Q&A with RMA – Nicole Bunyon part 1


Being out injured, I put it out there for some RMA members to hit me with some big questions about my running life. We will choose some RMA members from time to time to do the same…..for now, here is part 1 of my 1000 questions that were asked!

Sarah-Jane Bonner‪ –  I’d love to know more about how mums choose the challenges they pursue…do you wake up one day and think ‘a marathon…sounds like a plan, I will go out and train for that!’?

For me it started with the challenge of a half marathon a few years before I started RMA. That was the first race I ever ran after I left school and I was in my 30s!, after that there was no stopping me. I HAD to do a marathon, then once I had done a few of those, I HAD to do an ultra. Now I just crave distance so I just have to keep going to test myself and my limits.

‪Tee Jay Tom‪ When did you start your running journey what age ?

I started running when I was a child, but enjoyed it a lot and when I was in highschool I was quite good at cross country running and 800m distances.

‪ Belinda Macaulay‪ I would like to know more about mental toughness…… I know what to do and all the suggestions to do it but when the going gets tough (which is a lot) I would like to have more strength to keep going…

For me I have had to practice mental toughness and in my running journey I have had to find strategies to use to make racing easier for me. If there is anything that is going to go in a race for me, my mind is going to be first. I give up easily mentally sometimes when the going gets tough and it hurts, and lets face it, running marathons and ultra’s hurt and so to keep going I use things like mantras and counting and breaking the race into smaller sections in my mind. I tell myself that I am strong and capable and fast and my feet seem to listen. I count to 8 over and over again in some races to keep my pace and cadence consistent when I am trying to race harder. Mental toughness is a HUGE aspect to a successful race and I practice this in training also so that on race day I can use those strategies to get me to the finish line in a good way.

‪Carrie Spooner‪ How do u fit running in around a job and kids?

I work 2 days a week in my other job apart from RMA and I usually try to keep my running time when they are either at school or I go early in the morning before they wake for the day. My long runs are done on weekends early in the morning. I also have a very supportive husband who takes a lot of the load during my long training weeks and he is amazing.

Allison Nealon‪ What about 3, 2, 1…

3 things you couldn’t live without?

God, My kids, my husband.

2 things you would change if you could..

My ugly feet

Being out injured

1 great piece of advice you have been given?

Always be kind to others. First and foremost.

‪Bonita Dunne‪ Rest/recovery days – how important are they? What do you do on yours?

Rest and recovery is extremely important in any training program. I find that I need at least 2 to 3 days rest in my program a week. Some of these days I don’t do any activity, others I do cross training or some stretching etc. I give myself at least a day off a week to rest and do no physical activity. This helps clear me mentally and refresh me physically.

Bridie Raj‪ What do you consider your greatest running achievement?

My 60km Ultra Marathon at the Carcoar Cup in 2014. I ran the race solo and learned a lot about myself as a runner that day.


‪Michelle Downey Calder‪ Why running? Why a marathon? How do you get through those tough mental blocks? How do you juggle being a mum, wife, friend, employee etc etc and running

I really don’t think I chose running, I believe that it chose me. Through       running I have passion and purpose. I enjoy running and it is just a part of who I am. I feel free and empowered when running and I find that running is not only great exercise, but the friendships from running is amazing and I have made some amazing friends.

I chose a marathon because I love long distances. Running is a part of my life, so I make it fit in where I can. I don’t fit my family around running. . . I fit running around my family. This may mean getting up early, missing a run, taking them with me or getting them to be part of a race.

‪ How do you get out and run when you just don’t feel like it, not just one day but over and over? I have to admit that I rarely feel like this! Sometimes when I do I just put on my shoes and go, because I know that when I do I am so thankful that I did! I never think, “gee. I wish I didn’t do that”…I always enjoy the run and the effects from the run.

Rich AndClare Tapp‪ When did u discover your love for running? Was it from a race?

I discovered my love for running after I ran my first half marathon. I just had to have more……..!

‪Jess Black‪ I would love to know how you manage to train so hard with your kids. How long you have been running for. Could you train when they were babies. Does you husband train?

I am lucky that my husband is not a runner. This means that most ‘time’ goes to me in the exercise department, however he does play a team sport, but that doesn’t require the hours of training that I do! My children are older now, so training is easier and I can leave them for longer or take them with me and they are ok to be running around while I train. I didn’t do much running when my kids were babies so I can’t comment on that, but I think that if I had to I would not let that stop me. I would take them in the pram, or find people to help me out so that I could get my runs in!

Carolyn Tate‪ I’d like to know what you think about when you run. Do you have negative thoughts and how do you deal with them?

Running time for me is a lot about ‘thinking time’. For me it is the time when I pray, when I think things over in my head about decisions that I need to make, when I work out what I want to do that week, what I will have for dinner etc! I don’t listen to anything when I run except for my own brain! Sometimes I just switch off and enjoy the peace…J

 Belynda Jane Abbott‪ Where do you see the future of RMA going?

I see RMA staying the same as it is but perhaps in a larger form. I hope that the vision never changes, which is to equip and empower women from all walks of life to enjoy running and forming community with one another to bring about change in the lives of themselves and those around them.

Amy Evans‪ = Most memorable race and why?

My most memorable race would have to be my first marathon. Nothing will beat the pride I felt within myself reaching the finish line with my family watching on.

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