"It is such a positive and kind and quirky group of people that share this one thing in common, but [running is] such a powerful thing that it fosters instant connection. "I'm just very proud to be a runner."
~ Becky Wade
U.S. Track and Field Olympic Trials, I feel it's only fitting to feature one of the young women who toed the line with the best of the best for this next RWR interview. Fortunately, for all of us, the one and only Becky Wade has agreed to step up to the plate. Perhaps you saw her run, jump and splash her way through through the first heat of the 3000M Steeplechase on July 4th, one of the most challenging events on the track, in my humble opinion. Or, perhaps you know her from one the many other roles she's had to date - Rice University NCAA superstar, winner of the 2013 California International Marathon with a blazing time of 2 hours and 30 minutes, and author of the recent book RUN THE WORLD: My 3,500-Mile Journey through Running Cultures around the Globe, all of which have made a very large impact on the running world and beyond. Regardless, whether you know her or not, she has a pretty incredible story to tell and I have a feeling we'll be hearing her name pop up a lot more as she begins this next chapter of her life as a professional runner. I could spend a lot of time telling you about all the amazing things this ultra cool gal has done leading up to this point in her life. But, I'd prefer to let her publisher provide the intro so that I can take the time to get a bit more personal as I know you're all eager to know which tunes get this young firecracker pumped up and ready to rock. Seriously, though, I just finished Becky's aforementioned book and learning all the details about her solo journey around the globe kind of blew me away. Not only do you need to grab yourself a copy of the book and settle in (for the record, I finished it in one sitting), but you just need to know this woman, who she is and all that she has done. The crazy thing here being that she's really just getting started. Huge thanks to Becky for taking the time to contribute to RWM. She is so clearly a RUNNER WHO ROCKS.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Fresh off a successful collegiate running career—with multiple NCAA All-American honors and two Olympic Trials qualifying marks to her name—Becky Wade was no stranger to international competition. But after years spent safely sticking to the training methods she knew, Becky was curious about how her counterparts in other countries approached the sport to which she’d dedicated over half of her life. So in 2012, as a recipient of the Watson Fellowship, she packed four pairs of running shoes, cleared her schedule for the year, and took off on a journey to infiltrate diverse running communities around the world. What she encountered far exceeded her expectations and changed her outlook into the sport she loved.
Over the next twelve months—visiting 9 countries with unique and storied running histories, logging over 3,500 miles running over trails, tracks, sidewalks, and dirt roads—Becky explored the varied approaches of runners across the globe. Whether riding shotgun around the streets of London with Olympic champion sprinter Usain Bolt, climbing for an hour at daybreak to the top of Ethiopia’s Mount Entoto just to start her daily run, or getting lost jogging through the bustling streets of Tokyo, Becky’s unexpected adventures, keen insights, and landscape descriptions take the reader into the heartbeat of distance running around the world.
Name: Becky Wade
Where you're from: Dallas, Texas
Where you reside now: Houston, Texas
Occupation: Professional runner for Asics and author of Run the World: My 3,500 Mile Journey
through Running Cultures around the World (HarperCollins)
Becky at Rice University
RUNNING & MUSIC
What do you love most about running?
I love running for the never-ending challenges, clarity of thought, disciplined lifestyle, and quick, meaningful connections.
What do you love most about music?
Music, like running, is a big outlet for me. I get a similar feeling of release when I play the piano, and I also use music to calm me down, pump me up, and put me in a good state of mind.
Band (current, all time or both): The Black Keys
Album (current, all time or both): (lately) Oh Wonder by Oh Wonder
Race venue: Rice University, my home track
Music venue: Belly Up in Aspen, Colorado
Race distance: Marathon
Show you've seen live? Dr. Dog at Warehouse Live in Houston
Ice cream flavor: Chocolate chip cookie dough
THIS OR THAT
Sweet or salty: Salty
Live or recorded: Live
Coffee or tea: Coffee
Summer or winter: Summer
MORE MUSIC INFO:
Which band or artist would you go see tonight if you could? Bon Iver
Which band or artist (wait...but no longer alive or playing together) would you go see tonight if you could? The Jackson 5
Which band or artist would you like to have dinner with tonight if you could? Ben Harper
Which band or artist would you like to be playing alongside you during your next race (or long run)? Kanye West
THE JACKSON 5
Today, I feel like (complete the sentence)….
I’m ready to set new goals and return to the roads.
Top 5 Songs for running, dancing or both?
Rumble and Sway - Jamie N. Commons
One Dance - Drake ft. Wizkid & Kyla
Falling Star r3k Remix - Kid Cudi & Florence and the Machine
Beggin - Madcon
Dougou Badia - Amadou & Mariam ft. Santigold
Last 5 Songs you listened to today?
Greek Tragedy - The Wombats
Wolf Like Me - Lera Lee
Fader - Temper Trap
There Will be Time - Mumford & Sons & Baaba Maal
Lampshades on Fire - Modest Mouse