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Pace Bunny Joanne Bradley Represents Soldier On at the Canada Army Run

In 2008, while training for deployment to Afghanistan, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. I was medically released while still in the prime of my career. I loved being a soldier and I felt extremely guilty that I was unable to deploy when the others did. I also felt terrified because of how scary MS can be.

One of my favourite ways to remain active is running. I’ve always been a runner. Even with MS, I am still able to run. MS is progressive and can be unpredictable, but I am planning to run as long as I can. Running has been very beneficial to my mental health. I often use a long run as an occasion to sort through my thoughts. Not only does it get me outside in the fresh air, but it also helps with my depression. I have competed in the Canada Army Run eight times, each time I did the half marathon. For the last few years, I volunteered to be a Pace Bunny, that is someone who runs at a consistent pace so other runners can follow me and accomplish their running goals. Being a Pace Bunny is especially rewarding because I know that I am helping others. I have always found that I work my hardest when others are relying on me. 

My best advice to anyone else who is struggling is simple: Find an activity you enjoy and try to work at it everyday. Get outside into nature and set small, attainable weekly goals. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you have a bad day, just remember tomorrow’s a new day.

Related article: Joanne Bradley, Active for Life