Welcome to series TWO! It feels like a long time since series one, and yet no time at all. I am super excited to launch ten fresh conversations. They are all special and cover a lot of important ground, from moving forward after the loss of a child and marriage break down to becoming a quadruple amputee and recovering from eating disorders and exercise addiction.
We start by talking to a legend in fell and mountain running, and a huge role model of mine, Angela Mudge. Proof that you don’t need buzzing social media accounts and self-promotion to be respected as an athlete in these sports, and a fantastic poster girl for keeping the sport of fell running pure and simple, Angela was so interesting to talk to. I feel lucky to have had the opportunity to meet face-to-face, cosy up in her cottage, say hello to a sweet family of pets whilst gaining real insight into her approach to running, competing and life.
Back in the late 90s and early 2000s, when very few women were running in fell and mountain races, Angela won the World Mountain Running Championships and set many course records around the world, running the first sub-3 hour time for a female at the iconic mountain race Sierre-Zinal. And testament to the level of her performance on the hills many of these records still stand today, just check out this lengthy list on Scottish Hill Running.
Angela is proof that you can achieve incredible things whilst keeping it simple and staying true to the grassroots ethic of fell running. She runs for a love of the hills and listening to the sounds of the outdoors, doesn’t use specialist sports products, gels or coaching strategies, and reliably puts in hard graft day after day. She isn’t a fan of social media and exposure and is a true role model for women – and men – out there, showing that you don’t need to overcomplicate training and racing to explore your own potential and reach your goals.
In this episode we get into her early years and path to sports after being born with both feet pointing the wrong way; getting started in fell running when very few other women were competing; her most rewarding racing experience; and what led to the performance gains between being three-time runner up in the European Mountain Running Champs to winning the World Mountain Running Champs in 2000.
We recorded this in Angela’s beautiful cottage near Gartmore in the west of Scotland surrounded by her two dogs and cat, so you may need to forgive us the odd background bark, and a little road noise from having the door open on a toasting summer’s day in July!
I hope you enjoy listening as much as I loved recording, and if so throw us a quick five-start review on iTunes or whichever app you listen on. Check it out on iTunes, Soundcloud, Stitcher and most of the Android apps. You can also now download each episode on Soundcloud to listen to offline.