Louelle Blanchard

From chronic asthmatic young mum of 3, to marathoner, founder and coach of Evolution Runners…this is my running story.

I was never sporty as I grew up, I was very shy, and never had a very good self-esteem, especially when it came to sports.  I had chronic asthma and while I liked the idea of running – and even tried it a couple of times in my teens, which consisted of a run around the block – it ended with me unable to breathe and my legs feeling like jelly so I just thought “I can’t do it”.

It wasn’t until after I had my youngest child 19 years ago that I tried running again.  This time I didn’t give up and I think the previous years of going to the gym helped with my cardio fitness as well as the confidence and mental strength I had developed from being a young mum of 3.

“Running became my time out, time away from being a mum and just about me”.

With 3 young children and a husband who often worked long days or was away for work I needed to be resourceful with how I found the opportunity to run.  I made use of the crèche at the local gym as well as some early morning runs before anyone at home was awake.  I even found that laps around the local football oval while the children played in the middle was a way to get a run in.  As the children got older this became easier to manage and my opportunities to run increased.

My initial goal was just to be able to run a lap of the local lake (6km) and I was happy doing that for a long time.  I didn’t do many events in those early years.  There wasn’t the plethora of events that we have these days and with 3 young children and a limited income it just wasn’t attainable.  I did do some local events which helped to keep me motivated and gave me confidence in my ability as a runner.

I have run many laps of that lake over the years and I have also run many events including half marathons and a marathon or two.  Running has become a part of who I am and I run almost every day now.

“It not only keeps me fit and healthy but it also helps me cope with the stressors of life and has helped me get through some pretty tough times”

Running has always been there for me when I needed some time out and I have been lucky to be able to run when I have travelled.  I have run in some pretty iconic places around the world and met a few locals in the process.

I started my Run Down Under journey in January 2015 and in that time I have run over 5.700km around Australia and sitting in the top 100 to complete the virtual event.  It has been a great way to keep motivated with my training.

I realised that I wanted to help other people to experience the same sense of accomplishment as I had through learning how to run, to increase their own self confidence and experience the mental health benefits that come with being active.

So I started by coaching my sister in law from being a non-runner to running her first half marathon. It gave me a huge sense of satisfaction so see her turn her physical and mental health around.

I received my Athletics Australia accreditation early in 2015 and in 2016 I founded Evolution Runners with the vision of creating a running community of like-minded people who turn to running to improve the quality of their lives.

I still actively train for events and I am running stronger and faster now than I ever have and I love helping my clients do the same.