Hi friends 😀
Today, i am really excited to share yet another interview with you. A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of talking with elite athlete Tina Muir – at the time we didn’t know that she will actually get to run IN THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS FOR FOR GREAT BRITAIN & NORTHERN IRELAND THIS WEEKEND!!!!!
So here our Q&A . Enjoy!! 😀
Q: When did you start running?
A: I started running around age 14, which was pretty late for a runner in England. I joined a running club where I met my coach who coached me till I was 18, and still is a mentor to this day.
Q: How did you know that this would be a life career for you?
A: I don’t know if I ever considered that. I still wouldn’t say that it is my career. I am a professional runner, but it is not my primary job in my life. I need to keep that balance for me to stay sane. I couldn’t handle being purely a runner, it would be too easy to lose my identity. I also work full time for Runners Connect as the community manager.
But to answer your question, I realized that I had a gift as a runner as early as 15-16 years old, but I never really thought ahead to how I would go about it as I got older. It was only my last year of college that I thought I would like to continue improving and see where I could go.
Q: What does it mean to be an elite runner? Is there a lot of pressure involved?
A: I don’t feel like there is a set definition of what an elite runner is, but I would say that I live my life in a way that puts running as a priority in a way that would allow me to go after goals that most do not have the luxury to do.
As for pressure, yes and no. There is pressure to maintain a certain level and of course we wonder what others will think of us if we fall flat on our faces and bomb a race, but that being said. I think that I can keep that pressure off for the most part by reminding myself that I do this for fun at the end of the day, and by having that balance I talked about earlier, knowing that if I do not run well, it does not mean I have nothing to give in this world. I am a wife, friend, sister, daughter first, and a runner second.
Q: Share 3 of your strengths and 3 of your weaknesses with us.
A: Ooooohhh interesting. I am guessing running related?
Grit.I can push myself much harder than most can, and keep pushing forward when I am already at my limit. Most runners cant push through that level of pain.
Pacing. I am the queen of pacing. I can hold a pace within a few seconds for miles on end without looking at my watch. This allows me to be a smart racer and stay back at the beginning…..so I can pick it up at the end and catch the people who went out too fast.
Real. I hope that comes across in my blog, but In everything I do I like to be real. To show that every single person, I do not care who they are has down moments, has struggles, has those toxic self doubt thoguths, but I like to think it is a strength that I am not afraid to be vulnerable. I also hope that shows in my body type. I do not look perfectly chiselled, and that is okay. I would rather eat a bit more but look more real.
Breathing. I can keep my breathing very calm and steady most of the time, but once I get into a bad state with my breathing, there is no going back. That is the reason I have to start out slower. I am also very bad at keeping up with my breathing exercises. I just struggle to motivate myself to do them.
Comparison. Isnt that a weakness for us all? I stand on the start line and look around at the girls all around me and think that I am not lean/strong enough or I cant stay with them. I tend to compare the types of training others do and it makes me feel inferior. But I am working on it!
Efficiency. My running form used to be very bad in some of the most dangerous ways (risk of injury was high). Although I have been working on it, I still waste a lot of energy that I could be using to run faster by being inefficient. It means I fall apart a lot easier in a race.
Q: What keeps you motivated through a “bad” running day? What gets you out the door?
A: I try to remind myself of how good it is going to feel when I finish the run when I know I did not want to, how proud of myself I am going to be when I finish the run or workout when I struggled. I also like to look at my goal race or what I am training for, and think about how I will remember that moment when I am struggling in a race, and if I made it through that, I can make it through this.
Q: Let’s talk about the World Half Marathon Championships. What does that mean to you?
A: Well, as I am sure you know….but your readers probably do not, initially I was a little disappointed to find out I had not made the Great Britain team. But once I had some time for it to soak in (and a few people gave me a kick for being the Eeyore- Winnie the pooh reference, how childish!), I realized just how amazing of an opportunity this was!
It is still hard to believe that I will be running in a WORLD championship, against the best in the world. That is such an honor, and I just want to enjoy it, especially as there is no pressure. I am very excited for the race!
Moving from the UK to the USA, how did you find the transition? Do you miss the UK?
I have been here about 9 years now, so it seems like home being in the US….actually it is home! But yes, definitely still miss friends and family and even just the town I am from (St Albans). I still definitely get homesick, and feel like I am missing out sometimes, but the benefits outweigh those moments, and now I am with my husband, he makes me so happy. I am surrounded by so much love from people over here that it is hard to stay sad for long.
I still miss curries and M&S though 😉
Q: What are your plans for the future?
A: Whoa! That is a loaded question! Haha. Uhhh well just sticking to running, I will say that my number one goal is to represent GB in a world championships. I will keep working towards that until I accomplish it. I would also like to get as close to 2:30 in the marathon as I could, and get my 5k/10k PRs up to a level I would say is satisfactory to retire them away….that is about 10 seconds off my 5k and 30 seconds off my 10k….to be continued J
Q: What else do you enjoy apart from running?
A: My husband. It sounds cheesy, but anything we do together makes me very happy. I love to go out to eat (I am a real foodie!!) or make something in. I actually make most things myself, even down to sauces, bread, almond milk, hummus ect. I do really enjoy cooking.
I also LOVE to interact with people. I am surrounded by so many wonderful friends and family who I love to keep up to date on and stay in touch with. I do enjoy my blog and helping others to feel better about their own running and life.
Q: What is your advice to beginner runners?
A: You are a runner. Whether you run a 5 minute mile or a 15 minute mile. Be proud of who you are and never feel embarrassed or like you need to hide it. Do not compare yourselves to other. Be proud of your strengths and who YOU are. Be Brave. Be Strong. Be You!
Thank you so much Tina for taking the time to answer my questions! I was honoured to get to know such a down to earth awesome individual like you! I will definitely be cheering for you this weekend! 😀