Tuesday, April 30, 2024 – What if I try? (Steph Bannan)

Hi Everyone!


Massive congrats to our marathoners this weekend at Mississauga!!! Lori and Colette both braved the heat and ran very respectable marathons with Lori qualifying for Boston! In the Bum Run 5K we had Sean, Zoë and Jeff running very fast times on what I believe is not a “fast” course. Way to go everyone – feeling inspired! Coming up this weekend in the Toronto Marathon we have Shauna and Cindy (and maybe Roz S? tbd…)  running the full and Lyndsay running the half! We are welcome to join the Culture Cheer station at Underpass Park again – let’s rally with our LES gear!


This week’s guest post is by Steph Bannan. Thank-you Steph!!!


What if I try?




Omg. A chance to write a Seanna-esque email?! I both jump and cower at the chance. She does them so well. How could I hold a candle to such thought-provoking wisdom, and her seemingly psychic ability to put her finger on exactly what many of us are feeling at any given moment. I wouldn’t dare. I couldn’t.

But then again…what if I just tried?

Once upon a time I said “I couldn’t do that” to the idea of racing. Years prior, I even said it about “running outside.” It just wasn’t a thing I thought I could do. A marathon? No way.

Enter the Lower East Siders.

In an “as fate would have it” moment, a predestined friend of a friend introduction, I found this group. It was an amazing workout, a fun group of people, and the perfect time slot for a new mom.

But it was more than that. It was inspiration, teamwork, camaraderie. It was connection on a deeper, more intrinsic level. It was incredible people who didn’t know my last name or anything about me, but who seemed to care as much about my progress as they did their own. It was the thing that got me thinking, “maybe I could try that too?”

And so, just like all of you, I gave it a try. And over time, I became a member of the club. I became “a runner.”

This identity has brought me the highest highs. It’s taught me more about hard work (and grunt work) than I ever thought I’d learn. It has convinced me that the body should be nourished, cared for, and celebrated. It’s made me feel truly proud of myself, and deeply invested in the success of others. It’s brought some lows, too, but nothing pulls you out with more force than a team of people who get it, and who want to see you back out there.  

We’ve all had these experiences – where running has helped us, encouraged us, kept us going, or even saved us. And I’m sure we all have theories as to how and why this sport has gripped us in the way it has. For me, I believe it is because the whole of the group is greater than the sum of its parts. Together, we can see what is possible, and the magic that can happen if you just give it a try.



On to tomorrow’s workout – Riverdale Hills! (or a beach option – tbd) – let’s meet at the clubhouse at the top of the hill at 6:05 for drills, 6:15 GO.


  1. If coming back from Boston or London, or just wanna jog, come out and jog and have a Rooster coffee and tell us your stories.
  2. If you ran Mississauga, come for the coffee – can walk if feeling ok. (or sleep in – you deserve it)
  3. Toronto Marathoners and half marathoners: 2 laps of Riverdale track @ race pace. 2-4 x 1 lap a lil faster (marathoners 2, half marathoners up to 4). 2 min bw all.
  4. Everyone else: 2 x Riverdale hill followed by 2 laps of the track. Rest = slow jog/shuffle between each. I think the range here is 3-5 sets.
  5. If doing hills in the Beach, coordinate w Tanis!


That is all – see you in the am!