Q&A: Julia Hanlon, Founder of Running On Om
Julia Hanlon is busy. She’s a yoga instructor at Majestic Yoga Studio in Cambridge and a cross-country coach at Concord Academy. Despite having a packed schedule, Hanlon somehow manages to find time to keep up with her podcast, Running On Om.
Hanlon, a 23-year-old Bates College grad, started practicing yoga when she was 16 and became a yoga certified instructor in November 2012. She created Running On Om, a local radio podcast dedicated to healthy living in 2013, and has interviewed more than 70 people, including many health experts from the Boston community like OmGal’s Rebecca Pacheco and yoga instructor Cara Gilman.
When did you first come up with the idea to create a podcast on healthy living?
During my junior year, I was traveling about an hour to and from school and started listening to podcasts in the car. At the time, I was just getting into running and the podcasts were a way to learn about the sport of running and the science behind it. It became my coach and my friend and a way to learn more about that specific community. That summer during one of my runs, the idea for Running On Om hit me. It was one of those “a ha” moments.
What is it about podcasts that inspired you to create your own?
The transformational power of story telling is really what motivated me to create my own. Rich Roll’s podcast completely changed my life. I found that I was able to tune in and listen to a nutritionist, or a yogi, or a runner, and learn something new while driving.
What type of questions do you ask during your interview?
The questions are set around who I’m interviewing. For food and health, a lot of the questions are designed around what they are doing differently and why it’s neat. For running and yoga, the questions focus around how that person got to where they are today and what they get out of teaching, competing, whatever it may be.
Why is producing Running On Om rewarding?
As a little girl, I always thought my dream job was to be a therapist. I liked the idea of talking to people and listening to their stories. For me, my podcast is similar to a therapist. It’s an avenue to share stories, talk with inspirational individuals, and have it shared for other people to hear.
What’s next for your podcast?
One of my hopes for my podcast is to begin different segments that I can focus on. I would really like to focus on different health communities within Boston and develop a series of podcast around that. For example, for this upcoming year, do a segment on Boston yoga teachers.
The 40-minute podcasts focus on nutrition, running, and yoga, and can be found on runningonom.com or downloaded on iTunes.