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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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May 25, 2021
Earlier this year, On January 22, Brooke Thomas an ultra runner and nurse, finished running the 3,000km Te Araroa Trail. Which starts at Cape Regina in the North Island and runs through to Buff, which is the bottom of the South Island. 
 
Brooke started her journey (supported) on November 26, 2020 and ran for 57 days, 12 hours, breaking the Te Araroa women’s route record by almost nine days! 
 
During this episode, Brooke shares more about her love of running and why she wanted to take on this challenge, she shares the high points; running 100km in one day and finishing the challenge. To reflecting back on when she ending up in hospital and not knowing if she would be able to carry on. We talk about the logistics and the physical and mental preparation. Brooke also shares more about her heart condition and how having a pacemaker/defibrillator installed has impacted on her life and running. 
 
Brooke was raising money for Heart Kids, a nonprofit organisation in New Zealand that supports children living with heart defects. 
 
Brooke in her own words:
 
“At age 22 I was diagnosed with a heart condition and became the recipient of an inserted cardiac pacemaker/defibrillator. Being told you have a long term condition at that age, I reckon it's probably pretty normal to go through the journey of feeling hard done by, asking 'why me', then eventually learning to accept and embrace it. 
 
One of my favourite quotes is that "it's not the throw, but the catch". You can't always choose what life might chuck at you, but you decide how to receive it, and what to do next.
 
Being a nurse and witnessing the enormous challenges some patients go through has also definitely helped me to stay grounded when it comes to my own condition, and 100% inspired me to keep pushing my own boundaries.
 
I guess the best thing I've learned through my own experiences is that you never know how long you're going to get in life to do all the things you want to do. We've just got to make the most of what we’ve got and embrace any opportunity you get while you can.
 
For me, anything that both scares me and makes me question myself is definitely something I want to try!”
 
“Running the length of a country is without doubt the toughest challenge I have ever undertaken before. Yet somehow all the moments of struggle, exhaustion, frustration and disbelief in myself are so quickly forgotten in comparison to the excitement, raw happiness and gratitude that I have experienced throughout this journey.” - Brooke Thomas
 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Make sure you hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
 
The Tough Girl Podcast is sponsorship and ad free thanks to the monthly financial support of patrons. To find out more about supporting your favourite podcast and becoming a patron please check out www.patreon.com/toughgirlpodcast.
 
 
Show notes
  • Who is Brooke
  • Not thinking of herself as an athlete
  • Going running with her dad when she was younger
  • Living in Queenstown 
  • Coming from a close family
  • Having a twin sister 
  • Her running journey 
  • Being into rowing at a competitive level 
  • Using running as an outlet 
  • Training 2x a day for rowing 
  • Quitting rowing due to a heart condition
  • Having a pace maker fitted to help her heart beat
  • What her pace maker does
  • Not being able to compete in the world championships
  • Fundraising for Heartkids
  • The transition period from professional athlete to having a pace maker fitted
  • Finding your own limits 
  • Building back her confidence with running
  • Deciding to run the full length of New Zealand
  • Being inspired by Mina Holder and Lucy Clark 
  • Meeting her running coach - Adam Keen
  • The planning and preparation for the trip
  • Wanting to start the trail in November
  • Getting 2 months off work
  • Thinking about the record
  • Wanting to prove something to herself
  • Feeling the pressure from being behind schedule
  • Feeling like a failure every day
  • The magical moments while on the trail
  • Mental preparation
  • Dealing with the challenging sections and moments
  • Fuelling her body!
  • Getting into flow while running
  • The beauty of trail running and community
  • Dealing with the challenging river crossings
  • Dealing with food care
  • Documenting her journey in order to get the FKT (Fastest Known Time) 
  • Wearing a Coros watch
  • The finish line...
  • The final 100K - a nice round number
  • The biggest lesson learned from running the TA
  • The power of believing in yourself 
  • Thinking about the worst case scenario 
  • Getting back to work straight away
  • Follow Brooke and donate to Heart Kids - links down below.
 
 
Social Media
 
Instagram - @brooke_bt_thomas 
 
Charity donation link - onebigjog.wixsite.com/onebigjog/where-s-wally
te-araroa-for-heart-kids.raisely.com/brooke-thomas 
 
Brooks Running Coach - Aerobicedge Coaching
 
Listen to Mina Holder on the Tough Girl Podcast 
 
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