There Are No Red Lights in Marathons

by Kalia Douglas-Micallef

“But I’m tired,” I moaned and huffed as my mother and I arrived at a crosswalk with the red hand flashing.

“There are no red lights in marathons,” my mother would say.

“Keep jogging on the spot!”

My mother, Gabriella, transformed her life through running. At times, it seemed that running was the new love of her life in place of me, her daughter. I would wait in the early mornings for what seemed like forever for my mom to come back from her long runs. I would be the last one to be picked up at birthday parties due to her running.

She travelled far and wide, just for running. Continue reading “There Are No Red Lights in Marathons”

Say Hello to the Run-elles

by Darcia Kmet

In May 1999, eight women set foot—or rather, running shoe—into the Bank Street Running Room in Ottawa, for the first day of the 10-week 10K training program. The goal? To run and complete the Rattle Me Bones race. Each of the women had an individual reason for joining this clinic: lose weight, run faster, set a personal best time, meet new people, and so on.

The clinic leaders welcomed runners, both new and veteran, and outlined how the evening and next 10 weeks would unfold. Every week, participants would be greeted by then-store manager Phil Marsh as they arrived. Runners gathered around clothing racks, perused the latest styles and eventually huddled with those of equal running pace while they waited in anticipation for the session to start. The weekly routine entailed a guest speaker and a breakdown of the evening’s workout—followed by packs of runners taking over the Rideau Canal path for their scheduled group run. Continue reading “Say Hello to the Run-elles”

GTA Women Runs Oakville Half Marathon Blindfolded

My name is Stephanie Thompson and I run to raise awareness for mental health.

My friend Sam Chefero and I are from Aurora, ON. Together we recently conquered the Oakville Half Marathon with an added challenge: I was running blindfolded tethered to my running guide, Sam. I was running in the complete dark for the entire 21K race. For me, this blindfolded experience symbolized what it can feel like struggling with mental health; alone, consumed by your thoughts and surrounded by darkness. Continue reading “GTA Women Runs Oakville Half Marathon Blindfolded”

My Natural Medication

by Marjan Ashrafi

My depression and anxiety started back in 2004, when I lost my only sibling. My young and beautiful sister died in an accident. After her death, I began to notice myself worrying and overthinking everything. Crying became a daily part of living. I didn’t have any 
motivation for anything. I felt my medication wasn’t helping enough. I hated myself and my life.

Continue reading “My Natural Medication”

The Sixth Star

The Tokyo Marathon

 Below, another Canadian runner shares her story of completing the Tokyo Marathon, the sixth event in the Abbott World Marathon Majors series (the other five are Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York). Now in its 12thyear, the series attracts thousands of runners from 190 countries. Amateurs can vie to complete all the races in the coveted Six Star Finisher program, which was launched in 2014. Continue reading “The Sixth Star”

A Change for the Better

by Shane Dixon

If anyone tells you that running will change your life, you should listen, because it’s true. I’m living proof.

Throughout most of my life, the bulk of my time was spent going to the gym, lifting weights, and, like most younger men, trying to become bigger and more muscular. I often neglected the importance of cardio activities, and instead focused mostly on weight training. During this period of my life, I also enjoyed Toronto’s night life, and spent many nights going out to bars and binge-drinking with friends. Partying served as the perfect outlet for me as I was unhappy with parts of my life, miserable with my sales job, and chose to drown my sorrows with alcohol. Continue reading “A Change for the Better”

Big Bird in Tokyo

Below, a Canadian runner shares her story of completing the Tokyo Marathon, the sixth event in the Abbott World Marathon Majors series (the other five are Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York). Now in its 12thyear, the series attracts thousands of runners from 190 countries. Amateurs can vie to complete all the races in the coveted Six Star Finisher program, which was launched in 2014. Continue reading “Big Bird in Tokyo”

I Did It!

by Alice Bohlen

I never really considered myself a runner or someone who has the “running bug.” But, all of that changed when I volunteered at the legendary Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend in 2015. The people were cheering, upbeat music was playing and there was a lot of diversity in the crowd. It was the hidden community of running that I always seemed to be drawn to. So, two years later, on the occasion of Canada’s 150th anniversary, I completed a 10K race with my cousin. In this first run, the thing that made the biggest difference for me was the atmosphere. It certainly was the best source of adrenaline that I could have.

Continue reading “I Did It!”

Running Bloopers

by Kristi York

Finish-line moments are highly memorable, no question. You’ll always remember how you felt as you achieved a personal best time or conquered a new distance. But you likely also have other moments etched in your mind: the mistakes, the mix-ups, the times things didn’t go as planned. Once on a run in my neighbourhood, I slipped on a patch of black ice, resulting in a spectacular wipe-out where I landed squarely on my (to use a technical term) left heinie. Every time I run past that corner, I cringe inwardly. If you’re a runner, you’ve likely experienced a running blunder of some kind. Here are three of my greatest goof-ups:

Locked Out
I headed out for a mid-day run with my house key stashed safely in my zippered pocket. It was a chilly fall day and as I rounded the corner for home, I eagerly imagined having a hot shower and putting on some cozy, comfortable clothes. The only problem was, the garment I was already wearing wasn’t going to cooperate. The zipper of the pocket containing my key was completely, utterly stuck in the closed position. I pulled and tugged, but the thing wouldn’t budge. I was not carrying a phone and we do not have a hidden outdoor key. Plus, it was a weekday, so all the neighbours were at work.

Continue reading “Running Bloopers”