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Dream big.

Overcome challenges.

Live boldly.

Achieve greatness.

Embrace your true self.

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On coming home, there was safety and comfort. On coming home, I felt like I was amongst family; I could lay down my defenses and honor the most honest version of myself. On the precipice of achieving my dream in the country of my ancestors, I felt joy wash over me: a baptism of belonging.

With a reputation steeped in both competitiveness and warmth, Idara Otu similarly embraces her faith and her culture. An accomplished standout from youth, Idara leverages her immigrant-inspired aspirations at the intersection of athletics, finance, and personal development.


Seamlessly navigating the balance between incongruous identities as a Brooklyn-born Nigerian, Stanford-educated Commodities Trader, and Olympic Track and Field athlete, Running Home draws readers into Idara Otu's world through the context of her fiercely competitive, conventional African upbringing, complete with PhD and Masters-degreed parents and siblings, stringent cultural parameters, and tongue-clicking disapproval at any outcome subpar to excellence.

Cultivated with a kingly lifeblood, Idara's smooth ascent to Stanford and dreams of a lifetime of golden meritocracy came crashing, both on the track, in an ill-fated championship race that ended her collegiate racing career, followed by the crushing realizations that awaited her in the 'Old Boy' networks of Wall Street and the genteel Houston south.


An inspiring and brutally honest resurrection story, Running Home digs deep into the psyche that propelled Idara from the despair of a dream deferred to the heights of dreams come true – all on the world's greatest and most powerful stages.

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From the vibrant streets of Brooklyn to the grandeur of the Olympic stage, each page is a testament to Idara's relentless pursuit of excellence. Her journey is a source of inspiration for anyone who has dared to dream beyond the confines of circumstance, showing that with grit and passion, one can overcome any hurdle.

WNBA player, MVP, and WNBPA President

This book offers a perfect blend of deep reassurance and profound aspiration. As the Head Coach of the 2012 Nigerian Olympic Team, I witnessed and admired Idara's unforgettable dedication, discipline, focus, and hard work. Her exhibition of intelligence and compassion make her a true blessing to everyone around her.

INNOCENT EGBUNIKE, 4x Olympian, Olympic Bronze Medalist, National Record Holder, and Olympic Coach

Idara demonstrates how much one can accomplish, across cultures and continents, in both physical and intellectual arenas, all while exemplifying grace. Idara’s grace and moxie are on every page.

Former CEO of Barclays Bank


Idara Otu is an Olympian, Wall Street Veteran, Author, and Speaker who uses her gift of storytelling to inspire the pursuit of excellence, the cultivation of passion, and the understanding that it is never too early to plant seeds for one’s legacy. She is the Founder of charity, Let Girls Read, Run, Grow (LGRRG), whose mission is to develop the African girl through education, athletics, and entrepreneurship. An entrepreneur herself, Idara also founded NŌK CHOC, a premium, vegan hot cocoa company, which serves as a vehicle for LGRRG to build an all-girls primary school in Nigeria.

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