Vegan Runner of the Week Tara Sims

tara sims

“My name is Tara Sims and I am a lover of running, strength training, health, the truth on food and I have been vegan for over a year. I am a wife to an amazing husband for 20 years and counting and a mother of two teenagers. They are truly what keeps me interested in health and running because I can’t imagine a day without them.” 

What was it that got you interested in running?

I was searching for a way to stay fit and healthy after I went through a gamut of fitness workout videos about 10 years ago. The videos got old quick and my body desired more so I took to the road. I was never really athletic in school so I am here to say it’s never too late and you are never to old to get fit. I feel I am in the best shape of my life.

I see you’ve been vegan for over a year now. Why did you decide to give plant-based a try?

I was diagnosed with hereditary hemochromatosis (iron overload) about 3 years ago. I spent a lot of time searching on how to heal myself through food. I came upon a video called Forks over Knives and then dove in hardcore. Although there is no mention to hemochromatosis in the movie, I chose that this was the best move for me.

After all that knowledge it was hard to not just go for it. I could not fathom eating something that was bad for my health. I was always searching for truth on food and eating organic so after a lot of plant based movie watching and reading books such as the China Study it became very apparent of the truth that so many are misled on.

I have ended up with great results. My iron levels have been amazing for well over a year. Also as I ran a race the week before going vegan and then I ran again two months later and I had cut 5 min off of my time. I believe the vegan lifestyle is perfect for me. My Advice: Listen to your own body. You know it best.

What motivates you to keep running?

Being a mom and having a family history of diabetes, heart disease and cancer are the things that keep me going. It drives me to continue on with good health and running. I love the feeling of accomplishment I get from a run and the way it makes my body feel and lifts my mood. It just can’t be beat. 

What is your race length of choice?

Half Marathon

Have any favorite races?

I haven’t got to race at many fabulous places. I have ran in amazing places on vacations but not raced in any. I would say Dallas Rock n Roll because it was my first official 1/2 marathon and I ran it hard and fast. Sweet memories of my family waiting at the finish line. Thus, so far it was my fastest half.

If you could run with anyone (living/dead), who would it be?

My husband because a change in his career has led us to live apart temporarily so over everyone I definatley choose my husband. 

What do you eat before a race?

I do not like to eat at all the day of any morning race. Although I do hydrate. The night before I race I would say definitely veggie and avocado Sushi.

What about for after the race?

Veggie or Black Bean Burger for sure… and Fries!

What piece of running gear could you not possibly live without?

Nike+ watch or my Nike+ iphone app. I have got to have either one. It is a bad habit to check speed and I need to learn to run naked (watchless) this year.

What do you tell yourself when you are struggling?

The sooner you get it done the quicker the stuggle will be over. Nothing worth having comes easy. The fight is worth the result.

Do you have any current goals, or races coming up?

I want to do a couple of half marathons and one full in 2014. And also to be faster than last year. 

What advice would you give to someone who’s completely new to running?

Do not get overwhelmed or worry about pace. Running is just one step in front of the other. Find a running partner that is just a tad bit more advanced and who can guide you and keep you motivated and accountable. Also your shoes are one of your best investments if you are going to actually spend alot of time on your feet. I have been trained to enjoy the run regardless of speed or length.

Where can we find you on social media?

You can find me on Instagram (run_like_you_stole_something) and Twitter (@tarabara75).

If you have a question for Tara, or just want to show her some love, leave a comment below!

Would you like to become our “Runner of the Week?”  It’s really simple; just email us.

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