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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: October, 2022
Oct 27, 2022
Vedangi Kulkarni was born and raised in India and currently lives in the UK. 
 
She’s an adventurer, endurance athlete, writer, expedition/project manager and a business owner. She loves organising mountain biking and bike-packing events, managing a million projects simultaneously and talking to a ton of new people. 
 
In 2018, she rode 29,000km around the world in 160 days, mostly solo and unsupported, at the age of 19/20, becoming the youngest woman to circumnavigate the globe on bike. 
 
She’s always keen for an adventure, be it cold water swimming, long distance hiking or cycling, climbing, mountain biking, skiing or travelling through remote places. 
 
On her most recent expedition, she skied across Svalbard. 
 
Her happy place is anywhere outside, in the wild, and on the move. She tells stories from her adventures both digitally (through her social media channels) and through in-person events. 
 
When she isn't out and about, you can find her reading non-fiction books or writing something in one of her million Moleskine notebooks.
 
You can listen to Vedangi on the Tough Girl Podcast, new episodes go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 
 
Support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media especially in relation to adventure and physical challenges. Visit www.patreon.com/toughgirlpodcast Thank you.
 
Show notes
  • Who is Vedangi
  • Moving to Inverness in 2022
  • Cycling daily and taking up mountain biking
  • Mountain biking and how it’s helped with her confidence
  • Imposter syndrome 
  • Blog post - “I shouldn’t be here” 
  • Becoming more ambition especially in the world of adventure
  • New book coming soon - why people need adventure 
  • Feeling selfish while doing adventures 
  • Book: SOLO: What running across mountains taught me about life By Jenny Tough 
  • Starting to organise adaptive mountain biking races in the UK
  • Mountain Biking Race 12th - 13th November 2022 - “MTB4ALL” is a downhill race series where our aim is to make racing fun. Whether you're a first time racer or a pro, we've got something for you! 
  • Wanting to get more women racing mountain bikes
  • Arranging a series of events in 2023 for women in mountain biking 
  • Wanting to help build women’s self esteem in mountain biking
  • Working on improving her mountain biking skills
  • Heading to Svalbard in April 2022
  • The Trans Arctic Expedition
  • Speaking with Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions
  • Helen Turton - Newland Expeditions 
  • Visa challenges 
  • Sponsorship for Svalbard 
  • Sharing a tent with Helen & Ellen Piercy 
  • Reflections from the experience 
  • Dealing with the cold and learning patience
  • Tent life
  • The plan for the Trans Arctic Expedition
  • Just Around The Corner — exploring the best of the South West by bike 
  • How to connect with Vedangi
  • Final words of advice 
 
Social Media
 
Website vedangikulkarni.com 
 
Instagram @wheelsandwords 
 
Facebook @wheelsandwords 
 
Twitter @wheelsandwords 
 
YouTube www.youtube.com/c/VedangiKulkarni-wheelsandwords 
 
Oct 25, 2022
Ellen started to get into adventure in her late 30s. By day she work as an engineering, by night, she dream of adventure. 
 
In 2017 she wanted a new, big, scary challenge and decided on an arctic expedition - crossing Svalbard. 
 
Ellen has never been anywhere that cold before and she didn’t’ know how to ski! She didn’t know if the challenge that she had decided on would even be achievable.
 
The Svalbard Expedition was meant to go ahead in 2020, when Ellen was 42. It was postponed from 2020 to 2021 and again to 2022. 
 
To keep herself motivated, during the delays and wanting to focus on building her endurance, she set herself a more local project – the Cheshire Challenge to walk all 25 long distance paths in Cheshire totalling 1,500km.
 
In January 2022, Ellen had her sabbatical booked, and found out the Svalbard crossing would be going ahead in April. 
 
During this podcast Ellen shares more about the challenge, the lessons learned and provides top tips and advice to help you with your next adventure. 
 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
 
Support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media especially in relation to adventure and physical challenges. Visit www.patreon.com/toughgirlpodcast and subscribe - super quick and easy to do and it makes a massive difference. Thank you.
 
 
Show notes
  • Who is Ellen?
  • Age 45….
  • The concept of identity 
  • Describing herself pre and post Svalbard 
  • Calling herself a cold adventurer!
  • Who is Ellen pre-expedition?
  • Dealing with imposter syndrome
  • How adventure has changed her life
  • Not knowing if she would be able to do the challenge
  • “Maybe I can do this sort of stuff”  
  • The mindset shift that has happened
  • Dealing with setback after setback
  • 42 the second, 42 the third etc
  • Doing a polar training course in Norway
  • Covid Times and being able to work from home
  • What’s your plan B…..
  • The Svalbard Expedition April 2022
  • A 10 day crossing across the main island from the East to the most northerly town in the world
  • The route - 130km/100 miles
  • Being part of a team of 5, plus the guide
  • The pulks and the kit
  • Polar Bears, glaciers, mountain passes and an enormous ice cave
  • Structure of the day and the daily routine (melting water, packing up, ski and break time, tent life)
  • Thinking about doing her Mountain Leader Qualification 
  • Working towards her Chartered Engineer Qualification 
  • Tent mates, group dynamics and roles
  • Peeing and pooping outdoors
  • Fitness and training
  • Costs
  • Completing the challenge and what happened afterwards
  • Reflecting on the challenge and having time to process 
  • Getting Covid and being knocked for 2 months
  • Plans for 2023
  • Newland Expeditions Guided polar ski expeditions to North/South Poles, Greenland, Svalbard and Norway. 
  • How to connect with Ellen
  • Final words of advice for working women who want to have more adventures
 
Social Media
 
Website https://randogirls.com 
 
Instagram @randogirl42 
 
Facebook @EllenRandoGirl 
 
Twitter @RandoGirl42 
 
Oct 18, 2022
After a lengthy battle with a rare brain disease, Crystal Gail Welcome came to recognize the healing power of nature. 
 
She now uses her intersecting identities; Black, disabled, lesbian to break down barriers so more people can access the outdoors. 
 
Crystal is an experiential educator, author, storyteller, activist, backpacker, and Black outdoor leader. She chooses to speak out against racial injustice in the United States by hiking and giving voice to her experiences.
 
 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 
 
You can support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media especially in relation to adventure and physical challenges. Visit www.patreon.com/toughgirlpodcast.  Thank you.
 
 
Show notes
  • Who is Crystal Gail
  • Living in Minnesota 
  • Turtle racing!
  • Growing up in Florida 
  • Where Minnesota is located in the States
  • Not being exposed to the outdoors 
  • Not thinking the outdoors was for her
  • Her first visit to a National Park
  • Visiting the birth home of Martin Luther King Junior in Atlanta, Georgia 
  • Learning about the National Parks 
  • Feeling connected to Nature
  • Feeling a sense of belonging and wanting to spend more time in nature
  • Continuing her journey and connecting with nature 
  • Going out to live life and getting back into running
  • Her desire to go backpacking and wanting to hike the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT)
  • Hiking 600 miles on the PCT 
  • Learning about her capabilities
  • Her love of the outdoors and the power of connecting with nature
  • How hiking improved her health 
  • Why nature is a wonderful place to be
  • Her experience on the PCT 
  • Trail culture and trail families
  • Needed to recharge her batteries every 7-10 days  for 1.5 days
  • Connecting with new people and the kindness of strangers
  • Her trail name “The Giver” 
  • Book: “The Giver” by Lois Lowry 
  • After the death of George Floyd
  • Protesting in the way that she knows
  • Her reason for hiking the Superior Hiking Trail 
  • The Great Western Loop - is a 6,875-mile footpath that links together five existing long-distance trails — including the Pacific Crest Trail, Pacific Northwest Trail, Continental Divide Trail, Grand Enchantment Trail, and Arizona Trail — and a trail-less segment through the Sonoran and Mojave Deserts. 
  • Hiking until her body tells her body it’s time to stop
  • How her disability effects her hiking and how she adapts her hiking to suit her
  • Needing to keep her base weight at 10lbs /4.5kg and having to forgo luxury items (apart from her tent!)
  • Structuring her day while hiking 
  • Listening to podcasts and music while being on the trail
  • Listening to true crime while being out in nature
  • The music to power her up the hills - Eminem - fight song
  • Being inspired by Harriet Tubman
  • Learning about adventure therapy and going on to study it at Prescott College 
  • Sharing more about restorative narratives
  • The power in the stories we tell ourselves 
  • Plans for 2023
  • How Crystal Gail afford to backpack
  • Writing a book of poetry when she was first diagnosed with a rare brain disease
  • Being published in an anthology “Crossing Paths”
  • How to connect with Crystal Gail (see links below)
 
Social Media
 
Website: footprintsforchange.com
 
Instagram: @footprintsforchange 
 
Facebook: @crystalgailwelcome 
 
Twitter: @awesomewelcome 
 
TikTok: @footprintsforchange
 
Oct 11, 2022
Jennifer Strong McConachie is a life-long outdoor adventure athlete.
 
She has traveled the globe, raced an ultramarathon on five of the seven continents, swam the Hellespont from Europe to Asia, escaped Alcatraz, climbed several of the Seven Summits, and conquered an American epic by running across the Grand Canyon and then back again.
 
For more than 30 years, Jennifer has competed in running, swimming, triathloning, and adventure racing as part of her global endurance sporting lifestyle. She also trains for various kinds of paddling sports and mountain ascents around the world.
 
When not tackling tough adventures, Jennifer is an award-winning marketing executive based in the US, with more than 15 years of experience working with local, regional, national, and global firms. 
 
Jennifer most recently became a Fellow in the Royal Geographical Society after writing her first book, Go Far: How Endurance Sports Help You Win At Life. https://amzn.to/3ciFo4O 
 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
 
You can support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media especially in relation to adventure and physical challenges. Visit www.patreon.com/toughgirlpodcast and subscribe - super quick and easy to do and it makes a massive difference. Thank you.
 
Show Notes
  • Who is Jennifer
  • Being able to do all kinds of endurance sports 
  • Running at a young age 
  • Getting into mountaineering, climbing, and wild swimming 
  • Putting all of her endurance sports experience into her book: Go Far: How Endurance Sports Help You Win At Life
  • Getting into new adventures with kids
  • Dedication to endurance challenges and writing a book
  • Growing up in a sporty, outdoorsy family 
  • Having fun as a child triathlete in the 90s 
  • Being on a rowing team back in college 
  • Getting into ultra running and marathons in her 20s 
  • Travelling the world with her family
  • Choosing her own unique life path
  • Having a female role model
  • Going on adventures with her dad 
  • What does adventure mean to Jennifer
  • Her secret to exploring the adventure mindset 
  • Making the most of what you have to be the best you can be 
  • Reading books about places and feeling energized 
  • Magical moments from her adventures and challenges 
  • Motherhood and how her adventure has changed over the years 
  • Creating physical and mental space for her recovery 
  • Having her team as her recovery tools 
  • Getting into more details about therapy and recovery 
  • Running the length of the Grand Canyon and back
  • What inspired Jennifer to write the book
  • Final words of advice
 
Social Media
 
 
Instagram: @jenstrongmccon 
 
Facebook Author Page: @JenniferStrongMcConachieAuthorPage 
 
Twitter: @jenstrongmccon 
 
 
Oct 4, 2022
Julie Bradley was born with adventure genes and shares her passions in her books “Escape from the Ordinary” and “Crossing Pirate Waters”. Both are true stories about an 8 year adventure of sailing around the world with her husband, Glen. 
 
After twenty years in the Army as a Military Intelligence Officer she traded her uniform and worldly possessions to pursue the dream that had inspired her to keep going through the long separations of military deployments. 
During those years her stack of Cruising World, Sail and Latitude 38 magazines grew to hoarder proportions until the big purge of all belongings to buy their new home: a French built Amel blue-water sailboat.
 
Julie shares more about her passion for adventure and sailing and what it was like selling everything she owned to sail around the world.
 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out. 
 
To support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Sign up as a Patron -  www.patreon.com/toughgirlpodcast. Thank you. 
 
*Content Warning - during this episode - addiction to alcohol is talked about. 
 
Show Notes
  • Julie in her own words
  • Living out on the water with her husband 
  • Joining the army after high school 
  • Getting hooked on an adventure 
  • Julie's decision to leave the army after 20 years 
  • Sailing around the world with her husband for eight years
  • Not worrying about the money 
  • Julie and her husband's background in sailing 
  • Delivering a friend's boat
  • Being a company commander and sailing at the same time 
  • Selling everything and buying a sailboat 
  • Sailing in the South Pacific 
  • What it was like to sail through the storm 
  • How did they spend their days on the boat
  • Writing her books Escape from the Ordinary (Escape Series Book 1)  and Crossing Pirate Waters (Escape Series Book 2)
  • How she lost control of her addiction to alcohol
  • Keeping a close relationship with her husband 
  • Deciding to stop sailing 
  • Final words of advice
 
Social Media
 
Website: www.juliebradleyauthor.com 
 
Facebook: @julie.bradley.798 
 
Twitter: @redjuliebradley 
 
Books: Escape from the Ordinary (Escape Series Book 1)
 
Meet Glen and Julie, sailors who follow their dream and discover that reality can be even bigger than imagined. From Force 10 storms in the North Atlantic to the crystal blue waters and native dancers of French Polynesia, Escape from the Ordinary (book 1 of the Escape Series) opens a window to adventures in extraordinary places not found in travel brochures.
 
Told with keen observations and sparkling with wry humor, Julie describes the terrors and pleasures of living a life of total independence on a sailboat where even simple decisions can have big consequences.  This exhilarating, true story will thrill those planning to sail off into the sunset as well as armchair adventurers. Escape from the Ordinary reminds you of the unlimited possibilities in life and offers inspiration to go “all in” on your own dreams.
 
Crossing Pirate Waters (Escape Series Book 2)
 
You don’t have to know a spinnaker from a mainsail to enjoy this adventure book. Join Glen and Julie as they continue around the world through less traveled, dangerous areas on the far side of the world.
 
Turmoil in the Mideast convinces Glen and Julie to linger in the South Pacific visiting primitive villages on remote islands. But hang on tight, because to finish their voyage they must leave friendly shores and navigate through trouble in the Indian Ocean, Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea before arriving in Europe.
 
Full of dry wit and compelling descriptions, Julie takes the reader along for the ride of a lifetime in this sequel (book 2 of the Escape Series) to her previous bestseller, Escape from the Ordinary.
 
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