Episode 73: How to be a Role Model

Interview with Mirna Valerio

Banner image of Mirna by Tammi Nowack

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Ultrarunner Mirna Valerio is a role model for many because by doing what she loves, she shows others what is possible. She’s modeling being a black, fat girl running, moving her body up and over mountains. Which begs the question – what are you modeling for others?

In this episode, you’ll hear:

– Why when Mirna coached high school students, she taught them to love running as a lifestyle
– How Mirna answers the oft-dreaded question, “What do you do?”
– How nature and trail running impacts Mirna personally
– The ways in which joy and suffering balance each other in ultrarunning
– Why it’s important to put in the work, but why it’s also important to rest and listen to your body
– Why Mirna doesn’t believe changing one’s outward appearance leads to happiness
– How our culture uplifts a certain beauty standard, and the ways in which Mirna believes this is changing
– What she’s learned from other plus-sized women about what they want their outdoor apparel to be like
– What Mirna thinks about being a role model for others
– Who Mirna looks up to in her everyday life
– Advice for listeners on how they can be a role model

Find the episode below, on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, GooglePlay, or wherever you stream podcasts.


Mirna Valerio, AKA “The Mirnavator.” Mirna is a full-time ultrarunner, author, and public speaker. She blogs at Fat Girl Running and Runner’s World.

Want to meet Mirna in person? Our friend Shanti Hodges is hosting a retreat in October. Learn more here and take $50 off with the code, ‘SheExplores’ at checkout!

Hosted by Gale Straub 

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Music is by Lee Rosevere, Steve Combs, and Kai Engel via freemusicarchive.org.

Music is also by Memory Palace

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Mirna in Action

Photo by Tammi Nowack/@tamminowackphoto
Mirna Valerio in action; Photo by Tammi Nowack/@tamminowackphoto

Links/Resources Mentioned in this Episode:

Mirna Valerio’s Instagram
– Mirna Valerio’s Memoir: A Beautiful Work in Progress
The Mirnavator – Short Film produced by REI and directed by Sarah Menzies
– Mirna’s blog, Fat Girl Running
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