Suzy Slane is an open book.
She’s open about the good, the bad, and the ugly of daily life and running, and our chat today covers all of that and then some.
Running an Ultra With Nary a Clue
Suzy has fallen in love with the 50 mile distance, even though she’s only raced that distance once.
The fact that she’s only run 50 miles once (and only one other ultra distance event in general) and she loves the distance was a bit of a surprise to me, but her reasoning makes sense.
When she ran her 50 miler, Suzy finished as the 3rd female and qualified to represent Canada at the Commonwealth games.
With that type of success in a race, I can see why 50 miles has a special place in Suzy’s heart.
The other reason that she enjoyed her 50 mile race so much is the different vibe that is present in the ultra running community. Suzy felt at home with the ultra runners, whether she’s raced lots of ultras or not.
Suzy Doesn’t Run to Race, She Runs to Run
As much as Suzy loved her experience as part of the ultra crowd, she hasn’t raced an ultra in several years.
Suzy doesn’t enjoy racing as much as she does simply running, and racing disrupts her running routine.
She also lives in an area where there aren’t a lot of easily accessible racing options, and as a mom of 6 kids the headaches of traveling to get to a race (ultra or otherwise) can be a bit much.
So Suzy just runs.
She runs to be a lone. She runs to have time to sort out her thoughts.
She runs to run, simple as that.
Suzy’s Struggle With Anxiety
Suzy has been anxious for as long as she can remember.
As a teen, she tried self-medicating, but at that point in her life she didn’t have any idea that anxiety was the issue.
After having her first baby, Suzy’s anxiety was really bad. After seeing a specialist, she was diagnosed with anxiety disorder and she got put on medication to help her deal with her anxiety.
While she was a runner at the time her oldest son was born, Suzy needed the medication and the help of a therapist to really get control of her anxiety. At this point in her life, her running has taken place of medication, but it was a long road to get to this point.
She has also studied the link between cardiovascular exercise and mental illness, and the research definitely points to exercise being as effective as medication and psychotherapy combined.
But Suzy was clear to add that seeking help if you’re feeling overwhelmed is still important, no matter how much you may be running or cycling or swimming or whatever exercise you’re doing.
Suzy has a page on her website where she really opens up about her struggle with anxiety and several blog posts about her journey and the roll that running has had on her anxiety.
Stand Out Moments from Suzy’s Running Career to Date
When I asked Suzy about what moments from her running career stand out to her at this point in her life, I was expecting her to go to her experience running Boston or more about her ultra and running in Whistler.
Instead, she went 100% real. (Not surprisingly, BTW)
She talked about a time that she was running on the treadmill in her garage on a day when things in her life were not going smoothly, and she just had a “straw that broke the camels back”moment.
She jumped off of the treadmill, screamed, and kicked the running stroller in an attempt to let out some stress.
Whether or not that moment worked or not is debatable, but she did manage to break her toe during her kick of the stroller.
But that moment of life stood out to her, because it served as a reminder that life can get messy at times and it’s ok to reach out for help.
It’s ok to ask a friend for a hand or seek out a chat with a professional.
When we struggle with our running, we have no problems asking running friends or coaches for advice. So why should we do any different when we struggle with our lives?
Suzy Has the Runs
Suzy has been blogging for awhile, and the title of her blog is Suzy Has the Runs.
I asked her about the title for the blog, thinking that there was probably something clever to the title, and Suzy basically said she has had poo issues for most of her life.
So the diarrhea talk commenced…
But hey, as long as you can laugh about it, right?
As Always, I’d Love to Know What Stood Out to You From this Episode! Let Me Know Your Takeaway in the Comments Below!
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