Run4Dreams in Victoria Sports News

I’m very excited to see that the results of Run4Dreams 2017 have been featured in Victoria Sports News.

Not only that, but our friends at Victoria Sports News also have a special promotional coupon code for 15% off registration for the 2018 Run4Dreams.

Below is a screenshot of the article.

When you click on the picture, it will take you straight to the Victoria Sports News article.

As a runner, you may be wondering: Why should I take part in Run4Dreams?

Here are all the reasons to take part in Run4Dreams:

  1. 100% of the net proceeds will be donated to Help Fill a Dream Foundation
  2. It allows you to take part in a 5k race on your own time and at your own convenience
  3. You automatically get entered to win awesome draw prizes
  4. The official Run4Dreams endur athletic socks are free with your registration (1 pair per person)
  5. You become part of a mission to make the world a better place.
  6. It enables you to be part of a supportive online community of runners and walkers of all levels
  7. Registration fees are reasonably priced (about the price of a beer and burger)
  8. You will be inspired by other Run4Dreams participants
  9. There are cash prizes for fastest time as well as most creative run.

This is definitely one of the easiest ways in which you can make a difference in the community. The goal of Run4Dreams is to make things better and to raise money for a great charity.

I’m so incredibly grateful for the Run4Dreams participants and draw prize sponsors who came on board in 2017. I’m also really grateful that I met the folks at Q Academy who are working with me to help me grow Run4Dreams in 2018. Last, but not least, I want to thank Chris Kelsall of VIctoria Sports News for featuring the Run4Dreams story.

Join us in making the world a better place 🙂

It’s Your Turn: An Open Letter To All Runners Wanting to Make a Difference

Dear Runner or Aspiring Runner:

If you are reading this, then that means you are wanting to make a positive impact on other people while taking part in your beloved sport. You are in love with running and it’s your mission to inspire your friends, family and coworkers.

Most people will probably stop reading this letter right about now, but you are different…

You know you want to make a difference in other people’s lives.

You know that running brings you the kind of joy that no amount of money can buy. Let’s face it, running is amazing. It’s healthy. It’s liberating. It allows you to meet great people and make friends.

A lot of times, you read stories about elite runners and celebrities attempting to make the world a better place. They build schools for underprivileged girls in Africa, they donate thousands of dollars to natural disaster relief or they build homes for the homeless.

When you read strories like that, you think to yourself: “I want to help too, but there is no way that I can make that much of a difference. I can’t compete with Ryan and Sara Hall’s ‘The Hall Steps Foundation’ that provides opportunities for disadvantaged children. I can’t match Taylor Swift’s $100,000 donation to Red Cross.”

The truth is, you don’t have to donate $100,000 to charity or run a sub-2:30 marathon in order to make a positive impact on other people. Your ability to inspire people starts with your desire to do so.

Elite athletes and celebrities get all the glory and now it’s your turn to make an impact. You are looking for an opportunity to enrich your life and the lives of those around you.

Maybe you are a running coach or fitness trainer or maybe you lead your local run group. Perhaps, you are a wellness coordinator at your work or a manager in your corporate organization. Maybe, you have never ran before but are wanting to start and are looking for a non-intimidating opportunity to experience running.

Whatever your case may be, you have found your way here. You have always dreamed of making an impact and now is your opportunity to do so.

How you can make a difference

You don’t need to donate $100,000. In fact, you don’t even need to donate $100. Not even $50.

Regardless of where you are, for about the price of a fancy beer and burger, you can sign up for Run4Dreams 2018: Virtual 5k for Help Fill a Dream Foundation. 

Since you decided to read this article, when you sign up for Run4Dreams, you can use the promo code YBFAT110517 to get 15% OFF your registration price (limited number available). You will also be entered to win draw prizes. Cash prizes are also available. The Run4Dreams website will be live soon and until then you can see all the details on the registration page.

Run4Dreams is a Virtual 5k Race, where the net proceeds from registration will be donated to Help Fill a Dream Foundation. Help Fill A Dream provides hope, help and happiness for Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands’ children under the age of 19 with life-threatening conditions. Help Fill a Dream Foundation fulfils their dreams as well as assists their families with much-needed financial support.

At Run4Dreams, everyone who participates receives the respect they deserve. We value every participant because we all make a difference together. Even if it takes you over 1 hour to complete a 5k, you are still an elite athlete in our books.

Above: The first Run4Dreams raised $400 for Help Fill a Dream Foundation.

You may think, “What can one person possibly do? Will I really make a difference?” The truth is, if everyone stopped feeling like this and started to believe that you can make a difference, then we would soon see many positive changes in the world.

Change starts with you. One person.

Even if you decided not to sign up, you can still share this letter and the promo code with everyone who you believe wants to make a difference.

We can’t all be elites running a 5k in under 15 minutes, but we can take steps towards making the world a better place.

Let’s do this.


Yana (AKA Aspiring Dream-Maker, AKA Cubicle Dweller who Loves to Run)



4 Secrets to an Elite Attitude

Having an elite attitude is so much more than first place medals, achieving Olympic qualifying standards and getting sponsored by Nike or any other big company.

Quite frankly, there are some elite athletes who don’t have an elite attitude.

Just because you run a sub 15-min 5k, does not mean that you are better than everyone else.

At the same time, if it takes you over an hour to do a 5k, it doesn’t mean that you can’t display an elite attitude.

What are the 4 secrets to an elite attitude?

  1. Do not give up. Working out and running won’t always be fun. There will be days where you won’t want to get out the door. There will be times when after 1 mile you will want to turn around and go home (I’ve been there more times than I want to admit). It’s the choice you make on days like that that will determine whether you are displaying an elite attitude or not.
  2. Encourage other people. Being cocky because you are faster than other people is not conducive to an elite attitude. It’s important to be supportive of other people’s goals. You most definitely don’t tear other people down. Display your elite attitude by building people up, whether it’s in fitness, running, business and life. It’s very important to value every runner’s efforts, goals and potential.
  3. Your race times do not determine your self-worth. If you are reading this, I want you to know that you are worth so much more than the number beside your name on the “race results” page. Sure, you want to be a faster runner. However, don’t beat yourself up over what you consider a bad race time. Regardless of how fast you are, YOU are still an awesome, beautiful, healthy, productive and amazing person.
  4. Seek opportunities to learn. Every interaction with another runner is an opportunity to learn. With every training run and race, you learn more and more about yourself and your body. You begin to learn what works and what doesn’t work.

Final takaways

When it comes to having an elite attitude, the key is not beating yourself up. It’s a very difficult lesson to learn. Although we can’t all place first or win Olympic medals, we can still enjoy the sport and enjoy being part of an inclusive community filled with positive-minded and forward thinking people.

Let’s unite the running community and encourage everyone to have an elite attitude.

The Definition of a “Real Runner”

What is a “real runner”? Ever since I first started running, I’ve always wondered: when would I be considered a real runner? What separates the “runners” from the “joggers”? Also, why do some runners get so mad when they are referred to as “joggers”?

What is a real runner?

In my books, simply put, a real runner is anyone who puts on a pair of running shoes and runs. No, they don’t need to run a sub 8 minute mile to be considered a real runner. Some snobby “runners” will say that anyone who is not capable of going faster than 9 minutes per mile should be called a jogger.  At the end of the day, if you run, no matter how fast or how slow, you are a runner. Give yourself the credit you deserve and stop putting some arbitrary numerical value on what separates the joggers from the runners. To be honest, at the end of the day, both running and jogging have health benefits. The pace you choose to go is entirely up to you. It often depends on what you are trying to get out of your exercise routine.

When did I become a “real” runner?

I became a real runner the moment I joined my junior high cross-country running team way back in Grade 7. To be honest, I finished dead last in many of my first few races. I still think that even back then, I was a real runner. I trained consistently and tried hard to improve my speed. Later on, I did and I was winning races. I referred to myself as a real runner long before I ever won any races even though there were many people who tried to rain on my parade. HAHAHA.

What separates the runners from the joggers?

First, jogging requires a lot less effort than running because it’s a less intense form of aerobic exercise. One of the biggest differences is, of course, the pace. In order for a jog to be considered a run, a person’s pace should generally be about 10 minutes per mile or faster. Anything slower than 10 minutes per mile is usually considered a jog.

Keep in mind, however, that pace is often subjective. Therefore, for some people, a 14 minute mile may feel like a run if they are starting their fitness journey. There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with that. If you run a 14 minute mile and that’s the best you can do, kudos to you for getting out there and doing it. I promise you will get better if you stay consistent.

Although jogging and running both use the aerobic system, jogging will allow you to burn a higher percentage of fat relative to carbohydrates.There is a time and place for both running and jogging. However, all these numbers used in this example are subjective and vary between individuals.

I urge everyone who is reading this article to take these numbers with a grain of salt.

Above: Photo by IMS FotoGrafix

Why do runners get mad when they are referred to as “joggers”?

Honestly, I have far more important things to worry about than wondering if people consider me a runner or a jogger. Sometimes, I run and other times, I jog. Every pace has a purpose in my training schedule. It’s time that people stopped being “butthurt” over terminology and started focusing on what’s important. Let’s forget about the pace we run. Instead, let’s focus on creating an inclusive community that inspires people to lead a healthier lifestyle. By all means, strive to improve your pace. Aim higher. Try new and challenging workouts. Do hills. Do speedwork. Follow running programs.

However, next time you see someone running slower than you, I urge you to encourage them. Don’t get mad if someone calls you a jogger. Be grateful that your body lets you do the thing you love. Strive towards being an ambassador for this amazing sport.

Running is awesome for many reasons. It’s not expensive. It doesn’t require a lot of equipment. You will make great friends. You will enjoy a lot of free food at races.

The open roads are always waiting for you.

Run4Dreams 2017: Results, Winners and Thank You’s

The moment we have all been waiting for! It’s time to officially close out the 2017 Run4Dreams and start working on Run4Dreams 2018

What is Run4Dreams?

Run4Dreams is a Virtual 5k Race, where the net proceeds from registration will be donated to Help Fill a Dream Foundation. Help Fill A Dream provides hope, help and happiness for Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands’ children under the age of 19 with life-threatening conditions. Help Fill a Dream Foundation fulfils their dreams as well as assists their families with much-needed financial support.

Not only that, but Run4Dreams also aims to unite the worldwide running community and inspire runners and walkers of all levels to take part.

I first came up with Run4Dreams back in August 2017 and decided to do a pilot project right away. I wrote more about that on the Q Academy blog.

It warms my heart to know that I’ve been able to sell out the first Run4Dreams. It wasn’t an easy task and there were a lot of skeptics when I first started promoting it (I won’t mention anymore, because this is intended to be a positive post).

The results we’ve all been waiting for:

First of all, I want to say THANK YOU to all those who signed up and participated. I also want to thank Float House Victoria, Muscle MLK Canada and MEC Victoria for donating draw prizes to give to race participants.

THANK YOU to those who believed in the cause and who made a difference.

THANK YOU for believing in my vision to unite the worldwide running community, inspire active living and raise funds for a great charity. I cannot thank the participants and the draw prize sponsors enough for making this pilot project a success.

The first ever Run4Dreams raised $400 for Help Fill a Dream Foundation. There were participants from four different Canadian cities. Images from cheque presentation to follow.

I am definitely hoping that together with my expert team from Q Academy we can get a lot more people to participate in Run4Dreams 2018. We need more participants in order to make a greater impact on such a wonderful organization, Help Fill a Dream Foundation.

Submissions ranged from 16:05 for a 5k to over an hour. This is proof that everyone is welcome to participate and I’m thrilled to see such a wide range of running abilities. At the end of the day, whether the 5k takes you 15 minutes or 1 hour, you are still a winner because you did it. You helped a great charity and you should all be proud of yourselves.

There was a lot of positive feedback on the Run4Dreams endur socks that participants received just for registering!

The WINNER of the $75 CASH Prize for fastest submission is Matthew Winkler. His time was 16:05, which is his personal best. Matthew ran that fast at ParkRun and I watched him do it! Matthew is an inspiring local elite athlete who is passionate about running. I’m so thrilled that he took part in the race!

Above: Matthew looking speedy. Photo credit to whoever took this photo.


Muscle MLK Winners:

Adam Dennis

Kent Ainscough

Karolina Lazdzin

Jerry Hughes

Mark Hamblett

Float House Gift Card Winners:

Bernice Smith

David Mackenzie-Kong

Anne-Marie Sutherland

Dom Spragg

Ian Simpson

MEC Race Entry Winners:

Neil Frelick

Angel Farley

Connect with me to arrange claiming your prizes 🙂 yhempler (at) gmail (dot) com or Yana Hempler on Facebook.




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