This Black Woman Is On Track To Complete Marathons On All 7 Continents
By DeAnna Taylor
Since 2012, Yolanda Stevens has traveled the world to fuel her passion for running. The Orlando, Florida native has completed 15 marathons, 30 half marathons, 1 Ironman 70.3 and countless 5k’s, 10k’s and triathlons.
While most of us are out of breath just reading all that she has accomplished in the last 7 years, Yolanda Stevens is also set to complete all of the Abbott World Majors by early 2020. She has completed 5 of the 6 international races necessary for the feat and will finish out in Tokyo.
Most recently, she and her running group took on the London Marathon while exuding true Black girl magic.
We spoke with Yolanda to learn more about her love for running and to see how she will top what she has already done.
Travel Noire:Where has been your favorite race to date? Why?
Yolanda: To date, the London Marathon has been my favorite! I absolutely loved the city and the people there. The architecture and history were amazing. At Mile 20 of the race, we crossed over the iconic Tower Bridge and concluded the race down The Mall (street), lined with British flags, with Buckingham Palace as our backdrop. It was magical. The New York Marathon runs a close second.
TN: What inspired you to gather your crew to run this race?
Yolanda: We all share a love of running, and the desire to see more diversity and inclusion in the sport, especially in international races. Each of us is on the path to complete the Abbott World Major Marathons in order to obtain the coveted Six Star Metal. In addition to the London Marathon, the other World Majors include Boston, New York, Chicago, Berlin, and Toyko.
TN: Have you all faced any discrimination in your races around the world?
Yolanda: I can’t speak for others, nor have I heard any accounts of direct discrimination, but I personally have not encountered discrimination in other countries.
TN: What’s next for you?
Yolanda: On my quest to conquer the seven continents, I will run the Punta Arenas Marathon (South America) and the White Continent Marathon (Antarctica) in January, followed by Tokyo in March.
TN: Where can we keep up with you online?
Yolanda: You can find me on Instagram: @fame1908.
DeAnna Taylor is a criminal defense Attorney turned travel writer. The Charlotte native recently completed one year abroad working as an English teacher in South Korea. Her hobbies include fitness, traveling to new countries, and trying new foods.