Vegan Runner Fiona Oakes Talks Marathon Training Tips
Fiona Oakes was recently dubbed the “queen of extreme marathons” by CNN. The champion marathon runner holds a number of world records, including for setting a record time for the Antarctic Ice Marathon and for the fastest time for completing the marathon Grand Slam of running a marathon on all seven continents plus the North Pole, and on top of that, she is a retained fire-fighter and also runs an animal sanctuary, where she cares for over than 400 animals. Where does Fiona get her energy and drive? Well, she’s vegan! We caught up with Fiona to get her tips for running marathons and keeping motivated.
With her busy schedule, Fiona says that she doesn’t have pre-training routines or time for post-race pampering and snacks. Her running is about something other than herself. She runs to promote a vegan lifestyle and to call attention to the suffering of animals on factory farms.
[I]t is great to meet new challenges head [on] and, hopefully rise to them but my running is not done for me personally. I think this is what often gives me the “edge” in terms of the fact you would always go the “extra mile” (quite literally) when it is to help another rather than yourself – well, I would!
My training tips for vegan runners are very much the same as for any other runner. Be consistent in what you do and build up gradually – both in miles, speed and expectations. Then, the sky should be the limit for you. I would also add I don’t use any gadgets for my training such as music, Garmins, pulse monitors etc. I started running before they really existed in the very sophisticated forms they do today so I have learned over the years to rely on my own experience to judge how I am feeling and progressing in my training. I do think that sometimes people can become a little too fixated on what technology is telling them rather than accepting the most sophisticated piece of technology they will ever come across is there within them, their brain and body. Learn to listen to what these are telling you, how to act on the information and I think this is the best advice you could ever possible access.
Fiona likes to encourage people to think about vegan eating in a positive way. By running extreme marathon events and working as a fire-fighter, she is living proof that a vegan diet can provide all the energy needed for strength and endurance. And by keeping animals in the forefront of her mind, she uses her physical feats to give her a platform from which to advocate in their behalf. You don’t have to be an extreme athlete to feel the benefits of a vegan diet. To find out how easy it is to embrace a cruelty-free, healthy, environmentally friendly diet, order our free vegan starter kit today!