Walk, jog or run? FrontRunners might just be the group for you with chapters dotted around the province in London, Ottawa and Toronto. Scott Joudrey from their executive team provides his take on how easy it is to get involved in a running group as well as some of the benefits you'll experience after running together!
Who are the Frontrunners?
Frontrunners Toronto is a chapter of the International Frontrunners Organization. Our goal is to create a friendly space for LGBTQ+ runners and allies of all abilities – from novices to advanced runners – for recreation, health and friendship. We meet at the 519 Community Centre on Church St and we run a variety of routes, both on and off road, taking us through the Rosedale and Moore Park Ravines and even the Kay Gardner Beltline, or the Don Valley Trail
How did you get involved with the group?
I first joined Frontrunners Toronto in the fall of 2020 after following the group on social media for a few months. I had moved back to Toronto in 2017 and was struggling to find a running group that I felt welcomed and safe to be a part of.
What do you enjoy the most about running?
Running has always improved my mental health and mood. It’s also very nice to sets goals for certain distances and/or paces, especially if you are training for an upcoming race.
What are the benefits of running with a group?
Running with a group has a lot of potential benefits, depending what your goals are. I think a lot of people struggle to make friends organically in a big city like Toronto, so for me, joining Frontrunners Toronto has allowed me to build strong friendships with people I have a lot in common with, while also improving my physical and mental health. It’s a lot harder to decide not to go for a run when you have a group of people expecting to see you and this really had helped motivate me to run further and faster. This was very apparent during the many stages of COVID-19 when our group unfortunately had to shut down temporarily a few times based on government recommendations.