“Most people would describe me as kind and warm. But I have this other part of my personality: I am insatiably competitive.”
Aisha Praught Leer is a professional middle-distance runner for Under Armour, a national record holder in the 5000 meters, a 2016 Olympian (she competed in the 3000-meter steeplechase), and a gold medal winner at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. On this episode, Aisha talks about her progression as a professional athlete, her decision to race for and represent Jamaica (she’s a Jamaican-American dual citizen), and her dedication for giving back and helping inspire the next generation of runners. She talks about what it’s like being married to fellow professional runner Will Leer, and opens up about her decision to leave Eugene, OR, where she trained with the Oregon Track Club Elite, and move to Colorado to train alongside Emma Coburn, under the direction of coach Joe Bosshard. She also shares her thoughts on imposter syndrome, working with a sports psychologist, and building mental strength.
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What you’ll get on this episode:
- Why do you do what you do? (4:30)
- On building mental and physical strength as a professional athlete (14:00)
- On competitiveness (23:30)
- What it’s actually like working with a sports psychologist (25:30)
- Why Aisha left Oregon Track Club to train with Joe Bosshard and Emma Coburn in Colorado (30:00)
- Aisha’s decision to switch from the steeplechase to the 1500m (42:00)
- Aisha’s decision to race for Jamaica (49:00)
- All about drug testing (54:50)
- How Aisha met now-husband Will Leer (1:03:00)
What we mention on this episode:
Melissa Todd, Sports Psychologist
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