by Shauna McCooeye
I wanted to share my story because if I had not joined the Women’s Learn to run I would have never experienced all the monumental moments that have happened over the last three years.
I was a runner when I was younger and then life was busy and I stopped. I kept trying to get started but it would never last past the summer. After I had my second child I decided it was time so I joined the Women’s Learn to Run in Callingwood. I was nervous, but I met nice people and people just like me who wanted to experience the thrill of running 10 & 1s and then finally 20 minutes straight running!
My first 5 km with the Running Room at Hawrelark Park was awesome and I was totally hooked. I was on maternity leave from work during this running experience and found out that my work buddies were running at lunch so this worked well – when I went back to work I had group support and the four of us were a very tight group meeting to run at Kinsmen on Saturday or Sunday mornings for our “long run”. My running buddies kept me going and we would enter Running Room runs together to keep motivated. Then, my crazy group decided to try a triathlon. My one experienced running friend who trained with RR for half marathons and marathons and did an iron man thought it was time for us to go to the next step.
I would never have even thought of doing a triathlon or trying one, but I could run 5 km so it was not entirely out of the question. I spent 8 months learning how to swim and bike and keeping up the running to enter 2 events, last year’s ITU Tri the Try and Leduc Women’s Only Tri (750 swim, 20 km bike and 5 km run) and had the most fabulous and memorable experience of my life! : ) It is truly a natural high!
I continue to run entering fun runs and ran with my sister-in-law who did her first half marathon in the Capital City Savings Run (I did the 10 km) and Beat the Beethoven is next and maybe just maybe there will be more triathlons in my future!
So thank you Running Room & Happy 20th Anniversary for helping me and many many others take that most important first step to make a commitment and achieve reachable goals — I would have never experienced any of these memorable events if I had not joined.