Emily Hawgood is a professional trail runner for Adidas TERREX. She has a very unique story, growing up in rural Zimbabwe before moving to the USA for college. At only 27, Emily is one of the true rising stars in the sport who has been incredibly consistent and improving rapidly. Get to know her in this conversation.
Follow Emily on Instagram: @emilyhawgood
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Dylan Bowman (00:00:15): Hey fam well to the free trail podcast, of course I am your host Dylan in Bowman, always appreciative of your time. Grateful to have you here today. We are joined by Emily Hagood, the pride of the farmlands of rurals Zimbabwe, and this year's fifth place finisher at the Western states. 100. Emily is truly one of the rising stars in the sport today. Super strong, super consistent. And at only 27 years old, still in the earliest days of her career, I have to say, I loved this conversation. Emily is just a joy to speak with. We talked all about her very unique background growing up in Zimbabwe and how that's shaped the person and athlete. She is today. We talked about her education, her growth and development in a sport. Of course, we talked about her race at Western states where she ran in the lead with Ruth Croft for much of the day.
Dylan Bowman (00:01:10): And then we finished by talking about the future. What is ahead for Emily? There is so much to learn from her. I hope you all really enjoy this conversation as usual, a big thank you to speed land for being the presenting sponsor of the free trail podcast. If you haven't tried these shoes yet, where have you been? We're coming up on the one year anniversary since the brand's launched time flies. We are so excited with how things are going now and are immensely excited about the removable car techs plates, double bow, a lacing system for the best fit of all time. DMA integration in the upper for insane durability. These are seriously just the highest quality products on the market. Go check out the so HSV at run speed, land.com pick up a pair today. We'll be making more announcements in the near future about the next model. You've probably seen me post about on Instagram a bunch of times. So watch this space, but a big thank you to speed land free trail. We'll also be making some big announcements. Soon. We are working on some exciting things behind the scenes, some changes and some expansion on the horizon. So stay tuned for that for now. I hope you enjoy the episode with the great Emily OOD. See you in the outro.
Dylan Bowman (00:02:41): Welcome to the show. How are you?
Emily Hawgood (00:02:43): Hey, I'm super good. Thanks for having me
Dylan Bowman (00:02:46): Super great to have you here. And, uh, I've been looking forward to this one for a long time and, you know, I've sort of become a, uh, a recent rabid fan of, of Emily OOD. And I'm really excited to sort of use this as an opportunity to learn a little bit more about you and hopefully share your story with a, uh, a wider audience. But first maybe just tell us how the immediate aftermath after a fantastic place at Western states has been, how are you feeling physically and psychologically?
Emily Hawgood (00:03:17): Yeah, so, um, right from before the finish, I was excited to get back there next year.
Dylan Bowman (00:03:24): Was gonna ask you that later.
Emily Hawgood (00:03:27): So that's kinda a good start, um, on the whole old fronts. Um, but yeah, mainly physically everything pretty good. I've got a tight hip fixer and that's about it. So that's a fun way to come out of a solid race. Um, yeah, and I mean, we'll probably chat about later, but it was a special race all around and definitely get to share pots of it with Ruth and the race of the Eddie dust team and my coach and everything. We just made it pretty remarkable. So I couldn't be more filled up
Dylan Bowman (00:04:04): You were absolutely. I think one of the stories of the day, at least for myself looking back at it and it was such an impressive performance. I'm curious. And of course we will go into more detail about the race itself, but maybe while we're just talking about the immediate aftermath, how do you approach the couple weeks immediately after a hundred mile race, now that you've done a few of them in your career, how's the acute recovery been and what are you doing to help yourself come back to normal?
Emily Hawgood (00:04:34): Yeah, so definitely over the time I've seen how much better my body handles them. Like after your first one, I feel like you just feel like you've been hit by a bus, but then
Dylan Bowman (00:05:27): No, I'm pretty strict about that. Myself. I'm very good at being lazy. So I'm glad to hear you
Emily Hawgood (00:06:49): Yeah. I mean, I think in a lot of ways it's a unique place to be born and grow up. Um, just so different. Like when everyone, when anyone asks me like, oh, what's it like back there? I always like struggled to kind of talk about it, just cuz it's so different to anywhere else I've traveled in the world. Um, just in terms of everything, like kind of the landscape, the politics,
Dylan Bowman (00:08:14): But your family was from what I've read in that I run far article, they wrote about you, which is great that you come from a farming family. So maybe tell us a little bit about like your parents and what kind of farming you were doing and, and what life was like growing up in that environment.
Emily Hawgood (00:08:31): Yeah. So I think that was like the best upbringing I could have dreamed of. We grew up on a farm. Um, so we were outside of any cities or anything. We had a small community of farmers, um, grew up not wearing shoes, like barefoot, everywhere.
Dylan Bowman (00:09:21): Or younger?
Emily Hawgood (00:09:22): 15 months younger than me.
Dylan Bowman (00:09:24): Okay. That's funny. My, my brother and I are only separated by 14 months too. So awesome.
Emily Hawgood (00:09:30): Is,
Dylan Bowman (00:09:30): Is he still in Zimbabwe and, and what's your relationship like with him?
Emily Hawgood (00:09:35): Yeah, so he actually, uh, now he's based back there and he just took over the farm in February. Yeah. So he's bombing and yeah.
Dylan Bowman (00:09:55): Yeah. Yeah. So farming is usually a family business, like, you know, right. It's the case. It seems with your family, but it's also a really hard business, right. Requires kind of relentless year round work. And you're also dependent on things that are outside your control sometimes. Right. In terms of rainfall and sunshine, water availability. What's that like? I mean, are there any memorable moments of joy or adversity from your time growing up on the farm?
Emily Hawgood (00:10:29): Yeah. Uh, I mean, so we are dairy farm is too. So that kind of adds a, another aspect to that kind of commitment of having to be there, you know, running the farm 365 days a year. Um, my dad has built a really good team, which allows him to, you know, throughout growing up be at all sporting events or at school events or escape for holidays. Um, he's like rebuilding that a little bit right now with my brother. They're just creating a team so that they can have a little more freedom cuz like my mom could come over Western, but my brother was traveling so my dad couldn't come
Emily Hawgood (00:11:18): Um, but I think that helped me in endurance school just knowing like if it was raining well you just had to deal with it. Like
Dylan Bowman (00:12:27): Political or economic reasons you mean?
Emily Hawgood (00:12:29): Yeah, kind of both mm-hmm
Dylan Bowman (00:13:39): Yeah. And I imagine, again, farming being usually a family oriented business, it probably creates a really tight bond with the family. And you just mentioned that your mother was a Western states, which was so cool to see, I'd love to hear how you managed to maintain the connection with the family being so far away from your roots. What's it like for you? I know you've lived in the us now for like close to 10 years at this point, but have, has there ever been a struggle to sort of maintain that feeling of connection being so far away?
Emily Hawgood (00:14:15): Um, definitely COVID um, cuz like I've kind of always had like a plan for like the next time. So like my mom leaves tomorrow, but I'm seeing her and my dad over at UT M B. So I'm like, okay. I, I can like as much as it's hard to say goodbye now. I, I know I have like that plan to see them later, but with COVID that was kind of taken away. Like I was supposed to be going home for Christmas and then suddenly I couldn't go home and that was really hard on my family. Um, like my dad and uh, even me, you know, just like we didn't know when we'd be able to see each other and as much as like calms have got so much better over the years, like being able to call or FaceTime or things like that, that really helps. But that physical interaction and being next to each other, I think is really, um, hard to maintain over the long distance. So I feel very lucky to be able to see my parents at least once a year.
Dylan Bowman (00:15:14): So I also read that you went to a boarding school that was a little bit removed from your hometown and that this distance and being on your own more or less, you know, sort of dependent on yourself a little bit more than the average school-aged kid, certainly more so than I was maybe contributed to an independent streak in you. I'd love to hear you sort of reflect on that a little bit. Just sort of like how going away to school at a young age and, and again, like living in a rural part of a developing country, how all those different ingredients maybe contributed to the person you are today?
Emily Hawgood (00:15:56): Yeah. I mean, I think that was a lot of my grounding roots. Um, like you had to grow up pretty quick,
Dylan Bowman (00:17:09): Is there anything about that period of time that you look back on and you can directly associate with maybe part of your personality today? Like do you view yourself as a uniquely kind of independent person or like is there's something else that you can identify from that just unusual upbringing that maybe is a beneficial part of your personality today?
Emily Hawgood (00:17:35): Yeah, definitely very independent
Dylan Bowman (00:18:18): I was gonna say though, because like, I don't know, again, just not being that familiar with your story until recently mm-hmm
Emily Hawgood (00:18:43): Yeah, for sure. I think like growing up, we always had the saying of like, we'll make a plan. Zimbabwe will always make a plan and that has been a big part of it. So like, yes, that first immediate two seconds after you can be pissed about something
Dylan Bowman (00:19:37): And you've also had like a lot of consistency in your athletic career and you've been sort of like steadily improving, but it seems like you rarely implode, you know, like you rarely give up on yourself and it seems like maybe that was something that was born from this period of your life as well. So maybe, uh, maybe talk about that, but generally I'd love to hear a little bit more about like your history with sport, you know, growing up on a farm in Zimbabwe, I know you went to boarding school where you probably had the opportunity to be competitive with other kids. What was the relationship with sport? Like when you were a kid?
Emily Hawgood (00:20:13): Yeah. So I think from going to school an early age, we played every sport in the book cuz you know, everything's laid out in boarding school, you go to class in the morning, you have lunch at 12 o'clock at one o'clock afternoon sessions start and everyone plays all the sports. Like even if you aren't an athletic kid, you are out swimming at swim time. Like that's what we did. We had, you know, obviously team sports and then the non team group, but everyone's swimming for an hour. So that was kind of nice. Cause it gave me a broad, you know, uh, opportunity to try everything we swam. We ran, we played tennis, played hockey, played netball
Dylan Bowman (00:21:17): Me too. I tried everything else. This is the best one. Come on.
Emily Hawgood (00:21:21): Yeah. Um, so that's yeah, it's the, that's just a nice way to do it. And I encourage a lot of people. I know, you know, younger or older to try and like, because a lot of people say, well, if you specialize at the age of nine years old, you're gonna do bitter. And it's like, yeah, but you might lose a passion for it, which I've gained so much now. Yeah. Um, that, yeah, I wouldn't wanna trade my sport for anything. I I've tried all the other ones
Dylan Bowman (00:21:51): This is so true. I mean the youth participation in sports in the United States is actually going down and then the kids who do practice sport are specializing more. And it's like, man, when I was a kid, it was just like, you left the house in the morning, you played like 11 different sports and you came home and you did the same thing the next day. And then ultimately later in high school or whatever, maybe you narrow it down to one or two specific focuses. But man, I, I totally agree. It's, it's really important to develop that just general exposure to different activities. And then you learn how to compete. You learn how to work as a team, you learn how to win and lose. It's just so darn important. So I mean ultimately you make it to the college of Idaho, which to me is kind of just like a weird place
Emily Hawgood (00:22:54): Yeah. So my grandparents were actually both sick at the time I was applying for college and my mom was living six, well for like six weeks in France and then at home and I was kind of helping my dad around the farm with the bookkeeping and stuff like that. So I never like went to any of the official like university searches, um, communities or anything or got connected that way. So I did all my own research and it was applying by myself like online. And so
Dylan Bowman (00:23:59): Now it makes sense. Yeah. Idaho was world famous for its potatoes.
Emily Hawgood (00:24:03): Right.
Dylan Bowman (00:24:30): At home. You feel at home in a place that is so far removed from home.
Emily Hawgood (00:24:35): Yeah. Yeah. And it was actually, I was looking at going to the university of Idaho and I miss, I screwed up my application. So I ended up at the college of Idaho instead of the university, same thing.
Dylan Bowman (00:24:49): Come on. Same
Emily Hawgood (00:24:50): Thing. Yeah. Same thing. Exactly. I get here and everyone's like, oh, there's a thousand things you could have confused
Dylan Bowman (00:25:14): That's so interesting. And then I learned from you in our pre-race interview show ahead of Western states that you met Dr. Matthew lay there, Matt Le an old friend of mine and a guy who I used to do a ton of training with when we both lived in Marin county, he ultimately left Marin to take a job at the college of Idaho mm-hmm
Emily Hawgood (00:25:50): Yeah. So, uh, Matt is amazing. I mean, you know him, so that's great. And I'm, it's so exciting that you got to train with him when he was, you know, doing all this crazy stuff
Dylan Bowman (00:26:53): So wait, pause there, cuz I actually meant to ask you this
Emily Hawgood (00:27:15): Yeah. So I mean, I was trying to go to the university of Idaho and they have a big agricultural section. Okay. Um, as much as my dad, as a young kid had told me, like, you have to get another degree, don't just be a Fama first
Emily Hawgood (00:28:02):
Dylan Bowman (00:28:54): You fall into Matt's class, which is a nutrition exercise science class. So pick up the story from there.
Emily Hawgood (00:29:02): Yeah. And then, so then he's, I mean he's sharing like everything, like I just remember some of the stories and I'm like what the craziness
Dylan Bowman (00:30:02):
Emily Hawgood (00:30:13): Yeah. I think it's, it's been pretty, a pretty special, um, relationship with him. Like I just have had the huge disrespect for him from the beginning and then having him kind of be involved in the ultra world now and like his coaching and I just lucked out last year. I mean he coaching Tyler, he was at the finish line for Tyler and then like I round the corner hours later and he was still staying there for me. Like
Dylan Bowman (00:31:02): Unintentionally. He, he wasn't even meaning to indoctrinate. And the funny thing is for our listeners, you know, poor Matt lay, he was kind of on the path to be a great professional runner and he barely, I don't even think he runs anymore. He's been injured for years at this point. And mm-hmm,
Emily Hawgood (00:31:50): Fun. Yeah, you should. And his research is so fascinating. Like the stuff he did in grad school was with rats.
Dylan Bowman (00:31:56):
Emily Hawgood (00:32:12): Yeah.
Dylan Bowman (00:32:15): Sort of fell into the right field. Obviously you've gone on to get was a master's degree in, it was like high altitude exercise visit. Yeah. So like you're obviously like a scientific oriented thinker, probably an analytical person. Do you find like, has that always been part of your personality that maybe you discovered later in life and do you identify as such and does it impact your training if you know what I mean? Do you like take that kind of approach where you think methodically with a scientific method in a, for lack of a better word?
Emily Hawgood (00:32:51): I think I, I, I love that you asked that question because my sixth grade teacher always told me like, don't worry, am your math's terrible, but your English will always carry you through
Emily Hawgood (00:33:49): Um, whereas like even with coaching and different athletes, like everyone is so different. Mm-hmm
Dylan Bowman (00:34:21): So, but do you sometimes struggle with that kind of science mindset though? I, I think this is kind of fascinating because like I totally am not an analytical or number oriented person and it's just bringing into my head. You know, I had Dakota Jones on the podcast not long ago and he's studying engineering at Montana state right now, hoping to mm-hmm
Emily Hawgood (00:35:10): No. I think from when my professor told me that I just didn't have to worry that I never used math before. I think I just got this stubborn mindset of like, no
Dylan Bowman (00:36:08):
Emily Hawgood (00:37:15): Yeah. Um, so like I was asked before we, or, and at the interview with you and Karen, um, I mean I wouldn't be the athlete. I am stay without Paul. I like fully contribute all of it to him. Um, I think he's a very great people person, as much as he, you know, is an engineer and he knows the numbers and he knows what we should do and things like that. He, he also knows how to like connect to the heart and really make it magical out there. And not just it's art,
Dylan Bowman (00:37:46): Art and science right there it is.
Emily Hawgood (00:37:48):
Emily Hawgood (00:38:50): And uh, yeah. So that just having that opportunity to go over there and then meeting, you know, more of the trail running community and starting to kind of find my family all over the world made it, uh, really unique and a great upbringing. I, I actually started off with a 65 K in Cape town. And so knew that the ultra distances were more my strength mm-hmm
Dylan Bowman (00:39:32): Are about the same age too, aren't you and Cody. Yeah,
Emily Hawgood (00:39:35): Yeah, yeah, yeah. And he started running along a lot longer before me. And so even just learning from him, like seeing how he's excelled, um, but also how he's been patient and not jumped to the ultra stuff too quick. I think that was a huge part for me. And I got to work on like my strengths and my weaknesses and sky running and just kind of get to learn the competitive world a little more, learn more of the, um, trail running community. And that was a great introduction to it before I jumped to the distance stuff. And probably like the more comfortable stuff for me is the distance stuff. But knowing that, okay, well, if something isn't working right, or you struggle with something here, like on the technical part or, you know, downhill running for me when I first started was terrible. Like, all I wanted to do was go uphill. Like just gimme all the sky running stuff that goes up hill
Dylan Bowman (00:40:49): Yeah. I was kind of trying to think about it myself and for those who are lesser familiar, I mean, sky running usually entails shorter distance courses, but that are steeper and more technical mm-hmm
Emily Hawgood (00:41:37): Then
Dylan Bowman (00:41:37): Like it's a sort of sky running type descent are also, you have to be totally mentally engaged, right. And then you, and you have that competitive, uh, aspect always playing in the back of your head. And so I can just see it as being such a great opportunity to allow yourself to develop as an athlete. So fast forwarding and talking about last year, you and I, again, in our pre-race interview show, I asked you like, if you viewed 20, 21 as kind of like your breakout season, because for me mm-hmm,
Emily Hawgood (00:42:25): I mean, 2020 was my first hundred mile. I did the I'm tough 100. So obviously got the green light from pole to jump to those longer distances where I kind of felt like I would Excel a little more
Emily Hawgood (00:43:35): And I was, and that definitely has played into my career now. Um, just like learning to listen to my body. Mm-hmm
Emily Hawgood (00:44:52): Yeah. Um, yeah. And then I, we talked about 20, 21 also joining the, a dust Turx team and that opened a thousand doors for me and just connected me to an incredible family of people
Dylan Bowman (00:45:15): Wow. Yeah. Well, this is interesting. So I guess let's riff on this for a little bit because I mean, it it's worth mentioning you finished seventh at Western states and 10th at UT M B last year. So two top 10 finishes. I'm sure. Looking back, you feel like you could improve on both of those results, but you were the only person who ran the double who did so re respectfully re and like there was a handful, if not more people who completely exploded and didn't finish U T M B at all. And I think it goes back to what we identified earlier. You're just like somebody who doesn't get rattled easily and who knows how to kind of get through things. But I I'm sure, like you've probably been asked this before, but I'm curious, like to what you attribute that to, like, because if you look on paper, the other athletes who struggled, it was like Beth Pascal and Jim Walmsley and Tim Britney Peterson, and, you know, the name brand athletes in the sport, weren't able to put the devil together, but young Emily hoed
Emily Hawgood (00:46:23): Did
Dylan Bowman (00:46:24): And did super well. What, uh, what, what do you look back at? I mean, again, I, I recognize that you probably feel like you could do a lot better at both races, but maybe what, what do you attribute to the fact that you were able to have those two solid performances back to back when many of the best in the world weren't able to put it together?
Emily Hawgood (00:46:43): Um, so I think like the first thing was is that I actually don't think I could have done better in those two races last year. Like with the knowledge base I had and everything I put out on the line, like I gave it my best shot mm-hmm
Emily Hawgood (00:47:30): You know, if things hadn't gone, if my stomach hadn't turned, maybe I would've done better or, you know, maybe I can, but it's also like being proud of, you know, that fifth place spot this year. Yeah. And yeah, I really, I really do think it is the stubborn side of like, just knowing you can keep going. Um, but also having that calculated, scientific mind of like, I'm not injured, I'm still running one foot in front of the other, no change in GA or getting an injury. Um, so that allows you to just keep pushing through these ultras. Yeah. And like being elite and having, you know, maybe a better chance of getting ahead of cutoffs, you have a lot more time, so yes. Maybe you won't finish when you want to in terms of timeframe or place, but knowing you can keep going and still meet the required time commitments. Um, for me is a huge thing. Um, just like trusting I can get to the finish line, like yes. Okay. If it's not on the top 10, which at sky running events, it was hardly even the top 10
Dylan Bowman (00:48:42): Absolutely. And I'm, yeah. I'm happy to hear you say that in retrospect it's yeah. You don't, you are very proud of it and you don't think, oh, I could have done better. Right. But it is a process and you did improve on Western states this year and you will be going back to U two B. So maybe we'll talk about how you might be approaching that double differently this year in a sec. But this is just coming into my head where just a second ago, you said I love being a teammate. And I was actually at the finish line when you finished last year at U T M B. And I usually don't really ask athletes about their sponsors and stuff, but I think this is maybe an interesting thing to riff on for a second, because there was like, I don't know, maybe 20 of your Adidas teammates at the finish line to greet you at U T M B. So maybe talk about that teammate dynamic and what benefit you've seen from it in your career.
Emily Hawgood (00:49:35): Just like everything. I remember when Robert, our, um, team manager reached out to me about joining the team and I told him, I, I was like, you can pay me whatever you want. Like,
Emily Hawgood (00:50:28): We don't just wear the same gear and see each other at races. Like we're a family. And I've noticed that so much. Like the first time I got to spend time with any, a teammates was at a teen camp up in Sedona last year. Um, you know, during the COVID time. And we just was so connected, I was like, oh, I just walked in. And we were, we already had a passion for running for supporting each other. And that love and passion just grew. Like the only thing we had in common was we loved running and we wear three stripes. Like
Emily Hawgood (00:51:41): And that was counted as like my team contribution. Like my, my manager, Robert was like, no, we really want you to be you're part of the team. Yeah. And that was a big thing. It was like, I couldn't show up and run, but I could show up and support. And that in itself was like, wow, like, this is what a team's about. Yeah. Very, very, and I was lucky in college to my, my coach, pat Mac Curry was very much about that. He always talked about that about a value, um, being a part of the team, like, yes, not everyone's gonna win, but who's gonna bring, you know, like the camaraderie and the support and everything like that. And that's just like stuck with me. And I think going board school, that was a big part of it too. Like when you're a part of a team, you're a part of a team and multiple ways, not just standing at the top of the podium.
Dylan Bowman (00:52:31):
Dylan Bowman (00:53:00): It was like, we are family, you know, and still to this day, you know, the guys that I played with were, are, you know, family to me. So it's something that will, will last a long time. So, and it's awesome. That's so cool. Yeah. It's awesome to see Adidas in the game and making big investments in our sport. So if you can pass along our gratitude as a sport to one of the most important brands in the world that they're in trail running and they're, they understand this aspect and they clearly have identified great athletes to be part of this family. That's a good thing for the sport. So
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Dylan Bowman (00:56:19): Anyway, I will talking about, uh, Western states now this year, because
Emily Hawgood (00:56:57): Yeah, I think, I mean, I left out, had a really good training period leading up to the race. I didn't have any injuries. I'd learned a lot about my body. I got a lot more time to kind of focus on what I wanted to work on going into this race. And I was confident, you know, like my races had, my body was holding up well, like I was taking the time taking the extra time to be a professional athlete and feed myself and look after myself and get some sleep
Dylan Bowman (00:58:18): Love that metaphor thing come naturally to you. I've tying this back to your maybe independence streak, born, you know, from your unique upbringing. But you know, when you have coaches who are encouraging you to believe in yourself, is it, is it easy for you to do so? Or are you somebody who is maybe a little bit insecure in your capabilities?
Emily Hawgood (00:58:43): Um, not insecure, but I don't think I had that full belief. I think like really kind of finding that full belief has been a very recent thing of like, you know, people can tell you like, yeah, you're gonna do great, but it's like, wait, but what does great mean? Mm-hmm,
Dylan Bowman (00:59:52): Yeah. Well, that, that's awesome. And clearly you did have a little bit more self-belief this year, and you've mentioned Ruth Croft's name, standing at the pre-race meeting shoulder to shoulder with one of the greats of our generation
Emily Hawgood (01:00:47):
Emily Hawgood (01:01:44): And that'll be something I'll carry with me forever. Um, you know, being a team person, having been with her from the beginning where I was just a PIP squeak on the start line, you know, attempting to run these sky running races, like now I get to run step and step by sit with her. That is, I mean, that in itself is a life changing moment for me. Oh yeah. Um, yeah, it was everything. I think as much as I've preached about being a teammate and like really loving that family community, it can also finally showed up in a race scenario, you know, where we could race side by side and support each other and say like, Hey, can you taking your salt? Hey, do you have some calories? Let's walk this section and get some calories in. Like, we actually got to be teammates out there.
Emily Hawgood (01:02:35): We didn't have to, I don't know, be, uh, cutthroat with each other. Are we good?
Dylan Bowman (01:03:41): That's what it's all about. Mm-hmm
Emily Hawgood (01:03:56):
Dylan Bowman (01:04:38): My, my feeling, and as I've been reflecting on this and contemplating everything that happened at Western states is that what a amazing learning opportunity for you, right. To have a front row seat to Ruth CRO, who's definitely one of the best of all time. Who's clearly in the upper echelon of athletes who've ever come into the sport and who like you is like that humble, hard work person who like doesn't screw up. Right.
Emily Hawgood (01:05:17): Yep. Have,
Dylan Bowman (01:05:18): Have a front row seat to Ruth's performance there and see that execution firsthand. Although you faded a little bit, you were with her for a while. You probably feel like, Hey, I'm not that far off. Am I, am I right in that? Like, have you been thinking along the same lines, do you view it as an amazing learning opportunity as you develop?
Emily Hawgood (01:05:40): Yeah. An incredible learning opportunity and Ruth's so, so good at listening to her body too. Like she, she doesn't over race. She knows when she doesn't need to step up to a start line, she doesn't feel like she needs to prove anything. She knows that like she has to listen to her body do what's smart. Um, and that's really incredible to yeah. Have a front row seat to, but she's also like such a humble and just incredible personal around. Like I know like when I'm swinging time with Ruth, it's not all about racing or running, you know, we can have a good time. We can hang out and she'll buy the pool or yeah. Do things like that. And it's not all about racing
Dylan Bowman (01:07:00): Yeah. But you're also probably like, man, you're not that far off. Right. So maybe let's talk about the second half of the race. Cause ultimately Ruth kind of pulled away and ran away from the field and then you faded ever so slightly. Right. You went from running in the lead to finishing fifth, still an improvement on last year and a super, super strong performance from you. So what happened in the back half of the race? Is there, are there any, um, highlights or lowlights from that? Like did, did you feel like you actually faded and anything that you're taking away from that, that you want to improve on for next year, since you've already established that you are returning
Emily Hawgood (01:07:39):
Emily Hawgood (01:08:41): Okay. Come on. Like luckily all the training still paid off, but I think I, you know, if I hadn't had the stomach turn, my legs were still ready to roll and were, you know, rolling as hard as they could with an uncomfortable stomach. Um, but that's what kind of made me drop back. And maybe I I'd got some bad information from the river that I had a 50 minute lead on the girl behind me. Oh. And then when I got to the next age station, they were like, I don't know where you heard that from. You only had eight minutes at that lobby last aid station. I was like, dang, I took some time to try and turn my stomach around. And so that never
Dylan Bowman (01:09:17): Rely on that information.
Emily Hawgood (01:09:31): Estimates. Yeah, exactly. So, I mean, that's a learning curve, tears. Like I done really believe everything
Dylan Bowman (01:09:59): Yeah. She ran. Yeah, she
Emily Hawgood (01:10:01): Too.
Dylan Bowman (01:10:01): Yeah,
Emily Hawgood (01:10:01): She did.
Dylan Bowman (01:10:03): I mean, it was an awesome performance. And like I said, sort of one of the stories of the day for me, and it reminded me kind of, of Katie AB Smith's race from last year where she, I mean, at least to me was a little bit of an unknown quantity and she was competing for podium position, ultimately finished fifth place, but who was definitely like, you know, so close, so close. She unfortunately took a, a small step back this year, but she's got an automatic ticket for next year and yeah, sometimes it takes three tries to get it. Perfect. And I actually, I was seventh and fifth in my first two runnings at Western states too. So you and I are, are twins in that respect. Nice.
Emily Hawgood (01:10:43):
Dylan Bowman (01:10:44): Because third time, third, time's gonna be just totally perfect for you. So now looking ahead towards UT M B, unless there's other things you wanna reflect on from Western states, I'd love to hear again, you finished seventh and 10th at Western UT M B double last year. You were the only person who was able to put that together. Wondering what you learned from the double last year and anything that you're tweaking in the recovery or in the training in the eight weeks between these two incredibly important world class championship level races that you're hoping to maybe help you maybe finish a little bit higher on the UT M B podium this year.
Emily Hawgood (01:11:26): Yeah. Um, so last year I definitely learned a lot going from Winston to UT M B. Um, I love that summer. So now it's, you know, it's a great time to get up high and climb mountains and that's perfect for going into UT M B and kind of the opportunity to get out in the mountains. Um, here has like, that's a, it's at its peak right now and the summer weather. And so training for UT M B is a whole new adventure from Weston. Um, and that's like my mindset always going into the training block now of like, I just get to be outside more and up in the mountains more. And I have this huge training block behind me for Weston. Um, and as a huge bouncing block going into to TMB. And it's a nice way to do it this way around yet, uh, Western first and then U T M B I think going forward, like a lot of it will be similar to last year's training block, but kind of, as I was going into Western, I was a little more rested cuz I didn't have to do 300 Ks going into Western.
Emily Hawgood (01:12:34): And so coming out of Western, I'm a little more rested too, just for that fact of like I raced a 50 K and so I have that extra bounce still there. Um, yeah, as much as UT M B was super exciting last year, I'm excited this year because I have a little more bounce in my stick, even though I've run the hundred mile. Um, I haven't had to race three times before
Dylan Bowman (01:13:02): Well, awesome. Well, I can't wait to see, to see how you do there. It's such a tough double to do. I mean, the races are so close together and they're so different and the level of competition is so high at both of them that when you have the best in the world who are focusing on one of them or the other, it's, it's hard to put it together at both. And so I wish you nothing, but the best is you continue to recover from Western states and it put together at least a few specific bits of training for what is a very difficult mountainous course at UT M B. So maybe, oh,
Emily Hawgood (01:13:36): You with us, I saw your name. God,
Dylan Bowman (01:13:39):
Emily Hawgood (01:14:44): Yeah, I have a lot. I love like just seeing how this journey is playing out. Like you talked about my sky running section of running and you know, maybe now with like a little more experience jumping back into a couple of those races would be fun. I actually doing the Zimbabwe sky run at the end of the year, which is a 56 K and that'll just be a, you know, it'll be nice to do something short again, but that's way more technical and it's exciting to see trail running, coming into the Zimbabwe community. And so even that in itself is like a good little goal, but good little, I don't know, bonus of seeing my community kind of take up my passion to and talk,
Dylan Bowman (01:15:30): Talk about that briefly. I'm I'm curious because I, the reason I want you to expand on it is because I've been friends with Ryan sands for many years now and I've been able to see how he's like personally changed the trail, running culture in South Africa and, and brought it to the forefront. Like he basically made trail running a sport in South Africa. Yeah. And, uh, I'm, I, I feel like you kind of have a similar opportunity in, in Zimbabwe is like, do you hear from people back home or is the participation in the sport maybe ticking up because the great Emily Hogan is smashing races right. And left
Emily Hawgood (01:16:06):
Emily Hawgood (01:16:56): So yeah, the mountains or just, you know, the rolling Hills that they are in makes me so excited to have them. Yeah. Just be a little more a part of it, but also just have those opportunities to go down to that racing environment that Ryan has created in South Africa and maybe get the opportunities or more opportunities like I have of being able to see different places, see the wild a little differently. Um
Dylan Bowman (01:17:38): I feel like I cut you off though, as I was asking you about, uh, your, your goals for the future. Is there anything else you wanna add there before we sign? Oh
Emily Hawgood (01:17:46): Yeah. So then, so I think I have a lot and I'm kind of excited to see different opportunities arise and hear people suggest something and, you know, sit my heart on fire for other races or other opportunities, maybe some F KTS or diff different challenges. But this week I'm actually going up to glacier national park where two of my teammates out here, um, are crossing the park on all the highest peaks out there. And I'm getting to be with them for a couple days. Uh, Nate bender and Sam
Dylan Bowman (01:18:20): Okay.
Emily Hawgood (01:18:22): And so getting to be out there and kind of, uh, be there support crew and then go out on the trails. So they lost couple days with them and you know, I just bought a helmet and I'm borrowing an ISAC
Dylan Bowman (01:19:07): Bear mace with a helmet on. Yeah. You're definitely graduating to a new level here.
Emily Hawgood (01:19:12): Yep, exactly.
Dylan Bowman (01:19:14): Well, I think it's really smart, Emily. I think, you know, the, the path that you've been on has been impressive so far and it's great to just chat with you and I have nothing but confidence that you'll continue on this upward trajectory. It won't be without its challenges and bits of adversity, but you have all the tools you need to, you know, absolutely smash it in this sport. And I think you bring a great personality, a great, uh, personal, you know, kind of like disposition and energy to the racing fields too. So thanks so much for coming on the podcast as a joy to chat with you. And uh, I hope we can catch up again soon.
Emily Hawgood (01:19:51): Yeah. Well thank you so much, Dylan, everything. I mean, you know this community and so all those words coming from you, it's pretty special. Thank you. Um, yeah. Getting this opportunity to chat with you has been incredible and I hope we get to chat more and good luck on being
Dylan Bowman (01:20:06): A, a dad.
Dylan Bowman (01:20:16): Big. Thank you to Emily. I so enjoyed that episode. I hope you guys did too hope. You've grown to be as big of a fan of Emily as I have both as a person and as an athlete, I think huge things are ahead for her. So make sure you go follow Emily on Instagram to follow along her journey. I have a link to her profile in the show notes here in today's episode as always a big thanks to our sponsors speed land, best shoes to ever hit the trail running market. Visit run speed, land.com and grab a pair of the SL HSV JBO eyewear. I just got a new pair of the fury sunglasses and you should too use code free trail 10 for 10% off your email@example.com gnarly nutrition, best nutrition brand in the market. Go grab some protein powder or some electrolytes or some fuel to drink. Mix my favorite visit go gnarly.com. Use code free trail 15 for 15% off your order. If you enjoy the show, please share it with your friends and training partners. Share it on social media or even better. Leave us a review on apple podcasts. All those things are much appreciated by me and our small team here. I hope you all are having an amazing week and an amazing summer. Always appreciate your time and attention. Thanks for listening to the show. More great episodes coming down the pipeline very soon. Love you dearly talk soon. Bye bye.