Runner Takes on Tour de France

Zoë Romano is aiming to be the first person to ever run the Tour de France in 2013.

Zoë Romano is aiming to be the first person to ever run the Tour de France in 2013.

Richmond’s very own Zoë Romano will make history this summer as the first person EVER to RUN the Tour de France.

She’s running to raise money for World Pediatric Project, a locally-based non-profit that provides medical care and preventative health services to children in Central America and the Eastern Caribbean.

The 25-year-old amateur runner will set out on her 9-week journey in Nice on May 18 and log 30 – 35 miles every day until she reaches the finish in Paris on July 20 (one day ahead of the peloton).   Read “Richmond Woman Laces Up… for Tour de France”- Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Bicyclists struggle to make their way each year through the terrain– a grueling task considering the elevation challenges alone.  Romano will run the equivalent of THREE Mount Everests.

When asked if she really thinks she can do it, Romano often talks about the power of vulnerability.

“There’s no guidebook to executing authentic changes,” Romano said at Richmond’s inaugural TEDx event last March. “You must be in a place where nobody has been before. If you wait for the exact right moment, then you’ll be in the grave before change happens.”  Read “Inaugural TEDx Event focuses on creating”Richmond Times Dispatch.

Zoë visiting a child at a local Boys & Girls Club chapter during her 2011 cross-country run.

While the Tour de France is by far her most challenging endeavor to date, it certainly isn’t her first rodeo.  In 2011, Romano ran 2,867 miles across the United States, becoming the first female to run unsupported across the US. She averaged about 30 miles a day, pushing her gear in a stroller, and raised more than $17,000 for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Filmmaker Alexander Kreher will join Romano for the duration of her run in France, producing serial footage from the road and a full-length documentary. Romano and Kreher previously worked together on an award-winning short documentary “Street Dreams.”

“The first step is always the hardest,” said Romano. “Once you get started, all sorts of things happen to help you on your way.  You just have to begin it.”   Watch  “Richmond Woman to Run Tour de France” – WRIC-TV

Need more inspiration to get moving?  Follow Romano throughout her journey at www.zoegoesrunning.com

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About Kelly Vance

Kelly Vance made a career out of meeting interesting people. She heads up VANCE, a boutique PR agency in the heart of Richmond's start-up community.