Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The Tallest Poppy Run Club

The Tallest Poppy Run Club

The Tallest Poppy Run Club is inclusive of all runners of all abilities.  Our target neighbourhoods are Wolseley and West Broadway, but other folks are welcome.  The Tallest Poppy Run Club will be led by Ted’s Run for Literacy board members all of whom are very experienced runners.

A twelve-week running program building strength and endurance for participants to comfortably run a 5 km or 10 km distance with confidence and success.  We will run different routes through the neighbourhood always starting and finishing at The Tallest Poppy. We will slowly increase our distance every week. Each session will start with a talk about a different aspect of running including nutrition, injury prevention, benefit to mental health and more.

Twelve consecutive Thursday evenings in July, August, and September at 6:00 to 7:00.

The Tallest Poppy, 103 Sherbrook in the heart of The Beautiful West End.

We believe running not only promotes physical and mental health, it also builds friendships, confidence, and adds to the vibrancy of the neighbourhood. The Tallest Poppy is at the crossroads of Wolseley and West Broadway, and is a welcoming meeting place for the adjoining neighbourhoods. In other words, a perfect location to bridge the gap and build community.

For more information contact:

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Your Pace or Mine? by Lisa Jackson

I received a cheery email from Bridget Robinson the other day requesting support in promoting her friend's book, Your Pace or Mine.  Bridget is well known in Winnipeg's running community and is the race director of the Street Feet Run Well run in Point Douglas.  She's a person of unbridled positive energy and we share an audacious dream of social justice for all.  When Bridget speaks, I listen.

Your Pace or Mine? What Running Taught Me About Life, Laughter, and Coming Last is one runner's reflection of what it means to be a runner.  Having run over 100 marathon, Lisa Jackson is a serious distance runner with more than a few stories.  Her 23 DFLs (dead f*ing last) are a source of inspiration and pride for Lisa. While many runners would be less than pleased with a single DFL let alone 23, she sees the DFLs as a source of strength and indeed, life lessons. Lisa Jackson bio reads:

...she sets out to show that running's really not about the time you do but the time you have, and tells not only her own story but those of the everyday heroes she's met along the way.

Lisa is visiting Winnipeg from London England. She will run the Manitoba Marathon half-marathon and on June 30 will deliver a talk on "Ten things I've Learned on the way to 100 marathons" at 7:00 PM at the King's Head Pub. She will also have copies of her book for sale at $15.00.  We are fortunate to have Lisa visit peg City to share her story.  Be sure to drop by the King's Head for a pint and a story... you won't be disappointed, but don't take my word... there's dozens of reviews. Here's a couple to whet your appetite.

A wonderfully written, inspirational and philosophical book, not just about running but also about life and the many challenges it can throw at us. Heartbreakingly sad in some chapters, hilarious in others, it’s a great read. Lisa’s amazing multiple marathon achievements and the life lessons she has gained make for compelling reading.

(Christina Macdonald, Launch Editor of Women’s Running UK and author of Run Yourself Fit)

Jackson reads like a barefoot romp in the park on a rainy day: refreshing, quirky, deeply insightful, and not afraid to get her feet dirty!

(Lorraine Moller, Olympic medallist and Boston Marathon winner)

I have about 25 books on running in my collection.  Some notables are The Memory of Running by Ron McLarty,  Lore of Running by Tim Noakes,  Once A Runner by John Parker, Born To Run by Christopher McDougall, and Running and Being by George Sheehan. There's a space waiting for Your Pace or Mine by Lisa Jackson next to these distinguished noteables.

It's a good day to be alive.


King’s Head Pub and Eatery  – 120 King Street

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Scott Sugimoto runs for Jen

Scott's hydration station.
Scott Sugimoto ran 100 kilometers today to support Jen, a colleague with cancer.He had at least one runner along his side for every minute of his 14 hour odyssey.  I joined him at 10 AM and managed 15 miles.  During this time I learned Jen's story.

Jen is 25 years old, works at Home Depot, and according to Scott, shatters any stereotype we may hold of young people. Jen is a dynamo and is passionate about her job.  She continues to work despite her poor health and thinks of others before she gives a moment's consideration to herself. Jen has what the doctors refer to as an "undiagnosed cancer".  A cancer without a name, but with all the trepidation, grievous symptoms, and pain.  Jen and her mom need to travel to The Mayo Clinic for experimental treatment.  Because the cancer is undiagnosed and the treatment experimental, her expenses are not covered by Home Depot's private insurance or Manitoba Health.  All expenses are out pocket.

Scott and friend Junel Malapad.
Jen's initial stay at Mayo Clinic is two weeks at, let's say, roughly $1000 a day and likely much more. Jen's mom is a single parent on a limited income and Jen, like most 25 year olds, does not have significant savings.  The good folks at Home Depot have generously agreed to match fundraising efforts dollar for dollar.

Our Scott, our dear Scott, raised over $1000 in fives and tens and twenties.  Runners and children, and parents, and Home Depot staff stuffed cash into his hands as he ran. With eyes brimming over, Scott acknowledged each and every gift with a hug and with an exclamation of humbleness. He was overwhelmed with gratitude and we are overwhelmed with pride, pride and love of this man and his gift.

The smile never left his face.
Scott and Jen are not heros.  They're not special.  They're not even much different than you and me They're just normal folks who believe in the power of positive energy and the strength of community. They use their gifts to motivate us to rise up and change the world one step, one breath, one prayer at a time.

We are the lucky ones.  We are lucky to have Scott and Jen in our lives. Please pay it forward and send a few toonies Jen's way.   Find Scott Sugimoto on Facebook and message him your support. An e-cash transfer is so simple... a few clicks and you're done.

Jeff, Dale, Scott, Donovan changing the world one breath at a time.
Hey y'all, it's a good day to be alive. Make it even better and message Scott.


PS... Scott Sugimoto is currently training for Fat Dog 120 mile ultra marathon and is the designated 4:30 pacer for the Manitoba Marathon... that and he's the finest gentleman I know.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Boston Marathon Bombing

Bob and Julie Steinberg are anchors in Winnipeg's running community. Bob and Julie are twice survivors and twice lucky. They survived the Boston Marathon bombing by a sliver. Bob was seconds away from harm's way, lost in smoke and panic, Julie tripping through chaos, crying and fearful of the worst, desperately searching for her dear Bob. Bob had passed mile 26. Julie was to meet him with dry clothes and a hug. 

That was the plan. 

Our dear, sweet Julie is on a another journey of surival, a journey of endless chemotherapy, soul depleting radiation, and exhaustion. They survived Boston and they will survive cancer. 

They are so loved and admired by their peers. How could we possibly survive in the absence of their warmth and humour? Where would we be and what would we do without their indomitable spirit and courage? 

Bob and Julie make us proud. They are survivors.

This is Bob and Julie's story of the Boston Bombing.

I am Julie, 61, married to Bob Steinberg, 62. We were both registered for 2013, but I withdrew my tour entry, disabled after knee surgery. On April 15, friends and I cheered at mile 21. Alone I caught the train to meet Bob with warm clothes after his finish. 

My train was evacuated just before going underground. I thought the subway exploded! I had both phones and couldn't reach Bob. Panicked, I found strength to run for the first time in six months. I eventually found the skymall. Police blocked exits to my hotel, saying the Marriott was evacuated. Phone lines jammed, I texted friends as my battery died. 

Running through the mall in tears, I heard my name. Miraculously, we had found each other. Bob had passed 26 miles, heard the explosions, was ushered off course, and thought it was in the subway where I was. We held each other crying. Then he pulled on dry clothes, plugged in phones, and we learned what happened from a storefront TV. He was a half block from the second explosion. Barraged with calls and texts, we let family and friends know we were safe. The mall was then evacuated. Confused and terrified, we found the way back of our hotel and were allowed inside. 

Media, interviews, friends, each other, time, healing. Bob still cries sometimes, but will run Boston 2014. We plan to spend time there afterwards. I am running again. The possibility of running Boston with my husband brings me to tears.

And Bob adds...

Anecdotally, I had knee surgery in Nov 2011, the second arthroscopy on my left knee. I did not recover well and it took many months and much Physio to recover. The invitation to Boston motivated me to train hard. We joined Rehfit that winter which made it easier, especially being able to run downhill on treadmills. Returning to Boston was intense. Each time we came to a spot which brought back memories of the year before, waves of emotion washed over us with goosebumps and tears. 

We ran the 5 k together, retracing the route Bob had been running when all hell broke loose. We held hands, running and sobbing, together conquering the demons of memory and fear. Running the race was incredibly healing. The crowds were the biggest ever, and so excited and supportive. Over and over, the people of the city thanked us for coming and running. Together Boston was strong.

We didn't run the Marathon (on Monday) together: Iran my fastest Boston Marathon time (of 4) in 3:55:18

See Mike Run blogged the Boston Marathon bombing on April 29, 2013. Click here  4:09:34 into the 3rd wave.   It is the only blog post that did not end in "It's a good day to be alive"... it just didn't seem appropriate. 

Yes, it's a good day to be alive, lest we forget.