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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Jun 27, 2023

Mardi Fuller advocates for racial equity through writing, speaking and community building.  

A lifelong backcountry adventurer, in January 2021 she became the first known Black person to hike all 48 of New Hampshire’s high peaks in winter.  She lives in Boston where she works as a nonprofit communications director and volunteers with the local Outdoor Afro network.  

She writes for Outside magazine, SKI magazine, Melanin Basecamp and more.  

Mardi is committed to personal and corporate Black liberation and thereby, liberation for all humanity.  She believes deeply in nature's healing power.

Mardi was involved in the short film, “Mardi & the whites”

Film Abstract

“Mardi Fuller has a rich relationship with nature that has evolved and deepened throughout her life. In the last 20 years she’s dedicated much of her time to exploring the landscape in the White Mountains (unfortunately coined “The Whites” by New Englanders) on Abenaki land. 

In that time Mardi summited all forty-eight 4,000 footers several times in all four seasons, often as the only Black person on the mountain. She has experienced great joy from communing with this landscape, but the overwhelmingly white hiking community that is so seeped in white supremacy and colonialism complicates her experiences. 

Recently, she has focused on creating more opportunities for Black folks to join her in appreciating this magnificent wilderness. Enjoying this land with her community has been a liberating balm that has strengthened her sense of identity as an outdoorswoman. 

“Mardi & the whites” is a peek into Mardi’s relationship with the White Mountains, the great outdoors, and the community that surrounds them; Above all, it’s a celebration of Black liberation in the wild.”

Mardi’s Quote about the film “The film is about my 20-year journey as an outdoorswoman in the super white White mountains of New Hampshire. It's about the pain and loss I experienced amidst a hiking community wed to the invisibility of whiteness. At the same time, I benefited from the grounding force that is Nature. Over the years and through much identity formation and development, I found a path of Black liberation.”


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Mardi
  • Living in Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  • Her passion for the outdoors and spending time outdoors
  • Growing up in the suburbs close to NYC  
  • Discovering backpacking while at college
  • Starting to explore the White Mountains 
  • Studying Spanish and French at College and spending time studying abroad
  • Spending time in Europe
  • The joy of travelling and experiencing other cultures 
  • Making the decision to move to Boston and her reasons for staying
  • Her love of the mountains 
  • Hiking in the summer or winter?
  • The importance of being prepared for winter hiking
  • Up skilling and gaining new knowledge 
  • Why Mt Washington is one of the most deadly mountains in America
  • Appalachian Mountain Club - is dedicated to the protection, enjoyment & understanding of the outdoors across the Northeast & Mid-Atlantic regions. 
  • Figuring out your own layering system to keep warm while walking in Winter
  • Learning how to set your own personal expectations
  • Wanting to hike all 48 mountains in New Hampshire over 4,000 feet (1219 meters)
  • Her motivation for finishing off the remaining mountains to complete the 48 mountains in New Hampshire
  • The film - Mardi and the Whites
  • Paula Champagne - Visual Storyteller 
  • Talking about her personal experiences in the mountains 
  • Learning about the history of racial exclusion for people of colour
  • Having to suppress her identity while out in the mountains and why it’s an ongoing journey 
  • How have things changed over the past 20 years with regards to race and racism
  • Speaking out against white supremacy and white dominance 
  • Shilletha "Dragonsky" Curtis - Hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2021 
  • “Redlining” all the trails in a state and the racial undertones from the name
  • The importance of acknowledging tribal land - as a way of honouring the Indigenous people who have been living and working on the land.
  • Hiking Mt. Katahdin in Winter and her goals for winter 2023 and wanting to finish the New England 67 mountains 
  • Hiking all 67 New England 4,000 Footers
  • How to connect with Mardi 
  • Final words of advice for women who want to spend more time in the outdoors.


Social Media

Instagram @wherelocsflyfree

Watch the Film - Mardi & The Whites 

Linktree - 



Jun 20, 2023

Steph is a Mum to a her nearly 6 year old son, a soldiers wife, and Operations manager for Forces Wives Challenge (FWC). In July 2019 Steph and her families' world was turned upside down when she became suddenly very unwell, and was subsequently diagnosed with a neurological disorder. 

Going from an active, full time working Mum and a keen horse rider, to fully dependant on a wheelchair, with complex health issues and requiring 24/7 care to support with everyday tasks, was life changing. With sheer determination, an incredible support network and a passion for adventure, less than two years later Steph was back in the saddle and aiming for the next challenge in life. 

Steph found her new 'place' within the FWC community and her role quickly developed from there, with her now being FWC's operation manager. 

This year Steph will take on a huge challenge alongside a team of Forces Wives when she takes on the 'Ride to Freedom' (R2F). Created by Steph, R2F will see the team tackle the challenging terrain surrounding the WW2 freedom across the Pyrenees mountains. The team will spend 5 days on horseback covering 130km of technically difficult mountain tracks, with the only the team supporting Steph in every aspect of the expedition.

Join us as we follow Stephanie Quintrell's incredible journey of resilience, determination, and empowerment as she takes on the challenging Ride to Freedom and inspires others to never give up on their dreams.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Visit Thank you.


Show notes

  • Who is Steph
  • Being based in the East Midlands
  • Working as the Operations Mangers for Forces Wives Challenge (FWC)
  • The founder of FWC - Heather Sharp 
  • Wanting to be involved with FWC but not being able to participate in the hikes and the mountaineering expeditions
  • How her role has developed over the years 
  • Her early years growing up and her love for horses
  • Having her own horse from when she was 12
  • Being a member of The Pony Club 
  • Working in the care sector 
  • Getting ill at 28 and having to use a wheelchair 
  • Struggling with chronic pain and exhaustion when she was younger
  • Being diagnosed with Multiple sclerosis (MS) in her early 20s but still having an active lifestyle 
  • How her whole world changed within 48hrs 
  • The challenges of treating her condition 
  • Adapting to a new way of living 
  • Not being able to look after herself or her son
  • Getting back to horse riding after 2 years 
  • The feeling of freedom
  • The Ride to Freedom - what it is and what’ s involved 
  • Wanting to get involved in a new challenge and making the challenge accessible 
  • WW2 Freedom Trail (chemin de la Liberté) escape route to Spain 
  • Being supported by an amazing team of women 
  • The power of adventure and how it can bring people together
  • Wanting adventure to be inclusive and accessible 
  • Doing practice expeditions/training weekends in the UK
  • Working through her fears and concerns before the start of the challenge 
  • Wanting to create a short film about the journey 
  • How people can connect with Steph and FWC
  • Final words of advice and wisdom for other women who would like to take on new challenges and adventures 


Social Media

Website -




Facebook : @forceswiveschallenge

Twitter: @ForcesWivesChal 



Jun 15, 2023

An ex city-lawyer whose first qualification was as a tennis coach, and whose first love has always been sport, Catherine has spent the second half of her career combining her twin passions of sport and leadership through her business, Sport and Beyond Ltd. 

Catherine brings a unique perspective to the mindset and approaches that deliver exceptional and sustained performance. She has had the privilege of working with many of our elite athletes and coaches, as well as a large number of the leading CEOs in the sports sector and elsewhere. She maintains strong links to the legal sector both through coaching senior lawyers, and through her role as Chair of O Shaped, an organisation aimed at making the legal profession better. Catherine is also a Trustee on the Board of the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust.

About The Book: 

Staying the Distance showcases the much-needed leadership lessons that sport can teach us: how to improve, perform and achieve, in ways that are effective and sustainable.

Leadership can be hard. It can certainly be relentless. The pandemic has wreaked havoc on the well-being, health and sustained performance of many senior leaders, and yet strong leadership remains central to the performance of every single organization.

Business leaders are very familiar with drawing lessons from elite sport, particularly around teams, leadership and high performance. But we have all been missing a trick. Day in, day out, sport has been showing us not only how to improve, perform and achieve, but how to do so on a sustained basis, consistently delivering results when it matters. This book shines a light on these unseen lessons, and provides a clear and practical roadmap for how to deploy them in the reader's own leadership practices.

With Catherine Baker's unique view into world-class sport and top-level business, and with insights from top performers in both worlds, this book provides a fresh and dynamic take on how - consistently and over the long term - to bring out the best in yourself, and in those you lead.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Catherine?
  • Having a varied work life from tennis coach to corporate lawyer
  • Working as a leadership and mindset coach
  • Mother of 3 sons
  • Being sporty from a young age and being labelled as a tomboy
  • Being a twin and the twin relationship 
  • Being 1 of 2 girls in an all boys school 
  • Going to boarding school at 8 
  • Playing both tennis and hockey
  • Going down the route of becoming a lawyer
  • Trying to balance work and hockey training 
  • How team sports took a back seat to work
  • Being on secondment in Singapore for 5 months
  • Having a set of core principles and how they developed
  • Wanting to make most of the opportunities 
  • Recognising her privilege 
  • Practical tips for taking advantage of those opportunities 
  • The importance of having really clear goals
  • Getting the idea for her new book - Staying the Distance: The lessons from sport that business leaders have been missing
  • Working out her own personal mission
  • Balancing career, family and sports 
  • Wanting to do everything to the best of her ability
  • You can do anything, but you can’t do everything
  • Who is the book for?
  • The Huddle - a free resource to help you strategise, motivate and perform.
  • Thoughts on decision making - going with your gut, your emotions, or values….
  • Confirmation bias
  • Why it’s sensible to give yourself time to make decisions
  • Deciding to do the The Great North Swim 
  • Dealing with setbacks and failure 
  • Chapter 2 - How to leave behind fear
  • How to connect with Catherine
  • Final words of advice - “Success really is a team sport, so think carefully about who you have around you.” 


Social Media


Twitter: @sportandbeyond1 


Book: Staying the Distance: The lessons from sport that business leaders have been missing 



Jun 13, 2023

Genny is aiming to be the first Aruban to ski to the North and South Poles to raise awareness on the devastating effects of Lyme Disease.

Genny was diagnosed with Lyme Disease in the summer of 2016 after suffering from its debilitating effects and misdiagnosis for three harrowing years. She went from being a fit and active person to being so fatigued that she was bed bound for months. 

A few years on from diagnosis, Genny has recovered and become passionate about making diagnosis affordable, available and prompt in the UK, where she now lives. She is determined that no one else should suffer as she did.

Genny is excited and a little bit nervous about the challenge of skiing to the South Pole. She hopes to inspire others to aim high, dream big, work hard, and never settle for someone else’s interpretation of what they can achieve. 

As the first Aruban woman to attempt such a feat, Genny sees it as an honour to represent her home country and inspire others to pursue their dreams.

We first spoke with Genny on - 26th January 2021.  You can listen here:


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Visit Thank you.


Show notes

  • Who is Genny
  • Moving to the UK, 15 years ago
  • Her training to ski solo and unsupported to the South Pole in late 2024/25
  • Speaking to Genny on the TGP in January 26th 2021
  • What’s been going on since we last spoke
  • Coming to realise how much there is still to learn
  • The beginning of 2021
  • Starting to make plans for 2022 with regards to training 
  • Needing to get more on ice experience 
  • Heading to Norway for training 
  • Working with Helen Turton from Newland Expeditions
  • Getting physical fit by pulling tyres in the UK
  • Knowing her tent mate - Ellen aka @randogirl42
  • Wanting to dedicate her life to polar pursuits
  • Needing to get her act together and getting more sponsors
  • Developing uterine fibroids and how they impacted on her quality of life
  • Needing to have surgery to remove the uterine fibroids.
  • The recovery period after her surgery
  • Putting a plan in place with help from Helen
  • Needing to do more bespoke training and doing a mini solo expedition on her own
  • Needing to test new equipment out in the cold
  • Cold weather management 
  • Getting back into the gym and building back her strength again
  • Underestimating how long it took to recover
  • Building back up her confidence
  • The start of 2023
  • Doing her basic polar training course in Norway
  • Having to face her fears and overcome them
  • Needing to work on her mindset 
  • Continuing to show up for herself and doing all the right things
  • Making the best of the situation and focusing on her camp craft
  • Putting a lot of pressure on herself to be perfect
  • Woking with a therapist to identify the reasons why her fear had occurred 
  • Hillenberg Tent 
  • The challenges of solo expeditions 
  • Dealing with the negative thoughts and learning to enjoy the journey 
  • Taking the time to unplug
  • Being by yourself and spending time with your own thoughts
  • Plans for the rest of 2023
  • Focusing on sponsorship
  • Making progress over the past few years
  • Wanting to learn to be comfortable in uncomfortable situations 
  • Wanting to develop her mountaineering skills
  • Planning for 2024 and what needs to be done to achieve her polar goal
  • How to connect with Genny
  • Final words of advice for other women who want to pursue their big dream 
  • Stop holding yourself back
  • Needing to factor in rest and recovery


Social Media


Instagram: @antarcticaruban 

Facebook: @antarcticaruban

Go Fund Me: 



Jun 8, 2023

Tegan in her own words: 

“Once upon a time… I was studying to be a lawyer. 

Then I drew some comics in a competition to win a bicycle, which I rode across Spain, telling the story of my adventure through a comic blog. 

This kind of adventure storytelling was too fun to not wildly pursue, so I spent the next few years finding ways to go on more adventures (which included an 11,000km bike trip through Africa with my family, and a 10 Iron Man triathlon around New Zealand), while figuring out how to turn it into a real job. 

Today, I work full-time as a cartoonist, speaker and endurance cyclist. I am currently working on a book, setting up a comic merchandise shop in South Africa and training to try again to set a women’s record of the fastest cycle from Cairo to Cape Town in Oct 2022 February 2024.” 

The challenge: Cycling Africa: Cairo to Cape Town. 1 continent, 8 countries, 10,800 kilometres, and 58,000 elevation, setting a women's world record that needs to exist.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Visit Thank you.


Show notes

  • Who is Tegan
  • Her love of going on big adventures on her bike
  • Growing up in South Africa
  • Spending a lot of time outside
  • Living in Cape Town
  • Going on a family cycle adventure 
  • Cycle touring
  • Being inspired by Tom Allen 
  • Her first solo trip in Spain 
  • Getting lost, falling off the bike and figuring it out
  • Feeling completely free
  • Transitioning into the adventure life
  • Her love of adventure
  • Professional Adventurer?
  • Problem solving while on the road
  • Cartooning and why it’s more like writing 
  • Making decisions after university 
  • Trying to figure out what to do next
  • Feeling a lot of pressure
  • Reflecting back on her earlier work
  • Being encouraged to follow her passions
  • Heading off to New Zealand to do 10 Iron Man 
  • Trying to figure out how to make money
  • Adventure Grants
  • Altum Consulting 
  • Training plans and joining a triathlon club
  • The planning and preparation 
  • First blind woman attempting to climb Mt. Everest - Shawn Cheshire 
  • What does success look like on an adventure?
  • Anticipating unexpected challenges
  • Where the idea came from to cycle from Cairo to Cape Town
  • Finding out that there was no women’s record for the Cairo to Cape Town cycle 
  • 2019 - applying for the Guinness World Record to find out what the rules were
  • Planning and researching for the challenge 
  • Wanting to start in October 2022
  • Needing to go through the civil war in Ethiopia 
  • Working with a cycling coach for the past few years
  • Figuring out the funding and the support team
  • Being delayed in Egypt and needing to wait 6 weeks
  • Feeling ill and needing medical help 
  • Having a seizure and ending up in hospital 
  • Processing everything that’s happened
  • Trying to figure out what was wrong
  • Having her dream fall apart in front of her eyes
  • Getting back to cycling and training
  • Hormonal problems?
  • Looking after herself and prioritising her mental health 
  • The therapy of talking
  • Plans for 2023 
  • Heading to France do to an Alt Tour of the Women’s Tour de France
  • Staying with Katherine Bertine 
  • The Women’s Tour - UK 
  • Tour de France Femmes
  • Funding for adventures and making a living
  • Working with Komoot
  • Turning 30 and how her mindset is changing
  • Having less fear and coming-out the other side
  • How to connect with Tegan
  • Final words of advice 


Social Media


Instagram: @teganphillipscomics 



Jun 6, 2023

Seanna in her own words:

“I am Seanna (pronounced like Shauna) and I am deep into my healing journey. I am a survivor of multiple severe traumas and some debilitating psychosis. I have been to some of the darkest places and led a very limited life for some time.  

As well as medication and therapy, I have found that carving out an intentional life and staying true to my values has helped me to not only survive, but truly thrive. After spending two months as an inpatient in a trauma clinic, I discovered embodied healing practices, and later qualified as a breathwork facilitator. 

I aim to live a life that is aligned with who I am, focusing on physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing as well as a life full of adventure. 

In 2022, I thru hiked the Israel National Trail over two months on my own, which is over 1,000 km. The inner journey was even more powerful than the tangible one, and now I give talks on overcoming adversity and being guided by intuition to live your best, most intentional life.” 

  • Content Warning - During this episode; mental health, trauma, self harm, dark thoughts and psychosis is discussed. 


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Seanna?
  • Being on an 8 month sabbatical 
  • Recording this from Vietnam 
  • Having an adventurous spirit but not fitting into games
  • Not liking any type of game (sports, board games etc)
  • Joining the Army Cadets 
  • Taking 2 gap years to travel
  • Being concerned about what other people thought of her
  • Being a competitive cheerleader and competing in the world championships in Florida 
  • Booking a flight to Arctic Sweden to walk a small section of the Kungsleden Trail (The Kings Trail)
  • The joys of spending time in nature and how it makes her feel
  • Her running journey and signing up for her first marathon at 19 on the South Downs
  • Being ill aged 21/22 
  • Giving up smoking in 2012 and starting to run again
  • Doing her first Ultra Marathon - 50km on the Thames Path Challenge 
  • Biting off more than she can chew, not feeling ready - and why it’s ok to try your best and just muddle through.
  • Running for Joy
  • Feeling her feelings
  • Training for the Thames Path Challenge with running coach Toby - IG 
  • Queer Running Club
  • Struggling with consistency
  • Running with her mum and step dad
  • Magical moments while running 
  • Deciding to take a sabbatical and the planning for her time off
  • Spending 2 months in a trauma clinic in 2018
  • Being inspired to hike the Israel National Trail
  • Making the decision and how it felt right
  • Feeling difficult emotions but knowing how to feel them and cope with them in a sensible way
  • Not feeling ready to leave the trauma clinic 
  • Planning during the covid lockdowns 
  • The Israel National Trail 
  • Getting water on the trail and arranging water drops
  • Dealing with flash flood warnings and the dangers of hiking during those times
  • The Red Guide Book - The full guide to the Israel National Trail - Fourth Edition, 2020 
  • Not feeling safe putting her tent up and not listening to her gut
  • Magical moments with trail angels
  • Money/costs and going over budget (£1,500 for 2 months)
  • How to connect with Seanna 
  • Plans for the next few months
  • Leaving London and moving to Devon
  • Final words of wisdom for women who want to make some changes in their life


Social Media


Instagram: @seannasworld 





May 30, 2023

Zahra Rose, a brand ambassador for Sports Shoes and The North Face, and has achieved incredible feats such as trekking to Everest, Broad Peak, and K2 Base camps, as well as summiting Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa. 

In addition to her love for adventure, Zahra is an active member of the Muslim Hikers Community and uses her social media platform to promote representation of Muslim women in outdoor activities. 

Zahra is a strong advocate for breaking down stereotypes of the "Hijabi woman" and inspiring the next generation to pursue their dreams.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

Support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Visit Thank you.


Show notes

  • Who is Zahra Rose
  • Being raised in Hastings, South England
  • Having 2 younger sisters 
  • Feeling out of place
  • Struggling to make friends locally
  • Seeing people who looked like her for the first time
  • Moving to London to study fashion design
  • Feeling confident and knowing herself well
  • Being inspired by her father who was a runner
  • Getting involved in sports
  • Wearing the headscarf at 14
  • Feeling the need to change her personality
  • Feeling confident and self assured
  • Representing her faith and feeling a sense of responsibly 
  • Starting travelling after university 
  • Why travelling is an important part of life
  • Getting into hiking at 14
  • Her first charity trip to Snowdon
  • The struggle of climbing her first mountain 
  • Wanting to encourage other muslim women to get outdoors
  • Creating a vision board every year
  • Connecting with Haroon Mota from Muslin Hikers 
  • Planning to go to Everest Base Camp, Nepal 
  • Training and preparation for the trip
  • The importance of training your mind
  • Starting her day with yoga
  • The power of acceptance 
  • Checking in with yourself on a regular basis
  • Spending time in Nepal
  • The challenges on the hike to base camp
  • Dealing with the adventure blues
  • Planning the next challenge/adventure 
  • Needing something to look forward to
  • Climbing Kilimanjaro - the highest mountain in Africa
  • Summit night
  • Praying while on adventure
  • Heading to Broad Peak and K2 Base Camps
  • The final push to get to base camp
  • Being supported and encouraged at the the tough moments
  • Being a member o fMuslim Hikers - Inspiring Muslims to get OUTDOORS. 
  • How to connect with Zahra Rose
  • Final words of advice to motivate and inspire other women and girls to get active and spend more time in the outdoors
  • Why nothing is beyond your limits
  • Her plans to reach 40 countries 


Social Media

Instagram: @ZahraRosea

Muslim Hikers - Inspiring Muslims to get OUTDOORS. 


Instagram: @Muslim.Hikers 



May 23, 2023

Allie Mason is an autistic children’s author and micro-adventurer who has just published her first book, The Autistic Guide to Adventure: Active Pursuits from Archery to Wild Swimming for Tweens and Teens. 

Allie lives in the English countryside with her partner and their beloved Labrador. The purpose of her writing is to give neurodivergent young people a place where they recognise themselves and feel that they belong.

Allie in her own words:

“When I was 23 years old, I was diagnosed as autistic. It was a bittersweet moment for me. On the one hand, it answered a lot of questions that had been accumulating since I was a child. On the other, it highlighted that a lot of the struggles I had faced when I was younger could have been avoided with the right support.

I was (and still am!) an avid reader, but I never felt that I recognised myself in the pages of a book. The characters didn’t face the same struggles as me, didn’t think the same way, so as much as I tried to immerse myself in these fictional worlds, there was always something missing.

Now, as an adult, I write books that neurodivergent kids and teens, like I once was, can see themselves in.”


About the book:The Autistic Guide to Adventure: Active Pursuits from Archery to Wild Swimming for Tweens and Teens. 

Outdoor adventuring can be life changing - it makes you physically and mentally stronger, takes you to new places and introduces you to new friends, as well as being an exhilarating challenge - but it can be stressful when there are unexpected social and sensory challenges involved. Allie Mason, autistic adventurer extraordinaire, is here to help.

Join Allie as she introduces activities ranging from archery to stargazing, sailing to fossil hunting, snorkelling to nature-writing - and so much more. Each easily digestible factsheet comes with a short introduction, a summary of the sensory experiences involved, suggestions on approaching activities for when you're just getting started, as well as a handy budgeting system.

With personal anecdotes and interviews with awesome autistic athletes, this book will give you the support you need to take on the great outdoors.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Allie
  • Chilling with her dog at home
  • Her early years growing up 
  • Being diagnosed as autistic at 23 (Feb 2020)
  • Feeling strange from a young age and knowing she was different
  • Feeling isolated and being bullied 
  • Why her diagnoses was liberating
  • Understanding that she wasn’t broken and that there is nothing wrong with her
  • Her outlook on life 
  • Being trusting, truthful and taking things at face value
  • Not understanding social etiquette very well
  • Wanting to gentle educate people by just being herself
  • Understanding different Neurotypes 
  • Getting an assessment done to diagnose autism
  • Signing up for a roller-skate marathon in Berlin
  • Training for 18 months and what that looked like 
  • Thriving on structure 
  • Raising money for charity - Ambitious About Autism
  • Taking any reference to the roller-skate marathon out of the book
  • What happened on the day of the marathon and why things didn’t go according to plan 
  • Dealing with injury and still wanting to do the challenge
  • Being told to get off the course after 5km
  • The lessons learned from the negative experience 
  • Feeling emotions of frustration, resentment and feeling wronged
  • How can organisers of the event could have handle having to take people off the course 
  • Support for autistic people who enter larger events 
  • Wanting to do the event again
  • Equality and Equity
  • Having the idea for her book while thinking about doing the roller-skate marathon
  • New book: The Autistic Guide to Adventure: Active Pursuits from Archery to Wild Swimming for Tweens and Teens 
  • The contents of the book and how to use the guide
  • Highlights from the Autistic and Adventure manifesto - “Trying the thing, asking for support, respecting your limits and being an adventurer”
  • Top tips for “trying the thing”
  • Not being afraid to fail
  • Who the book is aimed at
  • The importance of representation and sharing stories from autistic athletics 
  • Future projects in 2023
  • Working on book 2
  • Wanting to take a sensory space on tour around the UK
  • How to connect with Allie
  • Final words of advice 
  • Being inspired by Al Humphreys


Social Media


Instagram: @alliewrote  

TikTok: @alliewrote  



May 16, 2023

A couple of years ago, Julia embarked on a solo hike along England's 630-mile South West Coast Path. Since then, she has cycled King Alfred's Way, a 217-mile mainly off-road cycle route in southern England, and walked the Camino Frances and Camino Portuguese!

But Julia's adventures don't stop there. In between her travels, she's been busy writing about her experiences, hoping to inspire others to embrace their own bucket lists. 

During this process, she's discovered a love for hiking and is also writing walking guidebooks to encourage others to get outdoors and explore.

Julia's story is a testament to the power of setting goals, pursuing your passions, and living life to the fullest.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

To support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media. Sign up as a Patron - Thank you. 


Show Notes


Social Media


Instagram @juliagsauthorspeaker 

Facebook @juliagsauthor 

Youtube @JuliaGSAuthorSpeaker 


Listen free of charge to the first three chapters of Live Your Bucket List: 

Free Pilgrimage Planner pdf:
Julia's books:
15 short walks on the Malvern Hills: 




May 11, 2023

India Pearson, is an Outdoors Advocate, Presenter, and Yoga Teacher based on the Kent coast. 

India's passion for wellbeing and nature has lead her to produce and host the podcast 'Start a Ripple ...' which celebrates the power of moving in nature for the mind, body and environment. Guests have included TV adventurer Ben Fogle, Olympian Michelle Griffith Robinson, BBC Spring Watch Presenter Megan McCubbin and Emmy Award Winner Doon Mackichan.

You can also find India presenting in front of the camera, on the highly successful Youtube Channel Holiday Extras Travel Guides, which over the last 4 years, has taken her all over the world making documentary style videos on sustainable tourism. 

During her time with Holiday Extras India co-founded a sustainable travel podcast 'Green on the Go' which saw her speak to industry professionals and travellers about eco tourism. In 2019 India won the Holiday Extras Difference Award for her efforts to encourage customers and colleagues to travel and live more sustainably.

As a lifestyle model India has worked with a variety of brands across different industries both nationally and internationally. 

India uses social media for discussions based around her passions and expertise in paddle boarding, yoga, environmental activism, and getting outdoors as a new mum to her daughter Malou. India has been featured in publications such as Women's Health and Women and Home, and is also also an ambassador for Gill Marine and Hatha Paddle Boards.

When she's not presenting, India can mostly be found by the sea, either on her stand up paddle board or practicing yoga on the beach. 

In 2020 India founded Fin & Flow, a hub for like minded people to connect through wellbeing activities by the sea such as yoga, paddle boarding, and beach cleans.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is India?
  • Living in Kent with her partner and daughter
  • Her love of the sea
  • Working as a SUP and Yoga teacher
  • Being an Outdoor Advocate and being passionate about the outdoors
  • Having a very outdoorsy childhood 
  • Her podcast - 'Start a Ripple ...' which celebrates the power of moving in nature for the mind, body and environment.
  • Wishing she learnt how to surf when she was younger
  • Memories of playing in the waves
  • Going to college and studying dance, before moving to London
  • Dealing with anxiety and getting into yoga for the breathing
  • Feeling the benefits and knowing that she wanted to teach it
  • Doing the 200hr teaching training inThailand
  • Doing a SUP/Yoga Teacher Training Course
  • Doing a refresher water safety course
  • What can people expect from a SUP/Yoga class
  • The benefits of moving in nature and wanting to share it with others
  • The ripple effect of spending time in nature
  • Deciding to start the podcast and being on it’s 5th Series 
  • Pregnancy and being active and spending time outdoors
  • Dealing with Postnatel Anxiety 
  • Self care tips for new mums during stressful times of the year
  • Why comparison is the thief of joy
  • How her views of adventure have changed since having a baby
  • Dealing with a change in her identify and how she viewed herself
  • The challenges of going back to work after maternity leave
  • Taking her daughter on adventures 
  • Future plans for 2023
  • Armchair Adventure Festival 2023 (Use TG10 to get a 10% discount)
  • How to connect with India
  • Final words of advice for new mums and parents



Social Media


Instagram @with_india 


The Start a Ripple podcast was founded on the belief that ripples are made when we connect movement with nature, not only for our mind and body, but also the environment too. Every episode India speaks to a guest who shares their story and approach to moving in nature, with the hope that these conversations will encourage you to get outside, move, dream big, and start making your own ripples.


Listen here -



May 9, 2023

Join us for an inspiring conversation with Saanvi Sita Mylavarapu, a seasoned hiker, backpacker, rock climber, and youth advocate for the great outdoors. Since the age of six, Saanvi has been exploring the stunning landscapes of the United States, and has completed some of the most challenging hikes in the country, including Kala Pathar, Half Dome, and Mt. Whitney. She recently accomplished the feat of reaching the Everest Base Camp, and is now gearing up for a 120-mile trek across the Tour du Mont Blanc in Europe this summer.

Saanvi has hiked over 800 miles and has visited more than 25 National Parks, making her a true champion of nature conservation. Her passion for the environment has been recognized by national media outlets, who have featured her on the front page of newspapers and in articles in major magazines.

As a National Park Trust Ambassador, Saanvi has been supported by the National Park Service, renowned conservationists, mountaineers, and wildlife photographers. She is also the founder of 'Young Roots', an environmental and ecology club at Frisco ISD, and runs 'Nature Worthy', a non-profit organization that aims to raise awareness of the benefits of connecting with nature. 

Join us as Saanvi shares her insights on the transformative power of nature, and her vision for a more sustainable future.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Saanvi
  • Moving from Dallas to Texas
  • Planing to complete the Tour du Mont Blanc trek in Europe 
  • Turning sixteen 
  • Reflecting on her childhood and growing up 
  • Her first road trip at 6 years old and visiting the National Parks
  • Her love for hiking and spending time outdoors
  • Enjoying the peace and quiet
  • Feeling under pressure at school 
  • Being self motivated and driven 
  • Being a National Park Student Trust Ambassador 
  • Going to the Junior Ranger Programs 
  • Climbing Mt. Whitney and why it was so strenuous 
  • Breaking through mental barriers 
  • Feeling mental drained and how to change her state
  • Getting into rock climbing and what she enjoys
  • Hiking and climbing Half Dome and why it was so tough
  • Being inspired by her mum
  • Hiking to Everest Base Camp in Nepal
  • Wanting to climb the mountains in the future
  • Dealing with cold hands and feet
  • Using the phrase “you can do this”
  • Future dreams and ambitions 
  • Preparing to hike Tour du Mont Blanc
  • Doing high altitude running
  • The Saanvi Speaker Series 
  • The importance of spending time in nature 
  • Founder of 'Young Roots', an environmental and ecology club
  • Her views on carbon footprints and climate change
  • The power of making little changes in their life
  • Being inspired by Emily Harrington 
  • How to connect with Saanvi
  • Final words of advice 


Social Media


Instagram: @chalkbagsntents 



May 2, 2023

Jen Price, is a former British Army Officer who spent the entirety of 2022 undertaking an extreme set of adventure and endurance challenges on behalf of the Veteran’s Foundation. 

The solo challenge she set herself was to complete 12 challenges in 12 months, in quick succession. The challenges were multi-discipline and included the Devizes to Westminster international canoe race, an ironman, a multistage desert ultra-marathon, summit of Aconcagua, and a 1000 mile self supported Lands’ End to John O’Groats cycle. None of the challenges were events she had attempted before and, in total, she covered over 3500km and climbed two of the Seven Summits. 

Jen has raised nearly £35,000 for the Veterans’ Foundation and she continues to fundraise in her spare time by speaking about the challenges at schools, universities and business. She also has two outstanding challenges to go this year (replaced due to severe weather) which she will also fundraise for: paddle boarding across the English channel and climbing the famous Matterhorn.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Joining the Army in 2012
  • Why she joined the Army 
  • Deciding to raise funds for the Veterans’ Foundation 
  • Being inspired by the Tough Girl Podcast!
  • Her role in the Army and being physical robust
  • Doing cross country ski racing and competing for the Army
  • Joining the cadets at university 
  • Deciding to leave the army after 10 years
  • How the dream was turned into a plan - the practical steps that were taken
  • Starting with the desert marathon and building the rest of the challenges around it
  • Paying for the adventures and challenges 
  • Being able to borrow equipment to help keep costs down
  • Being supported by her friends and family 
  • Being frugal to keep costs down
  • The stress of planning and doing challenges throughout the year
  • Training for the variety of challenges 
  • The challenges of the desert marathon (challenge 10) and feeling broken
  • Self appreciation and not putting so much pressure on herself to achieve
  • Dealing with the feelings of shame
  • Her experience with climbing Aconcagua and the challenges she faced with the cold and the altitude
  • 28% oxygen!!
  • Doing a 1000 mile solo self supported Lands’ End to John O’Groats cycle
  • The 2 remaining challenges left for 2023
  • The lessons learned from the challenges
  • Sharing more about experience addiction 
  • Taking a step back from adventuring and figuring out the next steps in her life
  • If you’re not on an adventure, you should be planning your next one”
  • How to connect with Jen
  • Wanting to write a book about the challenges
  • Final words of advice for other women and girls
  • Not caring what other people think and why it can be powerful 


Social Media


Instagram: @jennevolve

Just Giving:  



Apr 27, 2023

Emily is an adventurer, solo traveler, mountaineer, quote collector, and all around lover of things that get people out of their comfort zones. Put on her first international flight at 3 weeks old, she's been adventuring in one way or another ever since. 

From wandering the forests of Sweden alone at the age of nine, to solo trekking in the Himalayas of India, to joining the circus as a professional aerialist, Emily is a big fan of the "just get out there and do it" mentality. She considers it her mission in life to inspire others to go outside, travel, and get curious about everything. As John Muir so aptly put it, "going out is really going in.”

Emily is a columnist and longtime contributor to Outside. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Guardian, Condé Nast Traveler, Lonely Planet, Adventure Journal, REI, and Backpacker, among others. 

Emily has visited every national park in the United States, and her book Feral: Losing Myself and Finding My Way in America’s National Parks, came out in February 2023.


About Feral: A bracing memoir about self-discovery, liberating escape, and moving forward across an adventurous and volatile American landscape. One year. One national park at a time.

“After a decade as an assistant to high-powered LA executives, Emily Pennington left behind her structured life and surrendered to the pull of the great outdoors. With a tight budget, meticulous routing, and a temperamental minivan she named Gizmo, Emily embarked on a yearlong road trip to sixty-two national parks, hell-bent on a single goal: getting through the adventure in one piece. She was instantly thrust into more chaos than she’d bargained for and found herself on an unpredictable journey rocked by a gutting romantic breakup, a burgeoning pandemic, wildfires, and other seismic challenges that threatened her safety, her sanity, and the trip itself.

What began as an intrepid obsession soon evolved into a life-changing experience. Navigating the tangle of life’s unexpected sucker punches, Feral invites readers along on Emily’s grand, blissful, and sometimes perilous journey, where solitude, resilience, self-reliance, and personal transformation run wild.”

We first spoke with Emily on 17th December 2019. You can listen to that episode here - 


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Emily 
  • Working as a journalist and writing for; The New York Times, The Guardian, Condé Nast Traveler and Lonely Planet
  • Speaking to Emily on the Tough Girl Podcast - 17th December 2019. You can listen to that episode here
  • Going back to early 2020
  • Saving up $30K for the adventure of a lifetime
  • Having a goal to visit all 62 National Parks in the United States
  • How Covid impacted her life and work as a travel journalist 
  • Having a home base in LA and quitting her job
  • Starting her adventure on 6th January 2020
  • Living out of her mini van #VanLife and what life was really like while on the road
  • Being mindful of climate change and the impact her travel would have
  • The transition to full time travel and living in a different way
  • Having anxiety about travelling especially solo travel
  • Expectations verses reality 
  • The importance of having downtime while travelling
  • Tips for managing her anxiety 
  • Leaning into meditation, online therapy, and medication
  • Being caught in the smoke from the wild fires 
  • National Parks and the amount of people wanting to use the space
  • The challenges of meeting people while being on the road and the challenges during covid
  • Magical moments
  • Adventuring with a partner and the impact on their relationship
  • Spending time in Alaska
  • Thinking about what home really means
  • The writing experience and why it was like intensive therapy everyday for 6 months
  • Reflecting back on the journey and the experience of writing the book
  • The key takeaways from the experience
  • The importance of rest and scheduling in downtime 
  • Getting comfortable sitting with discomfort
  • Making better choices and having more compassion
  • Wanting to travel to meaningful places and learn more about herself 
  • Deciding to move to Colorado and work full time as a writer
  • Reflecting on her quality of life and wanting to spend more time in the mountains
  • Plans for a second and third book
  • How to connect with Emily 
  • Final words of advice for women who want to go on a big trip or take on a new adventure


Social Media


Instagram: @brazenbackpacker 

Twitter: @BrazenBackpack

Book: Feral: Losing Myself and Finding My Way in America’s National Parks 


Apr 25, 2023

Vivianette Ortiz is a Latina originally from Puerto Rico. She grew up in the beach and mountain town of Patillas, Puerto Rico. She grew up running the hills of her hometown, bodyboarding, loving the ocean, and playing hide-in-seek barefoot through the farmlands. 

Vivianette moved to North Carolina at the age of 17. She is a dedicated mother, daughter, and granddaughter. For a long time, she worked countless hours daily with 2 or 3 jobs at a time. Her adventurous soul went dormant for many years due to everyday responsibilities.

Since arriving in North Carolina she has always gone back to the island to visit family and enjoy the feeling of freedom there. Going back to the island would help the homesickness she felt here on the mainland. Due to Covid restrictions, her traveling ceased for a while she found herself extremely homesick and depressed. 

Through social media, she found a North Carolina hiking group page. Discovering the outdoors again provided her with a connection to home. Her love for nature and the Latino community led her to be one of the founders of the group Latinos Aventureros en las Carolinas. She is proud to combine her love for the outdoors with her passion for the Hispanic community through her role as the Executive Director of Latinos Aventureros. 

She has completed over 130 hikes throughout the Carolinas in 2022, and 76 hikes in 2021. 

In 2022 was able to fulfill a lifelong dream of visiting Peru, and completing the Inca Trail. She hopes to start the Appalachian Trail by sections in 2023.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Vivianette
  • Her passion for going outside and travelling 
  • Working as a disability rights advocate
  • Growing up in Puerto Rico
  • Being an ocean girl and her passion for the water
  • Not being encouraged to spend time in the outdoors
  • Being dedicated to work and working 2/3 jobs to support her family
  • Being a single mother
  • Moving to North Carolina at 17 years old
  • The impact of Covid
  • Being very depressed and looking for things to do
  • Joining a social media friend for a hike
  • Her first memorable sunrise hike on Roan Mountain 
  • The gradual change after going on more hikes
  • Finding her passion of spending time in the outdoors
  • Practical tips and advice 
  • Hiking with her children
  • Starting Latinos Aventureros in October 2021
  • Building a camping gear closet 
  • Being able to take families out camping 
  • Doing the Inca Trail in 2022
  • Planning for 2 years 
  • The challenges of the trail 
  • Just keep going 
  • The mental side of hiking 
  • Why self motivation is important
  • Plans for 2023
  • Finding education and training for the leaders
  • The importance of resting and figuring out what your body needs
  • Making time to go hiking on her own
  • Hiking without an agenda
  • Plans for section hiking the Appalachian trail in 2023
  • Support, sponsorship and funding for the Latinos Aventureros
  • The Year of the Trail 
  • Disability rights and hiking 
  • The need for disability rights advocates 
  • Looking up trails on line to see if they are accessible 
  • All Trails App
  • How you can use your voice 
  • How to connect online
  • Advice for women who want to get out hiking and spend more time in the outdoors
  • Why it’s ok to ask for help
  • Words of encouragement in Spanish 


Social Media


Facebook - Vivianette Ortiz

Facebook Group - Latinos Aventureros en las Carolinas

Linktree -

Apr 20, 2023

On 5th June 2022 Laura set off on the back of a tandem, with husband Stevie, from the Brandenberg Gate in Berlin... 180 days later she returned having circumnavigated the World and with a new Guinness World Record! 

But, the ride wasn't straightforward; with closed borders, sickness, monsoons, sub -10 degree temperatures and a motorcycle collision that nearly ended the trip it took everything to reach the finish line on target. 

Laura blogged and updated social media throughout the trip and relied on her skills in project management and from her ultra-distance background to make the trip a success, as well as the ultimate team work of surviving 6 months on a bike with her husband.

We first spoke with Laura on 27th January 2022 - You can listen to that episode here


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Laura 
  • Spending 6 months cycling around the world on a tandem bicycle and breaking the Guin
  • Stats from the challenge 
  • Starting on the 5th June 2022
  • Needing to cycle 18,000 miles
  • Visiting over 21 countries
  • Speaking to Laura previously on the Tough Girl Podcast - 27th January 2022 - You can listen to that episode here 
  • Getting to the start line and feeling ready?
  • Planning for over 18 months to get to the start line
  • Being in an accident 2 weeks before the start
  • Dealing with the risks of cycling on the road 
  • Getting back on the bike - sooner rather than later
  • The start line in Berlin
  • Settling into a cycling routine 
  • What the daily routine looked like
  • The challenges on the journey 
  • Day to day challenges - from logistics, navigation, accommodation, food 
  • Dealing with the ongoing pressure 
  • Boarder closures and being flexible with changing plans
  • The crash in Malaysia and why it was a critical moment
  • Not knowing if they wanted to continue 
  • Being open and honest with each other 
  • Being as prepared as possible 
  • Flying to Australia 
  • Impacts on their relationships 
  • Advice for couples/partners who adventure together
  • Losing time and distance and getting behind schedule while riding in India 
  • Needing to make up 6 days and 600km
  • How to up the pace?
  • Highlights from the trip
  • Riding through New Zealand in 8.5 days
  • The route
  • Finishing the trip - the challenges in the final days
  • Getting back safely and doing what they said they were going to do
  • The achievement…..
  • Adventure blues and what happened next
  • Recovering physically 
  • Quick Fire Questions
  • Tough Girl Buffs (Black, Grey & White - Send me a DM £15 P&P UK Only)
  • Tandem WOW - Catherine Dixon (Cat) and Rachael Marsden (Raz) cycling around the world to set a new tandem WR! 
  • How to connect with Laura
  • Writing the book
  • Final words of advice to motivate and inspire you with your next challenge
  • Don’t under estimate what you can do
  • Why you might surprise yourself with what you can do


Social Media



Instagram: @stela_tandem 

Facebook: SteLa Tandem Round the World Record 

Twitter: @StelaTandem 

Youtube: SteLa Tandem 



Apr 18, 2023

Shandi’s love of running began when she was very young, and throughout her life, it was something that always helped her to cope with stress and anxiety. However, as she got older, she became consumed with the idea of proving something to others, and the pressure of the pursuit caused her to have a nervous breakdown during the 2013 Boston Marathon.

During this episode Shandi shares more about how she got into running, how running the NYC Marathon changed her life, especially the second time she ran it, when she ran a Boston qualifying time of 3 hours and 12 mins. 

After qualifying for Boston, she set herself the goal of breaking a 3 hour marathon. Shandi put a lot of pressure on herself to perform well. 

Unfortunately things did not go to plan, she realised early on she wasn’t going to hit her goal, but she still managed to cross the finish line, where she was immediately ushered to the medical tent. Her body had finally given in and later on she would find out that she had had a nervous breakdown. 

*Please be advised that in this episode, we will be discussing the Boston Marathon bombings, which took place on April 15, 2013. This event resulted in the tragic loss of three lives and injured hundreds of others. We understand that this topic may be sensitive and triggering for some listeners. 

Our guest, Shandi, will be sharing her personal experience of being at the 2013 Boston Marathon, and the impact it had on her mental and physical health. If you feel that this topic may be difficult for you, we encourage you to prioritise your emotional well-being and listen at your own discretion.

Shandi shares more about the aftermath, how she needed to heal her body and mind. 

She did this by making big changes to her life; from leaving her job as a television producer and moving to be closer to the mountains. She also started to freelance as a creative producer.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

Support the mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media especially in relation to adventure and physical challenges. Visit Thank you.


Show notes

  • Who is Shandi
  • Working as a producer 
  • Being based in Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Having a passion for the outdoors 
  • Getting into running at a young age
  • Feeling good while moving her body
  • Growing up in Canada and being taught to ski by her mum
  • Switching to snowboarding in college
  • Being drawn to the snowboarding lifestyle
  • Starting her career and making big changes
  • Work for ESPN (Entertainment & Sports Programming Network) in Bristol, Connecticut 
  • Studying broadcast journalism at college
  • How her career goals have changed
  • Finding a love for editing 
  • Figuring out what she wanted to do 
  • Advice for women who want to get into production
  • Find people who want to support you 
  • Get experience and keep going 
  • Being away from the mountains and spending more time running 
  • Deciding to do her first marathon 
  • Running NYC Marathon and loving the experience 
  • How the race changed her life
  • What running the NYC Marathon is like
  • The power of putting your name on your shirt
  • The amazing support from the crowds
  • Wanting to qualify for the Boston Marathon (3hr 35) and following a training plan
  • Shaving 30 mins of her marathon time and running 3hr 12 mins 
  • Tactics to running a fast marathon
  • Breaking up and feeling depressed
  • Respect and love to the past boyfriend
  • Having a year and a half to train
  • Working with a run coach and wanting to break 3hrs
  • Having lots of goals and wanting to do well
  • Dealing with severe anxiety and not being able to sleep
  • Not being well on the finish line at Boston Marathon 2013
  • Being in the medical tent when the bombs went off
  • Going though a nervous breakdown
  • Managing to find her dad
  • What happened afterwards
  • Going on medical leave for 6 months
  • Being in the “push through” mentality 
  • Needing to make big changes in her life
  • Healing her body and mind
  • Deciding to move to Seattle and become a freelance producer
  • Using Yoga to help heal her nervous system
  • Her mentality now being more attentive to her mental health
  • Why nothing is more important than her health
  • Figuring out what is the most important to you 
  • What do producers do?
  • Being a creative producer 
  • Outessa Summit 
  • Mini documentary with Rachel Collet - Reflect and Reset. Watch on YouTube
  • How to connect with Shandi
  • Needing to update her website with her latest projects
  • #InItTogether  
  • Plans for 2023
  • Final words of advice


Social Media


Instagram @shandikk 



Apr 11, 2023

Nicky Button was born in Gloucester and grew up in Worcester. Having a very happy childhood.

Nicky was always last to be picked for any teams at school and was the most uncoordinated and non sporty child being told to go and swim after a term of tennis when she still hadn’t hit a ball. Her teens and twenties removed around horses and children , whilst she ran a yard starting and schooling young horses and teaching people to ride alongside being a foster mother. 

In 2000 with an eight year old daughter she moved to Surrey where she spotted a group of people kayaking on a local canal, she went along to the club and heard only two parts of the sentence, Wednesday nights are adults only, whitewater training and we go to the pub afterwards. Six months later she was staring at her first White water river in Wales. Several swims later and at the end of the river she was hooked. 

The kayaking totally changed her life and she soon realised that whilst she certainly wasn’t the most proficient, she had found her tribe. Through the kayaking she was invited to help on set on Midsummer Murders and the rest as they say is history, she retrained learning swift water and rope rescue, working at heights and confined spaces, with fire and setting up stunts and rigging. There then followed some incredible years where she felt that she was being paid to have the best time in life. 

In 2013 after going away skiing she returned and was unable to see her daughter across the room. Four months later she’d had her driving license removed which knocked onto no job and then no home. Her life felt as though it was falling apart. 

She moved to South Devon and stormed along the South West Coast path. A few years on and she was part of walking groups for people with Visual Impairment and encouraging people to get out walking. 

On moving to Worcester in 2021 she met an amazing group of strangers who became friends, a trip up Ben Nevis was followed by entering her first Ultra challenge a 50km over Exmoor. When she completed that she looked for her next challenge. 

During lockdown she’d dreamed she’d walked from Scotland to Devon, she decided to make this a reality and so Nicky’s most marvellous ridiculous adventure was born. Walking from the Orkney Islands to the Scilly Isles. Solo and unsupported.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • 54 year old mum of 1
  • Walking from the Orkney Islands to the Scilly Isles
  • Starting the challenge on April 1st (April fools day!)
  • Not being into team sports and not enjoying the outdoors
  • Preferring reading about adventure 
  • Discovering individual sports 
  • Her passion for horses and riding
  • Joining The Pony Club 
  • Training to be a nanny
  • Running away to work with horses
  • Teaching riding at Pony Club and Riding for the Disabled 
  • Bringing up her daughter
  • Moving to Surrey 
  • How joining a Canoe Club changed her life
  • How her views on fear changed 
  • The link between fear and excitement 
  • Starting to work in tv production
  • Making her career change at 38
  • Over coming the limiting beliefs of other people’s thoughts
  • Learning how to run and getting fit for search and rescue 
  • If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way 
  • How her life changed in 2013
  • Being diagnosed with a rare genetic eye disease called Stargardts
  • Now being registered as Severely Visually impaired S.V.I /blind
  • Losing her driving licence, her job, and her home in the space of 4 months
  • Dealing with the trauma 
  • Moving back home to Devon and spending time on the South West Coast Path
  • Action for Blind People - now connected to RNIB
  • Joining a local walking group and how that helped process her thoughts and feelings 
  • Getting to a place of acceptance?
  • How her life is different now
  • What she can see through her eyes
  • Completing her first ultra challenge 50km over Exmoor 
  • How it changed her self confidence 
  • Navigation 
  • The idea for - Nicky’s most marvellous ridiculous adventure
  • Sharing the adventure and making it a reality 
  • The route
  • Talking with people along the way about sight loss
  • Self funding and working on a tight budget
  • Hoping that people will come and join her 
  • Starting in the Orkney Islands
  • Fears and concerns before the start of the trip
  • Wanting to prove to herself that she can still do big thing
  • Having a sense of purpose 
  • Final words of advice for women
  • What do you actually want to do?



Social Media


Instagram: @blind.girl.walking 

Facebook: Nicky’s most marvellous, ridiculous adventure 

Just Giving: 

Apr 4, 2023

Sasha DiGiulian began climbing in 1998 at 6 years old. She won the World Championships for Female Overall, a Silver in the Bouldering World Championships, as well as Bronze in the Duel. 

Sasha was also the undefeated pan-American Champion for over a decade. Outdoors, Sasha is the first North American woman to climb the grade 9a, 5.14d. Additionally, she has on-sighted multiple 8b+’s, 5.14a’s, ascended groundbreaking, multi-pitch routes of over 1500 feet of 8c climbing, and accomplished multiple First Ascents and over 30 First Female Ascents around the World.

Sasha is a graduate of Columbia University in New York City where she studied Non-fiction Writing and Business. 

She is on the Board of the Women’s Sports Foundation, and is an Athlete Ambassador for Right to Play, Up2Us Sports, Access Fund, and American Alpine Club. She is the founder of SEND Bars and Female Focused Adventures, and is a co-founder of RoamTV.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

You can support the Tough Girl mission to increase the amount of female role models in the media - especially in relation to adventure and physical challenge by signing up as a patron. Thank you. 


Show Notes

  • Being based in Boulder, Colorado 
  • Growing up in the Washing DC Area
  • Her early years 
  • Being sporty from a young age
  • Getting into climbing at 6 years old
  • Discovering climbing as a competitive sport
  • Winning her first competition 
  • Falling in love with the sport 
  • Being supported by her mum
  • Dealing with the pressure of performing and needing to be perfect
  • Train so hard that even on a bad day you can still succeed
  • Dealing with pressure as a professional athlete
  • Using the pressure to her advantage
  • Building her own brand 
  • Deciding to go to college
  • Spending weekends in NYC training 
  • Making the transition from climbing indoors to big walls outside 
  • Feeling more motivated when climbing outside
  • In 2012 - doing her first big wall expedition in the Dolomites 
  • The lessons learned from big wall expeditions 
  • Type 2 fun!!
  • Her next chapter in climbing
  • How does it work with expedition planning
  • Building out the team 
  • Logistic - getting to the location, base camp, food, equipment etc
  • Launching a nutrition bar company - SEND Bars
  • The importance of fuelling her body especially being celiac (gluten free)
  • Planning the route from the ground
  • How to connect with Sasha
  • Read Sasha’s blog posts 
  • Working on a secret plan for 2023
  • Words of advice to inspire you to step outside your comfort zone
  • Being committed to what makes you passionate


Social Media


Instagram @sashadigiulian 

Facebook @sashadigiulian

Twitter @sashadigiulian


Mar 30, 2023

India in her own words:

“I am India Cook, an avid Atlanta-based runner, marathoner, race announcer, YouTube vlogger, podcast host, and RRCA-certified run coach. I have a love for running and road racing, but I also have a passion for encouraging and guiding runners and those who aspire to become runners. I advocate for all paces and body types in the space of road racing.

My running journey started in 2008 on the quest to lose weight and also engage in a healthy social activity. Since 2008 I have completed distances from 5K to marathons. 

Throughout my running journey, I observed that there were limited running resources created by women of color to help individuals get into running or resources for those already engaged in the sport. 

Therefore, I developed a vlog “Miles From India” on YouTube. The vlog’s purpose is to educate, inspire, and motivate runners. Viewers can find tips and how-to videos that aid in helping runners navigate running effectively. Within the running community, I also find it important to ensure diverse running experiences and stories are highlighted. 

In 2018, I became a podcast host of, The Run Duo Podcast, with my co-host, Tommy Mitchell. On our bi-weekly podcast, we talk all things running as we educate and entertain our listeners and also interview casually to elite runners. 

In addition to content creation, I am also a race announcer and event emcee. I am the amazing voice that you hear at the start and finish line of a race that motivates you to keep going and cheers you in at the finish. As a fellow runner, I find it important to feed positivity and love during all points for racing and I am your fun energetic voice that does that. 

On the coaching side of the sport, I have a focus on helping ladies run confidently in any phase of their run journey, my background in mental health not only allows me to have a positive and healthy relationship with running but also enables me to help athletes build a similar relationship as well. I find it essential to make the sport of running less intimidating and relatable for all levels. 

My goal is to make the sport of running more diverse, inclusive, and less intimidating to my listeners and viewers. 

I will continue to use my training, experience, and voice to guide others in the community of running through coaching. 

I take the approach that everyone's journey is unique, and we should celebrate every step, stride, and mile. I believe that running not only boosts physical health, but it also rejuvenates your mind and fuels confidence” 


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.

Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. Run 1 mile everyday in March. 


Show Notes

  • Who is India
  • Being focused on cheerleading and dance 
  • Doing a little bit of track and field
  • Focusing on sprinting
  • Not being a fan of running
  • Having a negative relationship with distance running
  • Starting with a 10k race
  • Wanting to start increasing her distance with running
  • Leaving college and not being active
  • Being in graduate school and wanting to be a pro cheerleader
  • Doing a season of semi-pro cheerleading
  • Figuring out that cheerleading was not for her 
  • Using running as her outlet to decompress from stressful work days
  • Doing her first race in 2008 - The Peachtree Road Race 
  • Starting to race every month
  • Running her first half marathon in 2013
  • Being surrounded by amazing people who were encouraging her with running
  • Not having a clue when she started running 
  • Struggling to find information that suited her needs 
  • Why it can be intimidating entering the world of running
  • The advice she wish she had received when she first starting her running journey 
  • Why movement is what’s important
  • Not training appropriately for her first half marathon
  • Calling herself a runner
  • The high points and low points of marathon running 
  • The mental experience of running a marathon
  • Running the NYC Marathon 
  • Running the Virtual Boston Marathon in 2021 
  • Tips and tricks for grit and determination while running 
  • The importance of knowing your why
  • Staying in the present and focusing on the current mile
  • Thoughts on the Virtual Boston Marathon 
  • Taking advantage of the unique opportunity 
  • Running a marathon independently and why it’s more of a challenge
  • Her running journey and becoming a run coach
  • The Run Duo Podcast
  • Wanting to interview people from the run community who aren’t elite athletes 
  • Goals for 2023 and how it’s a transition year
  • Moving her body and what that looks like
  • How to connect with India (see social media links below)
  • Final words of advice 


Social Media


Instagram: @i_of_endigo_runs

The Run Duo Podcast:

Link to all places:





Mar 28, 2023

Maddy is a 72-year-old runner, cyclist, mother of four, and grandmother to three. Her goal is to fight aging and show that we can do things long after we thought we couldn't.

Maddy has always enjoyed being outside since she was a child. At school, she enjoyed sports and spent a lot of time swimming with her brother.

Maddy has been running for more than four decades. She began running in 1977 at the age of 26. She was working for the military in a child guidance clinic in Munster, Germany.

Maddy was just running for pleasure, and prioritises her children after work. She was a social worker before becoming a teacher. She joined the Harriers in the 1990s and began running seriously in 1997–98. She has competed in every imaginable race, as well as loads that no longer exist.

In 2017, Maddy competed in over 30 races, winning the majority of them in her age category (V65). From 2004 to 2018, she ranked in the top 50 in the UK for her age group at distances ranging from 5K to marathon. She finished 14th among V65 women in the UK in the half marathon in 2017.

Maddy also finds time to coach and support other runners, and she has helped organise local parkruns. She set up Mansfield Runners in 2012 with Sue Bellingham's help. They started it when Run England was promoting beginner's groups. It is now a RunTogether group.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.

Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. Run 1 mile everyday in March. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Maddy
  • 72 years young
  • Running since 27
  • Waiting for bi-lateral hip replacements
  • Her early years in the 1950s
  • Getting a TV when she was 7 yrs old
  • Getting a car when she was 11
  • Cycling everywhere 
  • Getting into running while working in West Germany
  • The restrictions on women’s running and women not being allowed to run long distances 
  • Starting to run every week around the woods
  • Why she loves running and being out in nature 
  • Moving back to England in 1981 
  • Signing up for the first Nottingham Half Marathon 
  • Having 4 children between 1983 and 1990
  • Joining Mansfield Harriers
  • Running during pregnancy and after having children 
  • Loving yoga and CrossFit 
  • Dealing with injury
  • Going back to the early 1980s
  • 1984 - when women were allowed to run the marathon 
  • Taking 25 yrs of running before signing up for her first marathon 
  • Running the London Marathon in 3hr 27mins (over 50)
  • Deciding to stop running road marathons
  • Training by herself 
  • Effort Sessions every Tuesday and Thursday
  • Mindset and mental strategy while running 
  • How times and knowledge have trained
  • Getting into coaching
  • Mansfield Runners 
  • The Stilton Stumble 
  • Dealing with Osteoporosis 
  • Why you need to keep moving when you have arthritis 
  • Advice for new runners
  • How to connect with Maddy
  • Having younger running friends 
  • The isolation that happens when your older
  • Entering the Bath Half
  • Women being veterans from 35
  • Being competitive 
  • Counting while running
  • Embracing technology
  • Magical memory from running
  • Racing with her daughter in the Italian Alps


Social Media

Instagram @collingemaddy



Mar 23, 2023

Amy Rusiecki is a full-time engineer with a passion for ultrarunning. 

Amy, who has been running her entire life, started out with orienteering when she was only six years old before moving onto cross country running and then transitioning to road racing (during which time she escaped to the trails to train).

During her ultrarunning career (Amy has completed 82 ultras and has won 33 of them), she has found confidence, joy and her husband. 

She is the Race Director for the Vermont 100 and coaches other ultrarunners through The Run Formula. 

She is a three-time member of the USA Trail Team, and is sponsored by Inov-8 and Drymax. 

Amy, her husband and their kitty live in western Massachusetts and mainly race throughout the East Coast.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday 7am UK time - Make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.

Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. Run 1 mile everyday in March. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Amy
  • Being a lifelong athlete 
  • Finding trail and ultra running
  • Ultra running since 2007
  • Being a race director and working as a full time engineer
  • Waking up super early!
  • Being from an active family 
  • Doing orienteering and becoming a cross country skier
  • Finding the right endurance sport
  • Running use to be a punishment when she was younger
  • Why she loves running
  • Signing up for her first 50 mile race
  • Doing her first marathon and trail marathon with her sister
  • Reading Ultra Marathon Man By Dean Karnazes 
  • Doing a relay race and roping in her work colleague 
  • Signing up for the Vermont 50 
  • Her mental approach to running endurance races 
  • Make sure you know your why
  • Being inspired by her friend 
  • Doing a 100 mile race without her crew or her friends 
  • 100 reasons why Amy is going to rock the 100!
  • Magical moments while racing 
  • 2015 - The World Mountain Running and Trail Championships 
  • Feeling bad for herself and just wanting to finish the race
  • Making the transition from being an elite athlete to a normal runner
  • Being more of a middle of the pack runner
  • Did she love the sport or was her passion for the sport tied to her success
  • Being ok with not winning 
  • Not being able to live unto the expectation of other runners
  • Working as a Race Director 
  • The gender split in the ultra races 
  • Breaking down barriers in the ultra race space 
  • Working with adaptive athletes 
  • Wanting to welcome everybody to the trails
  • Having a policy for pregnant women
  • What it’s like on race day being a race director 
  • Wanting things to be perfect 
  • Top tips and advice for new runners
  • Remove any notion in your head about what that mile will look like
  • Why it’s about covering the distance 
  • Top tips for experienced runners wanting to go after a 100 mile race
  • Why you need a race that inspires you 
  • Why it’s ok to pick something that you may fail at 
  • How to connect with Amy (she’s not on social media)
  • Beast Coast Trail Running
  • Working as a run coach through Run Formula 
  • Plans for 2023 - combining running and travel


Social Media

Seven Sisters Trail Race - 12 miles of technical, single track trail on an out-and-back course with over 3,500 ft. elevation gain 

Vermont 100 - 100 mile race

Vermont Adaptive:

Beast Coast Trail Running: 



Mar 21, 2023

Ingrid has loved competitive sports since a young age. Originally swimming was her passion and she began swimming competitively at 6 years old, she swam throughout high school and attending UCLA (a division 1 school) where she swam competitively for 2 years, while studying Sociology. 

After leaving college, Ingrid made the transition from swimming to running and also decided to become an actress. Played lifeguard Sheryl Whelan, on Baywatch as well as having roles on Scandal, Grey's Anatomy, Castle, and Parenthood, to name a few!

At the age of 47 after running her fastest marathon ever, 2hr 48 mins in the 2019 LA Marathon. 

Ingrid was feeling the strongest and fittest she’d ever been. 

However, while training for her next challenge, she started to not feel well and after seeing her doctor was diagnosed with breast cancer. Ingrid underwent a double mastectomy, and continued to run while undergoing six rounds of chemotherapy as well as radiation.

Ingrid is a member of Janes an elite women’s running group based in LA and in 2021 Ingrid was inducted into the National Black Distance Running Hall of Fame.


2014 3rd Place Masters Female Chicago Marathon
2014 2nd Place Female Overall Orange County Marathon
2016 USATF Masters Half Marathon Championship: 5th place Masters Woman Overall
2021 2nd Place 50+, 12th Overall USATF Masters XC Club Nationals Tallahassee,FL
2022 1st Place 50+, 8th Overall USATF Masters XC Championships Mission Bay, CA


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday 7am UK time - Make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.

Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. Run 1 mile everyday in March. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Ingrid 
  • Being based in Santa Monica, California, USA 
  • Racing for the past 10 years
  • Starting out as a competitive swimmer 
  • Swimming for 2 years in College at UCLA
  • Hating running when she was younger
  • Transition to running at 18/19 years old
  • Starting to work as a lifeguard for LA County 
  • Running on the beach and doing her first marathon
  • Running marathons and improving her times
  • Joining the Janes’ an elite running team in Santa Monica and wanting to break 3hrs in the marathon
  • Always loved training and competing 
  • Liking to challenge herself
  • Working as an actor for 26 years
  • Finding her niche in life
  • What was Ingrid like as a little girl 
  • Being taught to swim from a very young age
  • Being a junior lifeguard
  • Studying Sociology at College in the early 90s
  • Getting into acting and booking her first commercial 
  • Acting in Baywatch
  • Gradually falling in love with running
  • Hal Higdon - Marathon training plan 
  • Deciding to join the Janes Elite Running Club 
  • Taking 5 years to run under 3hrs
  • Being fully committed to her running program 
  • Getting a running coach and running 70 miles a week
  • Breaking 3 hrs when she was 45 years old
  • Starting to change her training and wanting to go faster
  • Running 100mile weeks for 3 months before the LA Marathon
  • Running 2.48 at the LA Marathon!!!
  • Starting to not feel well and being diagnosed with Breast Cancer
  • Feeling shocked
  • The next steps to follow 
  • Being supported by the running community 
  • Running throughout her treatment 
  • Having surgery in August 2019
  • Getting into cross country races in 2021
  • Having a baby heart attack at a race in New Jersey
  • Figuring out what happened
  • Looking at running in a different way 
  • Reframing the situation in her mind
  • Advice for new runners starting out
  • The joy of making running fun!
  • A magical running memory 
  • How to connect with Ingrid 


Social Media

Instagram @ingridwalt

Janes Elite Racing - 

Mar 16, 2023

A Swiss-born ultrarunner, Luzia Buehler now lives in the mountains, trying to live a good life while protecting what is most important to her.

Luzia has always been an athletic person since she was a child because of her great love for the outdoors and the mountains. Luzia discovered her passion for trail running when she was about 20 years old, and she has since competed in all of the most important international races.

In 2016, Luzia competed in the Western States 100 race for the first time, finishing 27th (27hrs 03mins) and 11th (20hrs 23mins) in 2019.

Having run this race twice, which has greatly prepared her, Luzia, 40, has rocked the world’s oldest 100-mile trail race, the Western States Endurance Run, by becoming the 4th place women's finisher in a time of 18 hours, 08 minutes last year.

Luzia is also a social worker who enjoys skiing and snowboarding during the winter.


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.

Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. Run 1 mile everyday in March. 


Show Notes

  • Who Luzia
  • Living in East Switzerland by the mountains 
  • Working as a social worker
  • Being the youngest child and growing up in a sport family
  • Getting into skiing at a young age
  • Always being a runner
  • Working as a cook and fitting in running around her hours
  • Doing her first Half Marathon on the road and why it wasn’t good!
  • Working with running coach Ellie Greenwood
  • Listen to Ellie Greenwood on the Tough Girl Podcast 2016 
  • Needing more flexibility in her training 
  • Western States 100 mile endurance race 
  • Running the WS100 in 2016 and why it was the hardest thing she has ever done
  • Running for 27 hrs and needing to walk the majority of the race
  • Wanting to come back and do the race again (this time training with Ellie)
  • Winning a golden ticket to gain entry to Western States in 2018 
  • Going into the race with a lot of passion 
  • Why it’s so much more than a race
  • Having stomach problems on Raceday - but completing it in 20hrs 
  • Wanting to race the Western States again in 2022
  • Completing the WS100 in 18hrs 8 mins 27 secs
  • Why it was such a good day and feeling proud of herself 
  • Race strategy and tactics for Western States
  • Needing to run at her own pace
  • Feeling the impact of jet lag and needing to go slower at the start
  • Running really well when she runs alone 
  • Starting to overtake a few people and having fun while she raced. 
  • Just keep smiling and keep putting one foot in front of the other 
  • What’s going on in her head while racing 
  • Trying to stay in the current moment and be in the present
  • Fuelling and nutrition while racing 
  • Wanting to eat more salty food and less fatty food
  • Pizza and beer at the end of the race
  • How she recovers after a 100 mile race 
  • Taking a week or 2 weeks off from running 
  • Supplements?
  • “The future is unwritten” - what does that mean?
  • Her dream race - Hardrock 100 
  • Being an inov-8 ambassador 
  • Advice for new runners who are just starting out 
  • Losing her running mojo and what she does when she doesn’t feel like running
  • Remembering her why - why does she run?
  • Wanting to create happy memories 
  • Her favourite paid of Inov-8 trainers
  • Wearing PARKCLAW G 280 in the Western States 100
  • Advice for more experienced runners
  • Why time on feet really does count 
  • Doing strength training 2/3x a week 
  • Remaining injury free due to strength training 
  • Why cycling is good as well
  • How you can connect with Luzia on IG


Social Media

Instagram @luz.s.y



Mar 14, 2023

Allie spent a lot of her life seeking approval from people she thought were cool, believing that in order to be successful, you had to act a certain way. For her, success is seeing someone who doesn't believe they can do something transform into someone who does.

After working for major record labels for 12 years, Allie realised that music, which she had once loved, was slowly killing her. Her dream career had turned her into a nightmare, and she was completely lost. Allie has struggled to find her place and suffers from depressive demons, anxiety, and existential misery.

After taking part in the inaugural Rat Race Test Pilot trip to Mongolia in 2018, she realised it was the first time she had truly had time to stop, think, and be completely at peace. Fast forward, after three and a half years, numerous journeys, a pandemic, some questionable decisions, and a lot of planning and running, Allie is now coaching other people to do amazing things.

Allie holds several world firsts to her name, including running across Mongolia's Lake Khovsgol and crossing the Namib Desert twice. Allie is the first woman to run the entire length of the Panama Canal. She has also run the length of the Outer Hebrides, crossed Scotland on packraft and foot several times, and completed over 100 marathons and 60-70 ultramarathons, including nine 100-mile plus races.

Allie started running 10 years ago and have only being doing the ultra thing for 6 years, but she absolutely love it. It's a game changer. Allie believes that it is something that anyone of any age and from any background can participate in.

Allie has been extremely lucky to have discovered something she truly enjoys doing, and her favorite thing in the entire world is seeing people achieve things they never thought were possible

"There's nobody funner than an Ultrarunner" - Allie Bailey


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.

Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. Run 1 mile everyday in March. 

* We have previously spoken with Allie on 18th Dec 2018 - Listen here 


FYI marked as *Explicit - as there are a few little swear words!


Show Notes

  • Who is Allie Bailey
  • Meeting her dogs!
  • Why ultra running and why she loves it 
  • Writing her book 
  • How running helps with her mental health 
  • Being able to process her thoughts 
  • Going more into adventure running
  • Her favourite distance to run…
  • Liking 100 mile races
  • LEJOG - Lands End to John O’Groats
  • The ultimate dream 
  • Working with Rat Race 
  • Starting on the 1st June 2022
  • Running on average 35 miles a day
  • The hardest part of the LEJOG challenge
  • The mental side of the challenge
  • The challenges of being away from home
  • What a typical day looked like 
  • Starting with the South West Coast Path
  • Running 44 miles into Bristol over 12 hrs
  • Chocolate milk
  • Being in bed asleep by 8pm
  • Snacking all day
  • Having a rest day once a week 
  • Staying injury free throughout the journey 
  • Wanting to finish the run
  • Voltarol gel to help with the pain
  • Using bonjela to numb blisters 
  • Wearing Inov-8 Parkclaw G280 - for 750 miles (then wearing a second pair for the final 250 miles) - “the greatest shoe of all time”
  • The ultra playlist on Spotify - The Bailey Ultra Sound System 
  • Getting to Scotland and the final few days 
  • Spending time by herself towards the end 
  • Getting to John O’Groats and doing the final mile 
  • Feeling underwhelmed with what she had achieved 
  • What she would have done differently 
  • Wishing she had done more strength training before she left
  • Costs of taking on a challenge like this 
  • Dragons Back Race, Wales 
  • Getting timed out on day 2 
  • Why it was the most intense thing she’s ever done
  • Feeling like a fraud 
  • Taking herself out of the situation
  • The lessons learned from the experience
  • Wanting to go back in 2024 and try again
  • Not being kind to herself
  • Being able to reframe the situation 
  • Time off in 2023…..
  • Planning to do her first 200 miler and wanting to run all the Wainwrights in a year
  • Taking 10 days off running!!!
  • How you can connect with Allie
  • Final words of wisdom and advice for women who want to get into running and take it to the next level
  • Finding your people, find your tribe, find your people 
  • Ultra Awesome FB Group


Social Media


Instagram @ab_runs 

Twitter  @AllieBailey 




Mar 9, 2023

Rav is a mum of 3 teenagers and works as a management consultant. 

Rav only found running later on in life when she was in her late 30’s. She started running to prove a point to someone who said she couldn’t run. Rav soon realised that fitness initiatives such as Park Run and races just weren’t for her.  

Her joy for running came from the solitude and peace she found while on an empty trail or a calm street.  

Rav now runs for fun, for her mental well being and to keep fit. In 2022 she completed a goal she had had for 20 years - running the London Marathon.


Rav is currently on a run streak where she has been running outside every day for almost 5 years. She is also training for her next challenge: a 32 mile / 52k Ultra Marathon in the Peak District taking place in the Summer of 2023! 

“Find what makes you happy. Do more of it”


New episodes of the Tough Girl Podcast go live every Tuesday and Thursday at 7am UK time - Subscribe so you don’t miss out. 

The Tough Girl Podcast is being sponsored throughout March by Inov-8.

Get involved with the #MarchDailyMile Challenge. Run 1 mile everyday in March. 


Show Notes

  • Who is Rav
  • 42 year old, mum of 3 teenagers
  • Celebrating her 5 year run streak in March 2023
  • Her early years and growing up in a strict Indian family 
  • Not being sporty
  • Being pushed down the academic route
  • Deciding to join a gym
  • Getting her first pair of trainers when she was 36
  • Joining a hotel gym and going at night
  • Getting into swimming 
  • Starting her IG account to document her fitness journey 
  • Buying trainers
  • The motivation behind wanting to run
  • Wanting to prove people wrong
  • Not wanting to be seen in public
  • Deciding to run outside on the 17th May 2017
  • Doing a 12 week fitness challenge which involved running 200 miles
  • Setting running goals
  • RED January
  • The power of spending 30 mins outside each day
  • Meeting Scott who was run streaking 
  • How the purpose of the run streak has changed since she started
  • Motivating herself to run on the tough days
  • London Marathon 26.2 miles 
  • Dealing with imposter syndrome
  • Having social anxiety while running and not being able to do park run 
  • Getting a plan in places for races 
  • Running plans being stopped due to covid and doing the virtual London Marathon 
  • Doing 9 virtual marathons in 12 weeks 
  • Finding the training hard when running 18 miles+
  • Joining a fitness program - Six Pack Revolution
  • Not being able to run the London Marathon in 2021
  • Dealing with injury and the recovery process while still running every day
  • Losing her running confidence
  • The unofficial running community!
  • Getting over her mental block when running longer distances
  • Getting her running confidence back and starting to work with a running coach
  • Dealing with the fear of getting injured again 
  • The start line of the London Marathon 2022
  • Being a glam runner - hot pink lipstick and shades!
  • Being supported by friends 
  • Wanting to make the most of the day
  • The toughest part of the race and struggling around mile 16 and mile 24
  • Not wanting to do another road marathon again 
  • How to connect with Rav
  • Top tips and advice to help you get out running 


Social Media


Twitter @ravbillan 


Instagram @ravbillan 



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