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The Get Fit Arkansas program was a great experience for me! Mark gave me the information, tools, and confidence I needed to live a healthier lifestyle while avoiding "fad" diets that only provide short-term results. Mark is a great trainer who is not intimidating and he really works with you to create a custom workout program. I'm already down 20 pounds and feel great!     Auston Griffing, Little Rock

The Running Girl:

How Does She Do It?


Recently I had the pleasure to sit down for a little

“Q&A” session with 5-time Little Rock Marathon winner

Leah Thorvilson. Just a couple of weeks after winning the marathon for a record fifth time, and just a couple of days after knee surgery, Leah graciously granted me an interview for Get Fit Arkansas. Having just been thru a media whirlwind, and then having her knee scoped on top of that, I halfway expected to find her both exhausted and on crutches! To the contrary however, it was neither. She showed up ready to roll and was walking just fine. In no time, she was strolling thru Newks greeting some friends and fellow runners. I shouldn’t have expected anything less.


I’ve been fortunate to get to know Leah somewhat over the past year or so, as we are both UALR alumni and members of the UALR Tip-In Club. In the time I’ve known her, I’ve found her to be a very energetic person. That goes without saying. She’s also attractive, outgoing, and knows how to laugh. What I like most about Leah though is she hasn’t allowed all of her success to go to her head. She’s humble, down to earth, very pleasant to be around, and always seems to have a smile for everyone.   


Leah also stays very busy as the Director of Athletic Development for UALR. Having been a standout on the Trojan’s cross-country team, Leah has now returned to her alma mater to help make it possible for other student-athletes to play sports, graduate college, and achieve their dreams.  


So how does someone start off virtually every morning by running a half-marathon … that’s right … 13 miles per day for training, work full-time, constantly attend athletic events, travel for races, and have any time left over for a social life?


With all of this going on, one has to ask … Just how does she do it?


These are the questions I posed to Leah during our interview. We hope you enjoy the Q&A format:


Q.  With 25 marathon wins (so far!) spanning over several years, you’ve got to love what you’re doing. Can you tell us when and how you discovered your passion for running?


A.  I started running in high school back home in Minnesota and really enjoyed it, but don’t know that  I ever had any expectation to run after I graduated. I was given an opportunity to come run on a scholarship at UALR, where  I realized my passion for distance running.