Run Like A Girl adds week­end trail event in B.C.

The group are plan­ning Squamish’s first of­fi­cial trail marathon and the event is al­ready sold out

Canadian Running - - NEWS -

In 2012, three trail run­ners from Van­cou­ver set out to re­de­fine what it means to run like a girl. Four years later, Court­ney Burt, Hai­ley Van Dyk and Dayna Egyed are in awe of the com­mu­nity of run­ners they have built and fur­ther mo­ti­vated to con­tinue in­spir­ing women to run.

“We have ded­i­cated our lives to mo­ti­vat­ing oth­ers to see life as lim­it­less,” says Burt. “Run Like A Girl was cre­ated with the in­ten­tion of show­ing that ev­ery­day peo­ple can do ex­tra­or­di­nary things.”

Run Like A Girl is deeply rooted in so­cial me­dia, hav­ing grown from 10,000 Facebook fol­low­ers in 2012 to sur­pass­ing the 100,000 mark ear­lier this year. But don’t mis­take this or­ga­ni­za­tion for a move­ment that rests on its on­line pop­u­lar­ity. Run Like A Girl is hav­ing a real-world im­pact. From di­rect­ing races to host­ing re­treats and fa­cil­i­tat­ing coach­ing, the founders are con­nect­ing with peo­ple face-to-face. Burt feels it’s their re­lata­bil­ity that has largely driven their suc­cess.

“We’re grow­ing and the com­mu­nity is grow­ing,” says Burt. “What we’re go­ing through is what we talk about in the com­mu­nity. Like com­ing last in a race – some­thing that can hap­pen to any­body. We’re not putting our­selves above any­one else, we’re not elite run­ners.”

This sum­mer, Run Like A Girl will host its sec­ond an­nual Be Fear­less Trail Race in Squamish, B.C., fea­tur­ing a 11k, half-marathon and marathon. As far as the Run Like A Girl founders know, this will be the first-ever marathon in Squamish.

“There aren’t many trail marathons so for peo­ple com­ing from the road it’s kind of a weird tran­si­tion,” says Burt. With most trail races be­ing 50 kilo­me­tres or longer, Burt ex­plains that it can be a dif­fi­cult jump to make when your long­est race has been 42.2k. “Those eight more kilo­me­tres are ac­tu­ally a big deal,” says Burt.

The 2017 Be Fear­less event on June 3 has sold out for the sec­ond year in a row. But that’s no rea­son to be left be­hind. In their com­mit­ment to sup­port fe­male run­ners around the world, Run Like A Girl is pro­vid­ing a vir­tual race op­tion as part of this year’s Be Fear­less event.

Par­tic­i­pants of the vir­tual race will be mailed a race kit, which in­cludes a bib and fin­isher’s gift, and will be given f lex­i­bil­ity to run the dis­tance on their own time. This year, those who sign up for ei­ther the vir­tual and on-lo­ca­tion race will be sup­port­ing the Cana­dian Men­tal Health As­so­ci­a­tion.

“We have a lot of suc­cess with our events, and I think the num­ber one thing that makes our events stand out among other trail races in the Van­cou­ver-Squamish area is that part of the pro­ceeds from reg­is­tra­tion go to cer­tain char­i­ties that we’ve con­nected with,” says Burt. “This year it’s for men­tal health, which touches ev­ery­one’s lives.”— Tara Camp­bell

LEFT Run Like A Girl founders, Dayna Egyed (left), Hai­ley Van Dyk and Court­ney Burt (right) on the sum­mit of Panorama Ridge, Garibaldi Pro­vin­cial Park, B.C.

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