Sam Gardner Used Her Traumatic Experience To Propel Herself Forward


Today I am going a few easy miles with Sam Gardner.

Sam Gardner

Sam Gardner

Sam has experienced some epic high and low moments in her life with running being a central theme in both circumstances.

Running has been in her life for 10 years and has helped to shape the person she has become.

Nightmare in Broad Daylight

Sam was always athletic and played sports growing up.

The love for running blossomed as she matured, but then took a dark turn as she was training for her second half marathon.

One Sunday afternoon she headed out for a routine easy run.

She was approached at gun point and assaulted.

This traumatic event occurred 12 years ago.

An activity that once brought her joy and freedom now induced panic.

Pathway to Healing

For several years after the attack Sam didn’t run.

Eventually her love of running started to bubble up again and she wanted to conquer her fear.

This led her to sending a message to a man in a local running group requesting a friend to run with.

This seemingly innocent message would alter her life forever, as he would one day become her husband.

Sam offers some important safety information for all runners:

  • Run with others if possible.
  • Let at least two people know your route and when you are expected to return.
  • Stay alert.
  • Always carry a phone.
  • Trust your instinct.

Sharing her dark memory is difficult, but Sam wants her transparency to help others.

Reclaiming Herself

Sam found a way to reignite her passion for running following her trauma.

She experienced something very few runners get to do, which is win a major race.

At the Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans Marathon she unexpectedly found herself finishing as the first female.

Sam Gardner, Breaking the Tape in New Orleans

Sam Gardner, Breaking the Tape in New Orleans

Even with a win attached to her name, Sam tries not to take herself too seriously.

She has become more confident as a result of running.

Running is the core of who she is and that can never be taken away.


Also Mentioned In This Episode:

You can follow along on Sam’s journey through her blog. She can also be found on Instagram and Facebook.


Sam Gardner has experienced some epic highs and lows with running being the central theme in both. #runchat Click To Tweet
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