and situations, they will share their story, their knowledge and provide advice and essential tips for you to overcome your own personal challenges. Please check out the Tough Girl Challenges website - www.toughgirlchallenges.com and follow on twitter @_TOUGH_GIRL
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Now displaying: July, 2018
Jul 31, 2018

In 2013, Pip cycled home from Malaysia to London, a journey of 10,000 miles through 26 countries! Once back in London she started to work for Red Bull as their Adventure Editor. 

In 2016 Pip headed off on a 3,000 mile cycle, boat and plane journey exploring Brazil and Peru to raise awareness of the environmental issues in the region, Pip documented the deforestation of the Amazon rainforest with adventurer Reza Pakravan and shared more about it’s devastating effects on the indigenous communities.  Pip started at the mouth of the Amazon River in the Atlantic, and finishing in Lima at the Pacific.

Pip loves going on challenges and pushing her body to the limits. In February 2018 Pip teaming up with fellow adventurers Laura Bingham and Ness Knight to take on a world first – paddling the entire length of The Essequibo, South America's third largest river, which flows for 1,014 km through remote jungle, and untouched virgin rainforest until it meets the Atlantic Ocean.

During the podcast we learn more about her life, the steps she has taken to get where she has. How the opportunities she has taken have come about and what she has learnt by going on these challenges in remote parts of the world.

Show notes

  • Living in London
  • Being adventurous as a young child
  • Why home is not a place and it’s the people you are with
  • Being based in Germany and having family holidays around Europe
  • Not knowing what she wanted to do growing up
  • Following the structured path
  • Heading off to go travelling
  • Doing a Journalism Masters over in Hong Kong
  • Removing expectations from your life
  • What is was like living and studying in Hong Kong
  • Moving to Malaysia and deciding to cycle home to London
  • Planning and preparation for the big cycle ride!
  • Having 13 months to get home in time for Christmas
  • The biggest challenge while cycling
  • Why the challenge was more of a mental one
  • The magical moments on the trip
  • Preconceptions about certain countries
  • Why travel and talking is so important
  • Connecting with the locals
  • The realities of being on the road
  • Coming back to the UK and not having a plan
  • Travelling with her partner Charlie
  • Dealing with difficult situations while on the road
  • Transitioning back into real life
  • Applying to be Red Bull’s Adventure Editor
  • Getting itchy feet and wanting to go travelling again
  • How she gets her ideas for her next challenges and adventures
  • Why she focuses on what she is interested in
  • 2016 challenge - traversing the Amazon via the Trans Amazonian Highway
  • The damage that gold mining does
  • What she leant most from the experience and why it comes down to the power of a community
  • Filming the challenge!
  • Eating ants!!
  • Heading out to the Amazon with Laura Bingham and Ness Knight
  • Saying yes to the opportunities when they become available
  • Planning and training for this adventure over 8 months
  • Family and friends reactions to her next adventure
  • Dealing with fears, how she overcome them and managed them before and during the trip
  • Often you can’t change the problem - but you can change your response to a problem.
  • Dealing with snakes
  • Working as part of a team with Ness & Laura - dealing with team dynamics
  • What she leant most about herself on this challenge and why it was about the ego!
  • #ExploreHappy and using social media in a positive way
  • Keep looking forward
  • Dealing with the adventure blues after coming back from the trip and talking about mental health
  • Heading off to Norway with the Marines
  • Final words of advice and top tips

 

Social Media

Website  - www.phillippastewart.com 

Twitter - @Stewart_Pip 

Instagram - @pipstewart  

 

Jul 24, 2018

Paula McGuire's world was shrinking. Bullied as a child and plagued by excessive social anxiety, she had become a recluse. Unable to even go into a shop on her own, Paula's life was effectively over before she hit thirty. But then something changed. She isn't even quite sure what. But after years of running away from life, Paula decided to make a change, and decided to face up to her fears.

Paula gave herself less than 2 years to try all 17 Commonwealth Games sports! After learning how to ride a bike and completing a triathlon. Paula decided, she was going to continue facing her fears, one of her biggest was swimming, even though she was frightened of the water, and couldn’t swim, she decided to set the biggest challenge possible. Deciding to swim around Great Britain! Although he Big Mad Swim around Britain didn’t quite go in the direction she wanted, she’s leant a huge amount about herself and continues to talk about mental health and wanting to encourage others to face their fears and to live their most full lives. 

Show notes

  • Where Paula is based at the moment
  • Being an unlikely adventurer and an anxiety survivor
  • Growing up in Glasgow and not being sporty or outdoors at all!
  • Being very shy and hiding behind books and her family
  • Dealing with childhood anxiety at 5/6 years old and how her parents handle it
  • Not having risk management skills or social skills
  • Entering her teenage years and how her anxiety developed
  • Leaving school for university and wanting to start a new life, and how it didn’t happen
  • Starting work while dealing with anxiety, and it getting to the point where she couldn’t leave the house
  • Maybe this is as good as it gets…
  • Learning to live with her anxiety
  • Giving herself a chance to live her life - starting to blog about it to have accountability
  • The first challenge/fear she decided to face and why she decided on a sport
  • Taking the negativity and turning it around!
  • Learning to ride a bike and what she learned from it
  • Why you have to keep trying and keep on learning
  • Feeling pride in her accomplishment
  • Getting joy from these new experiences
  • Why 99% of people want to help you
  • Taking the power away from anxiety
  • The timeframe she gave herself to complete these challenges
  • The magical moment - and why doing a triathlon helped to propel her forward
  • Not being able to swim and being afraid of the water
  • The Big Mad Swim Around Britain! 
  • April 24th starting her swim!
  • Dealing with panic attacks in the water and not being able to overcome it
  • Failure and what’s she learning from the experience
  • Adapting the challenge to the Big Mad Splash - to help raise awareness for mental health challenges
  • How she’s funding the trip
  • Advice and tips for others who are dealing with anxiety
  • How to get in touch with Paula if you need someone to talk to

Social Media

Website  - www.paulamusttryharder.co.uk

Twitter - @pmusttryharder 

Instagram - @pmusttryharder  

Facebook - @pmusttryharder 

Jul 19, 2018

Hannah, is a 34-year-old creator, minimalist and adventurer living in Manchester, UK. Last year she got rid of everything she owned except what would fit in a carry on backpack. She travelled overland from the UK to Bhutan through eighteen countries with her partner Phil to document and discover what makes people happy. 

Hannah has scoliosis and deals with chronic pain, although she wears a permanent back brace, this does not stop her from getting out side and hiking on a regular basis. In her early twenties, she was £20,000 in debt and working in a stressful, badly paid job. Her Dad dying suddenly encouraged her to become debt free and focus on doing work with purpose that helps support other people. 

Hannah is now back in the UK writing about her experiences at betternotstop.com. Hannah shares stories about how to enjoy everyday life through work, friendships, travel, and adventure. Hannah believes experiencing different countries and culture is a way to discover more about ourselves and how to make the world a better place.

During this podcast we focus on the money, how she got into the debt, the mistakes she made and how ultimately she turned it around by getting out of debt and saving £15,000 in a year to pay for the ‘Road to Happiness’ Expedition.

*** this is not financial advice*** If you are having financial problems please speak to a qualified professional.

Show notes

  • Growing up, getting a job at 15
  • Going to university getting a full time job, a student loan and an overdraft
  • Work hard and play harder - not being sensible with money - racking up credit card debt while at university, 
  • Taking out a loan to expand a business
  • The breakdown of a relationship and moving to a new town
  • Not being able to pay the minimum payments on her credit cards
  • Feeling overwhelmed by her money situation 
  • Why only overspending by a few hundred pounds a month can lead to huge problems down the line
  • Moving back home to live with her mum, about 45 mins from London
  • Planning to move to London and to get a job working in events
  • Would you like to live on a tropical island? Disappearing off to Asia for a year to forget about the money problems in the UK
  • moneysavingexpert.com 
  • Deciding between 2 options - declare bankruptcy or going down the Individual Voluntary Arrangement
  • Individual Voluntary Arrangement and what that involved for Hannah
  • Having major surgery, and losing her father while all of this was happening
  • How it felt once she paid if all off
  • No debt, no credit cards, no overdrafts
  • Minimalism how she got into this movement- the minimalists
  • Never earning more than £25,000
  • Saving up £15,000 for a 10 month expedition (the Road to Happiness )
  • Having a 2 bedroom house and why she decided on that
  • Getting a flat mate, cycling into work, saving everything she could
  • Gary Vaynerchuk and the Flip Challenge 
  • How to make money from doing adventures and the plan for the blog
  • 2 new books coming out - How to save for an adventure and how to plan for an adventure 
  • Tim Moss from the Next Challenge - self publishing books 
  • Cathy O’Dowd - The Business of Adventure 
  • Pat Flynn - Smart Passive Income 
  • Patreon for creators https://www.patreon.com 
  • Privilege in the adventure industry
  • Earning £600 a month going forward
  • Taking ownership of her goals and financial future and being very clear with what she wants to achieve.
  • Doing monthly income reports
  • Documenting the journey
  • Final words of advice  - ‘You can’t change the people around you, but you can change the people around you’
  • Find your tribe 

Social Media

Follow Hannah's Writing at betternotstop  

Support Hannah on Patreon 

Instagram: @betternotstop  

Facebook: @betternotstop    

___________________________________________________

Feeling inspired week after week? 

You can do 3 easy things to help me continue to grow the podcast!

  1. Subscribe to the podcast in iTunes, so you won’t miss a single episode
  2. If you’re loving the podcast, please leave a 5-star review on iTunes! I read every single comment!
  3. Share the podcast with your friends, especially if you think it could help them, and spread the #ToughGirlPodcast love. 

Your support helps me continue to grow the podcast and do inspiring things in this space! Already done all 3? You’re a rockstar! Thank you!

Want to do more?

Please become a Patron and donate a small fixed amount every month to help fund the runnings costs. 

_____________________________________________________

Jul 17, 2018

Hannah, is a 34-year-old creator, minimalist and adventurer living in Manchester, UK. Last year she got rid of everything she owned except what would fit in a carry on backpack. She travelled overland from the UK to Bhutan through eighteen countries with her partner Phil to document and discover what makes people happy. 

Hannah has scoliosis and deals with chronic pain, although she wears a permanent back brace, this does not stop her from getting out side and hiking on a regular basis. In her early twenties, she was £20,000 in debt and working in a stressful, badly paid job. Her Dad dying suddenly encouraged her to become debt free and focus on doing work with purpose that helps support other people. To date, she has travelled to forty-five different countries. 

Hannah is now back in the UK writing about her experiences at betternotstop.com. Hannah shares stories about how to enjoy everyday life through work, friendships, travel, and adventure. Hannah believes experiencing different countries and culture is a way to discover more about ourselves and how to make the world a better place.

During this podcast we focus on the expedition the ‘Road to Happiness’ and in Tough Girl Extra coming out on Thursday we focus on the money, how she got into the debt, the mistakes she made and how ultimately she turned it around by getting out of debt and saving £15,000 in a year to pay for the ‘Road to Happiness’ Expedition.

Show notes

  • Being based in Manchester
  • 34 year old, minimalist adventure
  • Where the idea came from for the ‘Road to Happiness’ Expedition
  • Being kept accountably for what she wanted to achieve
  • Having no money and no idea how she was going to make it happen
  • How she started to plan to turn her dream into a reality
  • The visa machine
  • Having to be flexible with the planning and how the idea evolved and anchored over time
  • Dealing with a head injury that makes planning hard and having to put systems in place
  • To do lists, Trello, Evernote and how they all work together
  • Getting the date to leave and being delayed for a few months
  • The run up to leaving and dealing with the imposter syndrome
  • Packing for the trip while taking into account her chronic back pain
  • Documenting the trip - trying to figure out the best way to do it
  • Getting rid of everything she owned apart from what she carried on her back and a small suitcase she kept at her mums
  • Starting to write a 3 part book series about the journey 
  • The European part of the adventure and the moments that stand out
  • Working in Europe on Organic farms
  • Spending 6 weeks in Denmark!
  • What happiness means to Hannah
  • The correlation between money, time and happiness
  • Being open to new experiences and why she’s much happier now than when she was in her twenties 
  • Taking a short break from the trip and coming back to the UK for 3 weeks
  • Attending an adventure conference and feeling like she wasn’t doing adventure right
  • Why she loves to travel by train 
  • The Trans-Siberian Express and being able to travel on the first train line in Cambodia
  • Arriving in Bhutan after 10 months, crossing the land border from India into Bhutan and the difference
  • The culture shock of being in Bhutan
  • Wearing a back brace and the final stretch of the journey making it up the mountain to visit the Paro Taktsang monastery/‘Tigers Nest’ Monastery.
  • What she learnt from going on this journey 
  • The significance of her bee tattoo and why she got it 
  • Why her blog is called better not stop
  • Why there is no better time to take control of your life
  • Starting to do monthly income reports and why talking about money in the adventure world is important

Social Media

Website - www.betternotstop.com

Support Hannah on Patreon

Instagram: @betternotstop

Facebook: @betternotstop

 

Jul 10, 2018

Rachel Ann experiences the reality of mental health issues from a young age- she grows up in a dysfunctional home with a mother who suffers with bipolar disorder and disordered eating. Rachel Ann isn’t naturally athletic and from a young age, feels the pressure of being compared to her graceful ballerina sister Jane. She finds comfort in food and rapidly gains weight throughout childhood and into her teenage years.

Rachel Ann begins running at age 18, but she finds no pleasure in movement. Running is a necessary evil to help her lose weight, an ‘energy-depleting, laboured chore with the sole purpose of burning calories’. She dips in and out of running throughout her life, but only begins to take it seriously after the birth of her daughter, when she sets herself the goal of completing the London Marathon.

It gives her purpose and some headspace away from her new role as a mother. Running becomes Rachel Ann's saviour, she finally finds contentment and freedom she has been searching for all her life. 

Show notes

  • Living in Yorkshire and speaking to use from her attic
  • Being a runner and a writer  
  • Publishing her book - Running for my life
  • Her background of being a lawyer, to running her own health business and now working for a charity
  • Growing up with her mum, who suffered from mental health issues
  • Absorbing her mothers sadness (even though her mum loved her)
  • Coming into her teenage years and dealing with a lack of self confidence
  • Turning to comfort eating to deal with life
  • Being in an abusive relationship when she was a teenager
  • Wanting to feel better about herself and how she started running
  • Why her running came from a place of self loathing and negativity
  • Hating running but sticking to her running plan
  • Seeking professional help with her mental health
  • Being diagnosed with clinical depression and being on medication for 12 years
  • Deciding to set herself the challenge of running the London Marathon
  • Wanting to get pregnant and have a child
  • Getting a place the first time she entered the London Marathon!
  • Making up her own training schedule by booking in a series of races
  • The mental side of training and the marathon
  • Crossing the finish line of her first marathon in 2011
  • Experiencing the pain zone
  • What she would say to the 18 year old Rachel now
  • Why she deciding to write her book - “Running for my Life”
  • What can we do to raise awareness of mental health issues
  • Advice for new runners
  • Her next running goals
  • Running Boston Marathon and Leeds Half Marathon
  • Writing her second book

Social Media

Blog  - www.rachelcullenwrites.wordpress.com 

Twitter - @writtenbyrach  

Instagram - @rachel_running_for_my_life  

***********************************************

Feeling inspired week after week? 

You can do 3 easy things to help me continue to grow the podcast!

  1. Subscribe to the podcast in iTunes, so you won’t miss a single episode
  2. If you’re loving the podcast, please leave a 5-star review on iTunes! I read every single comment!
  3. Share the podcast with your friends, especially if you think it could help them, and spread the #ToughGirlPodcast love. 

Your support helps me continue to grow the podcast and do inspiring things in this space! Already done all 3? You’re a rockstar! Thank you!

Want to do more?

Please become a Patron and donate a small fixed amount every month to help fund the runnings costs.

***********************************************

Jul 3, 2018

Ghazala, was born in 1963, in Lahore, Pakistan, when still a baby, her family moved to London and she grew up in Twickenham. She has led an active life, being involved in rock-climbing, mountaineering, running, skiing and swimming, both in the UK and abroad. She loves the outdoors and now lives in the beautiful Derbyshire Peak District.

She is married to the mountaineer Roger Mear, who in 1986, with Robert Swan and Gareth Wood, made the first unsupported walk to the South Pole with the expedition ‘In the Footsteps of Scott’. For this achievement, all three members were awarded the Queen’s Polar Medal.  

In 1996, she was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and had a year off work for chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Focusing on the positive aspects and being determined to be well, both physically and emotionally, helped her through that year. Having been a keen long distance runner, and never accepting that she would be anything other than recovered after her treatment, the following year with a 30% reduction in lung function, she ran the Sheffield Marathon.

The whole experience, despite the difficulties, was positive for Ghazala and it enabled her to develop resilience, determination, humility, compassion and patience. During this podcast we learn more about Ghazala, her life, the decisions she’s made to get to where she is and what she’s learned along the way.

Show notes

  • Living in the beautiful peak district and working as a surgeon in Sheffield
  • Who is Ghazala and why she loves fitness
  • Becoming an environmentalist
  • Having 2 sons - 14 and 10 years old
  • Having to adjust her life after children
  • Loving to swim in the open air swimming pool
  • Growing up in Twickenham with 3 brothers
  • Joining the mountaineering club at University and getting into walking and rock climbing
  • Meeting her husband on the summit of the Matterhorn 
  • Being at a crossroads in her life
  • Getting access to the mountains
  • Taking on big wall climbing - Angels Landing
  • Ice climbing in Scotland 
  • Balancing life as a surgeon, with climbing and children
  • Keeping up running after her first child
  • Getting help with the children
  • Being 3 stone overweight after the birth of her first child and getting back into fitness
  • 1996 being diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
  • Learning patience and having gratitude 
  • Going on a healing course and working through personal issues
  • Deciding to love her tumour
  • Setting a new challenge after chemo 
  • Completing the Sheffield Marathon and being able to move on from the illness
  • Building her confidence back up 
  • A big road/climbing trip
  • The South Pole Energy Challenge - to walk the final 60 miles (the final degree)
  • 2041 Foundation 
  • The significance of 2041
  • Step by step helping to raise awareness and raising funds for the challenge
  • Par helium and wanting to see it
  • Tips for fundraising and getting sponsorship
  • Being on the ice for 2.5 weeks - getting hypothermia and how she dealt with it
  • Taking the positives from a negative situation 
  • Final words of advice
  • Why music plays a big part of her life

Social Media

Website - www.stepbystep.scot  

Twitter - @ghazala_mear  

 

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