Happy Canada Day

Canada

All the way from Dublin, Ireland, I’m wishing my home and native land a

HAPPY CANADA DAY!

If you are one of my readers from outside the Great White North, today is the anniversary of our country becoming, well, a country. And we celebrate it with inordinate amounts of red and white cake, strawberries and, of course,  fireworks.

In 2001 we went a trip on Canada..Spirit Island..

If you don’t know anything about Canada (or just know our frequent use of the word “eh”, maple syrup and our affinity for toques), then let me tell you this: Canada is a beautiful and diverse country, both in its people and its countryside. I am blessed to call it home. Visit the country if you get a chance. And if you are Canadian, may I suggest traveling from coast to coast to coast? Get to know this wonderful land of ours. Maybe even pick up a few races in each city you see?

So Happy Canada Day and happy running!

(Photo Credit: Palindrome6996 and Truus)

We Are All Athletes

2008 Summer Olympics - Opening Ceremony - Beijing, China 同一个世界 同一个梦想 - U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program - FMWRC

If you recall, high schools across North America tend to easily divide students into categories. As the 2004 smash hit and Lindsay Lohan vehicle, Mean Girls, tells us, “You got your freshmen, ROTC guys, preps, JV jocks…varsity jocks…” In other words, students can be athletes – in which case, they are probably signed up for multiple sports and teams – or they can be, well, not. 

(Side note: this is not to hate on student athletes, who are their own brand of awesome, just as we all are.)

But I was firmly in the not  category when it came to student athletics. I mean, I was okay-ish. I wasn’t picked dead last in gym, but I sure as hell didn’t get picked first.

Let’s just leave it by saying that I actually used study period to study. In the library. By choice. 

So when my older, significantly-more-accomplished-athletically-than-I-or-most-of-society-could-hope-to-be sister tried to tell me I could be runner I laughed and gave it exactly one shot. I went for a 20 minute run with her and hated it for 19.59 minutes. I liked the bit where we stopped. I could not imagine why people do this for fun. Honestly, what was the point of getting outside to sweat profusely in front of your neighbours as you shuffled along the gravel shoulder of a road for 20 minutes? Needless to say, I was excruciatingly sore the next day and didn’t lace up again for years (if you want to read about that, go here and here).

It wasn’t until I did that I realized we can all be athletes. You don’t need to own anything spandex, you don’t need to have a musculature that can be seen through several layers of bulky sweaters, and you certainly don’t need to be elite-anything.

My point is that athletes are not confined to specialty teams, high schools nor is it a label that should be reserved for the select few. Do you play in an intramural sport in your community? Athlete. Take in a game of squash with a co-worker occasionally? Athlete. Or, like me, lace up a few times a week and give it your best shot? Athlete.

Of course, if labels like “athlete” don’t mean anything to you, that is perfectly fine too.

But for many, myself included, reminding myself that “I. Am. An. Athlete” at the 2nd to last km on a long run can be a motivator all on its own. And that is definitely worth something.

Go run. Be awesome. Happy Running!

Log Off and Go Run

March 06, 2013 at 11:31AM

Another day done! Time to log off your computer and lace up.

Go for a run because it makes you happy. If you’re not happy to start, you will be once you finished.

For me, today is a steady run (tomorrow is hills — looking forward to it!). I’ll be running at a steady pace, without breaks, for the length of my run. If you are interested in other run terms, click here.

How many miles are you crushing today? What are you training for? I want to hear from you in the comments.

(Photo Credit: Arya Ziai)