Yvonne Zapata is Miss OUTSIDE!!!

It’s marathon season, summer is ending, the hot long runs are coming to an end, hopefully. Summer training one of the hardest things that comes with fall training and sometimes it’s the people that help us push through those most difficult runs, it’s the smiles, words of encouragement or more so simply just showing up to help us do the work. Yvonne Zapata is one of those beautiful run souls in our running community blessing us with her smile while running through those toughest training miles. Miss Outside is about to be outside for the fall marathon season. Her running and her why goes back to before she was even born which is amazing, want to know how? Check out this article.

MSM: Okay Miss OUTSIDE!!!! Let's go back to where it all started with you and running, you went outside and ran obviously lol, but in all seriousness how and when did you get into running?

Yvonne: I’ve always ran before but in triathlons but never really took it so serious until the time I went to go cheer at the NYC marathon back in 2018! I’ve witnessed the running community in NYC coming together and it was just so beautiful to watch the runners pass by at mile 20 where I was teamed up with team RWB to support with my mom! Around that time, I told my mom I wanted to run the NYC marathon then she explained to me the 9+1 then ever since then I started to sign up for 5ks, 10ks and all, of course the rest is history!

MSM: You’re not only a 5x marathoner but you’re also an Ironwomen. That's impressive, most of all super difficult to do and quite simply takes a whole lot of mental effort. I want to go back a little bit to a couple things here. Tell us how and when you knew that marathoning was indeed something that you wanted to do and what was “the race” where you knew this was indeed something you wanted to try.  

Yvonne: I’ve always told myself I wanted to do a marathon, but it had to be The NYC marathon! It had to my first one because I want to experience running 26.2 miles in my home of NYC! I wanted to feel all the energy from my people especially my people from the BX of course because I grew up in Yonkers/Bronx area! My mom ran NYC marathon 10x times once when she was 6 months pregnant with me, it was something I just really need to do! 

MSM: As I'm writing these questions, I'm also looking at your IG and there's one constant that I've noticed while running is the smile you have. It shows that you have a genuine love for something that you’re doing and it's great to see. The smile states the obvious but for our readers what else does it bring out of you?

Yvonne: It brings out of joy that I get to see when I run with the community, seeing the community come together during marathons, 5ks, 10ks and every other race in NYC & of course outside of NYC! Running has made a better version of me and I smile while running because it brings me so much love, joy, happiness along with everything around me just the energy itself just brings me good vibes! 

MSM: That smile inspires many on the pavement, but who are some of the runners that constantly help you to become better, to be the absolute best version of yourself and keep you with the goal of striving to be the best that you can be?

Yvonne: The community! The community inspires me and keeps me going for what I really want! Seeing everyone accomplish their goals from 5ks to marathons especially triathlons! It brings me joy to say like wow this person did this and so on and I can do that too! I have so much support around me, and I couldn’t have been at of where I am today without the community, they show me so much love and support because that’s what running is all about! Running has grown on me but the people who are around me has also grown on me too! 

MSM: I started running back in 2016 and when I started running one of my struggles was finding folks that looked like me. Years later it was simply me not knowing where to look and I eventually found BMRNYC. What were those early days of running like for you and how did you find those run crews that were an extension of you and a representation of you?

Yvonne: So, I’ve started running with team RWB at first then we’ve partnered with Boogie Down Bronx Runners where I meet Lennie and the crew on track Thursdays back in 2019! Once I’ve meet Boogie Down, I felt like I was with my people because I grew up around the Bronx area and I love how they were so genuine, supportive, and especially super lit! Especially seeing so many people of color coming together and doing love thing we love to do which is running! Time went by and during 2021 I’ve wanted to explore on what other crews are out there besides Bronx crews and I’ve meet run crews from uptown to Brooklyn to Queens, but the list goes on and on! I started to explore and join different run crews on their weekly community runs to see the vibes and get to know more people! I wanted to know what other run crews have to offer and how their community in their borough was! All I ever wanted to do was just show love to others and join in on all the fun! 

MSM: Finding that running family can change so many things and open so many doors for us, especially those in the diverse community. Did you feel like the “WANT” to get out and run became easier?

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