Smart Girls Sweat – The Runner’s Edition May 25th, 2016

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A few months ago I learned about a new initiative in the city called Smart Girls Sweat, I was curious about their philosophy about combining networking with modern professional women who also love to sweat – that’s my kind of hard working woman you all know that! After following them on social media for a while I was waiting for an opening in my schedule to be able to have an evening off to attend one of their events. At the end of April Smart Girls Sweat reached out to me on Instagram to invite me to their upcoming May event which was focused on running. I was more than thrilled to have an opportunity to attend and of course share my experience with all of you! If you follow me on Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter you will have already seen some posts that I shared leading up to and while I was attending the event.

About Smart Girls Sweat

What is Smart Girls Sweat?

Smart Girls Sweat puts a twist on traditional networking – designed with the modern professional woman in mind. We combine a high-energy group workout + healthy refreshments + amazing keynote speakers to provide the ultimate “sweatworking” experience. Our event series is designed for career-driven women who want to network, develop professionally & maintain a healthy, active lifestyle. 

About the Founder of Smart Girls Sweat – Celine Tarrant:

Celine Tarrant is a young professional with a passion for developing and advancing women, fitness and workplace wellness. She came up with the idea for Smart Girls Sweat when trying to balance a full time career, a busy networking and extra-curricular schedule and training for a marathon. Not wanting to sacrifice her active lifestyle for important professional development opportunities, she was determined to find a way to satisfy both demands. 

Pre-Workout Event

We were asked to arrive at the meeting place (Workhaus on Front Street East) for 6:00pm, this location would act as our home base for the evening. I was warmly welcomed at the door by two ladies from Smart Girls Sweat, I checked in, received my raffle ticket, changed and proceeded to find a chair to place my bag. One of my fellow Tribe Fitness #solesisters Courtney had also signed up for the event and once I located here we were good to go!

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Raffle prizes & all of the ladies before we head out to sweat

The Women on the Panel:

  • Seanna Robinson – Founder of Running WellSeanna Robinson has been a competitive runner for 24 years. She has been a national level competitor in track and cross-country and has completed nine marathons including one in an Ironman. Seanna has a Phys. Ed degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Queen’s University and has coached many levels of runners from beginners, to marathoners, to high-competitive track runners.
  • Lisa Mattam – Founder and CEO, Sahajan and The Mattam GroupLisa Mattam is widely recognized as a dynamic leader, inspiring speaker and consultant to business professionals across the globe. As founder of The Mattam Group, a management consulting firm specializing in Leadership, Organizational Development and Strategic Process, Lisa has been quoted on management and leadership issues in newspapers such as the Globe and Mail and on a variety of television media.

The event kicked off with a brief welcome and introductions from the Founder and one of our Panel Speakers for this evening’s event. Seanna Robinson would be leading us through out workout this evening ahead of the panel discussion she would later share with…

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Big THANKS to the incredible sponsors of tonight’s event

Workout

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The plan for this evening’s workout was to run down to Sugar Beach (~1km), complete an interval/running form style workout created by Seanna and then run back to home base. The goal was to keep the warm-up/cool down run at an easy pace to ensure that every struck together and to get to know one another while we were running.

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Ladies listening intently to Seanna’s instructions

The run was great but I know that many of the women in attendance were eager to see what types of internals/technique drills Seanna had planned for us. We headed out to the boardwalk along the water and Seanna proceeded to break the workout down into short sets for almost the next 45 minutes, the interval/running technique workout consisted of the following:

  • High knees
  • Prancing
  • Butt Kicks
  • Lateral Jumps
  • Grape Vine
  • Backwards Running – to work on core engagement and keeping upper body steady
  • Sprints – running max, to mid, to decelerate to allow us to determine our push point that we can speed up to at the end of a race
  • Hands above head run – practice keeping body steady and core engaged

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The ladies working it out

The interval/running technique workout was great! It gave me an opportunity to try some new drills that I haven’t tried before and it also gave me some ideas of how I can improve my workout routine to include some of these drills to better improve my form and stamina over the next few months of training.

Throughout our run back from Sugar Beach I had the opportunity to connect with a few of the women who had come out to the event tonight. Many of them were excited to be working out with new faces, sharing their stories with one another about what they do for a living and there was also lots of discussion about what goal races were on the horizon for many in the 2016 race season.

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Post workout fuel-up treats

Upon arrival back at home base we were treated to a number of tasty snacks from a variety of local business including – XXX. We were asked to settle in shortly after to allow for the raffle draw to take place and to start the Panel Discussion portion of the evening. The Founder of Smart Girls Sweat would be lading the panel and she had pre-selected some questions to get the conversation rolling. Below are a few of my favorite questions and answers from the event:

Q: Tell us a little bit about your backgrounds.

  • A: Seanna and Lisa – both talked about their backgrounds, shift to being an entrepreneur, hustle tips work life balance, career highlights, final parting words of wisdom about how to do what you love.

Q: Share your best hustle tips with us.

  • A: Seanna – don’t think of  yourself as selling something, think of yourself as filling a need!
  • A: Lisa –Be very clear in what you’re offering & live that consistently.

Q: How do you face the pressure on social media?

  • A: Seanna – Do what you love and don’t take yourself to seriously!
  • A: Lisa – Authenticity is important & you can believe in wellness + be you.

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A few of my favourite quotes from the Q&A

Q: Recent study talked about 5 pillars and how you need to attempt to incorporate three of them into your life to be content and happy – exercise work, sleep, social and family. How do you balance these elements within your own life and which three do you feel are most important?

  • A: Seanna – You don’t need to pick three, a combination is key so that you can incorporate all of them into your lives. A good example of this is when she combines social and exercise into one by running with folks who are part of her group of friends, the best of both worlds.

Q: What’s one failure that you’ve had which you’ve bounced back from:

  • A: Seanna – Small fails every day but you pick-up and move on from it, use that experience to be better. It’s almost like how you respond to a bad run.
  • A: Lisa – Push back because it’s in the best interest of your business, you’ll get better at it in time but you need to start doing this at some point in order to ensure that you are communicating what you want to do for your business.

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Seanna & Lisa speaking on the Smart Girls Sweat Panel

The Smart Girls Sweat events are truly unlike any networking event that I have been to before! Celine has done a fantastic job curating an event that women want to make time to attend as it allows them to come together is a more casual environment, while still getting their workout in and connecting with women from various industries that they may have not crossed paths with yet before. I really do hope to make it out to more of their events in the future – sadly I will be in Vancouver during the August event – but I hope to take some of my hardworking, modern, sweat loving women from Holt Renfrew to a Smart Girls Sweat event this coming fall!

Big thank you again to Celine for extending me an invite to this event and allowing me the opportunity to see how incredible this new version of networking aka sweatworking can be to the modern professional woman!

To learn more about Smart Girls Sweat or to sign-up for their next event check them out here.

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