Tuesday, May 7, 2024 – Running for resilience (Cheryl Whittam)

Hi Everyone!


Wow, what a weekend. In races we had Erin (5th in AG) and Graeme (2nd in AG) both in the Georgina Half marathon. Here in Toronto we had Shauna and Cindy run the full both getting official BQ’s and Cindy a PB and 3rd in her AG! As I always say and would like to reiterate: just getting through marathon training and to the start line is a success. Then finishing the marathon is a second success. A strong race with a time you’re happy with is not owed or delivered to many people. This is part of what keeps us trying again and again. And it IS the journey!

Also in the Toronto half we had Lyndsay with a fantastic time (close to PB) despite many training setbacks. Sometimes you just have to say “eff it” and throw yourself in the ring anyway. Way to go.


This week we have a guest post from our newest member Cheryl! Thank-you Cheryl. I think it helps for us to sometimes step back and remember the bigger picture and our “why”. It’s not all about times and egos. Cheryl’s words really bring that home.


Running for Resilience


“I didn’t know what to do, so I went out and ran because it was the only thing to do”. ~ Terry Fox


Running has helped me navigate so many personal and professional challenges in my life.  It’s helped me though stressful jobs, heartbreak, fertility challenges, and most recently the passing of my Dad. 


My Dad was a long distance runner completing numerous marathons and half marathons throughout his lifetime.  However in September 2020 at the age of 67 he passed away very suddenly from a rare and aggressive form of cancer. 


His love for the sport sparked my own interest at a very young age and he was my running buddy throughout my life.  After his passing, I felt a bit like Forest Gump and went on a 100+ day running streak to try and process some of the grief I was feeling.


In 2023 and 2024 I had the privilege of running the NYC half marathon in his honour and raised over $7,000 in support of the Terry Fox Foundation.  In addition, I was also recently accepted to run the 2024 Berlin Marathon. After 16 half marathons, I am finally attempting a full marathon! 


I am looking forward to training with all of you in the LES Crew in preparation for Berlin.  I will also be running it in honour of my Dad and in support of the Terry Fox Foundation.  Berlin has always been a dream race for my Dad and I.  We actually applied for it in 2020, and my Dad was learning German in preparation for the event. However unfortunately COVID and cancer had other plans.


Running various half marathons around the world with my Dad has brought me so much joy.  After his passing I was worried I would lose my love for running, however I was pleasantly surprised how it helped me keep part of my connection with him.  It also allowed me to turn some of my pain into purpose.  In addition, I have two young boys (5 and 2 years old) and hope that they will inherit my love for running and one day, run with me, the way I ran with my Dad.


I will always be grateful for running and how it has encouraged me to keep moving forward. As Martin Luther King Jr. so eloquently said: ‘if you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward”.


Long may you run!



On to tomorrow’s workout! Lakeshore and Leslie – 6:05 drills, 6:15 GO


  1. 4-6 x 800 w 1:30 rest – these can be a little cut-down. Start at 10K-ish pace and work your way down. A little longer rest than usual should mean we can get a bit more pace out of them. Then 3 min rest. Then 4 x 400 w 1:15 rest – a lil quicker
  2. If running Sporting Life: 3-4 x 800 w 1:30 (race pace and down) and 2-4 x 400 w 1:15 a lil quicker. I’m giving a range based on how fatigued you are going in and how hard it feels. We don’t want this one to be extremely taxing even though the race isn’t till Sunday.
  3. If you ran Boston, you can start to come back, but keep everything tempo paced.
  4. If you ran London, you can come out and run. Workouts can start back next week.
  5. If you ran Toronto or Georgina, stay in bed.


That is all – see you in the am!