Growing up in a family of runners, Ashley Wiles fell in love with the running community at the age of 5 and has spent much of her 20s running around the world. As a life coach she realized that many people connect physical activity with weight loss taking the fun out of the activity, and often leading to decreased self-worth. After seeing Amanda Todd’s video in 2012, she created Sole Girls, a community for girls connecting tweens with physical activity and mentorship. Now, as an ironman, and a mental health advocate, she inspires people of all ages to take the first step in fun physical activity.
Ashley’s talk Running Saved My Life and It Might Save Yours Too is about how this extracurricular activity has saved her life on numerous occasions starting as just a young girl. Having an exorbitant amount of energy Ashley found that she was having difficulty in the classroom. As a tween she suffered from her own body appearance and anxiety. She discovered that running helped her through her mood swings and circumstances. As a young adult, she continued to have large amounts of energy and anxiety that put that into training for big goals like ironman and marathons to continue her journey in mental health. Her running soon helped created a program called Sole Girls based on her own experience to empower girls through physical activity and as a result, she has trained over 200 girls in the programs.