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Digital Subscriptions > Women’s Running > February 2019 > Mara Hafezi WARRIOR “Stepping outside your comfort zone is empowering”

Mara Hafezi WARRIOR “Stepping outside your comfort zone is empowering”

Mara Hafezi overcame a phobia of swimming to complete an Ironman and challenge the limits of what she thought was possible. Now she’s on a mission to inspire others to do the same

When I ask Mara Hafezi, 28, what her teenage self would think of her sporting achievements last year – which include completing her first Ironman triathlon, swimming in open water and running a 250K ultramarathon in the desert – she laughs. “The teenage me would have thought, ‘As if I would ever, ever do that!’” In fact, aTher a childhood swimming incident left her with a deep phobia of water, Mara never expected to visit the pool again, let alone swim 2.4 miles in open water as part of triathlon’s toughest endurance event. But, quite aptly for someone whose social media hashtag is #defyexpectationstogether, through her love of endurance sport Mara has discovered she could redefine her limits of what is possible.

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About Women’s Running

Our new-look magazine is going from strength to strength, as are our tribe of happy runners! This issue we spoke to Mara Hafezi, a runner who is defying both her own and others’ expectations by sailing through the Marathon des Sables and by encouraging women of colour to take up running. If you’re inspired by Mara, our beginner’s guide will get you off the sofa and into your trainers in no time, and then for a bit of extra motivation, you might want to have a glance at our half marathon training guides. There’s one for beginners as well as for those of you who want to smash your PB at the next 13.1-miler. We focus on speedwork this issue too, and how building on your speed can power the rest of your running – even if it hurts while you’re doing it! Plus this issue, we’ve got the only core workout you’ll ever need: build it into your running schedule to see quick results with your strength and speed on the road. Then wind down with our feature on Sophrology: just how can this mindful practice help us live more in the moment and actually run better?