This month we celebrate our chairman of the PR committee: Carmen! It was long overdue that this Gaul got some credit. She was the secretary of the 51st board of Asterix, takes part in a lot of committees, is always enthusiastic and is our first lady at Asterix! Carmen turned 22 years old a few days ago and just finished her first year of her masters in Computer Science-Bioinformatics at Leiden University. “Yes, I still live in Eindhoven because everything was online due to Corona. The new study year is going to be a challenge if the university starts expecting me to turn up for things!”
Carmen is a long-distance runner at Asterix. Her favorite event, on the track, is 3000m. She has done a 400m once which in her own words: “wasn’t a huge success”. “Recently I had to run a 1500m at the competition in Roermond because there wasn’t a 3000m event. Against my expectations, I liked it and want to do this distance again to get my time below 5 minutes. But overall, my favorite event is a road 5k. Recently I managed to get my time under 19 minutes.”
But this great running talent almost didn’t pursue a career in running. At school, she was basically bad at every sport, except for running. Unlike the others in her year, she really enjoyed the ‘shuttle run’, ‘cooper test’, and ‘bosloop’. “I started running for myself: a 5k once in a while. When I was 15, I quit (competitive) dancing, and joined my brother at the athletics club in Kerkrade. I wasn’t very enthusiastic. I think I went once every two weeks, and never actually became a member.” When she started at the TU/e in 2017, she still ran every now and then. But in 2018 my brother ‘convinced’ me to join Asterix. He was on the board at the time and he basically filled in the subscription form for me because he thought his constant nagging wasn’t working fast enough.” Thank God for Tom’s persistence, otherwise we would have missed this Gaul!
Because Carmen is a long-distance runner, we asked her what her longest distance ever ran was. “The 6 Summits Skyrace in Austria last year, which was 23km long with 2100 vertical metres (!!). It took me 5,5 hours to finish. But I did not actually run the whole thing: I had many chocolate and photo breaks and walked a lot (near the end we only ran when people began cheering us on, and when they were out of sight we walked again). “
Eindhoven is of course a very male dominated city, but Carmen doesn’t feel like that applies to Asterix. “We have a lot of women training at Asterix, more than you would think! Athletics is definitely not a boy’s sport.” Even better, there even is an entirely female sorority: Bellefleur!. Carmen is a proud member and tells us more about their activities. “Once a year the new members bake a cake for the whole of Asterix. We organize fun things outside of the general Asterix activities, although Corona has limited that in the last year. Hopefully we will do something again soon and I am already looking forward to the next cake party!”
And we end this month’s story with a classic ‘Did you know’:
“Did you know I am half English? My last name is actually pronounced as Reep /riːp/ and has nothing to do with a Dutch candy bar!”
By: Annelies Becker