This week's Newsmaker is Tauranga runner Lydia O'Donnell, who carried a peace torch in the international Peace Run when it arrived in town this week.

1 Describe yourself in three words.

"Driven, curious and a dreamer."

2 Where is your favourite Bay running spot and why?


"Nothing beats running up the Mount. It's challenging, yet scenic. The pain of the steep slopes is quickly side-tracked by the beautiful views and the friendly crowds joining you on the mission up the mountain."

3 Who or what features on your "must have" running or workout soundtrack?

"I love anything that's new! Running for hours on end, you get sick of artists and music pretty quickly, although when in dire need of motivation I will turn to Eminem and old-school hip-hop to get me through."

4 The Peace Run goes through many countries. Which country would you most like to explore and why?

"The countries of Africa by far! Not only has it been my dream for a long time to go to Africa and explore, but Africa is in need of peace and the idea of teaching and offering support to these countries is something I am very interested in."

5 If you could wangle a selfie with anyone in the world, who would that be and why?

"Steve Prefontaine - the first Nike track and field athlete and record holder of 10 All American track records. Although he passed away in 1975, he is a huge inspiration to myself, not only his physical abilities but his attitude and the way he approached athletics."

6 Do you have a superstitious tradition or routine you do before each running event?


"Not really, to be honest. I will always have my nails done (girly, I know!) but I believe if you look good, you feel good and you'll race well. Running is such a mental game."

7 What is your personal recipe for success?

"Self belief! If you don't believe you can achieve something there is no way thatyou'll ever get there. Onceyou believe it and you imagine it, you'll work your buttoff to achieve it."

8 When life gets too busy, what is your go-to take-away food (or guilty pleasure) and why?

"I try to be pretty strict on my diet but when I need a treat I can't go past a sweet treat - doughnuts and cake. Little and Friday in Auckland is my all-time favourite for doughnuts."

9 What was your dream job when you were a child?

"Ballerina. I did ballet for nearly 10 years and dreamt of heading to England to join the royal academy and become prima ballerina. Now I am so inflexible I can't even cross my legs."

10 What has been the best advice you've received?

"Starve your distractions, feed your focus."