Mudmoiselle

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Looking for a great sporting event to take part in and help out a great cause all at once? Then consider taking part in one of the Canadian Cancer Society‘s Mudmoiselle races coming up in the next couple of weeks.

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Mudmoiselle is much more than just a mud run. The goal of the event is to not only raise funds for the organization but also but also raise awareness for all types of cancer. The Canadian Cancer Society is the primary funder of cancer research in the country. Their mission is to educate Canadians on the 200 different types of cancer, work on cancer prevention and help those affected by cancer through a variety of services and support.

This women’s-only 5k and 18-obstacle run is all about having a good time. The course is open to all levels and is a good introduction to mud runs for those who are new at these kinds of sporting events.

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One of the most inspiring things about Mudmoiselle is seeing women like Sherry Meehan, who are currently undergoing treatment for cancer be a part of the event.

I asked Sherry to share a bit of her story and why she continues to take part in sporting events while battling cancer.

I have led an active lifestyle with exercise since my 30s and starting to run in my mid-40s, eating well and looking after myself so it was a surprise (shock) to me to be diagnosed with breast cancer in January this year. Everything happened so fast from the diagnosis to the surgery and then the start of treatment that I didn’t have a lot of time to think about it. I always thought that if I ever got cancer I would just go into a corner and die but fortunately that didn’t happen. I was lucky to have a very treatable form of breast cancer and, being risk averse, chose the most aggressive treatment for chemo and radiation,” she explains.

At the time she was already signed up for the Mississauga Marathon and with the support of her husband and friends continued training and even completed it. “I found the importance of a good support network made a huge difference and I had enough friends and family that stepped up to support me,” Sherry adds.

During the past couple of months, Sherry has continued being active even during her intensive treatment rounds. “Keeping active during chemo and radiation is not easy. You feel tired, nauseous, have bone or muscle pain, low blood counts and not be eating or sleeping very well. BUT any activity you can do will benefit your recovery,” she says.

For me, it increased my appetite, helped me sleep better, minimized a lot of the side effects so they were manageable and increased my energy. I worked with a personal trainer two days a week, ran when I could and did some yoga and stretching to remain limber. I wanted to maintain as much muscle mass as I could during treatment so I could recover my health faster after treatment was done and I could go back to my regular life,” Sherry continues, “running has given me some mental toughness and that really helped in dealing with treatment.

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As to why she wanted to partake in an event like Mudmoiselle, she explains that as a benefiter of the research done by the Canadian Cancer Society, there’s no better run to support. “I gathered some sister-in-laws and a niece and am busy making pink costumes for us. We are not fast runners but every race we do is one where we have fun and support each other! Since that seems to be the theme for this event we will fit right in. It will also be a challenge for me but it will make me feel stronger at the end,” she concludes.

There are a handful of Mudmoiselle events that will be taking place across Ontario in the next couple of weeks. The dates and locations are as follows:

August 20th – Sudbury, ON

September 10th – Beaver Valley, ON

September 16th – Kingston H.S., ON

September 17th – Kingston, ON

September 17th – Halton, ON

September 24th – London, ON

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I am excited to be taking part in the Halton event on September 17th with my sister. I can’t wait to drag cancer through the mud!

For more information on Mudmoiselle or see how you can raise money for the event, go here.

Fit Summer

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July is here and it’s the perfect time to get your fitness in gear. It’s the perfect month to try new outdoor workouts and change your fitness routine.

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Growing up, I spent most of my summers going to the pool every day and biking around but as soon as I hit adolescence and with having to work a summer job, my fitness level dropped significantly.

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Last year was the first year in my adult life that I really kept my fitness level up, whether it’d be with running, partaking in races, swimming, surfing, biking, etc. This summer I’ve decided to push it one notch further.

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This weekend I’ll be racing my 5th race of the season already, something I would have never thought possible just a year ago. I’m excited for Spartan Race on Saturday and already can’t wait to plan the next one right after that.

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In between races, I’ve been keeping active by biking every day, running several times a week, doing a variety of fitness classes, swimming, etc. How are you staying fit this summer?

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Photos by: @Offner

What I’m wearing: Hyba Combo Medium-Impact Sports Bra (get it here), Hyba Combo Compression Short (get it here).

This post was written in collaboration with Hyba but all opinions are my own.

Toronto Waterfront 10

TW10_logo-TWToronto is getting a brand new 10k run this summer. Called the Toronto Waterfront 10, this new race evolved from the well-known Toronto Yonge Street 10k that usually took place in April of ever year. Now set to take place on Satuday June 25th 2016, this brand new race will showcase some of Toronto’s best running views.

The race will start at Queen and University and similar to the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon, will head down to lakeshore. The route will then take participants west before returning east along the water. Runners will be able to run along the scenic waterfront for most of the run.

Over 7000 people are expected to race and those who register can also help support any of the three featured charities: the Canadian Olympic Foundation, Second Harvest of Red Door family shelter by fundraising during their training.

On May 12th, the organizers of the #Waterfront10 in collaboration with the RunTOBeer group will be hosting a friendly beer training run that will be starting at the Amsterdamn BrewHouse and that will take runners on some of the actual course route from the Toronto Waterfront 10. The run is open to everyone and will feature 10k, 5k and 3k routes. Once the run complete, the participants will get an exclusive first look at the brand new finishers’ medal for the #Waterfront10. They will also be greeted with a pint of beer and have the chance to meet the pacers, representing the different run clubs in the city, who will be pacing the race on June 25th.

To celebrate this brand new race in Toronto, I am giving away 2 things:

1 free entry into the Toronto Waterfront 10 race

1 free entry to the RunTOBeer event happening on May 12th

For your chance to win, all you have to do is – Follow @melsays on Instagram + comment what event you want to win a spot to below the photo I posted today April 27th 2016 at 12pm talking about the race. I will announce the two winners on Instagram on Sunday May 1st.

See you at the starting line on June 25th!

Road to Nike Women’s 15k

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One of my goals for 2015 included signing up for my first ever race. Not only did I sign up for my first ever 10k race in May but I also recently signed for my first ever 15k race with Nike Women happening in Toronto on June 14th.

To some, running 15k might seem like a small feat, but for someone like me who’s never actually run that distance in my entire life, this race is a BIG deal. I’m one of those people that never really considered myself a runner but in the past couple of months, I’ve stopped using that as an excuse and have made running of one my main focuses in becoming a healthier, stronger and better me! Because this will be my first time ever running such a distance and also training for a big race, I thought it would be a neat idea to blog about my 10-week journey leading up to the big day. I know that a lot of the women I’ve spoken to, will also be running this distance for the very first time. I’m hoping that through chronicling this journey that we can help each other and give each other tips and motivation to not only get stronger and better leading up to the race but also motivate each other on race day to not only cross the finish line but also run our best!

Each Sunday, I’ll be writing a short recap of my training week. I want to share with you how I’m feeling, what I learned as well as the ups and downs of my journey because I think we can all learn from each other during this process. Whether you’re doing the Nike Women’s 15k race, another race or just training for yourself, I’m hoping that these blogs will help you along the way. I will also try to include some #5QuestionsWith interviews with people that can potentially help & inspire us along the way.

I’ve decided to take on this challenge as a personal challenge first and foremost. I really believe that you can push the human body and mind to do so many incredible things. It’s also taking me back to my years of competitive swimming, skipping and karate as a kid and teenager. I can still recall waking up the morning of a competition, feeling super nervous, not being able to eat and being anxious up until the event started and then feeling so relieved and happy after the event. I feel that I will feel the exact same thing on the morning on June 14th.

Please feel free to comment and share your experience along the way. Here’s to an awesome 10-week journey towards the Nike Women’s 15k. Let’s do this!

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Photos by @Offner

Nike FlyKnit Lunar 3 Women’s Running Shoes (get them here)

Nike Run Epic Lux All Over Print Women’s Tight (get them here)

Nike Run Dri-Fit Knit Women’s Long Sleeve (get it here)

Nike Pro Classic Padded Bra Top Womens (get it here)

Stable 26 Running Socks (get them here)