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Articles tagged #Rachel Hannah
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JP Flavin and Erin Mawhinney Victorious at 2024 Under Armour Toronto 10K

JP Flavin rang up Under Armour Toronto 10K organizers last week and asked if there was a place in the event for him. His eleventh-hour plea came just before the race limit of 7,500 was reached. Lucky for him.

The 25 year old New Jersey native showed his gratitude by front running his way to a victory in 29:20 and in the process pulling top Canadian Andrew Davies to a new personal best of 29:25. Third place overall went to Lee Wesselius in 29:49 and the third Canadian was Rob Kanko in 30 minutes flat.

“I am very thankful they let me in the race,” said Flavin, a member of the Brooks Hanson Project based in Rochester Hills, Michigan. “I did really well. I kept 4:40 miles throughout, which was my plan.  It was fun.”

Midway through the race - the lead pack of seven runners reached 5K in 14:32 - he went to the front with the objective of breaking pre-race favorite Andrew Davies. 

The Sarnia native has been training in Vancouver, where he is a law student at the University of British Columbia. Earlier this year, he ran a personal best 10,000m on the track (28:34.63) and also finished 2nd in the NAIA (collegiate) national championships in that event, which caught the attention of his peers.

“I knew if I stayed with Andrew to the last two kilometres, odds are he would outkick me,” Flavin added. “So a little before 5K, I started picking it up. I wanted to use that long hill [at the Canadian Legion] to come hard off it.”

"When I made my move and started feeling bad at mile five, I could hear from the crowd; they were screaming his name a little bit.  So I knew I had to pay attention, stay on it, and not let up too much. I was able to grind and finish off strong.”

Davies was satisfied with his personal best. When Flavin made his move, he made an effort to maintain contact but could never close the gap.

"I was trying to cover it as best I could without risking blowing up at the end,” he revealed. “I couldn’t quite cover it. I stayed pretty close. I couldn’t catch him over the last two kilometres. He held that gap the whole way.”

Despite his earlier 10,000m success in the spring, Davies admitted he has lately been focusing on the 5,000m, the event he will race at the Canadian Olympic trials June 26-30 in Montreal. 

While the men’s race had its drama, the women’s race saw the same podium finishers as in 2023, although Erin Mawhinney’s title defence was emphatic. The 28-year-old Hamilton, Ontario, nursing consultant won by 25 seconds over Salome Nyirarukundo. 

Mahwinney’s 33:40 time was a pleasant surprise after she learned earlier in the year she was iron deficient.  

“This was the first race since February that I haven’t felt dizzy, so this is the first one in a while that has felt like that,” says Mawhinney, who was greeted at the finish by her coach, two time Canadian Olympic marathoner, Reid Coolsaet.

Respect for her competitors was evident in her further comments.

“At no point was I confident of winning,” she declared. “Salome is so talented, and I knew there was a good chance she would come flying by but someone yelled at me with a kilometre to go that I had a good gap. 

To run in the 33s, especially today, it's hotter and windier than last year, to run the same time as last year off much less training is great.”

Mawhinney also credited Toronto running coach Paddy Birch for helping her through the windy stretches along Lake Shore Boulevard. 

“I owe my life to Paddy Birch. He was sort of breaking some of the wind and pacing up to about 8K, so I didn’t have to think quite as hard about it,” she added. “He is much faster than me, but I think he was going for an easy run. He was (pacing me) on purpose when he was talking to me.”

Nyirarukundo, who competed for Rwanda at the 2016 Olympics, now lives in Ottawa. She complained about having an upset stomach last night and into the race morning.

“I was a little bit tired. This morning I had a problemwith stomach. Even now, I have it,” she said with a smile, “so I was struggling even to finish, but because I am a fighter, I just tried to finish. It was not bad.”

“I appreciate the organisers; they are very, very good to the elites. It is really good and I enjoy the people (on the course) who are cheering.”

Rachel Hannah, now recovered from her 3rd place finish in the Ottawa Marathon, was 3rd in today’s race. Her time of 34:10, almost a minute faster than her 2023 finish, pleased her.

Once again, the Under Armour Toronto 10K served as the Canadian Masters’ championships, with  Toronto’s Allison Drynan crossing the line first in the 45-49 age bracket, recording a time of 38:46. She finished just 8 seconds ahead of Miriam Zittel (40-44).

In the men’s master’s race, Bryan Rusche earned top honours with his 33:37 performance, and Brian Byrne of London, Ontario, finished next in 33:51.

Race director Alan Brookes was delighted with the sold-out event and pointed out that runners from nine provinces, two territories (the Yukon and the Northwest Territories), eighteen American states, and twenty countries enjoyed the day.

(06/15/2024) Views: 273 ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains


Erin Mawhinney will defend her Under Armour Toronto 10K title Saturday June 15th the next stop on the 2024 Canada Running Series.

A year ago, the Hamilton resident won the race, which traces Toronto’s scenic Lake Shore Boulevard, in a personal best of 33 minutes 34 seconds. The result was a pleasant surprise and confirmed her arrival as one of Canada’s elite road racers.

“I would like to take a stab at defending my title I know there are some fast girls running,” the 27 year old says before adding, ”Truthfully I have struggled with some low iron the past couple of weeks. But being able to defend the win would be great. Running close to 33 minutes flat would also be great at this time.

Despite the medical hiccup - which is now behind her - Mawhinney has followed coach Reid Coolsaet’s training program closely and has gradually increased her training volume. Indeed, she has had weeks where she has run as much as 160km while working full-time as a nursing consultant.

Mawhinney completed her Master of Nursing degree last year after spending six years nursing in the intensive care unit at Hamilton’s St Joseph’s Hospital. Combining long, demanding shifts with her training program was challenging but she credits Coolsaet, a two-time Canadian Olympian, with providing a flexible plan.

“I did straight night shifts and I found that sticking on straight nights was a little bit easier for running,” she remembers. “I found the flipping back and forth between days and night was sort of chaotic.

“I would let Reid know and he was great with being flexible. I worked a lot of overtime during Covid because we were overwhelmed in the ICU during that time. There would be some days where I was too tired to double. There were even times when I had to sleep at the hospital between shifts because there was a risk of exposure in my apartment building.”

In addition to winning the 2023 Under Armour Toronto 10KMawhinney captured first place in the 2023 TCS Toronto Waterfront Half Marathon last October (1:13:50). Now she and Coolsaet are targeting a possible marathon debut this coming fall.

“We are thinking TCS Toronto Waterfront in the fall will be my marathon debut so that is the main focus for the rest of the year,” she reveals.

Recently Mawhinney’s concerns for the homeless crisis in the Hamilton neighbourhood she has called home the past seven years resulted in her penning an essay on her observations. Her advocacy is paying off.

“A big win recently was having City Housing Hamilton approve a new public health nurse role I proposed to them,” she adds. “(It is) to help those in higher social-need subsidized housing keep their tenancy and avoid needing to use the emergency room.”

Among those lining up against her Saturday are 2015 Pan Am Games marathon bronze medalist, Rachel Hannah, who was 3rd in the 2024 Ottawa Marathon last month and, most significantly, was 3rd in the Under Armour Toronto 10K last year and last year’s runner-up, Salome Nyirarukundo the 26 year-old Rwandan who has made Ottawa her home.

The men’s field is led by Andrew Davies, a second-year law student at the University of British Columbia. Although his 10k best is 29:32 last month he ran a superb 10,000m on the track recording 28:34.63.

“If you get one of the really fast road courses I definitely feel you can be just as fast, maybe even faster, on the roads (than on the track) with the new shoes,” he declares.

The 23-year-old Davies claims, however, he will focus more on the competition than on recording a fast time.

“I am not really going to focus on the time too much,” Davies, who hails from Sarnia, Ontario, says. “I have been transitioning now to focus on the 5,000m leading to the track Nationals at the end of the month. I will focus on racing whoever else is (at the Toronto 10k). I am not going in with a time goal.

“My 5,000m PB (13:37.39) is three years old and I would like to lower that into the (low) 13:30’s and run Nationals and then in the fall I’d like to run as well as I can in the Canadian cross countrychampionships. I was 4th there this past year. If I could medal there that would be awesome."

The fastest performer in the men’s field is Lee Wesselius whose personal best 29:13 earned him 7th in the 2021 Canadian 10k Championships held on a slightly modified Toronto Waterfront course. Also racing is Rob Kanko who was 3rd in the 2023 Under Armour Toronto 10K in a personal best of 30:02.

The race will once again serve as the Canadian Masters 10k championships. Baghdad Rachem will defend the title he won a year ago on this same course. The Verdun, Quebec resident won that day in 32:05 beating 44-year-old Reid Coolsaet by 13 seconds.

Edmonton’s Jay Smith finished 3rd in 2023 in 39:23 and leads the female master’s division entries.

(06/11/2024) Views: 204 ⚡AMP
by Paul Gains

Pamela Rotich headlines Los Angeles Marathon

Kenya’s Pamela Rotich will be the lady to watch at the 39th edition of the Los Angeles Marathon slated for Sunday (17) in Los Angeles, California, U.S.

Rotich who is the oldest and fastest athlete on the entry list, comes to this race with a life time best of 2:22.43 that she got two years ago at Daegu International Marathon, where she took the silver medal.

The 40 year-old will not have an easy time as she will face-off with Olga Mazuronak of Belarus who is the second fastest athlete on paper with a time of 2:23.54 that she got at the 2016 London Marathon where she finished in fourth place and the former Commonwealth Games 10,000m silver medallist, Stacy Ndiwa of Kenya who holds a personal best of 2:31.00 that she got last year at the Chicago Marathon.

Another title contender is Olympian Silvia Paredes from Ecuador of personal best 2:40.58 and the 2015 Pan American Games marathon bronze medalist, Rachel Hannah from Canada who holds a personal best of 2:32.09 that she got at the 2016 Houston Marathon, where she finished in sixth place.



Pamela Rotich       (KEN) 2:22.43

Olga Mazuronak   (BEL) 2:23.54

Stacy Ndiwa          (KEN) 2:31.00

Rachel Hannah      (CAN) 2:32.09

Silvia Paredes        (CAN) 2:40.58

(03/13/2024) Views: 340 ⚡AMP
by John Vaselyne
Los Angeles Marathon

Los Angeles Marathon

The LA Marathon is an annual running event held each spring in Los Angeles, Calif. The 26.219 mile (42.195 km) footrace, inspired by the success of the 1984 Summer Olympic Games, has been contested every year since 1986. While there are no qualifying standards to participate in the Skechers Performnce LA Marathon, runners wishing to receive an official time must...


Blair Morgan and Sasha Gollish take wins at Around the Bay Road Race

The 2023 edition of the Around the Bay Road Race (ATB) was held on Sunday, and thousands of runners took to the streets of Hamilton to race the 5K, 30K and relays. Ottawa runner Blair Morgan and Toronto’s Sasha Gollish were the top men’s and women’s finishers in the 30K, both grabbing the first ATB wins of their careers. Morgan finished in a winning time of 1:37:46, and Gollish crossed the line in 1:48:03 for the women’s win and eighth overall. 

ATB 30K 

Morgan took control of the race early on in the run, and by the time he recorded his opening 10K split of 31:40, he had already built a lead of one minute over the next-closest runner. By 15K, the gap had grown even bigger, and Toronto’s Romain Carette sat in second place more than two minutes back.

Morgan passed through the 20K checkpoint in 1:04:07. Two and a half minutes behind him were Carette and fellow Torontonian Eric Bang, who were separated by just a few seconds. Morgan’s lead got up to three minutes before the finish, and he stopped the clock in 1:37:46. Bang put a lot of time into Carette in the closing 10K, finishing a minute ahead of him in 1:40:40 to secure second place. Carette held on for third in 1:41:42. 

The women’s race was much tighter than the men’s, with Gollish battling alongside Rachel Hannah of Port Elgin, Ont., for more than half of the run. The two women covered the first 10K in identical splits of 35:39, and they passed through 15K a couple of seconds apart, both hovering just under 54 minutes. Over the following 5K, however, Gollish managed to pull away from Hannah, and by 20K she had a lead of about 40 seconds. 

Gollish’s lead only continued to grow in the final 10K, and by the time she made it to the finish, she was close to three minutes ahead of Hannah. She won the race in 1:48:03, followed by Hannah in second in 1:50:41. Third place went to Kingston, Ont., runner Teagan Robertson in 1:58:11. 

The 5K 

Aaron De Jong of Mississauga, Ont., won the 5K race in 15:56. He was followed closely by Sam Richter of Port Sydney, Ont., who finished in second in 15:59. A few seconds back in third place was Caleb Beland of Sudbury, Ont., who crossed the line in 16:02. 

In the women’s 5K, Etobicoke, Ont., athlete Brittany Moran won in 17:33, close to a minute ahead of second-place Carley Somerset of Guelph, Ont., who stopped the clock in 18:26. Not far behind Somerset was Mississauga’s Jessica Kellar, who rounded out the podum in 18:49.

(03/27/2023) Views: 988 ⚡AMP
by Ben Snider-McGrath
Around the Bay 30k

Around the Bay 30k

Hamilton's Around the Bay Road Race is the oldest on the continent, first run in 1894, three years before the Boston Marathon. Rich in tradition, it has been won by the best from around the world, including Boston Marathon winners and Olympic gold medallists. Become part of the continuing tradition by running this challenging course around Hamilton's natural harbour! ...


Chris Balestrini and Krista DuChene break Canadian 50K records

On a hot, sunny morning in Hamilton, Ont., Chris Balestrini and Krista DuChene ran a blazing-fast 50K, both setting new Canadian records of 2:48:32 and 3:22:22, respectively. Both athletes took several minutes off the previous Canadian records, proving that a little early summer heat wasn’t going to get in their way.

Balestrini’s run improves on Cal Neff’s 50K record by nearly three minutes, which he set earlier this year in Texas in 2:51:27.

Prior to the run, Balestrini told us he was confident he could outdo Neff’s record-setting pace of 3:26 per kilometer, which he did handily, holding an average pace of 3:25 per kilometer. Balestrini is a 2:17 marathoner, but this was his first official ultramarathon.

On the women’s side, DuChene shattered the previous Canadian record set by Catrin Jones in 2015 at the IAU 50K World Championships in Doha, Qatar, where she ran 3:28:20. Duchene’s 3:22 lowers that record by an incredible six minutes, making her average pace per kilometer 4:02 for the win.

This was DuChene’s second ultra of her career, having run a 54 kilometer trail race last fall. That run, she told us, gave her confidence knowing that she’d already completed the distance once before.

There have been no official results posted yet, so currently there is no news of how Phil Parrot-Migas or Rachel Hannah finished.

(05/21/2021) Views: 1,167 ⚡AMP
by Brittany Hambleton

Super foods for runners to maintain a healthy immune system

Every winter, immunity becomes an important topic of conversation as the temperatures drop and we enter cold and flu season. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, having a strong immune system has become even more crucial to maintaining health. While this will not guarantee that you won’t get sick (or get the coronavirus), it is still worth doing whatever you can to keep your body healthy.

We spoke with elite Canadian runner and registered dietitian Rachel Hannah to get her top food recommendations for runners who are looking to boost their immune systems and stay healthy this winter.

Plenty of brightly-colored fruits and vegetables

you´ve heard it before but it´s worth mentioning again: eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables is a key component to maintaining a strong immune system, thanks to their antioxidant content. These nutrients improve the health of your gut microbiome, which plays a role in training your immune system and avoiding an excess inflammatory response to pathogens. 

Hannah recommends eating as many colours as possible, especially leafy greens, because that will ensure you get all the antioxidants and phytochemicals necessary for proper immune function. When it comes to fruit, berries are at the top of her list thanks to their high density of antioxidants. During the winter, fresh berries may not always be available, but frozen berries are just as beneficial, and can often provide more nutrients than the fresh variety in the off-season.


Runners will have to eat plenty of probiotic-rich foods because they help maintain a balanced composition of gut bacteria. Prolonged or intense training can disturb the gut and increase your risk for gastrointestinal (GI) problems, which will in turn affect your immune system. 

Hannah´s favorite food sources  of probiotics are yogurt and kefir, and she says that miso soup is a great choice for runners as well. Other probiotic-rich foods include buttermilk, tempeh, sauerkraut, kimchi, and kombucha.

Whole Grains

Wholes grains including brown rice, wild rice, teff, barley and quinoa cannot be digested the same way other foods can. Instead, we rely on the microbiota in our digestive tract to break the fibre down into fatty acids.

These fatty acids help maintain our gut mucus barrier, which keeps pathogens out of our system. Hannah says that whole grains also contain important nutrients for immune health, and she recommends that all runners include them as a regular part of their diet.

Vitamin D

Hannah also points out the importance of vitamin D when it comes to immune health. While there are some food sources of vitamin D (such as fatty fish, fortified dairy products and fortified cereals), she explains that it is difficult to meet your daily requirement through food. For this reason, Hannah recommends runners take a supplement, since not only does it benefit your immune system, but vitamin D can help prevent other issues like fatigue, muscle pain, and stress fractures. Most health experts will recommend that adults 14 to 50 years old take 600 IU per day, however you should talk to your doctor to determine your specific needs, especially if you fall outside this age bracket.

Eating these foods will not guarantee that you won’t get sick, but they will reduce your risk of illness and improve your body’s ability to fight infections when they happen.

(01/08/2021) Views: 1,051 ⚡AMP
by Brittany Hambleton

A group of Canadian sport specialists are developing a tool to predict risk and prevent RED-S and overtraining

In 2014, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) first introduced the term Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S), which refers to low energy availability resulting from a mismatch between energy intake (i.e. fuel in the form of food) and energy expenditure from training.

While the term is now widely recognized by the endurance sport community, there remains a gap in its assessment and treatment. A group of Canadian researchers is trying to close this gap by developing a diagnostic tool for athletes. 

Rachel Hannah is on the development team, alongside Austen Forbes and Alex Coates who both have a background in elite triathlon. As a marathoner and registered dietitian, who has had personal experience with RED-S, Hannah says she is excited about the project. “RED-S is a condition that can prevent athletes from competing due to its negative health and performance issues, even forcing some into early retirement,” she says.

“There is currently no solution to the problem, because it is a relatively new area of study that reveals the difficulty in capturing all of the components that go into an athlete’s health and performance. We are collaborating with AI Endurance, which was founded by Markus Rummel in 2020, to create a diagnostic tool.”

In order to develop this tool, Hannah is asking runners to help. “This software would provide a predictive and diagnostic tool that could enable an athlete to understand their risk levels for developing RED-S or overtraining.

We are currently looking for athletes to fill out a diagnostic questionnaire in order for us to collect data. We are particularly looking for athletes who are currently diagnosed with RED-S or overtraining or have experienced RED-S or overtraining in the past.”

To take the survey, or for more information go to

(11/06/2020) Views: 1,016 ⚡AMP
by Madeleine Kelly

Rachel Hannah and Reid Coolsaet are Canadian headliners for Ottawa Marathon this weekend

Last year’s Scotiabank Ottawa Marathon saw a new female Canadian All-Comers record set at 2:22:17 and the field for the 2019 event could rival that of 2018.

Shuko Gemeno, Abeba-Tekula Gebremeskel and Tigist Girma all have personal bests under 2:27:00 and all have recent wins under their belts. The three Ethiopian women could work together to being each other to new personal bests and challenge the Canadian All-Comers and course record.

The Canadian women’s contingent includes 2:32 marathoner Rachel Hannah, Dayna Pidhoresky and Anne-Marie Comeau. Hannah and Pidhoresky are no strangers to the distance, but Sunday will be Comeau’s debut. The 22-year-old winter Olympian has been dominant on the roads for several years and we’re excited to see what she can do over 42.2K.

In the men’s field, Abera Kuma of Ethiopia has run under 2:06 twice, most recently 2:05:50 at the 2018 Rotterdam Marathon. Joining Kuma is Adugna Takele who was third in Ottawa a year ago, and ran a huge personal best in February at 2:06:32. The fastest man in the field is Getu Feleke at 2:04:50. Kenyan Martin Kosgey is also racing with an incoming time of 2:06:41.

The dark horse in the field is 23-year-old Ayana Tsede who comes in with a recent win at the 2019 Seville Marathon and a new personal best of 2:06:36.

Reid Coolsaet leads the Canadian men on his 10 year anniversary since his debut marathon. “I’m going to try to run as fast as I can on the Ottawa course, which will hopefully give me a solid placing and some points to help with my world ranking.

I’m realistically aiming for a 2:13 on the weekend.” The world championships in Doha this fall are also on Coolsaet’s radar. “Worlds would actually be a great setup for the Olympics. If you finish well at worlds the points could qualify you for Tokyo. It will be very hot in Doha, which will be good training for Tokyo as well.”

Coolsaet is coming off his longest altitude stint yet. “Boulder was really great. I got good training in and I had great people to train with. My son liked it too–any time we did some technical mountain climbing he got really into it.”

(05/25/2019) Views: 2,186 ⚡AMP
Ottawa Marathon

Ottawa Marathon

As one of two IAAF Gold Label marathon events in Canada, the race attracts Canada’s largest marathon field (7,000 participants) as well as a world-class contingent of elite athletes every year. Featuring the beautiful scenery of Canada’s capital, the top-notch organization of an IAAF event, the atmosphere of hundreds of thousands of spectators, and a fast course perfect both...

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