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So on International Womens Day, it’s only right that we showcase one of ourinternational members, the wonderful Katie Jean-Louis who lives in Mauritius…there are worse places to live I guess ha ha.

I love Katies enthusiasm for running, and her red faced sweaty selfies…while we moan about the cold and rain, she moans about the heat…we all have our battles hey?

Check out what she said last week to fellow Clubhouse member Dianne Macinnes who deals with our runner of the month feature.

When did you start running and why?  I started running initially about 10 years ago because I wanted a fitness option that didn’t require lots of equipment and that I could do anywhere, even when travelling but I hated running when I was younger.

What do you love and hate about the sport of running? I love the sense of accomplishment that it provides.  I love that it is portable.  I love that it gives me time to myself. (Some of my best ideas have come to me in the middle of a run)

I run 3-5 times a week.  It really depends on what else is on my schedule and whether or not I have childcare.  During RED January, I made it a point to get out everyday, even if it meant just a kilometer with the kids.

My typical/everyday loop is 5k. Unfortunately parkrun is not available here and I don’t have the bandwidth to start it myself.

Have you had any negative experiences whilst out running?  I’ve had kids tease, but nothing really disturbing.  However, I challenged the kids who were teasing me to join me and that shut them up pretty quick.

I always feel patronized by other people when I run.  They think of me as the “before” picture. 

My ultimate goal is a marathon.  Finding one that is accessible and time friendly has been a challenge.  The Mauritius marathon is not well supported during the race and has a strict 6 hour cut off.  They don’t send a sweeper after you, so if you don’t finish, no one comes looking for you, they just pack up and leave.

What’s more important to you and why? Frequency, running or distance of running?  Currently, frequency is more important that the others.  I am working to make it part of my lifestyle rather than just a hobby.

I think there should be more true beginner clubs with overweight people leading the run.  It is motivating seeing people your size doing what you want to do.  When you see them succeeding, it helps you to see that you can do it too.

Confidence is a big one.  Most people think, “I could never do that”, so they don’t even try.

What would you say to other runners just starting out?  It is hard at first.  That’s okay.  Stick to a training plan that will help you increase your distances and times.  Don’t assume you can’t do it.  Really give it your all.  You’d be surprised of what your capable of.

I’ve learned the barriers are in my head.  If you really want something, you can work for it and achieve it.

How has being a member of the Clubhouse helped you? It is so encouraging having a group of like minded people behind you who celebrate everything from your first trot out the door to your ultra marathon.  No effort is too small.  Knowing that people are waiting for your next post is a real motivation to get out the door and make it happen.

All day today we will be showcasing our awesome runners from around the UK and beyond. Check out our Runner of the Month hall of fame .

We have more than 300 women in our Clubhouse, and more than 10,000 women have taken part in one of my online programmes or challenges over the past 9 years.

Next year marks the 10 year anniversary of The Fat Girls Guide to Running, and I can’t be any prouder of the women in this international tribe. We may be different in all kind of ways, but our shared respect and understanding for true inclusion and equality bonds us together.

If you would like to join The Clubhouse it costs just £10 per month and it the most wonderful online running club. Find out more here

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