ABOUT US

Meet the team.

A HUGE thank you to Sandy Guiterrez for the beautiful photos of Tina all over the website. Check out Sandy’s work here.

Tina Muir

Founder &  CEO
Tina is the founder and CEO of Running For Real, the largest global community of socially engaged runners – people who are willing to contribute and connect positively to the world around them. Tina hosts the Running For Real Podcast, which has amassed over 4.5 million downloads and regularly celebrated as one of the top ten running podcasts in the world. The Running For Real Podcast is a collective of conversations about running, the climate emergency, and social justice. Tina also hosts a second, highly produced podcast with Knox Robinson called Running Realized, noted as “The ‘Invisibilia’ of running” by Women’s Running.

Tina believes running is a vehicle for social change. She not only sees running as a metaphor for life, but about being vulnerable and courageous about the things that matter. That’s why she started Running for Real as a business and Podcast in 2017.

Originally from St Albans, England, she currently lives in St Louis, Missouri (in the US). While she’s mostly known for putting a stop to professional running shortly after representing Great Britain and Northern Ireland in a world championship and running a 2:36 marathon and 1:13 half marathon, Tina is a mother of two girls and is supported by Altra Running, who signed her during pregnancy. Tina’s story of her nine year battle with amenorrhea (RED-S) went viral, ending up all over the internet including People Magazine, Glamour, Outside, Women’s Health, and more.

With Tina’s vision, Running for Real is growing into a movement of runners encouraging each other to be brave, get out of our comfort zones and take tiny steps toward shaping the world we want to see. Tina has previously been voted as one of the 17 women changing the world of running by women’s running magazine and has inspired many others to speak out about their own passions.

If you meet Tina in person she’ll likely weave in the climate crisis into the conversation and before you know it, you’ll be committed to composting your food at home before you realize it. She’s getting better at meditation, slowing down and letting go. For a recovering people pleaser and habitual “fixer”, that is not easy, but we can all keep striving to grow each and every day.

Maria Vargas

Communications Lead

Through innovation, creativity, and business development, Maria’s contributes to the big picture of Running for Real and where we are headed. She is Communications Lead at Running for Real and loves bringing ideas to life.

Maria was born in Bogota, Colombia and currently lives in Austin, Texas. She considers herself a multi-hyphenate and is a triathlete, reader, musician, writer, photographer, vegan baker, and bikepacking lover. Her favorite races have been an Ironman 70.3 in Florida and a 10 mile open-water swim in Vermont. In addition to R4R, she’s also co-creator of Prickly Pear, a consultant with CultureCircle, and co-leader of November Project Austin.

What Maria loves the most about Running for Real is the intersection of running with humanity. She believes in the power this community has for transcending differences and contributing positively to the world around us. Keep up with her adventures.

Jeremy Noessel

Podcast Editor & Audio Consultant

Jeremy Noessel has been the Podcast Editor and Audio Consultant for the Running For Real Podcast from the very beginning. A guitar player, singer, songwriter and audio engineer who has played and recorded with various bands, he has an ear for detail and an artist’s perspective.

Jeremy briefly ran on his high school’s varsity XC team in his freshman year. After an injury sidelined him, he turned his focus from sports to the performing arts and didn’t run again until a few years ago in his early 40’s. Having casually begun with Jeff Galloway’s Run / Walk method, he now trains seriously on the undulating topography of southern Rhode Island for race distances from the 5k to the half marathon. There’s a solid chance he’ll wind up on trails, an ultra marathon, or some outlandish excursion down the road.

Jeremy’s focus with Running For Real is for the podcast to sound great while maintaining the authenticity of Tina’s conversations with her guests. In addition to finalizing all the audio into what the audience hears, he has also helped Tina refine her equipment, recording space, and technical expertise and contributed to making Running For Real one of the top running podcasts.

Amber Moore

Operations Manager

Hi there, I am the Operations Manager at Running For Real, first starting off as Tina’s assistant doing ANYTHING that she needed me to do with her growing business.

I grew up doing sports, mainly soccer and dance so running was always in me, just not HUGE distances. I didn’t really get into running until after I had my second child and even then it was just something to warm me up before I did some strength training. Then a terrible year happened to me and running saved me, that may be why I did 2 half marathons in that year. It made me have purpose and strength in my life again and I know a lot of you know what it’s like to have running be there for you, when all hope may be lost.

I have a lovely little family with my husband of almost 10 years and three kids. We all love hiking as much as we can and living in Utah we are very lucky to have that opportunity often. I have loved what Running For Real has done for me. I have learned so much about the running community, this sport is far from being a solo sport. I have enjoyed the engagement I have been able to do through running.

I am excited to see where Running For Real will go from here and the major impact it will have on the running community.

Stacey Saunders

Events Manager

I am thrilled to be part of the Running for Real team as the Events Manager. I will be organizing and facilitating a variety of in-person and virtual events to include as much of our community as possible. Event accessibility is extremely important to me, so I will be getting creative to ensure that our events are as inclusive and accessible as possible. I’m looking forward to seeing you at an event soon!

I live in Marietta, OH, a small city in the southeast corner of the state, located right on the Ohio River. Despite living within the city limits (and having a TINY yard), I thoroughly enjoy growing my own vegetables and raising 5 egg laying chickens. I also love to explore my surroundings on the run or bike. I am looking forward to my next race, which is a 10 mile trail race in August. When I’m not on the go, you can usually find me snuggling my two cats and watching a baking/cooking show with my husband.

Sandy Guiterrez

Creative Content

Hi I’m Sandy, I live in St. Louis and I am a part of the creative content team for #Running4Real I enjoy all things fitness, traveling to new places and love to spend time with family and friends.

Sandy is a nationally recognized photographer and marketing manager with a proven track record of successfully executing creative communications. She works on multiple creative projects helping small businesses with strategic plans and creative marketing.

Erica De Los Santos

Inclusion Manager

Hello! I’m Erica De Los Santos and I’m thrilled to be joining the Running for Real team as the Inclusion Manager. I’m inspired by the work Tina and the team have done with Running for Real and feel honored at the opportunity to be a part of its growth and evolution. I live in Austin, Texas and wholeheartedly believe it is the best city in Texas! We’ve got music, trails, lakes and most importantly tacos!

In addition to being the DEI Manager for Running for Real I work as a SEL/Cultural Proficiency & Inclusiveness Specialist with Austin ISD. Our focus is to help grow the equity lens throughout the district so we can better serve our most marginalized communities. Equity and inclusiveness is something I’m very passionate about in both education and the running community. I’m also collaborating with local running groups and organizations supporting their efforts to create more inclusive outdoor spaces.

When I’m not working you’ll find me on the trails running/backpacking, or on my couch with a book. I’m also a bit of a foodie, so if you’re ever in the Austin area feel free to reach out and I’d be glad to send you some tasty recs!

Kat MacKay

Community Manager

Hi, I am Kat, the Community Manager here at Running For Real!

I grew up on the Canadian prairies, but I am definitely a nomad at heart; I have backpacked across 20 different countries and am looking forward to exploring more places again soon. I also love challenging myself through running and have completed races ranging in distance from 2 KM to 59.2 KM with (more even more importantly) post-race snacks ranging from pierogis and tubs of honey to cake and Girl Guide cookies.

One thing that I’m really passionate about is creating safe and inclusive communities that give everyone a space to truly belong and feel that their story and voice matter. If you’re not sure how to get involved with the running community or where you fit in, if you want to talk more about what community means for Running for Real, or just plain want to talk running, please feel free to reach out anytime!

Kelsey Cassidy

Head of Design

Hey there! I’m Kelsey and I’m super pumped to be the new Designer here at Running For Real. I live in Woodbury, MN which is right outside the Twin Cities. I’ve ran a total of 4 marathons including two world majors and have a dream to run the other 4. When I’m not running, spinning, or lifting, I enjoy cooking, drawing, and eating all of the chocolate. I also have a passion for travel and truly believe that traveling is the best way to discover yourself

Sally Pontarelli

Copy Editor

Hello! My name is Sally Pontarelli, and I’m the new copy editor for Running for Real. I’ve been a member of #Running4Real Superstars since it started in 2017, so I’m excited to officially be a member of Tina’s team!

I grew up outside of Washington, D.C., where I worked for many years, first at the National Theatre and then at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. My husband and I wanted to live somewhere less crowded, so we moved to the foothills of the Blue Ridge mountains to Culpeper, named “the prettiest town in Virginia” by Architectural Digest. I worked for Bluegrass Unlimited magazine until last year, when reversals caused by the pandemic forced us to close our doors. That was a blow, but I’m thrilled to be starting on this new chapter of my life!

Before moving here we traveled extensively, but living in a place where I’m content, I find that my wanderlust has diminished considerably. Now I enjoy running, reading, gardening, and doing genealogical and historical research.

David Skytte

Superstars Community Admin

My name is David Skytte and I’m an honorary member of the team as one of the admins in our community Facebook group. I often joke it’s the easiest job in the world as our members are super-friendly and I rarely have to interfere.

I’m a Danish expat living in Madrid, Spain, and my time is usually divided between teaching, running, and meditating. I’ll happily delve into life’s big questions and tacky dad-jokes with equal enthusiasm. I’m in general a happy-go-lucky guy, and I find immense joy in helping others learn, grow and overcome difficulties through my job, my friendship, and interaction with the community.

The final part of my puzzle is having a loving girlfriend and loveable cat – both whom need to be fed on a regular basis.

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