Why explore Anne & Dubndidu and her writings? Because her book tells with sincerity what she is and what she sets in motion. With this little extra thing that makes you want to (re) also hit the track afterwards. Influencer, her blog tells about her daily life, her fights (against Nike in particular). Cash maintenance.
Can you introduce yourself ?
Anne & Dubndidu: My name is Anne, I am 29 years old, I am a sports coach, author and creator of engaged content. I started the sport a bit by chance during my studies. I live in the south of France, in Montpellier. I have since graduated from Sciences-Po Aix and the University of Sussex, but also a STAPS sports training license from INSEP and a 200-hour Vinyasa yoga training. I love endurance sports, I practice triathlon, running, long distance trail running but also yoga, pilates or fitness. I like to share my passion because for me sport is more than just physical activity.
On reading your book, we realize that you did not necessarily have a sporting culture… There was a click, and since then it’s a way of life, a conquest on yourself…
A. & D. : My sports practice started a little by chance but, even if my beginnings were complicated (as for everyone), it was indeed a click. It was first a physical challenge, I was 20 years old and I was unable to do 10 minutes of running, then it became a real source of fulfillment. I had this feeling of having been spoiled since my adolescence by a tool of confidence, emancipation and well-being very easily accessible to all. I wanted to share my passion and my motivation at the beginning via my blog, then via social networks and my books in order to build another sport culture which is only rarely transmitted to women.
I think it takes a hell of a lot of ovaries to perpetually question and engage, especially against Nike. The brand that makes sportsmen and professional athletes dream. It is strength but also a little power through the exposure that I can bring to a cause, like that of the Uyghurs. Sport is not just a simple industry, it is a culture of respect, fair play and representation.
And today you share it. Your approach is not based on sports performance but on desire, surpassing in the sense of ‘everyone, everyone can achieve challenges’?
A. & D. : I believe that everyone can find what they need in their sport, without knowing exactly what they are looking for at the start. By challenging ourselves, we maintain our motivation, no matter how difficult the challenge. Regular sports practice is not linear, we lack desire, time, even if it is an activity that we love. With a challenge, a goal that awaits us and that we have set ourselves, we do not win because we know.
Running 10 kilometers or 100 kilometers is not the same thing, in terms of preparation, intensity, etc. And yet, at the heart of your book and your life, do you put self-knowledge as an art of living?
A. & D. : Unfortunately the practice of sport has its faults: too early, too often, too intense and you can get injured. Learning to know yourself, to recognize the signals of your body or your head allows you not to misuse sport and to practice in a healthy way. We always perceive sport as a maintenance of the body while the body-head bond is extremely strong. Knowing yourself, whatever your level of practice, allows you to remain true to yourself and always question yourself in order to preserve yourself. The “just do it” or the always stronger, further are hyper inspiring and motivating philosophies, especially when we begin, but they make us forget the finite and uniqueness of our body. Knowledge is a mature practice. We take a step back, if “she can do it”, maybe I can’t do it like her but knowing my limits, I can do it differently. It is much healthier and in harmony with oneself.
What does yoga do for you? What about travel?
A. & D. : I lost my grandmother just before going to study abroad for a year for the second time in my university studies. I felt the need for more introspection and depth activity. On my campus, the university offered Vinyasa Yoga classes at very low prices. I said to myself why not and I immediately hooked up with the teacher, his approach, his words (even if it was in English). If I continue to practice and even to teach it, it is because this practice calms me down, my brain no longer ruminates. Just like traveling, I am curious, I like to discover new cultures, but also other landscapes, on foot or by bike of course. The change of scenery is a source of motivation, but also the meetings. My sports practice, the way I work are the result of my travels or my years abroad.
You are also an influencer and content creator. With sport, is it a form of accomplishment?
A. & D. : I see myself as an inspirer who sometimes shakes things up but always motivates. I create content in order to transmit to my community as much information as possible for their own practices, energy, motivation but also and above all support because many practice in isolation. I want them to know that they are not alone.
My accomplishments in sport are twofold:
- they are personal: I take part in races, challenge myself above all for myself;
- They are inspiring: if I share my good and not so good experiences, it is to show, especially to women, that they too can take on this challenge they are thinking of. I don’t necessarily want to show that we can all do Ironman or ultra-trails, but that if a woman dares, they can all dare.
It is important to set an example, to inspire because still too few women are present, whether in competition or in a club.
I sincerely hope that I can participate in the Lavaredo Ultra Trail, in the Dolomites, Italy. It is for me the most beautiful place to run.
Your positions are strong and engaging. When you criticize a sports equipment giant like Nike, is it also your “strength to be yourself”?
A. & D. : I think it takes a hell of a pair of ovaries to perpetually question and engage, especially against Nike, the brand that makes sportsmen and professional athletes dream. It is strength but also a little power through the exposure that I can bring to a cause, like that of the Uyghurs. Sport is not just a simple industry, it is a culture of respect, fair play and representation.
I see myself as an influencer too and if I can use my influence to help women exercise, I can also help other communities halfway around the world.
Myself as a consumer, I am not perfect and I cannot expect all brands to be perfect across the board but in 2021 the sports industry must be shaken up and must catch up. I don’t want my sports practice and therefore the purchase of sports equipment to have a disastrous environmental and human impact. Sports practice reconnects us to nature but also to people. It would be selfish, false and blind not to hire me.
What is your fondest running memory? And in this long period of travel restrictions, what running dream do you want to realize when the health crisis is behind us?
A. & D. : My best memory is the sunrise during my first 100 km, I had climbed the last climb, perfect timing. I sincerely hope that I can participate in the Lavaredo Ultra Trail, in the Dolomites, Italy. It is for me the most beautiful place to run and I really wish all practitioners a lot of courage, to hold on because we will soon be able to wear bibs again and play sports together.