Heartbreaker Highlight - Alia Rawji

Introducing our next Heartbreaker Highlight, Alia Rawji! Alia is one of the most positive people on our team. She keeps everyone around her smiling, motivated, and excited to be in a Heartbreaker singlet. Alia ran her first marathon in Providence this past spring. From cheering on her teammates, to pushing hard in practice, and asking Coach Dan all the right questions, Alia leads through action. Learn more about Alia below!

Hometown & Alma Maters (High School and College(s), if applicable)? Belmont High School, University of Texas- Austin

How old were you when you started running? I honestly can’t remember. My earliest memory of running was as a kid with a tape player that played the Backstreet Boys and I would run around the block a couple of times. The first team I joined was my middle school cross country team.

Why did you start running? I wish I had a really moving story about this, but being that I don’t remember when I started I also can’t remember why I started. Since I started running though, it’s been a way of life. Running has taken me through good and bad times, and always made me a stronger person. In addition, I’m in public health and revel in the fact that the benefits of running are countless.

How did you learn about the Heartbreakers and why did you join? The Heartbreakers are pretty well known in the running community, so I’d heard about the team for a while before I joined. I knew in 2018 that I wanted to run my first marathon, so what better way to train for one? Once I joined I wondered why it took me so long to join in the first place!

Favorite part about being a Heartbreaker? I joined in December 2017 after having gone to a few of the practices and instantly loved the structured workouts, the coaching, and the people. Being a Heartbreaker has improved my times, form, and so much more, but most importantly I’ve met some of the best people I know on this team. The kind of people you know will be lifelong friends. 

Who's your favorite runner? Like many others, I became a true fan of Meb after the 2014 Boston Marathon. That being said I’ve always loved Shalane as she hails from Massachusetts, and her cook book has been invaluable to my running! 

Do you run with music? If so, what's your favorite song to run to? A good portion of my runs are with the team, but for those that I do on my own I do run with music. One song that’s stayed on my running playlists over the years is “Remember the Name” by Fort Minor. 


What's your favorite interval distance? (200s? 400s? 1000s? other) The 400. It’s short, but not too short.


What's one lesson about life you've learned through running? I learned the most about running and its relevance to life during marathon training this winter. I’d stayed away from the distance because it’s daunting and I was afraid of trying. When you hit that new “longest distance I’ve ever ran” mark, you get an incredible sense of accomplishment. And looking back on my training I’ll remember the power of working hard for something and achieving it.


What's your day job? (If you care to share) I work in Public Health


If you could run with anyone dead or alive who would it be? Rosa Mota


What's your favorite podcast? Death, Sex, and Money. It has nothing to do with running though!


Your social media handles? (Instagram, Twitter, etc.) Instagram: alia.rawji14


Your short-term (2018) and long-term running goal(s)? Very short-term: Move up to the E/black group at NRC by the end of the summer. Shortish-term: BQ. Long-term: Keep running through all stages of life!