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Last years winner. He fell during the marathon a few times.
photo by Chaim Peikoff

Smiling man in racing wheel chair
photo by Chaim Peikoff

Refreshments along the way
photo by Chaim Peikoff

Oxygen provided by SOS owned by Mr. Alan Friedman
photo by Chaim Peikoff


RUN TO ME - Rady Centre Participates in Manitoba Marathon - Fathers Day June 19, 2011

by Chaim (Hart) Peikoff, June 22, 2011

I recently returned from volunteering at the Rady Centre location at Guelph and Cambridge on Wellington Crescent which serviced the runners as they passed by. The volunteers distributed Water, Gatorade and water soaked Sponges to the participants to cool their jets. I preferred to yell out, “would you prefer Beer or Vodka?” And guess what?  99 % of those that heard what I was pretending to offer cracked up. Well, it helps lessen the struggle at times. Humor can heal pain and or stress temporarily.
I can appreciate from experience what it takes to run a marathon. I ran my first half marathon in 1993 and completed it doing a nine minute mile. Nine minutes is the amount of  time I trained for. When I entered University of Manitoba stadium I thought they were playing “Chariots of Fire” specifically for me.  I was so high from finishing this event the feeling both emotionally and intellectually is difficult to duplicate. And more so my daughters and X wife were waiting for me with a bunch of balloons. Well it was also Fathers day. I felt so loved--and the accomplishment brought pride to my inner being. This is the second time I volunteered and both times it brought back such fond memories. The first time was in 1999.
What I loved was the color of this year's T-Shirts given to the volunteers: Pink. In 1999 they were blue. I wear pink all the time. I do know some men who are not comfortable with that color. Oh my!  Dark Age thinking is still amongst some of us. Well when I grew  pink was worn by girls and blue by boys and no one mixed the colors.
The benefits one receives from completing a half, full marathon or any event they feature is far reaching. This leaves one feeling there is no word in the English language such as “can’t.” The lessons learned training for marathons and exercise programs including their sidebars can transfer to all areas of one's life. It is not about competing with anyone other than oneself. You train to complete this event in x amount of time. So this is truly all about mastering the goals you set forth for yourself through consistent training plus doing all the other activities which help keeps your body in top shape. A good attitude is irreplaceable.
The volunteers were a diverse group of really positive human beings. I probably was one of the elder statesmen in attendance. All of them exhibited warm and excited personas. And most “cheered on” the runners: Mark Spencer was as consistent as anyone possibly could be. It was mind altering to hear so many participants thank the volunteers for the work they were doing. It truly is a love in. For those readers who have never run, walked or crawled through a marathon you have no idea what you are missing. There are a variety of classifications which allow practically anyone of any age to participate. They include the full marathon, half marathon, relays, walking and various other distances. The starting times are scattered.  Try it as it will most likely be one of the high lights of your life. To enjoy the race, training is mandatory and doing so eliminates most injuries.
This years enrollment was expected to be approximately 14,500 passing the previous high of 13,914 which was set two years ago.
The first individuals we saw pass by our station were sitting in racing wheel chairs. One of them a man who passed by me as I took his picture had a smile on his face that could melt steel. I felt a quiet respect for his commitment. I am pretty sure he finished the race. These individuals are inspirations to everyone. The full marathoners and the relay teams followed. 

The following volunteers deserve a high five. They are Mark Spencer, Gayle & Alex Waxman, Boris Bursak, Debbie Figowy, Rachelle, Rose & Eddie Aziman, Reva Craven, Barb Benoit & Family, Lin Rosenbaum, Brooke, Soulong & Chris & Cheryll DeGrave. If I missed naming anyone who was present and did assist my apology.
A huge thanks to the following Sponsors:  Manitoba Lotteries [ full marathon ] Great West Life [ super run ] intrepid dezine [ half marathon ] Winnipeg Free Press [ walk ] Manitoba Marathon [ relay ] plus the following; stride ahead, imaginet, Manitoba Egg Farmers, World of Water, CBC-89.3FM & Radio One 990 am, Winnipeg, CTV & Manitoba Hydro-power smart. There may be other sponsors who committed after the T-Shirts were printed so their names did not appear on the back of the T-Shirts.
Alan Friedman donated oxygen from his company SOS Emergencies Response Technologies just in case runners needed it. Thank G-D no one at our station required its use. Apparently at other stations it was used successfully.  SOS also markets Defibrillators which can be used in ones home or Apartment buildings or anywhere humans will benefit from its use if need be. After simple training these are easy to use and do save lives until the first responders arrive. And the Good Samaritan law is in place when one private individual uses a defibrillator with the intention of saving a human beings life.  
Readers should also know that The Rady Centre in and of itself provides a myriad of exercise programs including, healthy eating guidelines and motivational suggestions which when put to work for oneself can change the life you are living. When I invent the “Just take two glasses of this” and you will not have to exercise to keep in top shape I will let all of you know. For now one must commit not quit exercise to obtain their magical benefits.
The Rady Center is a state of the art facility with the best equipment one can find anywhere including a chlorine free swimming pool embedded in salt. And last but certainly not least the Rady Center offers trainers and classes which can hold their own any place on this beautiful planet Earth. A city of this size is so fortunate to have access to a world class facility such as the Rady Center. If it were not for the wisdom of the men that came before my eyes were opened including the generous philanthropists this center would not exist. Thanks to the visionary woman and men who made this happen.

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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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