She needs to just run and get off of social media. Frankly, that goes for a lot of people. I have no doubt a lot of mental health issues these days are made worse by social media. All my social media is locked to only friends I really know and I go days without posting.
Her job is to run fast, not shill products, so she should give up anything tied to social media, get some mental health, and keep running if that is what she wants to do. I like her and wish her the best.
Wow, that article was a lot to process just as a reader; imagine living through it. I remember this site being pitched as the place “where your dreams become reality.” Who knew the reality of winning an Olympic marathon medal could be so dark. Here’s hoping Molly gets through this and rediscovers her joy.
I posted on the previous thread about the ultra that she ran it because she was still deep in her ED, and looks like that turned out to be correct. Think the post was deleted though. I'm around the same age as Molly, also female, vaguely similar issues without the long string of diagnoses that she has acquired. When you're struggling it is easy to see the signs in others. Wish the best for her and hope she continues to step back from social media.
I wish you the best with your issues, too. I struggled with binge eating in college. That was difficult enough. Trying to deal with an eating disorder as a high profile professional runner must be overwhelming. I’m glad she’s getting the support she needs.
Definitely a good idea for her to continue to limit her social media. I was stunned by the amount of hateful messages she receives. I’m regularly disgusted by the people who post those “___ is going home DEVASTATED!” threads on this board. I can’t believe people send messages like that to an athlete directly. That’s just evil.
Even when I limited my Strava just to people I know, I still wound up getting a sense over time that I was influenced into using it in a performative fashion. And that's really just a training log! When it's extended to images and opinions like what Insta, Twitter, and FB are based on, there's no way people can ensure absolutely that they won't get sucked into that. There are hundreds if not thousands of really intelligent engineers and scientists working to achieve that outcome, it's a nearly impossibly ask to expect otherwise. I hope MS can figure out a way to hire a marketing student in Flag to help run her accounts so that she can personally insulate herself from the insidious downsides.
I mean this as an honest question, and I hope I don’t come off as obtuse or demeaning by asking it, but I am legitimately curious. Why would an ED push someone towards competing in an ultra? I have no experience personally with EDs, and very little second hand experience to speak of.
Burns a f*ckload of calories in 'one sitting,' even if you hit the aid stations. Really high on the fat burning scale. Long ago, my older sister ran close to 150 mpw for many years to run marathons barely under 3 hours. She also had been hospitalized for ED in high school. She clearly ran that much primarily to control weight and bf % rather than directly for any performance reasons.
My hat's off to Molly for giving this interview & allowing the article, so that someone else in here situation might be able to learn from it and get better sooner. My sincere hope is that she gets well soon. It's a painful struggle to have to go through.
Really brave interview, it was a tough read but kudos to Molly for being so transparent.
Maybe I’m missing something but why doesn’t she bin off social media altogether? I got rid of Facebook years ago, Strava recently and have never had/wanted Insta - all of this might make me a bit of an oddity but honestly I can’t bear the oversharing / validation craving that is present in today’s world.
I agree with you that a very feasible option for her overcoming some of those struggles is to take a step back from competitive running. As someone who ran competitively in college myself, I felt there was always pressure to be better and temptation to take unhealthy routes in doing so. For someone who is predisposed to disordered eating, this can be a recipe for disaster.
At the same time though, this has become Molly's livelihood and what she is known for, and I can imagine it's also mentally incredibly challenging to leave whatever defines you identity. The adderall thing is blown way out of proportion for sure, she has ADHD and it's not like lots of athletes abuse stimulants in one way or another.
Just hope that her talking about her eating disorder is indicative of her genuine desire to overcome it, because she deserves that!
For some, running is a little more socially acceptable form of purging after a binge.
Some believe they binge everyday with a normal diet and thus they believe they need to purge by running much everyday
There are numerous ultra runs called 'Fat Ass 50's that take place just after new years day. Holiday eating is considered a big binge, so many ultra runners do these little 50k runs as a purge to help prevent becoming a fat ass or cutting some off the fat ass they believe they have.
These are usually low key events, often with no entry fee, awards or recording of times or places. The primary goal for many participants is to cover the distance and burn the calories. Easier to accomplish that in a semi organized social event.
I believe every single serious distance runner has done something to run with less weight. Carrying as little extra weight as possible is part of the sport. Distance runners try to compete in the lightest shoes and clothing, You can become extremely fit by running 30 miles a week but running more might help you weigh less. Food is often chosen to as a way to cut weight. Lifting weights is great but done in a manner to get strong not bulky.