Gabe Grunewald

Ali on the Run Show Episode 62: Gabe Grunewald, Professional Runner & 4-Time Cancer Survivor

“It’s OK to struggle, but it’s not OK to give up.” —Gabe Grunewald

Gabriele “Gabe” Grunewald is a professional middle-distance runner and four-time rare cancer survivor from Minneapolis, MN. Gabe was first diagnosed with Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma when she was in college and undoubtedly in the best shape of her life. Instead of finishing her college running career on a high note — or, better yet, a podium — Gabe was faced with a difficult and scary diagnosis. She’s undergone several surgeries, including having more than half of her liver removed after the third time the cancer came back. But Gabe keeps fighting, smiling, and running. On this episode, she talks about the difference between fighting and giving up, and explains what it means to be “brave like Gabe.” She also talks about her current project: training Fixer Upper star Chip Gaines for his first marathon!

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This episode is brought to you by Strava, the leading social network for athletes. Click here to join today, then enter for your chance to win a 2018 TCS New York City Marathon entry and a $500 travel stipend! 

What you’ll get in this episode:

  • How Gabe became a professional runner — and why that was never the plan (3:00)
  • Gabe’s first cancer diagnosis (4:45)
  • Gabe’s third — and scariest — cancer diagnosis, and the hug that saved her life (11:00)
  • How Gabe handled each diagnosis emotionally (16:25)
  • The aftermath of Gabe’s liver surgery, followed by her fourth diagnosis (18:25)
  • Gabe explains her current immunotherapy treatment plan (20:50)
  • How cancer has changed Gabe’s relationship with running (23:05)
  • How Gabe maintains her optimistic outlook even after four cancer diagnoses (25:55)
  • How the running community has supported Gabe throughout her health struggles (27:45)
  • The difference between fighting and giving up (28:35)
  • How Gabe’s diagnoses and treatment will affect her fertility and hopes for a family (32:30)
  • What it means to be #bravelikegabe (37:15)
  • What it’s like training Fixer Upper star Chip Gaines for his first marathon! (40:55)
  • Chip’s time goal for his debut marathon (47:50)
  • Introducing the Brave Like Gabe Foundation (48:40)

What we mention on this episode:

Brooks Running

Arizona State University

University of Minnesota

Fixer Upper

Chip Gaines

Silo District Marathon

Brave Like Gabe Foundation: — coming soon!

Brave Like Gabe 5K

Kara Goucher

Carrie Tollefson

Allyson Felix

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Follow Gabe:

Follow Ali:

Listen & Subscribe:

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3 Responses

  1. I already left my OFFICIAL podcast review but wanted to mention that even though I haven’t quite finished (saving the Sprint questions for my walk to the subway today 🙂 ) this was one of my favorite episodes so far. Thank you!

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about ali

I’m the creator of the Ali on the Run blog and the host of the Ali on the Run Show podcast. I’m also a freelance writer and editor, a race announcer, a runner and marathoner, a mom, and a huge fan of Peanut M&Ms, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (way better than the first one!), and reliving my glory days as a competition dancer in the early 2000s. I’m really happy you’re here.
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