The Hike Life founder, who is an ambassador for this Sunday’s VHI Women’s Mini Marathon and has been with her boyfriend, Zach Desmond, since 2016, told of the societal pressures on women once they reach 30.
She recently attended the wedding of Zach’s brother, Jett, who swapped vows with partner Madeleine Daly-Devereux at Adare Manor.
However, when it comes to her own situation, Purcell (31) said people were far more interested in asking her whether she had any baby plans, rather than a wedding on the horizon.
“I actually get the baby question way more often than the ‘When are you getting married?’ one,” she said.
“It’s always people saying it in passing, and I think a lot of the time they mean well. They’re like, ‘Start thinking about it now because such and such had a really hard time’ and I’m like, ‘Well, you’re getting me really stressed about it now’.
“It’s funny, the second I turned 30, I got it so much, and I wonder if guys get it when they turn 30.
“From my experience, when a woman turns 30, especially in my industry, it’s like, ‘Right, time for you to have a baby and do that part of your life now’. It’s like, tick that off the list.”
Boyfriend Desmond, a music promoter with his family company, MCD, is all set for a busy summer, with a host of live events on the menu.
“It’s really good to see,” Purcell said. “It was obviously a long two years for anyone in the entertainment industry, so it’s really good that things are up and running again.
“People are looking forward to going to festivals and gigs again. They bring so much joy to people.
“Zach has such great taste in music – he knows who’s up and coming. My music choice is whatever is in the charts, I’m terrible with all that. Luckily, Zach keeps me in the loop.”
On Sunday, the former Miss Universe Ireland will pound the pavements during the Mini Marathon – which has raised €226m for charities since 1983 – alongside more than 20,000 participants as the 10k event returns for the first time since 2019.
Unlike previous years, outdoor-loving Purcell said she no longer had an interest in competing for a personal best and simply wanted to savour the experience.
“Younger me would have been all ego and ‘I’m going off to get a certain time in the race’,” she said.
“But I actually can’t wait to just talk to people and find
out why they’re raising money for whatever charity they’re with.
“A few years ago I did it by myself and I would jog a bit and then stop and I would chat to people. I actually loved that.
“That’s the thing I’m looking forward to most, seeing all the T-shirts and hearing why they’re running the race and taking the time to just chat to people.
“That’s what I enjoyed and what I remember from doing the race before.”
As for any last-minute advice for participants, Purcell advised them to hydrate well and get a good night’s sleep before the event.