An exploration of running coaches through experience, education and tenure – how a male dominated industry can be toxic to the development of female athletes.

First, through the storytelling of Rebecca Mehra. Second, a discussion with Porscha Dobson on how female coaching is paramount for the success and health of female athletes. Third, a breakdown and call to action on how the listener can take immediate next steps on being an active participant in supporting female coaches. Last, Alexi Pappas reads an excerpt from her new book Bravey: Chasing Dreams, Befriending Pain, and Other Big Ideas.

Meet the guests:

Rebecca Mehra

  • Professional runner for Little Wing Athletics and Oiselle
  • Personal bests of 2:01.09 in the 800m, 4:08.14 in the 1500, 4:22 in the road mile
  • 3x all-American at Stanford
  • Finalist at 2019 US championships in the 800
  • 3rd place at 2019 5th Ave mile

Porscha Dobson

  • Director of Dartmouth Track & Field and Cross Country
  • Third female director of both a men’s and women’s cross country and track and field program in the history of the Ivy League and first Black woman
  • 2018 and 2019 USTFCCCA Mid-Atlantic Region Assistant Coach of the Year
  • Garden State Record Holder

Calls to action:

  • Normalize family interactions- show you can win while having children or balance within your life
  • Utilize your connections- how can you help the women you know who want to get into coaching get a position? Do you know anyone who you could reach out to?
  • What is your role- what young girls and women can you speak to. How can you normalize conversations about periods and the stagnation that comes with female body changes? Can you post on social media? Volunteer as an assistant coach? Speak to the girls and women in your life
  • Donate/give back

If you take action and do one of our suggested takeaways, tell us! We would love to hear what you did, and how it changed you. Tag us in a post on Instagram or email info@runningforreal.com to share.

Thank you to Dena Evans, Sarah Lesko, and Alison Wade for their input for this episode.

Running Realized is hosted by Tina Muir and Knox Robinson. Produced by Jon Phillips. Original music, sound design, and mix by Daniel Brunelle. Edited by Gordon Bramli. Cover image created by Mari De Monte and Toby Kelleher.

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Thank you to Tracksmith for partnering with running realized

Tracksmith is a Boston-based running apparel brand, born from a desire to celebrate both the history and the evolving culture of running. Their team works to create a space where stories and conversations from all corners of the sport are welcome. They believe that stories have the power to both inspire the next generation and grow the sport. And they know that conversations drive change and empower new perspectives. Check out the Tracksmith Journal at journal.tracksmith.com to learn more.

Thanks for listening!

To help out the show:

Thanks for joining us. See you on March 22nd for Episode three!

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