Olympic medalist urges parents to start with a walk

Catriona Le May Doan still skates, but what she enjoys most these days is a good long walk with her dog.

Though she no longer competes, former Olympic speed skater Catriona Le May Doan remains active. She still skates, but what she enjoys most these days is a good long walk with her dog.

“I’m still super active. I don’t train, but I work out. I work out to counteract what I put into my body and deal with any stress. Even just walking the dog helps. I know it’s what I need. The kids see that.”

Le May Doan says walking is a great place to start, especially for parents who don’t “see themselves as athletic.”

“I’m enjoying walking even more than running these days. I just love a good two-hour walk. Everybody can do that as a basic activity.”

The added benefit of walking? Le May Doan says many of her dog walks include chats with neighbours.

“That doesn’t happen when you’re jumping in the car and racing by all the time,” she says.

Just start – Regardless of your age or what you’ve done in sport, Le May Doan encourages parents to stop worrying about what other people think.

“We need to lose our expectations of ourselves and just start. And when we do get to that point where we start, it’s OK to be proud of ourselves even if you try to take a shot in hockey and completely miss the puck!” (something Le May Doan has done herself).

She says the fear of the unknown and the fact that we make it too complicated often stop us from starting.

“Just take a moment and say ‘let’s go do this.’” says Le May Doan.