Instructor Profile/Ian Hunter–Slater Street, Ottawa, ON

by Justin Wall

As the Slater Street Running Room’s incumbent Ottawa Marathon training program co-instructor, Ian consistently displays the qualities we all look for in a mentor. His years of running experience—many of which were spent right here in our store—make him an invaluable wealth of information for even the most seasoned athletes. With his kind heart and genuine compassion for others, our Run Clubbers see him as a mentor, even when he’s not formally coaching. Continue reading “Instructor Profile/Ian Hunter–Slater Street, Ottawa, ON”

Summer Play

Family members of all ages thrive on unstructured “playtime.” This is especially true for Canadian families, as longer days bring extended outdoor play hours. Here are some ideas to help your family get moving and play together this summer:

Active Training. If you missed out on a community run/walk or charity event in the spring, consider signing up for one. Take the family to a free all-ages event like the Running Room 20 Minute Challenge— it might be the springboard for a more active summer ahead. Continue reading “Summer Play”

Eating Well as a Vegetarian Athlete

by Lisa Podlecki

Athletes may choose to eat vegetarian or vegan for a variety of reasons, such as environmental considerations, animal welfare, personal preference, and/or religion. While eating a well-balanced vegetarian diet can have a number of positive health outcomes—including lower risk of heart disease, diabetes and hypertension—athletes may also believe that becoming vegetarian may be a way to lose weight, improve their performance and help with recovery. As with any diet, cutting out a particular food group can result in insufficient calorie and nutrient intake, which may lead to potential nutritional deficiencies and decreased performance. With the proper guidance, however, vegetarian athletes can be just as strong and healthy!

Continue reading “Eating Well as a Vegetarian Athlete”

Running Through the Bush of Ghosts

by Tim MacKay

Crunch, crunch. Breathe. Crunch, crunch. Breathe.

The snow underneath my feet responds to my pace with a rhythmic crunch, matched by a parallel rhythm in my breathing. There’s great comfort in the rhythm. It’s soothing, healing. It’s important. Maybe essential. The rhythm—the consistent beating—is what keeps me going. It marks the mental space I find the most comfort in, with a steady ‘left, right, in, out’ bringing calm and peace. And when set along a trail in the woods, the forest bathing me in solitude and simplicity, this healing rhythm is as close as I can come to perfection. Continue reading “Running Through the Bush of Ghosts”

Pilates for Runners

by Cara Hazelton

Runners are always in search of ways to improve their performance. As an Authentic Pilates specialist, the one thing I often see missing from regular training regimes is a strong, supple and stable relationship between the pelvis and spine.

In simple terms, a human body is a torso with levers. If the torso is weak, rigid or unstable, the levers will not work properly or with ease. The levers (our arms and legs) are attached to the torso (which contains the spine) by a variety of muscles. The legs are not solely attached to the pelvis, just as the arms are not solely attached to the shoulder blades. Both the arms and the legs are attached to the back, which is why a strong, supple and stable spine allows for healthy movement of the limbs. Continue reading “Pilates for Runners”

Ultimate Guide to Foot Pain for Runners: Plantar Fasciitis No More!

by Mitchell Starkman, Registered Physiotherapist

Now this one is a big topic, folks. Our foot is not only the first thing to contact the ground when we run, but also our only means to generate force to propel ourselves forward while running. When it comes to foot pain for runners there is one condition that by far outweighs the others and that is Plantar Fasciitis. There are a few other common causes of foot pain in runners, like fat pad syndrome–even a stress fracture–but given that the number one killer of a runner’s season is Plantar Fasciitis, that will be our focus today.

Our goal is to cover three general questions to give you all the info you need to solve this age-old question.

  • What is Plantar Fasciitis and why do I have It?
  • How do I know if I have this issue?
  • How do I fix It?

Continue reading “Ultimate Guide to Foot Pain for Runners: Plantar Fasciitis No More!”

Stress Fractures

Two words that can really stress out a runner: stress fracture.

A stress fracture is a small crack in a bone brought on by repetitive loading and strain, resulting in pain and tenderness at the injury site. Stress fractures occur most frequently in the foot (metatarsals), the shin (tibia) and the hip (femur or pelvis). The condition can be accelerated by inadequate muscular support; therefore, maintaining balanced muscle and bone strength is the best way to avoid a stress fracture.

Bones are the skeletal structures that provide attachment points for muscles, ligaments and tendons, which exert force in order to generate movement. The bones also receive their strength from proper use of the adjacent muscles, so any situation where there is muscle weakness or misalignment can lead to weakening of the bones, which may in turn lead to fractures. Continue reading “Stress Fractures”

Getting My Life Back

by Chris Bonyun

The Running Room teaches a “SMART” approach to goal setting, but sometimes goals come from somewhere else. In 2017, my goals were based on a deeply personal, irrational and obsessive drive to get my life back. And, on December 31st, I showed myself that I’m well on my way with my fastest 5K of the year, in the bitterly cold weather of the Ottawa Resolution Run. Continue reading “Getting My Life Back”