Six-time Patriot League Academic Honor Roll member Anna Chiodo Ortiz is striding out in her senior year.
Six-time Patriot League Academic Honor Roll member Anna Chiodo Ortiz
Photo: Marc Hagemeier
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Six-time Patriot League Academic Honor Roll member Anna Chiodo Ortiz is striding out in her senior year.
Resilient Runner’s Blog Promotes Positive Body Images
by Julia Stevens ’20

Anna Chiodo Ortiz ’19 chose managing for sustainability because of the major’s versatility — a quality she embodies in her own life. She’s a distance runner for the women’s track & field and cross-country teams. She also maintains an increasingly popular Instagram account and blog, where her growing base of followers reads her candid commentary about her ongoing struggles with eating disorders and body image.

A passion that began in seventh grade earned the Ambler, Pa., native a spot on the Bucknell teams. Though she’s had many successes, Chiodo Ortiz considers her career highlight to be a 10-kilometer race she ran in her sophomore year, not because of her finish time, but because of the circumstances surrounding the race. “It was pouring rain, but it was the most fun I’ve ever had in a race. And I scored at leagues, which I never imagined doing.”

Chiodo Ortiz has a genuine love for fitness, but she recognizes the problems created by overemphasis on idealized body types. “When I first began my health and fitness Instagram, I was feeding into all the toxicity you see around [fitness-based social media]. I talked about ‘cheat meals’ and ‘good’ foods versus ‘bad’ foods,” she says. “Diet culture is a huge reason for eating disorders, low self-esteem and other mental-health issues. I didn’t want to be a part of that or feed into that toxicity that we scroll through every day on our phones. I wanted to be real and open with everyone.”

Her openness is expressed in a blog simply titled Anna Chiodo Ortiz, where she writes about her fight against bulimia, anorexia, body dysmorphia and the associated toll on her mental health. She acknowledges that eating disorders are hard to conquer, but she perseveres by reminding herself that she needs a healthy body to be the best athlete possible. She also draws strength from blogging itself because the support of her followers motivates her.

With more than 5,000 Instagram followers, Chiodo Ortiz already has a far-reaching platform. In the future, she plans to continue making a positive impact on people’s health, and she’s earning her certification in personal training.

“I would also love to coach,” she says. “I’m extremely passionate about running, and I want to keep it in my life as much as possible.”

Even after her final lap around Bucknell’s track, Chiodo Ortiz plans to keep pace in the sport that has taught her useful life lessons. “Running has made me who I am today — strong, resilient, driven, diligent, tenacious. The lessons that are taught in running are lessons that are so applicable to everyday life.”

Instant Replay
Lessons Learned on the Track That Spill into the Classroom
A busy practice schedule has taught the runner to stay productive during the time she sets aside for schoolwork.
Off the Track
When she’s not racing or training, Chiodo Ortiz spends time with her friends and writes for her blog.
Finding Motivation
For those days when you’re tempted to skip the gym, Chiodo Ortiz suggests simply getting changed into workout clothes to get in the right mindset.
Fueling Up
Chiodo Ortiz avoids red meat and practices intuitive eating — responding to her body’s needs as she feels necessary — to stay healthy and energized.