Camilla Christensen

Monday, August 25, 2014

I currently attend a university with so many students from so many different countries, it is very hard to come across somebody from Johannesburg. Hearing a south african accent is actually something very scarce. However I think in life it is hard to come across who is almost similar to you, Camilla if I was a white girl we would be twinsies.

Q. Tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do for a living?
A.   I am a 21-year-old girl from Aarhus, Denmark. I am a sports girl beyond all limits. I love everything about sports and ever since I was a little girl I have been in love with sport. Before I became a runner, I played football at the highest level both at club level and at National Team level. Additionally, I was also the captain for both teams. But my football career completely stopped two years ago due to five years with six operations in my knee and two in my ankle. As I was not able to play football anymore, I chose running as my new sport. Meaning that today I see my self as a runner. Besides running I am a student – studying International Business Communication at Aarhus University, a bachelor degree. Although I am not playing football myself anymore, I just got a new job as National Team assistance coach for the Danish youth National Team (youth 14). I am so happy and pleased that my everyday life contains three of the best things – running, football and studying! 

Q. How do you balance your exercise regime and your professional life?
A.   That is very simple. I plan and organize my days about training and school. I make sure to write everything down in my calendar, and thus ensure that I find time for both. Of course it can be difficult sometimes with social events, homework, exams etc. But i try to get both adjusted. I prioritize my training just as much as school, which is why it is a must for me to achieve both during the day. 

Q. What does your weekly fitness regime consist of?
A.  I train six times a week. I only have one day free from training during the week, which normally is Thursday. On Monday and Friday I train strength and in the beginning of the training I normally run 30 easy/restitutions min.. Tuesday I run by my self – mainly long runs. Wednesday I run with my running club, RUNAAR. Saturday and Sunday I run by myself as well. The type of these runs varies. It could be interval running, long-distance, short-distance, fast rides etc.

Q. When and why did you start running?
A.   Due to my football career I have always been used to run. Meaning that since I was four-years-old I have been running - though running as my sport began about 1½  - 2 years ago. The reason for choosing to run was because of all my surgeries and injuries, I was not able to play football – therefore I chose running. Simple the best choice I have ever made! 

Q. What motivates you to go out there, when you do not feel like it?
A.   I am not a very nice person to be around if I have not done my workout and been running. Running makes me happy, relieved, kind etc. If I miss a run, I become very easily irritated, restless and angry. Shortly, I become a misery without running. A day without a run is not a good day. I run to be a better person. 

Q. What is the longest distance you have ran?
A.    So far the longest distance is a half marathon. But in the upcoming fall I have planned to run two half marathons and one marathon. So excited about it! 

Q. What do you love about running?
A.   What is there not to like? I love the sounds of my footstep, my breathing and heartbeats. The mix of these sounds in a unique polyrhythm makes me happy. The endorphin rush I get from running cannot be described or told, you have to try it. My absolute favorite part of running is that it is just my mind, my body, my music and I. It is also about pace, time, distance and attitude. For every run I set a goal – sometimes the goal can be reached and sometimes it cannot. But that is the thing I love. Whether you are succeeding or not, there is never an ending point – it is always possible to be better. 

Q. What do you hate about running?
A.   The minor unnecessary injuries that you have not seen coming, but sometimes can ruin or delay your training.  

Q. What gives you the confidence to run in the streets?
A.   The people passing me either by foot, cars, bus, bicycle etc. are giving me the extra power I need when running. They are the reason that I do not stop when it hurts, because not only disappointing myself, I feel like I am disappointing the people looking at me. They give me the confidence to run, because when they are looking at me, I feel like they are noticing and respecting my effort.

Q. How do you think running can empower women?
A.   No matter who you are, running is good for you. At all levels, wants and needs running are satisfying. It will not disappoint you or let you down! 

Q. What would you like to achieve in the future in terms of running?
A.    Better times and a new PR, become an iron-woman and run lots of marathons and half marathons. 

Q. How do you envision the future of running?

A.    Good. Just a few years ago half marathons were a big race, but when it became “normal” and something everyone could accomplish, marathons became the new ultimate race. But even the marathon distance is not enough anymore. Today, the ultimate title is iron-man or iron-woman. I think this show pretty good how the process of running has been and still is. People want more and more and the crossbar naturally becomes higher. 

Q. What do you think about the lack of exercise among the youth?
A.    It is pitiful and choking. 

Q. What was your best running experience?
A.   My first half marathon in Aarhus – called “Aarhus City Half Marathon”. Three times I had signed up for the race, but due to injuries I was not able to run the races. So finally be able to finish the race was very emotional and an amazing experience.

Q. What was your worst running experience?
A.   Besides the small injuries because of running, I have not yet had a bad running experience. 

Q. How do you push through the pain?

A.   It must be painful in order to be a great success. Pain is just temporary. The feelings you get after finishing the hardest, toughest and most painful runs are those you will remember for the rest of your life. Runs like these are also the ones that define what type of runner you are. The pain is needed in order to become a stronger and better runner. It is a mental game. I do not fear the pain. In fact, I love the pain, because it helps me to become a better runner. 

Q. What is your favorite shoe to run in?
A.   Nike Lunarglide. My favorite brand is Nike, meaning I could run in every shoe made by Nike. 

Q. What can you not run without?
A.    I cannot run without a little smile, my running watch and my music.

Q. What advice can you give somebody who wants to start running?
A. Just do it. No matter how far you make it or which goals you succeed, your effort, commitment and strength will be the biggest success of all. It is not about short runs or long runs; it is about every run and every single mile you run.

Start by making small goals, e.g. 2km, 5km, 2 runs a week etc. Succeed those goals and find new goals. The best you can do is to find someone who shares the same interests as you and who wants to achieve the same goals, or find someone who wants to be your motivation-person/friend/coach etc. 

Q. Which Social media sites are you on and how can one follow you?
A.  You can follow me on instagram: “be_a_runner” or check out my blog

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