May 02, 2017 at 01:18 PM EDT

In the new romantic drama Tracktown (out May 12), Alexi Pappas plays Plumb Marigold, a famous but lonely distance runner preparing for the biggest race of her life at the Olympic trials. But when an injury forces her to take an unexpected day off, Marigold wanders into a bakery where the aimless boy behind the counter catches her eye. The fascinating behind-the-scenes twist? Pappas, who also co-wrote and co-directed the film with Jeremy Teicher, actually is a distance runner who competed for Greece at the Olympics last year in Brazil.

“Tracktown’s story is inspired by my real-life experience and observations as a professional runner chasing the Olympic dream,” says Pappas in her director’s statement. “The film is not directly based on one individual story or person. Rather it is a patchwork quilt of personalities and occurrences woven together to capture a truthful emotional core — the feeling of being young and trying your hardest to pursue a dream at the expense of everything else… and at the same time, questioning if your dream is really will make you happiest.”

Watch the trailer for Tracktown below and an exclusive clip from the film above.

Tracktown opens in theaters on May 12

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