You don’t know what’s going to happen on race day, as you don’t know what’s going to happen in life. And you don’t know what adversity is going to hit you. And they’re the lessons learnt from running…it’s more than about the sport. It’s about what you learn about yourself.
I’m always fascinated with the path someone takes through life.
Annie Crawford began her career as a social worker.
With that background and after losing her beloved Dad tragically to bowel cancer, it’s hardly surprising Annie decided she wanted to “make a difference” rather than returning to the paid workforce when she returned to Australia after living in the US for several years.
And she’s made a profound difference in the lives of thousands of Australians ever since.
Annie founded Can Too as a charity with the goal of creating a healthier and fitter community while also funding innovative cancer research in 2005.
To be honest, I always thought of Can Too as a cancer fundraising organisation first and foremost.
But as Annie points out in this conversation, Can Too is dedicated to promoting health and wellbeing and encouraging people to step out of their comfort zone, by committing to an event - perhaps their first 7km, first marathon or first ocean swim - with the support of like-minded people and professional coaches, while raising funds for cancer research.
If you’re in Australia, you’ll no doubt be familiar with the ubiquitous orange singlets worn by runners at most events around the country these days.
Over the last 14 years, over 15,000 people have participated in Can Too programs and raised over $21m for cancer research.
While I was familiar with the work and programs run by Can Too, I wanted to know more about the woman with the vision behind the scenes, so I asked 🙂
Annie joins me on Sparta Chicks Radio this week and shares:
* what inspired her to establish Can Too in 2005,
* the role running has played in managing her mental health,
* how she went from being a social worker in Australia to working in Human Resources on a biotech startup in America,
* her most profound memory from her first Marathon,
* the importance of managing your expectations when training and racing,
* why you need to remember that you can’t die of fear (my new favourite quote!),
* why launching the Can Too ocean swimming program forced her to “walk the talk”,
* the tactics she uses when things get tough in the middle of a training session or race,
* her experience with the Imposter Complex,
* why she believes women need to exercise more self-compassion and how she looks after herself (ask yourself the question: what do you need to do to look after yourself?),
* why it serves others when you say ‘no’, and
* why she doesn’t describe herself as ‘busy’.
Notes and resources:
Visit the Can Too website to find out more about it or to sign up for one of their programs.