Bachelorette Andi Dorfman On Running The NYC Half Marathon & Training With Her Fiancé – Exclusive Interview
Andi Dorfman has been busy since she was a contestant on Season 18 of "The Bachelor" and then the lead on the tenth season of "The Bachelorette" in 2014. She has fallen in and out of love — and has written two controversial books about it — but has never given up on that happy ending. She also fell head over heels for running, which was a surprise to almost everyone in her life, including herself.
In an exclusive interview with Health Digest, Dorfman shared how she got into the sport, details about her new running app, and helpful tips on how to incorporate running into your cardio workout routine. She also told us about what she’s been doing to train for the approaching NYC Half Marathon she’s running with her new fiancé, Blaine Hart — as well as how the two of them met, their upcoming wedding plans, and her idea for her third book release.
How Andi found running
You’ve been very public about your passion for running. How did you first get into it?
I first got into it when I was living in New York City. I was never a runner growing up. I played tennis, and I remember I used to fake injuries to get out of the running portion of the conditioning. People will laugh — my family — that I’m a runner now.
But New York … To see the city, I started running and working out there, and I guess I kept going with it. I saw some of the advantages of the fitness, whether it was my body, my mind, [or] overall feeling healthier, so I stuck with running.
A lot of it was [because] I was traveling so much at the time, and I would be places where I didn’t know if there was a gym or didn’t want to spend $35 to go to a workout class, so I would run when I was out of town and traveling. It became a cool way for me to see the city by foot, which is so much different than driving around. Those two passions of New York and travel and wanting to still do fitness created this love for running.
I hear that you are running in the upcoming NYC Half Marathon.
I am. It’s a rain check, a redo, because I was actually supposed to run it after the marathon in 2019. The half marathon was in March of 2020 and got canceled due to COVID. It’s funny — I’ve run two marathons and never a half. This will be my first.
How have you been preparing for it?
I’ve been running a lot, obviously. My fiancé and I have been running. We do one long run each week — my old coach, Roberto from Road Runners, taught me doing one long run. Then we’ll do some speed runs. We’ll do progression runs, we’ll do fartlek runs, and then we’ll do some hills. We alternate what we’re doing each week. It’ll either be a progression or a hill, and then our long run comes usually on the weekend.
How Andi met her dream guy
Has your routine been any different from when you were training to run previous marathons, like the LA Marathon?
Yes. Planning a wedding, building a house, moving across the country … There is definitely not as much time for us to dedicate to training, which is good that we’re doing the half for that reason.
When I did the New York City Marathon, I was all in every day. I was doing whatever I could for months at a time, and this is definitely a little more relaxed, trying to make it fit with our schedule and not putting too much pressure on it. There’s definitely been a little less running.
How has it been training with your now-fiancé, Blaine Hart?
It’s great. It’s really fun. We both love fitness. He wasn’t necessarily a big runner before meeting me, but he always loved fitness. I’ve definitely gotten him more into running, but it’s a nice way to spend time with each other. It’s undistracted. You can’t be talking on your phone. You’re not answering text messages. It’s a cool way to blend our love of fitness and our love of spending time together.
How did the two of you meet?
It’s a long story, but I’ll make it brief. We actually met one time in college. Blaine played baseball with one of my high school friends, and they all came down for our 4th of July party when we were literally 18 years old — I never talked to him again.
15 years later, we were both in Italy at the same time, and he slid into my DMs. He’s like, "Hey, I know it’s been a minute, but are you in Italy this weekend?" I’m like, "Yeah, are you?" He was like, "I am. I’m here for a wedding. What are you doing this weekend?" I told him, "I’m with my girlfriends. We’re hanging out on the coast." He’s like, "I’m going to come take you out for a drink."
Literally, he came [and] took me out for a drink. I told him he has to take my friends out too, and that was it. Ever since then, we kept talking, and here we are. It’s a crazy story. We did not talk for 15 years. I didn’t know what had gone on in his life. It wasn’t like we kept in touch. It was completely random.
Don’t care about what other people think
You have been on quite the love journey. What was the biggest challenge and takeaway from your time on "The Bachelor" and "The Bachelorette" and dating in the public eye?
A lot of it was not worrying about other people’s opinions, because when you go on a reality show, and [with] the internet and now all social media, you can’t live your life for everyone else’s opinions. They don’t know what’s going on behind closed doors, and while they have a right to judge if you’re putting stuff out there, you have to remember that what matters is how you feel, how your family feels. I had to learn that I knew those relationships better than what people on social media or the internet knew, and when the time was right for me to leave, I had to leave without worrying about what people thought.
Can you tell us about your new workout app, Andorfins?
Yes. It started with the New York City Marathon. We’re actually redeveloping it right now, so if people don’t see it this second, wait until summer. But it’s great. It’s running programs, and we have an Instagram account. It’s a nice way for people that are intimidated by running — which I myself was. It may not seem that way because I’ve run two marathons, but like I said, I was never a runner before. It’s a good way to ease people into running and make it attainable and make it something fun, and not have people be intimidated by the score, because it is very intimidating.
Andi’s tips for getting into running
Do you have any tips for people who want to get into running but don’t know where to start?
Start one step at a time. I know that sounds crazy, but don’t expect yourself to go out without having ever run or [if you] haven’t run in a long time and run three miles. It’s okay. Start out with a walk-run; start out with something that gets your body moving. The most important thing is taking the first step. Don’t be embarrassed about it. Nobody cares what you look like running.
I used to think, "Oh my gosh, people are going to think I have terrible form." No one cares. No one’s worried about it. Just go out there and do it. If it’s a walk-run, great. If you can run a mile to start, great. If you can’t, you’ll build up to that. That’s the beauty with running. You will get better and you do build up to certain milestones, and it will make you feel empowered once you reach those milestones.
What is next on the horizon for you? Any exciting things that you would like to share with us?
Well, I’m getting married.
Very exciting — thank you. We’re building a house and getting married at the same time, which I do not suggest anyone do. It’s been a lot, but also, I’m definitely working on the third book. I needed an ending to be able to see the full picture of what that third book was going to be, and the past few years, even though I felt like, "I need to put something out there," every time I went down to write, it was like, "I don’t have the ending yet." I’m getting the ending and definitely going to be working on book number three.
Andi reveals her third book
Do you have the title yet?
No, no title yet. I usually wait until the end, actually, for the title. For both the previous books, I’ve never had a title until the end.
People do it every which way. Some people start with the title and that’s the theme, but sometimes, I like to see what I keep focusing back to. It makes me realize, "Okay, this is actually what I want the title to encompass."
Can you tell us a little bit about your first two books and what we might expect in the third book?
It definitely goes in sequential order. The first book was about my time on "The Bachelor" and "The Bachelorette." That included a very public breakup. The second book was "Single State of Mind." It was about being single in New York City and rebuilding my life after having left a relationship and having no clue what to do, coming out of this whirlwind. It’s a lot more upbeat. The second one’s definitely more of life on the other side of the breakup.
What’s your focus for the third book?
The third book will pick up where "Single State of Mind" left off. It definitely has a lot of running in there. There’s another move to LA and the move here to South Carolina, and navigating not just the single life, but single in your thirties, because I personally have experienced it.
I get it. I know the pressures. I know the societal norms that are put on us for that, and it focuses on getting through that period of your life, but doing it in a fun way and believing in yourself and saying, "Hey, this is my life right now. I may not be married with kids like I thought it would be, but there’s a lot of beauty in that single lifestyle."
You can catch Andi Dorfman at the 2023 United Airlines NYC Half Marathon on March 19 presented by New York Road Runners.
This interview has been edited for clarity.