The intent of this section is to shine a light on the local running scene, and to share the wisdom that already exists in Lloydminster’s vibrant running community.
Featured Runners will be updated periodically and showcase runners of various experience and skill level. If you would like to suggest a runner or volunteer yourself please contact us here.
Lloydminster Runner Christopher Hemmelgarn
Bio: I work at Superstore as a department manager and “Run” no pun intended the Baby/Pharmacy and Health/Beauty Departments. I have 2 kids, Noah 14 and Abby 12 (who is going start training with me as she wants to run with me in the Lloydminster Runners Half Marathon). In my free time I enjoy cross stitch and collecting retro Video games (NES/Sega/Atari etc). I love camping, the outdoors and just spending time with my kids.
How many years have you been running? I’ve only been running for 1 year and never ran in a race yet. That will all change on May 26 at the Calgary Marathon Half Distance. I’m not sure I have a favorite distance race yet, however I do know that I want to try something longer after the Calgary race. I just randomly picked the Calgary Marathon last year because I needed some sort of goal to work towards and I just picked a half Marathon only because my Aunt and Cousin both have run this distance which I found very inspiring. Now that I’ve been training for over 6 months I’m thinking I should have picked a longer race. At the time of signing up I was scared about not finishing due to the distance, but after training for I while now I know I’m going to finish. Something else I love about Running and endurance racing is the mental aspect of the sport. Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t your always right!
How many KM per week do you run? Right now I’m trying to run between 65km to 80Km per week plus some core strength training. I’m pretty sure I’ll slow up a little after the Lloydminster race, but my heart is on fire for endurance racing now that I’ve taken it up. I love the challenge it brings to your mind and body. I have dreams of going all over the world doing races, maybe I’m going through a midlife crisis but at least it’s a physically healthy one (lol).
What got you into running? My grandfather passed away a few years ago of dementia and that’s when I noticed I could also do the Calgary Marathon Charity Challenge and raise money for a charity that’s really important to me. I chose the Alzheimer’s society of Saskatchewan to raise money. My grandmother was also inspirational for me, watching her look after my grandfather in the last few years of his life. Caregivers are so inspirational and compassionate. Not only do I raise money for Alzheimer’s Society of Saskatchewan but I try to raise awareness of the many forms of the disease, how it affects not only the individual diagnosed but the families and caregivers as well as the society. I use my fundraisers as educational sessions as well. I also have information about the society and disease on my Compassion Run website. I’ve enjoyed listening to inspirational stories people have told me about in their families and friends. Everyone is touched in some sort of way through this disease and you can feel the energy when I hold one of these fundraisers. I’ve had so many people step forward who want to help me or give me things to sell, or just give encouraging words. It really does feel like a big community coming together to help raise funds. I try to constantly say thank you, but I hope everyone knows how grateful I am. It is one big team!
I was going through some pretty rough stuff in my personal life and I decided I needed to make a change so I joined a gym and just started working out on Elliptical with some weight lifting. I noticed that my problems seemed easier to deal with after I worked out. After a workout I felt my thinking was clearer and I was enjoying life more. When I started I I had no idea that I was going to fall in love with running. I heard that my Aunt ran in a half marathon in Saskatoon, and she placed 3rd in her age group. I was so proud of her and I thought that if she could do it that I could as well. After that I chose the Calgary Marathon. My goal in the Calgary Marathon is to run 21.1 km half distance in less than 90 minutes. I will also be running with Abby in the Lloydminster Runners Half Marathon in June of 2019.
Do you have any advice for people considering taking up running? My advice to people who are considering taking up running is quite simple, whether your training or its during the big race, just don’t stop! Just take one step, and another and another. It doesn’t matter if you’re not running as fast or hard as you can that day just don’t stop. You will amaze yourself with what you can do!
Do you have any favorite running gear or gear that you would recommend to other runners? My favorite running gear is hands down some ear buds or headphones anything to listen to music. Endurance racing is a mental thing just as much as physical and I like my music loud and fast.
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If you would like to suggest a runner or volunteer yourself please contact us here.