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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

Motivation

The Gospel According to Lanni Marchant

Lanni Marchant, double Olympian, woman’s activist, Canada’s all-time fastest marathon and half marathon runner, is iRun’s new question answerer (she doesn’t like being called an “advice columnist”). You ask, she answers—whether it’s about training techniques, dealing with bullies, dating, speed work or lacing up against the best in the world, the floor is open and Lanni is ready. Honesty guaranteed.

Scott Goodburn What’s your favourite craft brewery in Ontario, Lanni? I live near London!

Lanni Marchant: Amsterdam Brewery, though I’m also a fan of Flying Monkeys. One near London is Forked Rivers. I just discovered it and like it a lot.

Amanda Belliveau What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had to face during your training, and how did you overcome it?

Lanni Marchant: Most recently I’ve had to figure my way around dealing with my Dad’s passing. We lost him just before New Year’s Eve and it was unexpected. I’ve been trying to figure out why I did not let the issues between us affect my training before, but I’m letting him have an effect on my training now. January 1st was my official start back to real mileage and there I was dealing with a mental and emotional curve ball. Obviously, this challenge is different than coming back from injury or dealing with running politics, but my approach has been similar. I focus on what I can control and have to be willing to modify some of my mini goals so that I do not lose ground on my big goals. I like writing things down–training notes, workout splits, or just feelings I had during a session.  

My biggest challenge was and is self doubt/fear toward the end of training if I don’t always hit the mark during my workouts. I think I could have done more to be better, stronger, faster. This is why I now keep a training journal for my half marathon and current marathon training, so when those thoughts creep in, I can look back and see my efforts, my split times, my speed training. It’s a work in progress.

Jeff Shikaze How often during the season should I be weight training (is twice enough?), and should it mostly be body weight exercises?  

Lanni Marchant: I weight train year round though it changes from when I am in my base phase versus my peak phase. When I’m not getting destroyed by hard interval or tempo workouts, I’ll be in the gym 3-4 times a week strength training (weights, plyometric exercises, drills and core work). As my season progresses, my strength program cuts back to 2 times a week.  

Marc Roy Do you do most of your running outdoors in the winter and if yes, does the cold affect your pace?

Lanni Marchant: I run outdoors as much as possible year round. Winter running isn’t just about dealing with the cold, but also the extra layers we have to train in, poor footing and less daylight. I run by effort rather than by my watch for any harder efforts.

Yvon Duval Are you single?

Lanni Marchant: Isn’t the standard answer for an athlete to say we date our sport?

Leah Marsh 2016 I did my first half in Vegas, baby! Now with cracking down on my budget and living in northern BC (Fort St. John) and with only a few local 5k and 10k coming up, what’s a good way to find a goal you end up doing by yourself (like a half marathon)?   

Lanni Marchant: Plan on one of the 5k/10k local races, but get in 10-15km of running beforehand and set a time goal. I’ve done this in training when my coach wants a half marathon effort but traveling to one is not a great option. It’s a great balance between working hard on your own and then having people to run hard with.

Jessica Clark Shody Have you ever had to combat bursitis?

Lanni Marchant: In my hips/glutes off and on since college. Rolling out with a lacrosse ball is helpful, as is making sure not to stay seated in one position too long when lawyering.

John Powell Have you got any marathons planned for 2017?

Lanni Marchant: Not this spring, but as we get closer to the summer we’ll evaluate if there’s a fall marathon that seems appealing.

Charlotte Flewelling What got you into running in the first place?

Lanni Marchant: I started running as a form of cross-training for figure skating and also as a form of punishment when I had been a “mis-fit” and my figure skating coaches would make me run laps of the parking lot. I soon discovered that I liked running more than skating and found it refreshing to not have to worry about how I looked competing—I just needed to focus on passing girls and trying to cross the finish line first. My first true running memory is running in the elementary school cross country meet at Spring Bank Park. I had borrowed a pair of running shoes from my girlfriend which were more than a few sizes too big for me and trudged my way around the course.  

James Wild How to taper for distance races? Reduce mileage but keep race pace intensity? Or reduce mileage and intensity? What about speed work during taper?

Lanni Marchant: I do not do well with a long taper. The week of a big race we start backing off the mileage but keeping with some intensity. It’s important to keep some intensity in your program so you do not feel flat or stale, but the volume of the workouts does not need to be high.

Claire Boone I’m going to run my first half in 2017. I’ve been running 12-15k and while I know I can add distance, I struggle to get faster. I’m 5′ 0″ and have short legs. Tips?

Lanni Marchant: If you are already doing a speed program then try adding strides (8-10x 100m pickups) after you have finished your normal mileage runs.  

Stephen Wood What’s your favourite training song that gets your ass moving? Mine is “Kickstart my Heart.”

Lanni Marchant: Dirty Radio’s “Ground Shake” is my race day alarm clock. I listen to it before hard workouts as well.

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February 14th, 2017

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