iRun.ca

iRun because I cannot say no to a second slice of chocolate cakeEmily Shandruk , Vancouver, BC

iRun to stay fit and release those running endorphinsLiliana Plava , Calgary, AB

iRun because I want to qualify for Boston and raise money for charities near and dear to my heartChristine Gracel , Calgary, AB

iRun because it makes me feel good, allows me to spend time with my friends and gives me a feeling of accomplishmentHelen Kolodziejzyk , Calgary, AB

iRun but not enoughMichael Shaw , New Westminister, BC

iRun because I never thought I would be able toGary Morris , Winnipeg, MB

iRun to challenge myself, physically and mentallyKathleen Keenan , Brampton, ON

iRun because people around me inspire mePina Bevilacqua , Caledon, ON

iRun therefore I amDuncan Walsh , Nottingham, UK

iRun because I liveGeorges Schneller , Laval, QC

iRun to be free and enjoy our beautiful countryCheryl Carter , Clearwater , BC

iRun for overall wellbeingTrish McCourt , Halifax, NS

iRun because it makes me a better person, a better wife, a better mother and a better friendNathalie Joncas-Caissie , St-Antoine, NB

iRun because it makes me feel powerfulCarlene Paquette , Carp, ON

iRun because pecan pie, french fries and beer are chasing meTeresa Sterling , Ottawa , ON

iRun because it’s in meMichael Foley , Stittsville, ON

iRun because it reminds me that I am capable of so much more than I have doneJames Sauve , Ottawa, ON

iRun for meKiza Francis , Ottawa,ON

iRun to prove to myself I canLesley McGougan , Brampton, ON

iRun because all the ladies are chasing my sexy runner’s bodyChris Baker , Etobicoke, ON

iRun because I can and I’m gratefulTerry SanCartier , Gatineau, QC

iRun because when I run I feel most aliveMeghan Lynch , Ottawa, ON

iRun to unleash my inner athleteAdelle Densham , Avonmore, ON

iRun because it cleans up my life, because I drink more water, sleep better and eat healthier foodsRobin McIntyre , Ottawa, ON

iRun because of the peace and strength it brings meMichelle Jordan , Ottawa, ON

iRun because I need it to soothe the soul, keep me in shape and for overall wellbeingBeth Neil , Lombardy, ON

iRun because it is my tonic and my salvation Georgia Ioannou , British Columbia

iRun for relaxation and to motivate my two sonsKeith Bradbury , Newfoundland

iRun because endorphins are freeCassandra Chouinard , Ontario

iRun because somebody once told me I couldn’t Heidi Abbey-Der , Saskatchewan

iRun because couch potatoes die young Cathy Andrew , Ontario

iRun because it’s cheaper than therapy Leah Boulter , Alberta

iRun because I like buying running clothes Pamela Blaikie , Ontario

iRun slowly!Jason Hoffman , Manitoba

iRun because it gives me freedom to relax my brainMarie-Claude Gregoire , Nova Scotia

iRun because I learn more about who I am with every kmSteph Mansell , Quebec

iRun because iEat Sherry Maligaspe , British Columbia

iRun and run, and run, and run, and nobody can stop me Andrei Lucaciu , Ontario

iRun because the wall is meant to be broken Jonathan Bird , Ontario

iRun because it has saved my life John Marshall , Alberta

iRun for the challenge to go faster and farther Steven Matejka , Alberta

iRun to my happy place and some days it’s very Doreen May , Alberta

iRun because food tastes better afterwards Patrick Houston , Alberta

iRun because I can’t dance Mario Javier , Ontario

iRun so I don’t say never ever again Linda Klaric , Manitoba

iRun because it makes me whole Denis Ladouceur , Quebec

iRun because it gets my husband out there Tricia LaLonde , Alberta

iRun away from the negative and towards the positive Teri Lepard , Alberta

iRun because running is like breathing to Stephanie McEvoy , Ontario

iRun because I love the solitude Janene Tailleur , British Columbia

iRun for the moment when both feet are off the ground Catherine Anderson , British Columbia

iRun to someday win the race Lindy Dunlop , Yukon

iRun to stay ahead of the weight gainMyra Abstreiter , Alberta

iRun because otherwise I’m grumpy Alexandre Charest , Quebec

iRun because I get foot rubs afterward Kate Howerton , British Columbia

iRun because iLoves my man Beverly Huang , Alberta

iRun because not everyone can Olivia Harvey , New Brunswick

iRun to get to know myself, my strength and my spirit Lisa Groulx , Ontario

iRun whenever I feel the need to escape Iona Hillis , Ontario

iRun because it’s like flying, only lower Glenn Johnson , Ontario

iRun because it makes me feel powerful Sarah Kallaghan , Alberta

iRun because I’ve lost 80 lbs and running has become fun Cheryl Kelly , Ontario

iRun because there is no finish line Claire Kilgour , Ontario

iRun so my daughters know that they can, too Shelley Kirkpatrick , New Brunswick

iRun because it reminds me of how strong I can be Monique Lavoie , Ontario

iRun because it’s a great way to see the world Sherry Mahoney , British Columbia

iRun because my heart tells me to William Martin , Manitoba

iRun to prove to them that iCan Catherine Smith , Manitoba

iRun because it’s fun when it’s done Sue Matte , Ontario

iRun because I am not as clumsy I thought I was Hanna Baer , Quebec

iRun see where my feet will take me todayMegan Dolinskas , New York

iRun for the cool t-shirts! Pina Bevilacqua , Ontario

iRun because I want to be a role model for our six kids Catherine Empey , British Columbia

iRun to inspire my kids to tryGlen Johnston , Nunavut

iRun so I can eat ice cream Sandy Bolan , Ontario

iRun because I want to live to be 100! Colette DeJean , Ontario

iRun for health, i Run for life Pat Cheung , British Columbia

iRun because it gives my day a boost of energy Sara Campbell , Nova Scotia

iRun because it’s better than almost everything else Nathan Carey , Ontario

iRun at 50 years old because at 43 I couldn’t Peter Cicalo , Ontario

iRun because it's better than almost everything else Nathan Carey , Ontario

iRun at 50 years old because at 43 I couldn't Peter Cicalo , Ontario

iRun because it is my tonic and my salvation Georgia Ioannou , British Columbia

iRun for relaxation and to motivate my two sons Keith Bradbury , Newfoundland

iRun because endorphins are free Cassandra Chouinard , Ontario

iRun because somebody once told me I couldn't Heidi Abbey-Der , Saskatchewan

iRun because couch potatoes die young Cathy Andrew , Ontario

iRun because it's cheaper than therapy Leah Boulter , Alberta

iRun because I like buying running clothes Pamela Blaikie , Ontario

iRun slowly! Jason Hoffman , Manitoba

iRun because it gives me freedom to relax my brain Marie-Claude Gregoire , Nova Scotia

iRun because I learn more about who I am with every km Steph Mansell , Quebec

iRun because iEat Sherry Maligaspe , British Columbia

iRun for my heart, so it runs for me! Cathy Brzoza , British Columbia

iRun to inspire my children! Wendy Bowen , Manitoba

iRun because it sure beats the bus Robin Robbins , Alberta

iRun for the challenge and to remember to fully live Pascale Synnott , Québec

iRun to kickstart my day Sharon Strueby , Saskatchewan

iRun for me! Judi Wearing , Saskatchewan

iRun because it's a great stress release Brooke McKenzie , Yukon

iRun because i love to Mirella Petriello , Ontario

iRun because it helps me see things more clearly Jennifer Pitts , Ontario

iRun to eat Maureen Tritscher , Alberta

iRun to correct years of sedentary living! Mike Scott , Ontario

iRun away from the abyss Charlene Thomas , Ontario

iRun all the livelong day Pierre Saint-Laurent , Québec

iRun to challenge my perceived limitations Cassandra Williams , Ontario

iRun to maintain a strong physical and mental state Tammy Rainville , Ontario

iRun so that I can live longer and stronger Derek MacPhail , Ontario

iRun to feel great Kathryn Rachar , Saskatchewan

iRun because I like to be healthy Melanie Oickle , New Brunswick

iRun to eat more, especially sweet potatoe fries Joanna Skomra , Ontario

iRun for the fresh air and adrenalin Charlyn McGregor , Saskatchewan

iRun for the individual pursuit Robert Pelletier , New Brunswick

iRun to satisfy the irresistible urge Tim Nixon , British Columbia

iRun because I love the sense of accomplishment Amber Moase , Nova Scotia

iRun to challenge my mind, body and soul Sonia Mendes , Ontario

iRun because walking is too slow Barry Knapp , Ontario

News, No Category selected

Ragnar Wisdom: Making the Most of the Run and Your Fellow Runners

(All photos courtesy of Heather Gardner/Tribe Fitness)

Ragnar is, like, so hot right now. It’s not just a race. It’s an adventure and an experience that builds (and perhaps also tests) friendships and stretches boundaries.

A group of 12 women ranging three decades in age got together for their first Ragnar recently, putting in a combined 300+ km over 24 hours from Coburg to Niagara and managing to rank as the top all women’s team. Some had known each other for years as members of Toronto run crew Tribe Fitness, while some only made acquaintance as the race began.

For those aspiring to their first Ragnar, the group shares the following lessons.

Don’t think too much…

If your first thought is how difficult it’s going to be to run long distances on little sleep while sharing a van with sweaty and cranky runners, you may not be inclined to hop on board. Instead, Andrea Salin advises, “You never know when or if the opportunity will come again so you need to just jump in then maybe freak out a bit later.”

Recruit those who owe you a favour…

While many Ragnar teams just rotate drivers between then, Anna Kobb says, “…having a designated driver was really nice. In the case of the ‘A team’ van, that driver was my husband, who took a break from driving to run with me for the night leg and to run the final leg with me. I absolutely could not have kept up the intense effort, grinding it out up to Niagara Falls without him.”

Know your strengths…

Team member Damara Nickerson says, “We all have different strengths and interests when it comes to running, so were able to split up the different legs to suit our abilities and preferences. We had so much more fun cheering each other on, knowing we were each playing to our strengths.”  

And your weaknesses…

You may love the people you’ll be running with, but you’ve never spent days with them in a van. Kat Peterson says to voice your concerns and needs before your driver turns the key. Kat says, “If you know you’re going to need a nap between midnight and three or you’ll get cranky, tell your van. If you know you need to eat pizza after each leg, tell your van.  If you know you can’t stand the smell of pizza in a van, suggest you make a pizza stop instead of getting take out.”

Don’t walk around acting like your sweat don’t stink…

Kat adds that no one likes a smelly runner, so change your damn clothes. This will also prevent you from learning what Angela Valdes did the hard way. “I would definitely pack more non-running clothes and bring a warm sleeping bag! We spent a few hours after our nighttime legs trying to get some sleep on the cold cement floor of the Burlington Central Arena. All I had was a bunch of sweaty clothes to lay on the ground,” Angela recalls with horror. Teammate Alyssa Cheung adds that, “…sitting in a cramped van after running is so much comfier in sweatpants and sandals.”

Running during the night and day is…night and day…

Alyssa remembers her latest leg at 1:30 a.m., finding herself, “…getting startled by my own shadow, footsteps and rustling of the leaves. I think I ran faster than I usually would because I didn’t want to find out the boogeyman was real and living in Oakville.”*

Teammate Kim Bergerson says she, “…just felt completely depleted the whole time. Add to this a wall of wind of 30km/h and you’ve got one hell of a race.” The experience reminded Kim how vital the mental game is in running and that, “The body will go where the mind goes, and knowing that Heather was waiting for me at the finish line just kept me going!”

You might actually enjoy it…

Despite the fatigue, cramped conditions, and vans reeking of pizza, it’s pretty unanimous that the experience made for closer, stronger friendships that will likely last beyond the Ragnar van. Amber Renton admits she was a bit nervous, but in the end, “…had so much fun I’m pretty sure I drove my family crazy talking about it for weeks afterwards. I’d do it again in a heartbeat and I’m fortunate for the new friendships I’ve gained!”

Courtney Lundrigan, who put out the initial call on Twitter to form a team, says that despite the challenges of planning this race while still dealing with life’s other obligations, “Ragnar made me fall in love with running all over again, and I have such a renewed love for my running community. “

Kim Agostino found herself amazed at, “…the transformation of our small group of extremely different women, some meeting for the first time, into the supportive, determined and encouraging team we became.”

The team effort and moral support always evens to bring individual runners to  their best. As the group came together to complete the final 200 meters together, Allison MIceli felt the moment summarizes, “The vulnerability, grit, determination, emotion, ambition and sheer commitment from each and every one of them allowed us to all give this 110% on the course, along with tirelessly supporting one another when we were not running.”

*It has not been confirmed whether or not the boogeyman lives in Oakville.

For bonus reading, check out team member Heather Gardner’s blog 5 THINGS I WISH I KNEW BEFORE MY FIRST RAGNAR RELAY

June 15th, 2017

Leave a Comment

Current issue: Issue 4. 2017
GET A FREE DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTION HERE!
pick up the iRun magazine at a newsstand near you -
Login or Register
iRun on FacebookFollow Us on TwitteriRun Videos on YouTubeRSS Feed of our Issue ArchivesPintrestOur Google+ Page
Play the latest iRun Podcast now!