The curvy model signed up for the New York City Half Marathon earlier this year and started to document her training on Instagram. But her followers soon questioned how she could train so much and still be a size 12.
“When it came to doing the half marathon, people immediately thought that I was trying to change my body — that I no longer wanted to be a curvy woman. And that I was starting to implement this new active lifestyle in order to completely change the way I look and be a different person,” Huffine, 32, tells Women’s Running for its Nov/Dec cover story.
But Huffine wasn’t interested in losing weight — she simply decided to give running a try after her husband, a longtime runner, convinced her to log a few miles with him.
“I went from nothing,” she says. “I was very slow and would walk occasionally.”
She quickly discovered a true love for running and ran three half marathons in 2016.
“You feel good,” Huffine says. “I guess that’s the runner’s high!”
Now the model hopes her experience as a size-12 runner who went from zero miles to 13.1 will inspire other women to take up the sport.
“I come from the plus-size modeling world, where body image is a huge topic,” Huffine explains. “Breaking down barriers is what I’ve been trying to do for my whole career. Curvy women should be in media. Curvy women can be on TV. We can wear amazing fashion. We belong. We are needed. It’s vital for women to see diverse women that they can relate to.”
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Huffine is teaming up with Women’s Running for their Project Start initiative to help other women hit the pavement for the first time.
“I need running to show other women what they can do for themselves, what it can look like and how they can feel.”