Run, Women, Run
And of course, it's good for you.
If there's a fountain of youth, it's exercise. I look better at 60 than my mom did at 40-exercise really keeps you healthy, keeps your weight down, and keeps you feeling good about yourself. It's going to help us live not necessarily longer but better.
Your old boyfriend said women stopped being attractive when they sweated through the back of their shirts.
Oh yes! But athleticism is totally integrated into femininity now. To watch the end of the New York City Marathon and see these women who are totally soaked and horrible from the race and men who look the same locked in a big sweaty embrace-it's great.
Would you ever have dreamed a woman could run a 2:15 marathon, just 10 minutes slower than the men?
I did, but I dared not say it at the time! People were howling at me for saying a woman could break 2:30. But women are winning 100-mile races overall and pulling their coed teams through adventure races. We're going to see more sports that take advantage of women's capability in endurance, balance, and stamina. I really think this will contribute to men and women doing more sports together.
You helped secure the women's marathon as an Olympic event and created the Avon Running program; participation in women's sports is way up, and pro athletes are being paid more-what more is left to do?
The next area of women's sports is global. The Kenyan women runners are transforming their society-they take their winnings and go home to build schools and inoculate their kids. In Asia, women are the rock stars of their sports. At an Avon race in Brazil, women who came to do a race were so poor they didn't have shoes. They did the race, got a T-shirt and a medal, and had the same eureka moment that I did: If I could do this, what else can I do? It's much more than fitness. It's about changing a woman's life.