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 - and follow on twitter @_TOUGH_GIRL
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Now displaying: 2022
Jun 28, 2022
Kelda started her sporting career playing netball at a national level as a teenager. Sport very quickly became the thing that defined who she was and the person she wanted to be. Her real passion lay with horses and her ultimate goal was to ride for her country and represent Great Britain at the Olympics. 

Unfortunately, after a serious leg injury in 2002, Kelda’s hopes of competing at an international level seemed to have disappeared. The leg injury had a huge impact on her life, leaving her no longer able to run or play many of the sports that meant so much to her. This had a huge impact on her confidence and self-belief, and she spent nearly 10years fighting to accept who she was. 

In 2002 she decided to climb Kilimanjaro, and this proved to be the start of a new direction in life. She returned and began retraining as an outdoor instructor. As a result of the dramatic effect the outdoors had on her own mental and physical recovery, Kelda decided she wanted to help others facing similar challenges to herself, and this led her to set up the charity Climbing Out.
Kelda went on to represent Great Britain in Paracanoe and competed at the 2015 World Cup and the 2016 World Championships. The ultimate goal was the Rio Paralympics.
Unfortunately she just missed out on selection for Rio, but she went on to join an Adaptive Team attempting to climb Aconcagua, the highest mountain in South America at 7,000m. 
On the 19th January 2017 she became the first recorded adaptive female to summit the mountain.
In summiting, Kelda found many of the answers she’d been searching for since her injury and this inspired her to attempt a solo row of the Atlantic. After 76 days unsupported at sea, Kelda became the first adaptive person to ever solo row any ocean.
But the challenges didn’t stop there. 12 months ago Kelda was diagnosed with breast cancer. She decided to set herself the goal of completing a triathlon as motivation to push through her recovery. 
She completed her first triathlon just 4 months post mastectomy and went on to complete 2 further triathlons last year, including the Snowman Triathlon, known for being the toughest triathlon in the country. She now has her sights set on completing a half ironman in 2022.
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 
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Show Notes
  • Who is Kelda
  • Being based in Shropshire 
  • Her 4 legged family
  • Her early years and her passions for sports 
  • Playing netball at a national level
  • Her dream of wanting to ride at the Olympics
  • Hanging around the local stables
  • Getting her first horse at 16
  • The riders who inspired her
  • Being in an accident with her horse
  • Dealing with the trauma after the accident
  • The start of her resilience journey at 21
  • Losing her confidence and going back to riding too soon
  • Moving away from horse and going travelling to Australia 
  • Getting into eventing and gaining her confidence
  • The accident that changed her life completely
  • Trying to be the person she was before the injury
  • Feeling like a failure
  • Learning acceptance 
  • Deciding to climb Kilimanjaro and why that was the start of her recovery
  • Not being able to get the mental health support that was needed
  • Table legs…. 
  • Video resources to help with resilience
  • Being dumped…
  • Lessons from climbing Kilimanjaro
  • Needing to change her attitude and focus more on what she could do
  • Deciding to retrain as an outdoor instructor
  • Figuring out how to get sport back in her life
  • Aiming for the para-olympics for 2016 
  • Meeting Martin Hewitt - Adaptive Grand Slam 
  • “It’s not about saying I can’t, it’s about saying how can I”
  • How can I make it possible to climb Aconcagua?
  • Figuring out the how
  • Advice for people who are feeling like a failure
  • The importance of being honest with yourself
  • Being brave enough to try
  • Being judged by people and why it doesn’t matter
  • Deciding to solo row the Atlantic
  • Finding peace on the mountain
  • Fundraising for Climbing Out and wanting to raise £50K
  • Advice regarding sponsorship
  • Being super clear on her WHY
  • 3 questions about the row
  • The challenge of the solitude while out on the row
  • The challenges of 2020/2021
  • Being diagnosed with cancer and having a single mastectomy
  • Wanting to get back to normal and feel like herself again
  • Getting back into exercise and following a routine again
  • Why you have to try
  • Training for 4 triathlons in 2022
  • Challenging the belief that she had that she couldn’t run
  • Swimming after a mastectomy
  • Doing an half Ironman in June 2022
  • Connect with Kelda
  • Final words of advice - Keep Moving
Social Media

Website: Climbing Out

Instagram: @kelda_wood

Facebook: @ClimbingOutCharity


Twitter: @ClimbingOut_


Jun 21, 2022
Mary-Ann is a broadcaster, anthropologist and lover of the outdoors. She mostly makes TV shows about archaeology and anthropology, and her work has taken her from yak herders' camps on the Tibetan plateau to the slums of Dhaka in Bangladesh, the deserts of Australia and crofters' cottages on the Scottish islands. 
She's currently pinned in one place (give or take) by two small children, and is working out ways to live an adventurous life with kids and a mortgage. 
Mary-Ann is also passionate about helping people from diverse backgrounds find outdoor adventures, and challenging the systems that mean access isn't equal for all. She's a hillwalking ambassador for the British Mountaineering Council, and a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.
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. 
To find out more about supporting your favourite podcast and becoming a patron please check out
Show Notes
  • Who is Mary-Ann in her own words
  • Growing up in Cheshire loving outdoors
  • Learning and working with adults as a kid
  • Wanting to be a vet back then
  • How she got into Anthropology
  • Her first research as an Anthropologist
  • Challenges getting on adventures as a mum of two kids
  • Joining a 40-day expedition in the Simpson Desert in Australia
  • Making positive choices rather than missing out
  • Her role as the British Mountaineering Council's hillwalking ambassador
  • 'Finding Our Way' Podcast and what this is about
  • Celebrating people who are making a difference
  • Seeing Sarah Williams as a role model
  • Being inspired by Izzy Lynch and Tessa Treadway of Motherload
  • Getting into more detail about her role as a Royal Geographical Society fellow
  • Future challenges she would like to take on
  • Wanting to hike the Cape Wrath Trail
  • Her goal of travelling more in the east and west of Africa
  • Wishing to go on a long journey with horses
  • Spending time with the yak herders
  • Having deep connections with animals and landscapes
  • Biggest challenges she faced in her 20's
  • Budget and travel with confidence
  • Gender and safety
  • Final words or advice
Social Media
Instagram: @Maryannochota 
Twitter: @MaryAnnOchota 
Jun 14, 2022
Lael Wilcox is an ultra-endurance bike packer from Alaska. In racing, she’s excited to compete against the whole field and sometimes wins overall. She’s extremely motivated to encourage more women & girls to try bike packing. 
She organizes a girls cycling mentorship program, women’s adventure scholarships & bikepacking challenges.
Lael started bicycling in 2008 at age 20, when she and her partner decided to tour the world. Working stints to collect money, the two set out on a bicycle tour of over thirty countries. They started in North America, then traveled in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, logging over 100,000 miles.
Lael entered the Holyland Challenge, a 1000-mile unsupported race across Israel. She was both the youngest rider and the only woman. She led the race by 25 miles the first day, and although she did not win the race, she became hooked on endurance racing. 
In 2016, Lael participated in the 4,400 mile Trans Am Bike Race that crosses the United States from west to east. Lael averaged 235 miles per day for 18 days, averaging less than 5 hours of sleep per night and ending up winning the race outright.
In 2018, Lael became only the second female to complete Switzerland's Navad 1000 bikepacking race, finishing in second place. The race features 627 miles distance and 99,770 feet of climbing. Lael's race was commemorated in the film I'm Not Stopping produced by Rugile Kaladyte (who is now her wife!)
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. 
To support the tough girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Please sign up as a patron Thank you.
Show notes
  • Who is Lael in her own words
  • What was it like to grow up in Alaska
  • Being obsessed with sports
  • Starting to cycle at 20
  • How her passion for bikes started
  • Her travel and biking journey in the Middle East
  • Talking about her first race
  • Getting a job as a bicycle taxi driver
  • Working in a restaurant
  • Saving up money and getting back on her bike
  • Not expecting bicycling as her lifestyle
  • Riding in the US, traveling to Europe, Africa, Middle East, etc.
  • Seeing more remote places and meeting interesting people
  • Expecting to go to medical school and become a doctor
  • Working hard organising girls scholarships and mentorship programs while doing another job
  • Feeling stressed out for about 3 years
  • Getting worried about not having enough time to do everything to live a healthy and happy life
  • Getting support from people within the industry
  • Talking about the 1400 km bike race in Israel
  • Taking on the challenge as a woman
  • Utilising only the equipment she has to win the race
  • "I didn't know I'd love it until I did it."
  • Why does she love bike packing
  • Riding the Tour Divide in 2015
  • Her breathing experience in the Tour Divide race
  • "I don't have to quit; the race will keep going, but I can just rest and see how I'm doing."
  • Becoming sick and being diagnosed with asthma while on the race
  • Finishing the race and breaking the women's record
  • Experiencing tough situations and how she deals with it
  • Recovering from exhaustion physically and mentally
  • What is Trans Am and its history
  • Road racing is not as easy as it seems
  • Sleeping in a sleeping pad or sleeping bag
  • Averaging 183 miles per day for the Tour Divide and 237 miles per day for 18 days for the Trans Am
  • Eating while on the race
  • Talking more about her bikes
  • Getting into detail about the film I'm Not Stopping
  • Meeting her wife Rugile Kaladyte
  • How Rue asked to marry her in 2020
  • Her wedding and how it felt
  • How she encourages girls to get into bike packing
  • Starting a program in Tucson in 2022
  • Hosting 2 women's bike packing challenges with Komoot
  • Hosting 3 women's scholarships
  • Final words of advice
  • "It doesn't have to be the biggest goal or the biggest achievement but start doing some part of it."
Social Media
Instagram: @laelwilcox
Jun 7, 2022
After leaving her entire life behind to escape an abusive relationship, Jillian found herself living in a tent in the woods. 
Confused, depressed and feeling a lack of control over emotions and herself, she learned of her diagnosis of PTSD. 
Refusing medication, she shifted PTSD to fuel her drive to connecting back to fitness, health, nature, adventure and herself. 
She is now particularly known for her niche of integrating her imagery and story telling in powerful presentations, offering healing and connection for others. 
She has also reframed her definition of PTSD  to  - Perseverance - Trust - Strength - Determination
In the past few years Jillian has pushed herself to achieve a world first: Paddling a tandem sea kayak down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon and becoming the first Canadian to paddle across America; a journey of  over 6,500km completed in 150 days. This involved going through 16 states with 23 portages (carrying the kayak), including 675kms over the Great Divide, which she did on a broken foot.
“Nothing is placed in front of us, that we don’t have the strength to overcome. It’s just believing in ourselves enough.”
* Content Warning - Abusive relationships are discussed as well as PTSD - we don’t go into specific but it is mentioned and talked about. 
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 by signing up as patron Visit Thank you.
Show notes
  • Who is Jillian
  • What does she do
  • Growing up and spending half of her life in Winnipeg
  • How did her love for the outdoors and nature start
  • Growing up in an island with her entire family
  • Discovering and finding their own hobbies and activities in the woods
  • Wanting to be a naturalist and being creative as a kid
  • Taking photos and having camera in hand since 10 years old
  • Making plans of going to specific school or university to study photography
  • Struggling in university studying fine arts
  • Getting into Prairieview School of Photography
  • Feeling stuck again after finishing the program
  • Returning to the island in northwestern Ontario to reconnect with nature
  • Falling inlove with the mountains and oceans
  • Packing up and driving to the west coast with her dog
  • Landing a photography job
  • Becoming a live-in nanny
  • Getting fitness while doing photography
  • Having a musher partner and friends
  • Starting their own team and a dog sledding company
  • Having an abusive relationship and leaving everything behind
  • Living in a tent in the woods with her dog for seven months
  • Living in the best home she could ever have that moment
  • Dealing with trauma
  • Becoming concerned about her negative thoughts
  • Meeting a counselor and being diagnosed with PTSD
  • Believing a counselor is not for her
  • Discovering her own healing tool out in nature
  • Having a supportive family
  • Doing  a solo roadtrip across Canada
  • Wanting to reconnect with her passions and family
  • Not opening up about her abusive relationship to her family
  • Writing an article published in the Canadian Women's Foundation
  • Talking about her solo travel experience
  • Having others inspired by her article and her story
  • Shifting her mindset around PTSD
  • "I've been able to basically utilise that kind of diagnosis and what we affiliate as a negative to be my fuel to accomplish goals and allow me to accept saying yes to things, new experiences, and push myself. I believe wholeheartedly that nothing is placed in front of us that we don't have the strength to overcome."
  • Perseverance, Trust, Strength, and Determination
  • Being a CEO and lead guide of a camp
  • Being able to share all of her knowledge to help others get through life's challenges
  • Becoming the first Canadian to paddle across America
  • How she started the journey with Jaime Sharp @jaimesharp_adventures
  • Her journey on paddling a tandem sea kayak through the Grand Canyon
  • Getting into more detail about paddling across America
  • Ending up paddling up solo on a trip
  • Needing a break...
  • Being mentally broken back then
  • Getting support from people and her sponsors
  • Why she decided to keep going
  • Sharing more experiences about her journey
  • Getting injured and how she recovered
  • Most valuable lessons she learned on her journey
  • Doing a 75-day expedition flipping a 400lbs. tire up to mountains with 60 lbs. of steel chains in 2021 to raise awareness to PTSD
  • Being stationed as Ecoguardian at Race Rocks
  • Final words of advice
Social Media
May 31, 2022
Donna (@fitfetishtri) 52, mother of one (27yrs). Recently completed Ironman Barcelona (Oct 3rd 2021) her first full distance endurance triathlon after being inspired to sign up by 10 Ironwomen, a group who are working to increase female participation in Ironman races. 

Donna was one of 194 women that took part in the event out of 1500 athletes. 
It was only her third triathlon event, she had also never run a marathon before. 
Learn more about Donna, her early years, her reasons for wanting to do an Ironman, her training, journey to the start line, lessons from the race as well as advice and tips to help you take on your next challenge.
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out! 
To support the Tough Girl Podcast and to help increase the amount of female role models in the media become a patron
Show Notes
  • Who is Donna
  • Growing up in London
  • Always enjoy reading as a kid
  • Starting to think about her future career
  • Acquiring a journalism degree
  • Getting into fitness in her early 20s
  • Having no interest in running a marathon
  • Signing up for her first triathlon at 46
  • Aiming to always be fit
  • Riding and owning three bikes in her teenage years
  • More details about Ironman training
  • Doing online workouts and keeping herself positive to stay fit
  • Getting into the details about Ironman
  • Being inspired by 10IronWomen @10ironwomen
  • Signing up for Ironman Barcelona 2020 at the age of 50
  • Representing and encouraging women of colour
  • Her main concerns about the challenge
  • What is it like to be part of 10IronWomen
  • Becoming more driven by achieving the goal
  • Forming a training plan with the help of the book Be IronFit
  • More information on her preparation and training
  • Not wanting to skip a session
  • Personal challenges associated with menopause
  • Listening to podcasts to keep herself mentally healthy
  • Working on strengthening her mindset
  • Dealing with anxiety when in Barcelona
  • What it was like prior to the event
  • Being determined to complete the challenge
  • Looking back to when she was out on the course
  • Biggest challenges she experienced throughout the Ironman
  • Her reaction when she crossed the finish line
  • Wanting to do more cycling challenges
  • Planning to sign up for another 10IronWomen event in Barcelona in 2023
  • Other future challenges she wants to take on
  • The story behind her name "The Iron Empress"
  • Final words of advice
  • "Signing up for Ironman and pushing myself to the limit physically, has really shown me that I am capable of so much more."
Social Media
Instagram: @fitfetishtri 
10 Iron Women - Striving for a 50:50 Gender Split in an Ironman Event 
Follow us as we inspire more women to take on the unthinkable, and our goal of a 50/50 gender split in an Ironman event in 2023 
Website - 
Twitter - @10ironwomen
Instagram - @10ironwomen
May 24, 2022
Kate Pilcher is the founder & guide of Globetrotting, a worldwide travel agency that specialises in horse riding experiences to all corners of the globe. Kate discovered this form of travel as part of a quarter-life crisis and ran away to Argentina and then Kenya to discover herself from the back of a horse. Now in her forties Kate leads globetrotting rides to some extraordinary places with her three daughters and husband in toe.
Kate in her own words:
“I started Globetrotting a bit over a decade ago, thanks to a quarter-life crisis. You see, I had turned 25 and went on a 10-day horse riding safari in the Maasai Mara, Kenya, where my mind was blown by witnessing the wildebeest migration astride a safari horse. 
It was THIS crazy, colourful, life-changing experience that led me to step away from my business (Salt magazine), my boyfriend (now husband – thankfully Steven is a very patient man), mortgage and flee to a remote 100,000 acre estancia in Patagonia only accessible via horse.
For the next nine months I jumped from saddle to saddle, driven by an unquenchable thirst to explore horse cultures in South America and Africa. When I finally returned home, Globetrotting took form alongside my business at the time, Salt magazine.
You see, I fell in love with this form of travel – Globetrotting – where the pace is slower and the experience richer.
Rather than travelling in a tour bus (conveyor-belt travel, I like to call it), when you’re astride a horse, you climb under the skin of a country, absorbing every nuance it has to offer.
I knew it was the only way for me to travel, and I was determined to share this passion with other horse folk and I have. 
This is a true calling for me.”
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Make sure you hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
To find out more about supporting your favourite podcast and becoming a patron please visit
Show notes
  • Who is Kate
  • What is Globetrotting
  • How they use horse riding to change people's lives
  • A little background about her family
  • Her first and earliest memory of horses
  • Having a little interest in horses back then
  • Never thought of horses as part of her career
  • Having no idea what she wanted to do
  • Working in small businesses alongside her degree
  • How sales and marketing interest her
  • She enjoys marketing and sales
  • Moving to the UK after finishing her degree
  • Returning to Australia and having the chance to ride a horse once again
  • Exploring Maasai Mara in Kenya for 10 days
  • Wanting to get away from everything
  • Feeling that she isn't living the life she was meant to live
  • Rejecting Steven's marriage proposal
  • How Globetrotting started
  • Background on how and why she took the risk of changing careers
  • Wanting to be invited to the world's oldest horseback riding event
  • Being able to open many people's doors through her space
  • Getting more detailed about horse riding
  • Different types of rides and items to carry on the journey
  • Ensuring that each client is well-cared for from start to finish.
  • Her favourite horse breeds
  • Talking about horse therapy
  • Road testing in European rides in 2018
  • Riding with a baby and just wanting to go home
  • The most challenging time she had during her riding journey
  • Having her husband's support and encouragement
  • Being a mother and how it affects her work
  • "Home is my family and we can go anywhere and have adventure."
  • Planning a six-week adventure in August with family and guests
  • Experiencing the most terrifying adventure with her girls back in 2021
  • Returning to horse riding after having children
  • More information on the Silk Road Adventure - Kazakhstan - Kyrgyzstan - Mongolia
  • Partnering with Katy Willings
  • Final words of advice

Social Media




Youtube: Globetrotting - Horse Riding Holidays
May 17, 2022
Sophie in her own words:
“I am a GP and mental health trainer practising in West London. My exposure to diverse pockets of humanity has taught me that social struggles, such as loneliness, don’t discriminate and that the resulting emotional distress is real and reaching pandemic levels. My heart lies in challenging perceptions of these problems and how we support those suffering.
I am striving to increase awareness and education around responding to distress within the current UK system through my work with the organisation 4MentalHealth, while seeking out ways to change the system through the undertaking of research into the root causes of distress and alternative approaches to healing globally.
My growing interest in the relationship between mental health and community led to the creation of 'The Patient's Voice Project' in 2016. I'm delighted this year to expand the project and focus in on cultural influences on mental health and healing through a Winston Churchill Fellowship exploring the potential translation of indigenous traditional practice elements to western society as alternative forms of therapy. 
I've also had the opportunity to relay my work more widely; engaging with corporate audiences through talks on community at the Airbnb London Headquarters and contributing to policy change through work with the Jo Cox Foundation and the ‘Campaign to End Loneliness’ .
My work has also fostered a growing awareness of the transformative potential of the natural environment on psychological well being. 
I enjoy getting outdoors as much as possible in the role of Expedition Doctor and most recently accompanied a group of young people to the Scottish Highlands with the British Exploring Society.
When not working you will usually find me Scottish country dancing, falling off a surfboard or practising the ukulele.”
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. Visit and subscribe - super quick and easy to do and it makes a massive difference. Thank you.
Show notes
  • Who is Sophie
  • Being based in London and working as a GP
  • Her Special interests
  • Doing mental health research
  • Being an expedition doctor
  • Her love of travel and expeditions
  • Her early years growing up in the Yorkshire Dales
  • Where her love of travel and adventure came from 
  • Being inspired by her Grandfather
  • Going to Kenya and doing her first expedition at 17
  • Trekking across the States on the Lewis & Clark Trail 
  • Going to medical school at St. Andrews
  • Getting into expedition medicine
  • Being afraid of taking the next step
  • Going on a trip to Antarctica in January 2020
  • How the trip on a tall ship changed her life
  • The mental side of adventures and challenges
  • Stress
  • Anticipation and preparation
  • Coping strategies for extreme environments 
  • Creating your own safety plan
  • The emotional kit list
  • Why strategies are very personal 
  • Having a safety plan for general life
  • Creating your own Safety Plan
  • Heading to the USA in 2019 for research
  • Winning a Winston Churchill Fellowship
  • Talking circles 
  • Going on a tall ship in Costa Rica
  • Personal boundaries and looking at your own mental health
  • Keeping expedition fit 
  • Having to want to be on the expedition
  • Visiting Antarctica and getting free vodka
  • Being an emerging film maker and what that means
  • The Patients Voice Project - 2016
  • Looking to do a Masters later on in 2022
  • Connect with Sophie
  • Final words of advice
  • Be curious about the world
Social Media
The Patients Voice - A global project researching and collecting patients’ stories from around the world to enhance our collective wellbeing.
Instagram: @drsophieredlin
Twitter: @DrSophieRedlin
May 10, 2022
Shikha is a writer based in Uttarakhand, India. Specialising in stories woven around nature and the outdoors, sustainable living, and those with a cultural insight from the remote mountains of India, Nepal and Bhutan. 
Her travel stories appear in a wide variety of publications such as the National Geographic Traveller, Travel + Leisure, Conde Nast Traveller, Lonely Planet, and more. 
Her environmental and social interest stories have appeared in newspapers such as The Hindu, The New Indian Express, and on platforms such as Nature InFocus and RoundGlass Sustain. 
Born and brought up in the mountains, she is a qualified mountaineer who has participated in expeditions in the Himalayas. Her mountaineering stories have appeared in The Outdoor Journal and online on the Red Bull forum. 
Shikha is the recipient of a Commonwealth Writers fellowship for her stories on Himalayan ecology, and has also authored an award-winning children's book on Northeast India's first female Everester, Tine Mena, for a literacy NGO, Pratham. 
Most recently, she authored a series of Lonely Planet pocket guide books on Nepal.
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 tough girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media -  visit
Show Notes
  • Who is Shikha
  • Growing up in the mountains in India
  • Her love of exploration
  • Deciding to become a professional writer
  • Being curious about the world
  • Quitting her job to backpack across the Indian Continent in 2008
  • Her love of writing and not wanting to be confined to an office cubicle
  • Being drawn to the mountains and wanting to spend more time there
  • Her year of self discovery
  • Her childhood and early years
  • Going into higher education
  • Making the decision to quit her job and go on a gap year
  • Planning her year out and travelling on a shoe string budget
  • Wanting to get off the regular tourist circuit
  • Heading to the North East of India
  • Spending time in Nepal and Bhutan
  • Building her career as a freelance writer
  • Travelling solo in remote places
  • Advice and tips for solo travel
  • Why planning a little ahead can make things a lot easier
  • Advice for travel writing
  • Why you need to find your niche
  • Finding your writing voice
  • Telling the same story but in a different way
  • Learning mountaineering skills 
  • Encouraging more women to gain skills in the outdoors
  • Challenging times in the mountains
  • Walking on unmarked trails 
  • Being underprepared on the mountains and the lessons learned
  • Dealing with challenging situations and her process for handling it
  • Staying positive and having a back up plan
  • How to connect with Shikha 
  • Putting together her website
  • Writing her award-winning children's book on Northeast India's first female Everester, Tine Mena.
  • Wanting to inspire young girls
  • Advice for women and girls to spend more time in the mountains
  • Future dreams and goals 
Social Media
Instagram: @shikha_trip 
May 3, 2022
Eleanor Drinkwater is a bug nut and adventurer. Her love of all things creepy-crawly has led her to carry out research in field sites across the world, from Australia to the Amazon. 
She is fascinated by invertebrate behaviour and has been awarded Inspirational Explorer of the Year award by the Scientific Expedition Society for her work looking into the behaviour of the biggest beetle on the planet. 
However, she is equally fascinated by the weird and wonderful critters we have in the UK and has recently she finished her PhD which researched how and why woodlice have personalities.
Eleanor is passionate about communicating and sharing her enthusiasm for invertebrates. She is currently working as a lecturer at Writtle University College where she teaches about ecology and conservation. She also really enjoys encouraging little bug enthusiasts through running bug-hunting events with community groups and schools.
Ultimately, she believes that there’s a real need to encourage budding bug lovers (of every age) and hopes to share some of her enthusiasm with future bug enthusiasts.
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. Visit and subscribe - super quick and easy to do and it makes a massive difference. Thank you.
Show notes
  • Who is Dr. Eleanor
  • What exactly does she do
  • Getting into more detail about her fascination with bugs
  • Growing up with environmentally conscious parents
  • What was it like to study Developmental Biology and how did it go
  • Her desire to go on expeditions and study butterflies.
  • Her story of how she got her first project, which began her career
  • Over-confidence as her real turning point
  • Finally getting into a PhD program
  • Volunteering in the Peruvian Amazon with Crees Manu
  • Taking part in research expeditions with lots of help and connections
  • Memorable and fun experience she had while crossing a river
  • Lessons she learned from her previous expedition
  • What new expeditioners and researchaer should know and talk about before starting their journey
  • Her love for an expedition-focused research centre
  • Having an amazing research trip in Honduras
  • Being extremely lucky to have been successful on all of her expeditions
  • Wanting to be the first person to do a recorded behaviour study of various creatures
  • Getting into more detail about the Titan beetle
  • How thrilled she is to find the first creature
  • Challenges she had in catching the beetle in such a short period of time
  • How she managed to stay motivated while dealing with a lot of stress
  • Bugs and insects for human consumption
  • Cricket protein powder Protein Rebel 
  • Her thoughts on eating live invertebrates for entertainment
  • Finishing her PhD and what are her future plans
  • Talking about woodlice and its personality
  • Keeping a hedgehog and giant African snails as pets
  • Participating in a short film and rewilding project with Citizen Zoo 
Social Media
Twitter: @E_Drinkwater
Apr 28, 2022
Helen Butters is a Sunday Times Bestselling author, keynote speaker, communications & engagement expert, qualified performance coach with NLP, and a member of the National Council of Psychotherapists.   

In 2016 she followed her dream of rowing across both the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean with a team of 3 amazing women and gained a Guinness World Record and an Honorary Doctorate.   
A lot of people ask Helen how she coped with the level of endurance rowing, 2 hours on and 2 hours off 24 hours a day.  What got her through, was a positive mindset and understanding how to keep it that way, in times of immense stress 
Adventure and business have many similarities.  
Helen uses her row across the Atlantic as a backdrop, and adopts a unique, interesting, and amusing approach that sets her apart from many motivational speakers.  Helen is extremely relatable as she’s not a professional athlete: She’s a mum with a busy career who has many barriers that could have stopped her from undertaking a big adventure.  Helen has many examples of how attendees have been inspired to look at life using new perspectives, become more attentive to their own talents which in turn has caused many to leave her talk feeling prepared and motivated.
Helen qualified as a performance life coach in 2019 with the aim of helping others to live a more fulfilling and satisfying life both professionally and personally. She works collaboratively with her clients to find meaning, understanding and solutions: empowering them to come up with the answers. 
She is passionate about the ethos of coaching as a powerful positive discipline and uses flexible effective tools which enable her clients to turn their belief into reality.  She has a specific interest in the power of mindset and has put together a mindset reset programme for clients.
Helen will be swapping 40-foot waves for the Pyrenees as her next adventure will see her cycling 1000 miles through 4 countries from Maggie’s Leeds to Maggie’s Barcelona in April 2022.  Helen and her team will be raising money for Maggie’s Yorkshire. 
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. 
Visit and support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Thank you.
Show notes
  • Who is Helen
  • Wanting to row across the Atlantic Ocean
  • How she met Janette Benaddi
  • "If you plant something in your head that you actually want to happen, your brain subconsciously looks for those opportunities. And when opportunities arrive, that's when you instantly say yes."
  • How grateful she is that she said yes
  • Speaking with Melanie Sykes
  • Getting a No from her husband and Yes from their children about rowing
  • Involving her children in everything
  • Feeling safe with the team despite the risks and dangers
  • Making sure to use all the expertise and that the right people were in place
  • Being good at communicating and building relationships
  • Coaching as her new career
  • Helping Niki Doeg to stay motivated
  • Being strong and positive on the boat
  • Doing mental training in preparation for the row
  • Doing mindset reset and anchoring techniques
  • Crying and holding back her feelings
  • Feeling unhappy when she shouldn't have been
  • The need to prepare mentally before the adventure
  • Having an adrenaline hangover
  • Not getting help and how she struggled mentally for 18 months
  • Using her experience to help other rowers before and after their journeys
  • Her journey into coaching
  • Becoming a qualified performance life coach
  • How self-expansion excites her
  • Believing that everyone should have a coach and why it is important
  • Mindset reset and what is it
  • Teaching people deliberate thinking
  • Jealousy and its positive effects on people
  • The story of her cycling journey for Maggie’s Cancer Care Centre
  • Fundraising event for Maggie's
  • Cycling from Leeds to Barcelona in April
  • Having no prior cycling experience
  • Worrying about her physical fitness
  • Meeting people along the way
  • Raising money for people experiencing complex grief with children and families
  • Final words of advice


Social Media




Instagram: @butters_and_beyond



Yorkshire Rows


Instagram: @yorkshirerows 

Facebook: @yorkshirerows2015

Twitter: @yorkshirerows 


Apr 26, 2022
Michelle Moore is an award-winning leadership coach, author, speaker and educator voted as one of the UK’s 50 Most 'Influential Women in Sport’.

Based on a twenty year’ career in senior leadership roles across sport, government and education, her pioneering work and coaching and leadership programmes have transformed the lives of professionals, young people, athletes and the culture of many organisations.

Winner of the 2016 UK Precious Award for ‘Outstanding Woman in Sport’, a Football Black List award and an esteemed national Change Maker award. Michelle is a globally recognised executive on leadership, race equity and sport for development.

A sought after experienced speaker and moderator hosting events and delivering keynotes for The University of Cambridge, The NBA, and UNICEF UK. She has chaired events at the United Nations and presented to the House of Lords. Michelle makes regular appearances for top tier media outlets including BBC Radio 4, TRT World, Channel 4, BBC World Service Sportshour and been featured in The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Times and The Independent. Michelle is a regular contributor on BBC radio.

Michelle combines her campaigning roles with board positions for SportsAid, a Sport England Talent Inclusion Advisory Board member and is commissioner for The Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket. She is a senior honorary associate lecturer at the University of Worcester.

Michelle’s book Real Wins was published November 25 2021, by John Murray Press, Hachette UK. 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
To support the Tough Girl Podcast and learn more about becoming a patron please visit
Show Notes
  • Who is Michelle
  • Her work in the world 
  • Using sport to address inequities 
  • Supporting individuals in their leadership journey 
  • Helping people to transform themselves and their communities 
  • Being based in London 
  • Working as a former teacher and having a love of education
  • Learning more about Michelle’s early years 
  • Growing up as a twin in the 70s
  • Being at athlete and being encouraged by her mum to do sports
  • Being a Black woman of mixed heritage
  • Being surrounded by love and culture and sports
  • Future dreams and ambitions
  • Wanting to be the best athlete she could be
  • The lessons learned from sports
  • Dealing with losses
  • Showing up every week to train
  • Wanting to be of service and to make a difference
  • Leaving athletics behind after going to university 
  • The challenges at university
  • Having an honest conversation with herself 
  • Using sport to develop leadership 
  • Changing your mindset around fear
  • How we achieve success which is defined by ourselves
  • Why we need to ask ourselves better questions
  • Learning to practice self compassion
  • Write the newspaper headline for tomorrow
  • Why we are not our thoughts
  • Why you have more power and control than you realise
  • Definitions of success and how they have changed 
  • Figuring out strengths and talents
  • Wanting to talk to young people about well-being
  • Why the biggest competition is always yourself
  • Living in the moment and being present
  • Going through the process of writing her book
  • Attracting different opportunities into our lives
  • Why you should be successful at a job if you’ve been doing it for 10 years
  • Why 20% was good enough
  • Creating her own leadership seminars 
  • Backing herself
  • Turning up and being me
  • Focusing on what I can control
  • Writing for herself 
  • How to connect with Michelle
  • How to support Michelle and why it makes a big difference
  • Final words of advice 
  • Wanting to be seen, heard, valued and respected 
  • Why the small things are important 
Social Media
Twitter: @hellomoore 
Real Wins is an urgent call to action from one of the most influential women in sport. In her unflinching style, Michelle Moore seeks to redress inequality at all levels and shows us how to channel our inner Serena Williams or Raheem Sterling to challenge stereotypes and tired assumptions. 
Through this timely, eye-opening insight into her experiences both on the track and in the boardroom, Michelle shows us how to face our fears, build resilience and find our own unique leadership style. She shares stories from athletes, leaders and many other inspiring people, as she redefines the relationship between identity and success for both individuals and organizations. 
Giving you the practical strategies of self-awareness and resilience to run your own race, Real Wins will empower you to take responsibility for your own prejudices, actions and ultimate success.
Apr 21, 2022
Jill is an underwater explorer, writer, photographer, speaker, and filmmaker. 
A pioneer of technical rebreather diving, she has led expeditions into icebergs in Antarctica, volcanic lava tubes, and submerged caves worldwide. 
Jill is the first Explorer-in-Residence of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. 
Her memoir, INTO THE PLANET, has been lauded by the Wall Street Journal, Oprah Magazine, and the New York Times. 
Her children’s book THE AQUANAUT is a Blue Ribbon Selection for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. 
Jill is a Fellow of the International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame, Underwater Academy of Arts and Sciences, Women Divers Hall of Fame and the Explorers Club, which awarded her with the William Beebe Award for ocean exploration.
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. Visit and subscribe - super quick and easy to do and it makes a massive difference. Thank you.
Show notes
  • Who is Jill
  • Loving water since she's a baby
  • How she got into diving
  • Becoming a lifeguard at 16
  • Taking a Bachelor of Fine Arts in visual communications design
  • Talking about her expeditions
  • Icebergs and cave diving
  • Exploring the B-15 iceberg for 60 days
  • Leading the dive team
  • Writing and producing the documentary film for National Geographic
  • Qualities a good cave diver should have
  • How dangerous cave diving is
  • Having a scary experience while underwater with a scientist
  • Her best piece of advice to deal with fear
  • How she dealt with and processed trauma
  • Processing and overcoming challenges with her husband
  • Having supportive mentors and colleagues
  • Being a woman in the diving industry
  • Becoming the Explorer in Residence at The Royal Canadian Geographical Society
  • Not having female mentors as a kid
  • Wanting to go to schools across the country and give talks about diving and exploration
  • Having a growth mindset
  • Writing her book Into The Planet
  • Jill and her husband's podcast Into The Planet Podcast
  • Impact of technology and natural world changes on the environment
  • Her passion to increase awareness about the big issues we face
  • Top tips and advice
  • "Be willing to step into the darkness to do something that you've never done before. Trust me, your eyes will adjust to the light, and that's when you stand on that threshold of true opportunity to become an explorer."
Social Media
Instagram: @jillheinerth 
Facebook: @jillheinerth 
Twitter: @jillheinerth 
Apr 19, 2022
Abi is a white, neurodivergent and fat writer, artist, cyclist and student nurse.

 She recently featured in Cycling UK’s 100 Women in Cycling 2021 for her working promoting fat lib in cycling.

Abigail was nominated for the 100 Women in Cycling by Chloe Bramwell who said:
"Abigail shows that cycling is open to everyone. Not just only women, but LGBT women, too. Her work embracing body positivity has made me change my relationship with my own body. I make healthier choices for myself because I love my body rather than to punish it. I admire her vulnerability and strength in showing how she sees herself. I admire that she holds the cycling community to account by expecting accessibility for everyone. I admire her for showing that cycling is for us all.”
Abi is the co-author of her first book all about cycle touring ‘Gears for Queers’. 
She lives on the Fife Coast with her partner Lea and cat Boba. She can normally be found riding her bike, cooking vegan feasts or obsessively playing The Sims!
"I believe that if people see a diversity of bodies on bikes and trikes, more people will feel like cycling is for them. I feel so happy when we get messages on social media from people who have got on their bikes again after reading our book or blogs. In the future I’d love to organise a big fat cycle tour!” - Abi Melton 
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. 
To find out more about supporting the Tough Girl Podcast and becoming a patron please visit
Show Notes
  • Who is Abi in her own words
  • Here passions and interests
  • Publishing her first book in June 2020
  • Being a 1st year student nurse
  • What is neurodivergency
  • Examples of neurodivergency and how it’s impacted Abi throughout her life
  • Challenges with communication 
  • Using masking as a technique to appear normal
  • Her early childhood and growing up in Norfolk
  • Being the eldest child
  • Living by the coast
  • Going to holiday camps and wanting to try everything available.
  • Being an avid reader and wanting to be the hero of the story
  • Wanting to be going out and having adventures
  • Not having a lot of opportunities 
  • Her late teenage years and her early 20s
  • Struggling with her mental health for 16 years onwards
  • Going to Edinburgh University to study English Literature
  • Why she stoped riding bikes 
  • Becoming more self conscious 
  • Not knowing how to travel or go on adventures 
  • Meeting Lea 
  • Woman on the Edge of Time: The classic feminist dystopian novel - By Marge Piercy
  • Going on an accidental mini-break to Brighton 
  • Deciding to go on a cycle adventure in Europe
  • Fears and concerns before heading out on the cycle adventure 
  • Feeling anxious about fitness levels 
  • Going with a partner and handling tough situations while on the road
  • Magical moments while travelling and the places that stand out
  • Being vegan and gluten free and trying to find food to eat 
  • Budgets and paying for the trip
  • Having a supportive family
  • Mental health while travelling
  • Writing the book - “Gears for Queers” and how it came about 
  • Going on a 2nd cycling tour
  • Planning their 3rd cycle tour
  • Going back to university to study to become a nurse
  • Following your passions and dreams
  • Being featured in Cycling UK’s 100 Women in Cycling 2021
  • Wanting to promote adventure for everyone
  • Advice for women who want to go cycle touring
  • Enjoying having a purpose for cycling 
  • Not cycling for fitness or weight loss
  • How to connect with Abi
  • Final words of advice 
Social Media
Instagram: @gearsforqueers 
Facebook: @gearsforqueers 
Twitter: @gearsforqueers 
Book: Gear for Queers
Apr 14, 2022
Omie in her own words:
“I’m a keen swimmer and swim teacher, having worked in the leisure industry since 2013. In my teaching role I've worked with a variety of different ages and abilities both in the UK and abroad.
I have been exploring the issue of diversity in aquatics and the leisure industry with my own project titled, ‘If 71% of the world is water, how can we feel at home if we don't know how to swim?’. 
I currently work for the Black Swimming Association in community engagement and communication and volunteer in my spare time for Pride in Water, and work as a volunteer swim host for Mental Health Swims in the London region.”
“Swimming has given me so much – employment, friendships and both physical and mental health benefits.”
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday 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. Visit and subscribe - super quick and easy to do and it makes a massive difference. Thank you.
Show notes
  • Who is Omie
  • Her work and love for swimming
  • Getting into swimming from a young age
  • Her love for teaching people
  • Not being able to join a swim club
  • Swimming competitively for her school
  • Role models who inspired Omie growing up
  • What she wanted to be 
  • Being academic at school
  • Talking with non swimmers
  • Teaching people how to swim
  • Wanting to make people feel as comfortable as possible
  • The joy of swimming
  • Loving outdoor swimming
  • Swimming in London
  • The support of the outdoor swimming community
  • The stress of swimming in pools
  • Advice and tips for outdoor swimming
  • Go with experienced people when it’s your first time
  • Why you need to be prepared
  • Working for the Black Swim Association
  • Working on a research project with the University of Portsmouth regarding Bone Density
  • Engaging with community leaders across the UK
  • Mental Health Swims and being a swim host
  • Working with Patagonia in 2021 on the Outsiders Project
  • What’s changed in swimming over the past few years
  • Plans for 2022 and wanting to go with the flow a bit more
  • Managing her mental health and putting herself first
  • Needing to talk about other stuff apart from swimming
  • Enjoying reading and writing 
  • Needing a creative outlet
  • Connect with Omie on the socials 
  • Final words of advice
  • The power of community 
  • Being surrounded by people who are proud of you and support you
Social Media
Instagram: @omiedale 
Twitter: @omie_dale 
Apr 12, 2022
Abhejali Bernardova (44, Czech Republic) of the Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team completed an extreme ultra-triathlon from Dover to Prague, during which she covered a total of 1111 km across the 3 disciplines: 34 km swimming, 895 km cycling, 182 km running. It took her 7 days, 12 hours and 5 minutes. 
She started on Monday September 13 2021 at 3am from Dover. In very challenging conditions, with the wind at force 5, she swam the English Channel in 15 hours and 33 minutes. The only other successful crossing on the same day was a 5-person relay team. It was her last chance to swim this year and the swim had already been postponed a few times. 
Restrictions did not allow her to stay in France, so she had to take a detour back to Dover and then take a ferry to France. She then cycled from Calais to her hometown of Cheb, near the Czech/German border. 
The cycling leg, which took her 4 days, was approximately 900 kilometres through France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. She arrived in Cheb on Saturday afternoon, then ran 182km to Prague, arriving on Monday afternoon. Her daily average was 220km cycling and 2 marathons running. 
The Czech athlete successfully completed her first English Channel swim 10 years ago. In 2018 she became the 1st Czech, the 10th person in the world, 4th woman and the 1st person from a landlocked country to complete the Oceans Seven*, seven difficult long-distance swims around the world. She is also the only Czech holder of the Triple Crown** of long-distance swimming. 
With her ultra-triathlon she aims to connect people and places and inspire others to break down and cross barriers in their own lives. If she can go from the UK to the Czech Republic under her own steam, then we really are closer to each other than we realise, we just put up unnecessary walls between us. She also tries to inspire others to overcome their own limits and show that these limits are often self-created. 
 (*) Oceans Seven include: English Channel, Gibraltrar Strait, Tsugaru Strait, Catalina Channel, Molokai Channel, North Channel, Cook Strait – all solo, non-wetsuit. See also:
(**) The Triple Crown includes: English Channel, Catalina Channel, around Manhattan. 
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. Visit and sign up - super quick and easy to do and it makes a massive difference. Thank you.
Show notes
  • Her love for swimming in the ocean
  • Wanting to share her adventures 
  • Her childhood and growing up in the Czech Republic 
  • Learning to swim in Russia
  • Not coming from a sports family 
  • Hearing about the English Channel
  • Starting meditation at 18 years old with Sri Chinmoy 
  • Wanting to know herself better
  • Wanting to step outside her comfort zone
  • Going to university and getting into running
  • Going after longer and longer distances
  • Running a marathon doing laps
  • “I can do more”
  • Swimming the English Channel in 2011
  • Getting into flow while swimming
  • Completing the Oceans 7 Challenge in 2018
  • Coping with the cold water
  • Taking cold showers in the morning
  • Being scared by sharks
  • Beautiful moments while swimming
  • Advice for going further with swimming 
  • Tips and advice for recovery
  • Sleeping for 7 hrs a night
  • Being a Peace Ultra Runner 
  • The Peace Run 
  • Loving the 24hrs races
  • When it gets difficult on the 24hr races
  • Deciding on a new challenge
  • The logistical challenges of putting the plan together
  • Being dependant on the weather for the swim
  • The training involved to get physically ready for the challenge
  • How her body has changed from 34 to 44
  • Needing more time to recover
  • Finishing in Prague
  • “I can do it - I have already done it”
  • Use your imagination even while training to tell yourself you can do it
  • Why you should DREAM BIG!!! 
  • Future dream challenges
  • Adventure blues….
  • Thank you to Abhejali
Social Media
Instagram: @abhejali
Apr 7, 2022
Rebecca Lowe is a freelance journalist from London who specialises in human rights and the Middle East. 
In 2015-16, she cycled 11,000km solo from London to Tehran. 
Her first book, THE SLOW ROAD TO TEHRAN, documenting her year-long journey, paints a living portrait of the Middle East through its people, politics and historic relationship with the West, and challenges much of the perceived wisdom about this region of the world. It was published in March 2022 by September Books in the UK and MVG in Germany.
During her career, Rebecca has written for the Guardian, BBC, Independent, Huffington Post, Economist, Sunday Times Magazine, Daily Mail, Evening Standard, Spectator and IranWire, as well as numerous travel, music and sports magazines. 
From 2010-15, she was the lead reporter at the International Bar Association, where she focused on human rights and the rule of law, and in 2018 she contributed to the adventure travel anthology THE KINDNESS OF STRANGERS: TRAVEL STORIES THAT MAKE YOUR HEART GROW, published by Summersdale. 
Rebecca is a Fellow at the Royal Geographical Society and holds a BA in English Literature from Cambridge University and an MA in Journalism from Stanford University, where she was awarded a scholarship.
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. 
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Show Notes
  • Who is Rebecca
  • Being a journalist for over a decade
  • Becoming interested in the Middle East 
  • Deciding to quit her job and cycle from London to Iran
  • Becoming a new mum while finishing off her new book
  • The challenges of motherhood and juggling work
  • Being adventurous and having an independent spirit
  • Being into sports and playing with the boys
  • Where her interest in the middle east came from 
  • Always wanting to become a writer 
  • Explaining what the Arab Spring is (2010- 2011)
  • Her journey with cycling 
  • Trying to find a bike via sponsorship
  • Learning to cycle with Panniers
  • Packing everything!!
  • Not feeling prepared before the trip
  • Learning how to deal with new situations
  • Getting into her cycling rhythm
  • Going from West to East
  • Feeling overwhelmed by undertaking big challenges
  • Concerns and fears before starting the journey 
  • The challenges of being a journalist while travelling
  • Taking precautions before the trip 
  • The benefits of being a woman in the Middle East
  • What it was like day to day
  • Having a budget of £15 per day 
  • Trying to avoid the heat
  • The wonderful food!
  • Learning different cultures 
  • Getting to the end of the trip and being ready to finish
  • Dealing with punctures
  • Arriving into Tehran and getting to the finish line
  • Missing the Uk 
  • The lessons learning from time spend on the road
  • Feeling more confident and being able to cope with new situations
  • Connect with Rebecca
  • Final words of advice 
  • Start slowly and push those boundaries
  • Why you can go on Big Adventures
  • Mantra and powerful quotes
Social Media
Instagram: @reo_lowe 
Twitter: @reo_lowe 
Apr 5, 2022
Kumbi in her own words:
“I’m Kumbi, a fun loving adventurous woman. I was born and raised in Zimbabwe and came over to England to study nursing when I was 18.
I love all things outdoors, from climbing, hiking, camping, cycling.
I am a senior nurse in the NHS, and I have been very thankful that I have the ability to go outdoors and destress. 
It is one of the places that I am able to practice Mindfulness, which has kept me grounded through some of the most challenging times that I have experienced during this pandemic.
I hope to share my love and inspire others to explore and be adventurous!”
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Show Notes
  • Who is Kumbi
  • What she does and her love of the outdoors
  • Being an outgoing child
  • Spending time in the outdoors
  • Wanting to be a lawyer
  • Her current role in the NHS
  • Looking at health inequalities
  • Making the move to the UK
  • Growing up speaking English
  • Her university days and not having a car
  • Going back to the start of the pandemic
  • Being redeployed to 111 (Non emergency help line in the UK)
  • Needing to have a break between work and home life
  • Getting back into climbing again 
  • Becoming a member of Extreme Sports Central 
  • Making the transition from the gym to climbing outside
  • Joining the British Mountaineering Council (BMC)
  • The Women's Trad Festival 
  • Overcoming fears while climbing
  • Learning to be kind to herself
  • Breaking problems down step by step
  • Looking at diversity in the sport
  • “Climbing is for all and everyone is welcome”
  • The role models and women she looks up to 
  • Learning to be kind to herself
  • Climbing goals for 2022
  • Magical moments in the outdoors
  • Type 2 and Type 3 fun
  • Being a speaker at Kendal Mountain Festival
  • Wanting to be a role model
  • Final words of advice
Social Media
Instagram: @here_climbs_krumbles 
Mar 31, 2022
Nicola Hardy worked in IT in South Yorkshire for a decade before diving into freelance life as an adventurer and outdoor writer in 2019. She began by climbing all 282 of Scotland's Munros and - after her plans to hike 3000km in New Zealand were scuppered by Covid - she continued adventuring closer to home. 
In 2020 she walked 330km from her birthplace in Sheffield to her new home in Cockermouth, Cumbria, journeying on foot across three national parks; and in 2021 she climbed all 214 Wainwrights in the Lake District over seven long weekends, a quirky book-by-book peak-bagging adventure.
Nic in her own words:
“I'm basically half IT organised spreadsheet nerd and half outdoor adventure loving hiker. I've taken a series of steps over the last 5 years to make my life as outdoorsy and adventurous as possible. I quit my job and sold my house in April 2019 and had 6 months of Scottish hill walking adventure, since then I've dabbled in route writing, gear reviewing, festival speaking, outdoor magazine/website writing whilst spending as much time outdoors around all that as I can. 
I also now work a 2-day a week job to keep regular income coming in whilst doing my freelance work and adventuring around that. Flipping the 5-day working week on its head and ensuring my love for the outdoors doesn't become stressful due to the need to focus constantly on monetising it.”
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 being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8 supporting the #MarchDailyMile Challenge.
If you’re interested in Inov-8 products send me a DM – I have a special discount code for you!!
Show Notes
  • Who is Nicola Hardy?
  • Getting into the outdoors 5 years ago
  • Being inspired by her parents to be active
  • Growing up in Sheffield
  • Falling in and out of love with running
  • Reaching her early 30s in a senior management role
  • Living to work 
  • Making changes to her life in 2016
  • Planning some walks in the Peak District
  • Spending more time in the outdoors in 2017
  • Wanting to go higher, further and to really challenge herself
  • Making a commitment to spending time outdoors
  • Deciding to hike Mt. Kilimanjaro and getting a team together 
  • Having 100 followers on Instagram
  • Meeting her partner James though an IG meet up
  • Peak Bagging and getting to explore more of the Lake District
  • Enjoying the planning of routes
  • Wanting to do more but being held back by work commitments
  • Making big changes to her life
  • Selling her house and quitting her job
  • Wanting to make a full time living from Adventure
  • How she approached the first few months
  • Planning to hike all 282 munros in Scotland in a 6 months period
  • Wanting to try a thru-hike
  • Not looking after herself when it came to nutrition
  • Wanting to have a healthy work life balance 
  • Going tunnel vision on a task
  • Wanting to leave a legacy and to show people they can make brave choices
  • Connecting with adventurers through instagram 
  • Getting into volunteering 
  • Walking home 2020
  • Settling in the Lake District
  • 2020 and working with Komoot
  • Working 2 days per week and having 5 days off to adventure 
  • Creating a life that works for her
  • Talking through the planning process of turning an idea into reality
  • Starting with maps and picking something which is a bit quirky
  • Using public transport to get around all the Wainwrights in the Lake District.
  • Nutrient and current diet
  • Making sure to fuel adequately during hikes
  • Maintaining fitness and what training looks like
  • Magical moments out in the mountains
  • Getting nervous about parking
  • Working as an ambassador for Inov-8
  • Inov-8 creating gear for the fast and light, hiker market
  • Super light hiking boot - ROCFLY G 390 - World’s first hiking boot with Graphene foam. 390g
  • My next challenge…
  • Advice and top tips for other women who want to get into the mountains 
  • The benefits of spending time with other people who have more experience 
  • Trying new things and figuring out what you enjoy
  • Dealing with the rain in the mountains and reframing it
  • Finding the one sport that you love
  • Finding ways to get through the tough times
  • Connect with Nic on the Socials 
  • Future plans for 2022…
Social Media

Instagram @adventurer.nic 

Twitter @adventurernic 

Facebook @adventurer.nic.official 

Komoot Adventurer Nic
Recent adventures are all catalogued in a series of komoot 'Collections' here -
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored by Inov-8 
Instagram: @inov_8 
Mar 29, 2022
Tasha, 43, from London is the founder of Black Girls Do Run UK. 
In 2019, Tasha set up the online community to inspire black women to run for their health, fitness and mental wellbeing.  
Tasha talking about running:
“I am a runner and running is definitely part of my identity and how I am often identified by others. For me, being a runner is to simply be someone who runs, enjoys running and becomes miserable if they cannot run – because it is such a big and important part of your life and who you are. It is not about racing, speed, distance, fitness levels or running daily, it is a feeling where life isn’t quite right without running.”
Listen to Tasha on the Tough Girl Podcast as she shares more about her life, her passion for running, how she got into running, what she loves about it as well as giving you lots of top tips to help you with your running journey. 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.


Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear —>>
Show notes
  • Who is Tasha
  • Living in London
  • Being a runner for 23 years
  • Doing her first race in 1999
  • Growing up with an older sister in there early 80s
  • Spending time in the outdoors
  • Being a runner at school and being encouraged to join the athletics team
  • Running 800m and 1500m
  • What happened after leaving school
  • Her early 20s and not being active
  • Exercising 3x a week?
  • Wanting to lead an active lifestyle
  • Loving the treadmill
  • Going running outside for the first time and why she loved it
  • Doing her first 5k and why it helped to change her life
  • Being encouraged to sign up for her first race
  • Being a runner and identifying as such
  • How running makes her feel
  • Her running journey 
  • Being inspired by the London Marathon
  • Doing the London Marathon in 2000 and raising money for charity 
  • How it felt finishing the race
  • Doing the Paris Marathon in 2004
  • The women who have inspired Tasha 
  • Being inspired by Paula Radcliffe
  • How you entered the London Marathon before it being online
  • Being inspired by everyday women
  • Making running work for her 
  • Fitting running into her life and having to be creative with her time
  • Choosing to run at 5am
  • Training for a half marathon in April 
  • Founding Black Girls Do Run UK in 2019
  • Her goals for Black Girl Do Run UK and how it has grown over the years
  • Keeping the community together during Covid
  • How running has changed over the past 23 years
  • Representation in magazines and in races
  • Advice for new runners
  • Why the most important thing is that your moving
  • Losing your running mojo
  • Training herself to run without music
  • Using Strava
  • Connect with Tasha and Black Girls Do Run UK
  • Final words of advice and wisdom
  • Start small and be consistent
Social Media
Instagram: @blackgirlsdorunuk 
Facebook: @blackgirlsdorunuk 
Twitter: @bgdrunuk 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored by Inov-8 
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
Instagram: @inov_8 
Mar 24, 2022
Miriam in her own words:
“I am also an ordinary ultra runner. I have finished eight 50 mile ultras, three 100 mile ultras, six 24-hour, 1 48-hour ultra, and one 60 hour ultra. I also ran several virtual ultras and marathons during the Covid-19 pandemic.
I began running ultras after watching Leslie Stahl interview elite world-class ulta runners Dean Karnazes and Pam Reed on 60 Minutes in 2004. 
I have been running ultras since 2005. Prior to running ultras, I completed nine marathons, eight half-marathons, one 10 miler, and five 5Ks. I have been running competitively since 1989.
I am a published author, freelance writer, interviewer, and book reviewer. You can read my publications in the Writing Life tab. In my blog you'll find interviews with ultrarunners, such as Jacob Moss, Kevin Hoegler, Dean Karnazes, Camille Herron, Bart Yasso, Charlie Engle, Pamela Chapman Markle, Catra Corbett, Gene Dykes, and Peter Morgan.I  write book reviews, and articles about gardening, the national parks, spirituality, cancer caregiving, and more. 
I am a cancer caregiver. I have been running virtual ultra running events during the Covid-19 pandemic to raise money for a GoFundMe campaign I established - Ultra Care for Cancer Caregivers." 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by @inov_8
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
Show notes
  • Who is Miriam
  • Born and raised in Connecticut 
  • Starting to get into running after a break-up
  • 2005 - running her first 50 mile Ultra Marathon
  • Getting hooked on ultra running
  • Why she loves running
  • Plotting her next ultra
  • Turning 63 years young
  • Being a writer and a blogger in 2017
  • Writing for the Huffington Post and working on her memoir 
  • Being her husbands cancer care giver 
  • Learning more about her childhood and early years
  • Not being athletic as a child 
  • Being the tallest girl in the class
  • Using running to reduce stress
  • Running 9 marathons but finding that there were too many people
  • Placing 3rd in her first 24hr race
  • Running a 3 mile loop around a lake in Massachusetts
  • Dealing with some health challenges
  • Having a hysterectomy in 2012
  • Dealing with complications post surgery
  • Allowing her body time to heal
  • Going back to her first ultra
  • Running an ultra of gratitude
  • Mental resilience while running
  • Using running to heal her body
  • Feeling blessed to be running
  • Why she knows she is never running alone
  • Feeling god’s presence 
  • Running with purpose 
  • Coming in dead last in her 2nd ultra and why it was joyful 
  • Focusing on track ultras
  • Making running work for her and John
  • Celebrating her 60th birthday by running 60 miles on a 1 mile loop
  • Dedicating a run to John and his surgeons 
  • Running for others and wanting to raise funds for Cancer Care Givers
  • Ultra Care for Cancer Care Givers 
  • Training for her 30th ultra track race
  • 99 laps to go!
  • Pacing while running on a track 
  • Running speed to reach 100 miles 
  • How her running speed has changed over the years
  • Starting off fast on track races
  • What can happened during track ultra races
  • Dealing with variables that you can’t control
  • Not wanting to risk any injury
  • Fuelling and nutrition while running ultra races
  • Having a vanilla milkshake at 50 miles 
  • The power of ginger and how it helps with feelings of nausea 
  • Dealing with sleep deprivation at mile 60/70
  • Starting to do strength training and going indoor climbing
  • Not doing anything differently for rest and recovery
  • Sleep is overrated!!!!
  • Waking up automatically at 7am 
  • Going to bed at 1am/2am 
  • Her love of reading and writing book reviews for her website blog
  • Having over 1,300 books in her home 
  • How you can connect with Miriam
  • How she got the name UltraMiriam
  • Final words of advice to get you into ultra running
  • Why you should work your way up and build up endurance
  • Why you shouldn’t compare yourself to other runners
Social Media
Facebook: @ultramiriam
Twitter: @ultramiriam
Instagram: @ultramiriam 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored by Inov-8 
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. 
Instagram: @inov_8 
Mar 22, 2022
In 2019 Sarah was crowned World Cup champion by the World Mountain Running Association. 
After a series of seven races throughout the season, including a win in Wales, Sarah secured victory with a second place in Slovenia, the final race in the series.
Sarah is a Cumbrian-based athlete, a brand ambassador for Inov-8 – who sponsor the Lakeland Trails series – an Irish international mountain runner (representing her country no less than 25 times!), a qualified ecologist and a professional running coach. 
She lives with her partner – and fellow Inov-8 brand ambassador – Paul Tierney and their two border collies, Quilla and Lupo, in a shepherd’s hut in Windermere.
“You can’t have a good race every time, but you can gain something from each and every run.  If you have a bad race, find one or two positives to take away from it, even if it’s just something you now know you’d do differently, and then start looking ahead to the next one.”
  • UK Athletics-Certified Trail & Fell Running Coach
  • PhD Biogeochemistry, MPhil Chemistry BSc (Hons) Biochemistry
  • Mountain Running World Cup Winner 2019
  • Italian Mountain Running & Vertical Kilometre Champion 2020
  • Top ten - World/European Mountain Running Championships - 2012, 2013, 2015, 2018
  • Winner, Snowdon International Mountain Race 2014, 2015, 2019
  • European Cross Country Championships Team Gold 2012
  • Irish Cross-Country Champion 2014
  • 5k PB 15:46 / 10k PB 33:33
Listen to Sarah now! 
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.


Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear —>>
Show notes
  • Being based out of the Lake District usually
  • Woking as a running coach
  • Living in a camper van in Spain
  • Welcoming the sunshine
  • Doing van life for the past 5 years
  • Heading to the Alps and Ireland
  • Growing up and her early years
  • Racing short races from 6 years old
  • Moving to America and having the American high school experience 
  • Moving back to the UK at 21
  • Being on the girls track team
  • Going to college/university to study biochemistry and joining the running team in her final year of Michigan State University 
  • Training with the university team and learning how to become a better runner
  • Her ambitions with running 
  • What happened after leaving university  
  • Not seeing a future in running and focusing on getting a job in the UK
  • Doing a Masters at Sheffield University, UK
  • Winning her first race in 5 years
  • Key races and her love of the Italian mountain races 
  • How running makes her feel 
  • Loving the simplicity of running 
  • Getting into cycling 
  • What is mountain running and how it’s different from ultra running 
  • Climbing at a 30% gradient
  • Running uphill? Running or power walking?
  • Why walking is encouraged
  • Not fully trusting her ankles 
  • Magical moments in races that really stands out
  • Training and working with a running coach - Robbie Simpson 
  • Example of a training session for the Yorkshire 3 Peaks Race 
  • Dealing with injury
  • Rest and recovery 
  • Mental side of running and Sarah’s top tips and advice 
  • Writing down goals….
  • The Dream Race — Jungfrau Marathon 2022
  • Taking the van to Switzerland
  • Having 3 passports!
  • The early start of van life and how it progressed
  • A day in the life of Sarah
  • Nutrition and fueling being a vegetarian and focusing on protein at every meal
  • Working with a running coach
  • Being supported by Inov-8 and working as an ambassador
  • Connect with Sarah online 
  • Final words of advice and wisdom for women who want to get into running
  • How having the right gear can help with confidence in the mountains 
Social Media
Instagram: @missinglinkcoach 
Facebook: @MissingLinkCumbria 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored by Inov-8 throughout March.
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
Instagram: @inov_8 
Mar 17, 2022
Lois @lois_lo_lo - lives in Luton, is a GP, Teaching lecturer in Medical Education and Equality, Diversity and Inclusion lead. She is passionate about running and staying active and sharing her enthusiasm for running with others. 
She has always been interested in sports, playing netball and basketball competitively for many years. Running was always a reserve activity for her, something to do between seasons, when she felt guilty about her inactivity. This all changed after her second son, and a move to Luton. Not having the time to play netball, and balancing work with her young family, Lois initially began home HIIT workouts and circuit training, but frequent interruptions for nappy changes and feeds left her feeling unsatisfied. 
She decided to go for a run one afternoon and was pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable and uninterrupted this session (or type) of exercise could be. She immediately swapped her home workouts for outdoor runs. These quickly increased infrequency and within a few months Lois was running 4-5km every day. 
She hasn’t looked back since, and except for a few days in 2019, and no missed days since March 2020, Lois has been running daily ever since. Most recently her #NoExcuses ethos was put to the test, during her last pregnancy. 
Struggling with nausea and vomiting in the first trimester, ever changing bra sizes, and pubic-symphysis (pelvic) pain in the last trimester all meant that Lois relied heavily on the habit she had built up over the past 2 years to get her through her runs. She managed to continue to run throughout her pregnancy, and continues to run daily, including just 9 hours after delivery!
For Lois, running is more than just about the physical movement- it’s become meditative, a tool of self-discipline, a reminder how incredible our bodies are, and continues to be her self-care time- a time when she can focus solely on herself. 
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. 
Throughout March the Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored by Inov-8. Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
Show Notes
  • Who is Dr. Lois
  • Having been involved in sports since a young age
  • Being competitive in school
  • Playing netball and basketball at university
  • Enjoying team sports and being socially active
  • Becoming a mum
  • Spending time with her family and what she loves to do with them
  • Pregnancy and giving birth to her youngest
  • Running after having her first child
  • Wanting to go out and move after birth
  • Enjoying activities like running, netball and basketball
  • Moving to Luton
  • Exercising on her own after her second son
  • Challenges and how she managed her time
  • Giving time for herself
  • Running regularly five months after her second childbirth
  • Trying to be consistent and doing an early morning run
  • "Being intentional is being consistent."
  • Having no reason why she shouldn't run
  • Not wanting to miss out on running for whatever reason
  • Using a running app
  • Being part of running clubs and communities
  • Identifying herself as a runner
  • Doing her best to keep up
  • Benefits of running for her physically and psychologically
  • Finding running as meditative
  • Her thoughts about running with a baby
  • Bad runs in her running journey
  • Losing control of her body in the first trimester
  • Getting back to running and enjoy it as her goal
  • Quick Fire Questions
  • Final words of advice
Social Media
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by @inov_8
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
You can still get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. 
Mar 15, 2022
After a few months of feeling unwell, Sara’s life was turned upside down when she was diagnosed with a rare brain tumour.
Following a haemorrhage and major brain surgery that left her unable to walk, with impaired vision and balance, as well as permanent profound hearing loss, she has been focused on getting back everything the tumour took away from her, and much more.
Now she’s sharing the story of how she overcame adversity to get from sickbed to summits.
During this episode Sara shares more about how she got back into running, going after her first ultra and how she approaches new and difficult challenges.
Sara in her own words about her next challenge:
“In September 2022, to show others that despite life throwing curveballs our way we can still achieve, I aim to run from Land's End to John 'Groats. I will be covering a distance of approximately 855 miles over 20 days.
I'll be leaving from Land's End on the morning of Monday 5th September, and with the help of some friends l'll be running between 40 to 50 miles a day, mostly on road.
Yes, I have my concerns. Running, however, is the least of them! I wonder how much of a problem my tinnitus will be with having road noise around me for approximately 10 hours a day. I worry about not hearing traffic around me (as I have no direction of sound). 
I'm also apprehensive about how I will cope with fatigue and the nausea associated with it. I have good support around me though, and we're working hard in training to overcome these issues as best we can.”
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by @inov_8
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear.
Show notes
  • Who is Sara
  • 46 years old
  • Her love of challenges and taking on her next big challenge
  • Growing up in Chester and her early years
  • Not fitting in at school and focusing on school work
  • Meeting her husband and going waking at the weekends
  • Getting married and having children
  • Getting back into running about 10 years ago
  • Starting with couch to 5k
  • Using running to help with children behaviour
  • Sticking with running but not have a plan
  • How running helped to maintain her sanity
  • Why running became enjoyable
  • Having a love/hate relationship with running 
  • Why you have to push yourself 
  • Being diagnosed with a brain tumour 
  • Needing to have an operation in May 2018
  • Having a rare complication 
  • Dealing with everything that was going on
  • The challenges of recovery
  • Losing her hearing and struggling with balance
  • Wanting a new normal which would be better that the old normal
  • Getting back into running after surgery
  • Struggling with motion sickness
  • Deciding to sign up for an Ultra Marathon 
  • The challenges of fatigue
  • Wanting to push her limits
  • Meeting Danielle Gibbons @danigibbo1  
  • Starting to train for her first ultra
  • Not being able to go longer than 40 mins 
  • Running her own ultra - The Sandstone Trail
  • Being supported by friends and family
  • Why running fast isn’t an option 
  • Deciding to run the length of the UK (LEJOG)
  • Looking for support and funding and building up a support team
  • The mental approach for taking on these big, physical challenges
  • Having to figure out the process
  • Breaking down the process into individual steps
  • Taking it one step at a time
  • Figuring out sleep 
  • Wanting to run 40 - 45 miles a day
  • Learning how to manage fatigue 
  • Writing her book - Sickbeds to Summit 
  • Dealing with the trauma and addressing the feeling it brings up
  • The good stuff that has come out of the challenges
  • September 2022
  • Finals words of advice
  • “Don’t overthink it and don’t talk yourself out of it” 
Social Media
Instagram: @saracrosland 
Facebook: @sickbedtosummits 
Twitter: @saracrosland 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by @inov_8
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
You can still get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge.
Mar 10, 2022
Janelle in her own words:
“Trail runner born and raised in the front range of Colorado. Started running as a kid with my dad then picked it back up in high school and went to Colorado State University on track and cross country scholarship. 

Started racing on trails in 2020 and have had a couple wins at broken arrow sky race and the golden trail national series race in the Azores.
Signed on with Inov-8 as an ambassador at the beginning of 2022”
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 being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8 supporting the #MarchDailyMile Challenge.


Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear —>>
Show Notes
  • Who is Janelle
  • Being nomadic and moving between places
  • Growing up in Colorado
  • Playing a lot of soccer growing up 
  • Getting into running with her dad
  • Running well in track and getting a scholarship to a local college
  • Becoming an An All American in the steeplechase
  • Finding trail running
  • Being a smoker in high school
  • Feeling like a natural runner
  • Feeling her best while running
  • Her dreams as a little girl and wanting to be a professional soccer player
  • Her love of running and what’s going through her head
  • Working through issues while running
  • Mantra and the power of simple words
  • Strength, freedom, fast
  • Positive Self Talk
  • What is an All American…
  • Making the transition from the track to running trails
  • Falling in love with trails running
  • Being competitive and her relationship with competition
  • Focusing on the experience of running
  • Leaving college and not having a plan
  • Money as a motivator 
  • Living a very frugal lifestyle
  • Magical moments while out running 
  • Challenges while out running on the mountains
  • Hitting mile 23 and struggling and needing to walk the final few miles
  • Being inspired by other runners
  • Training for races and what a typical week looks like
  • Wanting to be more focused with training 
  • Loving running all distances from 1 mile to marathons 
  • Running goals for 2022
  • Tips and advice for running uphill
  • Advice for running downhill
  • Loving toe-yoga 
  • The Broken Arrow Race
  • Rest and recovery after a race
  • Advice for new runners 
  • Running in a place that inspires you!
  • Advice for runners who have lost their mojo
  • Why the hardest part is just getting out there and going
  • Connect with Janelle
  • Instagram vibes
  • Quick Fire Questions
  • Final words of advice
Social Media
Instagram: @janellelincks 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored by Inov-8 
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. 
Instagram: @inov_8 
Mar 8, 2022
Mariam Kilpatrick is a Women's Health Physiotherapist and ultra-runner based in Glasgow, Scotland. She is an outdoor enthusiast and can usually be found up a hill in the Highlands of Scotland or travelling and exploring new places with her young family in their camper van. 
It may come as a surprise to a lot of people, but Mariam only took up trail running after the birth of her daughter in 2017 when her husband decided to surprise her by entering her into an "ultra" six months after giving birth. As it happened, it turned out it was as part of a team relay with 3 other people and she was assigned to run 10 miles out of the total 50-mile race. 
Nevertheless, Mariam stepped up to the challenge and worked hard to achieve her postpartum goal of running 10 hilly miles in the Ochils - her first experience running on the trails in Scotland. Since then, she has been bitten by the bug and to date has run several trail marathons, mountain and sky-running races and ultramarathons with her most recent achievement in 2021, running the full West Highland Way, Scotland's most famous long distance trail which is 96 miles (155km) long. Her goal was to run it in under-24 hours. 
As a women's health physiotherapist and a mother herself, Mariam's biggest passion is helping new mums through their postpartum journey. She hopes that her own personal experience will inspire and empower other women to achieve their goals  - whether it's returning to their sport such as  running, or simply just feeling back to themselves again after giving birth.  
New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday & Thursday at 7am UK time - Hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss out. 
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8 supporting the #MarchDailyMile Challenge.


Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear —>> 
Show notes
  • Who is Mariam
  • Being based in Scotland
  • Her love of the outdoors and exploring Scotland
  • Wanting to help other women return to running and sport after having a baby
  • Her early years and where her accent comes from 
  • Growing up in New Zealand and moving to Australia
  • Taking up trail running after having her daughter in 2017
  • Being entered into a 50 mile trail ultra marathon 6 months after giving birth…
  • Meeting her husband and moving to Scotland
  • Her pregnancy and birth story 
  • Working what a PT and doing gym classes
  • Getting back to fitness after giving birth
  • Putting on 3 stone during pregnancy
  • Getting into running after pregnancy 
  • Using the walk run strategy and trying to build up time on feet
  • Training for the final 10 miles of an ultra
  • Not feeling ready for the race
  • Being coached by Jonny @jonnykilpatrick 
  • Starting to identify as a runner 
  • Juggling training and childcare
  • How the running goals evolved over time
  • Thinking about running the West Highland Way (95 miles) in a day
  • Wanting to see what else she could do
  • Entering the WHW ballot 
  • Following a training plan 
  • Figuring out how to fit in running around her life and work
  • Not being able to race the WHW due to covid and restrictions
  • Going ahead with the challenge
  • Making the challenge work for her and her family 
  • Doing the technical section in the pitch black
  • Coming off caffeine before the WHW
  • Having stomach issues
  • 80s power ballads
  • Counting and keeping the legs moving
  • Getting the nutrition in 
  • Feeling emotional and crying it all out
  • The final push - wanting to run the distance in 24 hrs
  • Wanting to get it done
  • The final 14 miles 
  • 4 miles downhill and giving everything she had left
  • The finish of the run
  • 23 hrs and 57 mins
  • The picture from the finish line -
  • Connect with Mariam 
  • Final words of advice for runner and new mothers
Social Media
Instagram: @mariam_kilpatrick
The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored by Inov-8 throughout March.
Use TOUGHGIRL20 to get your 20% discount on all trainers and running gear. 
Instagram: @inov_8 
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