Image by Joe McCladdie, provided by the California International Marathon.

Becky Wade Olympic Trials Qualifier

Becky Wade, Rice graduate, ASICS runner, and author of a new book Run the World: My 3,500-Mile Journey through Running Cultures around the Globe, won her debut marathon at the California International Marathon in 2013 with a time of 2:30.41. Her training days which include writing often look different than most elite runners. Throughout her journey around the world she has had the opportunity to train with different running groups and enjoy foods from different cultures.  She is not only looking forward to her new book that will be released this summer, she is also excited to be preparing for the 2016 Olympic Marathon Trials –  which are just around the corner!

What does a typical day of training look like for you?

I’ve been working hard my book for the last year and a half, so my days follow a pattern along the lines of: Wake around 6 a.m., eat a full breakfast, put in a few hours of writing, and head out the door around 9 for a workout. I’ll spend a few hours warming up, running, and winding down, and begin refueling immediately after. Lunch and a nap follow, and then my afternoon is divided between more work and another run plus some core or strength work. After dinner, I normally work a little more and then relax by stretching and watching a documentary or reading. Not too exciting, but a good routine and a nice blend of thinking and moving.

What key workout makes you feel race-ready?

A hard but controlled tempo run with a strong finish, or a solid mile repeat workout with 400m jog recovery. I ask a lot of myself in those workouts, so they’re good indicators of where I’m at.

What is your favorite pre-race meal?

Salmon or chicken with rice and a few vegetables.

Describe a perfect recovery day. What do you love outside of running?

Lately, I’ve been spending almost all of my free time writing, which is challenging but also mentally stimulating and very fulfilling. I also love food, and along with it, cooking, grocery shopping, reading cookbooks, and trying new restaurants. And other random hobbies include playing the piano, writing letters and making art, hosting dinner or brunch parties, and spending time with my boyfriend, friends, and family!

What is your favorite race memory?

CIM in 2013, when I won by debut marathon and had a really smooth, memorable, and exciting start to my professional running career.

Your sponsored by ASICS. What do you love about them?

ASICS is not only a premier brand of running shoes and gear, but the sponsor of some of my biggest running role models (Deena Kastor and Ryan Hall, for two), and a corporation with values I stand behind completely.  “A sound mind in a sound body” is a great mantra for running and life, and the recent motto “It’s a Big World—Go Run It” perfectly captures my excitement about combining traveling and running, which my book is all about. I feel like a valued and supported part of the ASICS family, and putting on that uniform is something I take a lot of pride in. I’m also sponsored by the Houston Marathon Foundation, Clif Bar, 44 Farms, and RRCA, and I feel enormously privileged to have relationships with all of them. Distance running can be a lonely sport, especially when I’m not part of a local team or anything, but having support from multiple angles allows me to do what I love and to enjoy the whole process.

About me / life mantra: My family is a massive part of everything I am and everything that I do. I have a twin brother and another brother and sister, also twins and a year older, and we’re all extremely close. I also have great relationships with both of my parents, and I feel so blessed to have the 5 of them as my greatest supporters, friends, and inspiration. If I had to choose one mantra for my life, it would be something that my coach Jim Bevan has said, which I’ve heard in various forms since: “A happy runner is a fast runner.” As a professional distance runner, it’s easy to be overly consumed by the job, but I try to remember that a balanced, multi-dimensional life is much more fulfilling and sustainable than a tunnel-visioned one.

41yinqzV0FL._SX330_BO1,204,203,200_Pre-order Run the World here.

Interview by: Lauren Jimison