In the vast world of outdoor adventure, there are few voices as captivating and inspiring as Milly Young’s. The brain and voice behind the Breaking Trail podcast, Milly is a well-accomplished trail runner with a deep passion for the outdoors. In this blog post, we’ll delve into her background, her motivations behind starting Breaking Trail, her thoughts on the Australian outdoor sports scene, and her insights on conquering climate change.
A Trail Runner’s Journey
From Kojonup to Chamonix Milly’s journey to becoming a trail runner and podcast host is a fascinating one. Hailing from the small town of Kojonup in country Western Australia, she now calls Chamonix in the French Alps her home. Her love for the mountains knows no bounds, encompassing a wide range of outdoor activities, from climbing to mountain biking, skiing, and running. It’s in the mountains that she finds her true happiness, spending long days exploring the breathtaking landscapes. When she’s not immersed in outdoor pursuits or podcasting, Milly works in the climate innovation space, where she helps entrepreneurs launch solutions to combat climate change.
The Birth of a Podcast The Breaking Trail podcast was born out of Milly’s desire to hear more stories from adventurous Australians. While many adventure sports podcasts focus on tales from the United States and Europe, she saw a gap for stories closer to home. Breaking Trail serves the purpose of sharing gripping adventure stories, inspiring listeners, and fostering a deeper connection with nature. Through these stories, Milly hopes to encourage people to explore the outdoors and, in doing so, cultivate a stronger bond with the natural world. This connection, she believes, can drive efforts to protect and preserve our wild places.
Australian Outdoor Sports Scene
Unique and Evolving Milly’s perspective on the Australian outdoor sports scene is both insightful and pragmatic. She acknowledges that Australia doesn’t boast the same grand terrain as the US and Europe, but it possesses its own distinctive geography. In the land Down Under, adventurers can find wild places with minimal crowds and ample opportunities to carve out unique outdoor experiences. However, Milly also highlights the challenges faced by Aussie athletes, including limited support and funding compared to their international counterparts. She is optimistic about the changing landscape, with outdoor brands and sponsorship initiatives helping Australian athletes reach new heights.
Upcoming Projects and Adventures
Milly’s love for the outdoors is a driving force in her life, and she always has exciting projects on the horizon. In the coming months, she plans to return to Australia for a few months during spring, with the intention of tackling one or two mountain-running FKTs (Fastest Known Times). Additionally, after a less-than-ideal summer of climbing in the Alps, she and her climbing partner (who also happens to be her brother) are gearing up for a better 2024.
The Mind of a Long-Distance Runner
Ever wondered what goes through the mind of a trail runner during those long, solitary runs? Milly shares her perspective, revealing that she often immerses herself in the sounds of nature—the chirping of birds, the rustling of leaves, and the whisper of the wind. It’s a way for her to connect deeply with her surroundings. Depending on her mood and the run’s purpose, she may also listen to music, audiobooks, or podcasts. Her choice of audio complements her run, creating a harmonious experience.
Running Solo vs. Running with Mates
Milly enjoys both solo and group runs, each offering a unique experience. Running with friends provides camaraderie, shared adventures, and the opportunity for post-run coffee chats. On the other hand, some of her most cherished running moments have occurred during solo missions, where she can fully immerse herself in the mountains, savoring the solitude and the beauty of nature.
The Climate Activist’s Perspective
Beyond her passion for the outdoors, Milly is a self-declared climate activist. She offers valuable insights into how each of us can take action to combat climate change. Her top three recommendations are:
- Get Active: Political change happens when citizens mobilize. Voting, contacting elected officials, joining grassroots campaigns, and engaging in discussions with friends and family can make a significant impact.
- Put Your Money Where Your Values Are: Support clean energy and sustainability by aligning your spending habits with your values. Consider buying locally, choosing eco-friendly products, and divesting from fossil fuels. Examine your investments, bank, and super fund to ensure they align with a clean energy future.
- Live Simply: Reduce personal consumption by embracing a simpler lifestyle. Prioritize simple pleasures like spending time in nature, growing your own food (if possible), and using eco-friendly transportation options. Embrace the principles of reduce, reuse, and recycle.
Milly’s journey as a trail runner, podcast host, and climate activist serves as a beacon of inspiration for those who aspire to embrace the great outdoors and make a positive impact on the planet. Through Breaking Trail, she continues to share stories that ignite a passion for adventure and nature, reminding us all that our connection with the wild is essential for a sustainable future.