What inspired you to start running?
Immersing myself in the natural world and discovering the beauty of Mother Nature is my number one inspiration to run. It’s my favourite way to travel through the world.
What made you want to take on the GR20 trail in particular?
The GR20 is heralded as the toughest trail in Europe, which immediately appealed to my sense of adventure. I Ike a challenge! I was also instantly attracted to the beauty of Corsica. It’s such a majestic island.
What was the hardest part of that race?
From mile 90-110 (145km-177km) I hit a rough patch. I was having what felt like an asthma attack and was very bonky (low on energy and light headed). But I powered through and, after a two hour nap, I was able to finish the last 15 miles (24km) relatively quickly.
What kept you going through those moments?
A strong desire to complete the trail. I knew in my bones that I could do it, I just needed to dig deep to finish it.
How else do you prepare for a run like this?
Lots of time on the trails! Probably 25-35 hours of running per week for the 6-8 weeks leading up to the run.
What three words would you use to describe the 190km run?
Steep, magical, joyful.
What goes through your mind when you’re running?
Anything and everything! I daydream, think about current world events and mull over the big issues... Although sometimes I try not to think and just absorb the beauty of my surroundings instead.
Can you describe how you felt when you finished the run?
Finishing the GR20 trail was the most satisfying, deeply emotional feeling I’ve ever experienced. I was so happy to complete what was and still is the hardest physical and mental challenge in my life to date. To put so much effort and planning into something and not know if I would be able to finish it was really daunting. But then actually completing it was the proudest I’d ever felt. Running the entire GR20 trail means more to me than winning any race.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to take on the GR20?
Go for it! DREAM BIG!! Then put in the time and effort and keep a positive attitude.
In support of the #SheMovesMountains initiative, which female role model in your life has inspired you to Move Mountains?
The majority of my role models in life are women. From my mom, to my sisters and friends, I am surrounded my spectacular females. My mom is my biggest inspiration though; she’s the reason I do all of these crazy runs.
What advice would you give to young women?
You are only limited by your mind. If you open your mind to possibilities and keep an optimistic attitude, work hard and dream big achieving your goals is do-able!
And finally, what’s your next personal challenge?
The sky’s the limit! I want to continue exploring the world on my own two feet, immersing myself more and more in the majesty of Mother Nature.
Watch the full story on Rory’s GR 20 adventure in Running On Empty now: