A weekend of inspiration in support of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation

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This past August, UG Series held our inaugural Women Strong weekend retreat in the beautiful town of Blue Mountain/Collingwood. We created an all-inclusive weekend full of activities, workouts, coaching sessions, and play for a group of like-minded women whoall enjoy fitness as a sport.

What drew me in to my local CrossFit box nearly 3 years ago was the support of the community. We wanted to use that support and create a whole weekend around it that would include 4 phenomenal coaches and CrossFit athletes. We connected with Michele Letendre, Jenny LaBaw, Katie Hogan and Samantha Briggs and asked them to be a part of our first ever Women Strong event.

“When I was first asked to take part in the Women’s Strong weekend I thought it seemed like a really cool idea, add in the fact that it was raising money for such a worthy cause and set in a beautiful location and I was sold!” said the 2013 fittest woman on earth, Samantha Briggs. “I have run a few women only camps in the past and have loved every minute of coaching them. This weekend took it to the next level! The Friday night adventure run kicked us off for a weekend full of laughter and empowerment! I was honoured to be apart of the experience!”

All four of the coaches were invited to the weekend not only for their athletic abilities, but because they tell great stories of struggle, fight and success. Each of the women are leaders in their communities and all inspire others to press on and thrive.

Women Strong coach and 4 times CrossFit Games veteran Michele Letendre said, “It was as much of a learning experience for me as it was for the women in attendance. I love the enthusiasm and the passion for improvement each women demonstrated in and out of the gym. It was a great weekend that I will not soon forget.”

For UG the Women Strong Weekend was about not only being able to be coached by these incredible women but to also spend time sharing meals, stories, knowledge and just spending the weekend playing with a group of women and alongside these 4 amazing coaches, from a team building adventure up Blue Mountain to hanging out and playing on the beach.

“I almost cancelled my participation in the Women Strong weekend.In May I experienced a very painful disc herniation in my neck, which prevented me from competing in the 2014 CrossFit Games,” said 2013 Games master’s athlete Kelly Graham. “I was emotionally very low and felt I would not be able to ‘throw down’ with everyone else, so why bother going.As it turned out, Women Strong was a powerful weekend for me.I was blessed to spend time with incredibly supportive, talented, and inspiring women.I came away encouraged by the coaches’ knowledge and stories of their own challenges.”

It’s so great to be able to give women an experience like Women Strong. These women all embrace the beauty and power of their physical strength; they redefine what beauty and strength are for this generation of women and the next.

“Getting the opportunity to talk to, train with, and connect with a group of women I had never met before was a unique and inspiring experience,” said Katie Hogan, two-time CrossFit Games veteran.

The fact that a group of women who are mostly strangers can come together for such a short time and leave with this wonderful feeling of inner strength is a glowing sign of the empowering nature of this sport and its embodiment by Women Strong.

“I laughed, I cried; in three days I was influenced by a group of 40 women I had never met and knew nothing about, but I left feeling like I had somehow touched their hearts and knew that I had forever been made a better person, athlete, and friend because of them,” said two-time CrossFit Games veteran, Jenny LaBaw.

The first annual Women Strong weekend is just the beginning for this event; by the end of the weekend,athletes in attendance were excited for the next chance to be empowered and topass that experience onto other women over three days of friendship, laughter, and world-class coaching from some of the strongest in the sport.

We’re now busy planning Women Strong 2015!

Related Categories: Community

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