Badass Women can come from any career, background, and age. When you see someone walking down the street, that could be the making of a future bad ass, or they are already a bad ass in their own right. Let's talk about my latest Badass Woman in this series – Toni Hessen. She is a strong bad ass momma that comes from a meat cutting career. Like most of us, she did her first OCR and was hooked. I wanted to feature Toni, as she is inspiring, motivating and a Badass. Sit back, relax and enjoy getting to know Toni better.

Please tell us about yourself.

This is the part I dislike the most. I am 46, have 2 kids (age 22 and 16), and work as a meat cutter which I have been doing for approx. 25  years.

Have you always considered yourself athletic?

No, I have not always considered myself athletic, I am what they call a late bloomer, I did not get into any type of fitness or health until I was like 41.

How did you get into the sport of OCR?

I got into OCR’s by my niece if I remember correctly (sometimes my old age gets the better of my memory). But if I recall she took me to my first Spartan and I was hooked. It was as if this is what I had been training for.

How did you find out about / join the BEASTS OCR group?

I have only been with the Beasts since February. My Muddy Valentine will be my year anniversary with them. I had been seeing them at OCR’s at mainly Spartan Races (not by running with them, most of them I run behind, so I could probably identify them by their backsides). So anyway, when I saw them at my Muddy Valentine, I just walked up and introduced myself and started asking questions after talking with them (I formerly met Zane, Patrick, Lorenzo, and Jenna). I went home and joined. I met up for a Beast WOD (Workout of the Day) after that and the rest is history. So many good souls.

Tell us about the races you have done so far.

This is only my 3rd year of doing races, I have just recently got my 2x trifecta and Did my first Ultra I went from my 1st year doing 6 races to doing 21 this year and would of done more if time permitted. they all mean something different to me each race my goals are different 1 might be a straight half marathon just to work on my running, 1 might be to help a friend get through their first race, a lot of them are just to continue pushing myself to get to that podium! One day I tell ya, One Day!!

What initially drew you into the world of OCR?

What drew me?! The Challenge and the fact it is never the same.

In your experience is it better to race solo or with a team?

Running solo vs a team depends on my goal for that specific race – if I am trying to go for time I am going alone. We each have our own race, but if it’s for fun and comradery then you betcha I wanna run in the group! But being part of my team Beasts OCR lets me know even if I go alone, I am never alone. Someone is always there to pick me up if I fall and vice versa.

Is there is an OCR or endurance race that you will never do?

No, my goal is always challenging myself.

If someone were to give you a plane ticket, and a paid race entry to any event in the world which one would you love to go and do?

All of them, but for now I would like to do a Bonefrog.

If you had a spirit animal, what would it be and why?

A Honey Badger. No fear, ok I will do it, but I will find a way.

What is your next NON-OCR goal or event you are working on?

Getting my 11 I have actually failed it, but I am getting up and taking it again.

With so many amazing women on course this year, do you find yourself becoming more competitive, inspired or both?

I am not sure, there are some amazing athletes but it’s the one who surpasses personal obstacles that inspire me more. We take for granted how much we have and how easy some things come to us. But depending on the athlete I find myself becoming more competitive.

What type of training do you complete for OCR training (ie crossfit, running ect).

I am a Cross-fitter! But on top of that I will run and lift and I put in approximately 2-3 hours, 5-6 days a week always varying.

For someone that is newer to the OCR sport, what is one solid piece of advice that you wish to pass on?

Never give up! Don’t be your own enemy. And there is always someone there, you are never alone. Don’t let fear decide your destiny.

If someone wants to reach out to you on social media, how do they find you?

on Facebook: Toni Hessen
on Instagram: Toni Hessen

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