A few days before Women’s Day, we have the pleasure of telling you the story of a woman from the Val di Fassa who moved to Milan at the age of twenty but who always keeps her mountains and her valley in her heart. She started running at the age of forty and it is a sign that, when they set their mind to something, women are capable of achieving it.
Raffaella, how did this passion for running start?
I started racing at the end of 2021, I have always been sporty as a girl I used to skate in Fassa, then I stopped, got married, went to live in Milan, had three daughters and this brought changes in my life. Before, I only raced a little, but I had some problems and had to lose 50 kg. Then I started doing small races and I set myself the goal of finishing ahead of my husband, who has been running as a passion for longer. At first I did the shorter 5 km races and this year I started doing the 10 and will soon start with the 21 km competitive races.
What do you do to prepare?
I go running every other day. I do 5 km just to
keep myself trained or I do 10 km to get ready for
the half marathons… When I come to the Val di
Fassa I try to train here along the Marcialonga track. It’s something that I carry inside me, Val di Fassa is like oxygen for me, every now and then I have to come just to see the Sassolungo.
What do you like about running?
It’s become such a passion that if I can’t train in
the evening I feel I need it. It’s not always easy… It’s a commitment of both mind and body, I go running early in the morning before going to work in the office.
What are your goals?
We aim to do the biggest marathons in Europe; Oslo Berlin Valencia and also New York. These are 42km marathons. And then I would like to do Marcialonga Running which is 21 km.
Can all women start running at this age and at this level?
You always have to look at what you are inclined to do. I am lucky because I have the support of my work family. I work in a company that produces biodiesel, it’s a start-up. My owner, when she knows I have to do training, lets me go during the break and if I had to come back half an hour later she wouldn’t say anything: it’s a great support.
I understand that it’s not like that for everyone and that it’s certainly more difficult for a woman than for a man, because you have to look after the children and work, but life goes by quickly and women have to learn to take time for their own well-being, to feel good about themselves and others.