"This is one of my core beliefs: that we allow people to live, to experience, and to express the fullness of their humanity every time and all the time."


Mirna Valerio is a native of Brooklyn, NY, a former educator, cross-country coach, ultrarunner, obstacle course enthusiast, and author of the recently published memoir, A Beautiful Work in Progress. Although she began running in high school, she recommitted to the sport after a health scare in 2008. It was then that her love for running and all its attendant benefits were reignited. She soon started her blog Fatgirlrunning, about her experiences as a larger woman in a world of thinner athletes. Mirna's athletic story was featured in the WSJ, Runner’s World, on the NBC Nightly News, CNN, on the CW Network, and in the viral REI-produced documentary short, The Mirnavator. Her writing has been featured in Women’s Running Magazine, Self Magazine Online, Outside Online, and Runner's World Magazine. Most recently, she was chosen as a 2018 National Geographic Adventurer of the Year.

Sample Workshops / Presentations / Motivational Speaking

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Mirna has been a diversity professional for over 11 years. She will craft a workshop and/or talk around specific issues in DEI as they pertain to education, the outdoor industry, and fitness.

Mirna’s Story through REI Presents the Mirnavator

As part of this talk, you’ll watch the short film The Mirnavator and engage in a discussion about cyberbullying and kindness.

Passion Forward: From Passion to Profession

In this workshop, Mirna will take you through her process for building a career that reflects your core values, skills, and passions.

Your Body is a Beautiful Work in Progress

In this talk/workshop based on Mirna’s memoir "A Beautiful Work in Progress" you will dig deep into the body-image messaging of your past and work individually and with others to reset your body narrative to reflect the power you have and always had within.