Episode 99: Kathrine Switzer
Today I am honored to have the one and only Kathrine Switzer on I’ll Have Another. Kathrine was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon as an official participant in 1967. (You’ve all seen the iconic picture of one of the race officials trying to take her bib from her while she’s running the race) She’s had a huge part in radically changing women’s running to move toward in an amazing and positive direction over the last 50 years. She is one of the most influential runners of all time. She’s worked tirelessly for years to give women the opportunity they deserve in the sport and she continues to do that through her non-profit 261 fearless. Kathrine ran both the Boston Marathon and the NYC Marathon in 2017- 50 years since that first Boston she ran, raising awareness and funds for her incredible organization.
What you don’t hear talked about much as that first Boston she ran though is Kathrine’s athletic achievement in the sport. I had no clue until reading her book that she holds a marathon PR of 2:51, that she worked her tail off to earn, which landed her in second place at the 1975 Boston Marathon. She wasn’t training just to earn the time for herself though, she was training to run fast to prove that women could run fast too and that they were worthy to be out on the start and finish line with the men. The sport of running was a much different world 50 years ago. We all know now that ANYONE running ANY TIME is worthy of being on the start and finish line. At least I hope we all feel that way.
I highly recommend you all go out and pick up Kathrine’s book “Marathon Woman” to learn more about her journey to the 1967 Boston Marathon and beyond. I guarantee you will learn something you didn’t know about her and how the sport of running has become what it is today. It is truly remarkable all that she has done for the sport- many things I knew nothing about until I read the book. Kathrine had a huge hand in the Marathon becoming an Olympic event for women (which didn’t happen until 1984!) Can you imagine there being a men’s marathon in the Olympics but not a women’s now in 2018? That was reality. Blows my mind.
I know you are going to be inspired by this interview with Kathrine and I’m so happy you are hear tuning in.
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