Fast and Female https://fastandfemale.com Girl, You Got This! Thu, 13 Oct 2022 23:50:41 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=6.0.2 https://fastandfemale.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/Fast_Female_Logo_2022-C-nowordmark-150x150.png Fast and Female https://fastandfemale.com 32 32 Celebrating International Day of the Girl 2022 https://fastandfemale.com/international-day-of-the-girl-2022/ Tue, 11 Oct 2022 16:17:08 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=4465 By Morgyn Engman

 

October 11th marks the 10th anniversary of International Day of the Girl Child, established by the United Nations. It was started with the goal of bringing more awareness to the different challenges that are faced by girls around the world. Some of the inequalities that the United Nations set out to address with the Day are access to education, nutrition, legal rights, discrimination, violence against women, medical care, and forced child marriage. They also strive to have girls and women be included and able to fully participate in decisions that impact them. International Day of the Girl also stems from a commitment to the United Nations Millennium Development Goal for “empowerment and investment in girls”  (Wikipedia, 2022). 

The History of International Day of the Girl 

Plan International was the main inspiration and champion for the observance. The Plan International Canada and Rona Ambrose, former Minister for the Status of Women were the ones that fought for the cause (Wikipedia, 2022). Plan International continues to celebrate and contribute to ending gender disparity. The recognition of the day has spread to many organizations big and small, with thousands of events across the world celebrating girls. The celebration has also jump started other commitments from governments to work towards gender equality.

10 Ways To Celebrate for 10 Years of International Day of the Girl 

  • Talk about Girl Power with people in your life 
  • Move with your friends 
  • Share with #internationaldayofthegirl and #fastandfemale on social media
  • Share women influencers on social media 
  • Watch women’s sports  
  • Learn more about the day from Plan International 
  • Read a book by a woman author
  • Listen to a Podcast by Women  
  • Check out our resources 
  • Donate to Fast and Female to support our mission of keeping self-identified girls healthy and active in sport and physical activity!
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Celebrating Latin American Heritage Month in Canada with the Estrada’s https://fastandfemale.com/celebrating-latin-american-heritage-month-in-canada-with-the-estradas/ Fri, 07 Oct 2022 16:08:54 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=4431 Our very own Gabriela (Gaby) and Alejandra Estrada share more on what Latin American Heritage Month in Canada is and it’s significance to them and their family. Please note that this is just the perspective of Gaby and Alejandra and in no way represents what this month means to all those of Latin American Heritage.

October was proclaimed Latin American Heritage Month in Canada in 2018 by the Parliament of Canada; the month was deemed a time to recognize the Latin American community’s “tremendous contribution to Canadian Society,” (Canadian Heritage, 2021). But what does this mean? And who and what exactly is the Latin American Community?

Photo of Latin America – Credit: Forbes

The Latin American Community: Latin America is composed of 21 countries or territories: it starts in North America with Mexico and goes down to the furthest point of South America in Argentina and Chile. Latin America includes countries in the Caribbean. All 21 countries or territories are: Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Cuba, Haiti, the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico (Wikipedia, 2022).

The populations and communities in Latin America often identify themselves as being Latinx/Latine/Latino/Latina – people that originate from a country in Latin America; the spelling of the word is very much an individual choice, as Latinx and Latine are terms “used to describe people of all genders who have Latin American roots, as well as people whose ancestors are from multiple Latin American Countries,” (Washington Post, 2022). Although these terms are used to unite peoples and communities from Latin America, it is very important to note that Latinx/Latine/Latino/Latina people are not a monolith and are not a race: we are made up of groups that have “different racial and ethnic backgrounds…[and also of people] who do not speak any Spanish [and instead] speak a variety of other languages, [like] Creole, Quecha, or Spanglish,” (Vice, 2020). Latinx/Latine/Latino/Latina people include Black, Indigenous, White, and multi-racial people. We are a diverse group with both many similarities and many differences, which is part of what makes our cultures so rich and beautiful. It is also important to note that Latin America has a deep rooted and ongoing history of racism and anti-Blackness within their own communities towards Black people and Indigenous people. As a collective, our people and culture need to do better.

The Estrada’s in Antigua, Guatemala 2012

What is this month and what it means to us: Latin American Heritage Month is meant to be a month to celebrate Latin American origin and people’s in Canada and how we “enrich [Canadian fabric] with [our] diverse and vibrant cultures, cuisine, music, dance and more,” (Canadian Heritage, 2021). For us, Gaby and Alejandra, and our family, this is something we strive to do this month and everyday. Our parents immigrated here from Guatemala back in the early 80’s and the two of us, alongside our brother Marvin Jr., were all born here in Scarborough (Toronto, ON). Latin American culture and, in particular, traditions from Guatemala were infused and continue to be infused into our entire being. Some things are more minor, like Guatemalan and Spanish slang, whereas others are big yearly traditions during key holidays. Being proud to celebrate our parent’s heritage and culture also includes things like listening to our music, eating our delicious food (I mean, have you tried frijoles with fresh queso and warm tortilla?!), speaking the language (or finding ways to relearn it, in Alejandra and Marvin Jr.’s case), and connecting and reconnecting with family.

Papa Estrada

Ultimately, for us, celebrating Latin American Heritage is about celebrating our dad. It’s about making our dad proud of the sacrifices he made, alongside our other family members, in choosing to leave home and come to a new country to create better opportunities for us. It’s reflecting on the barriers and hardships our family experienced and continue to experience in immigrating to this country, learning a different language, and finding ways to assimilate into Canadian culture while still being true and authentic to themselves and bringing whatever they could from back home into their day to day lives through language, music, food, art and other aspects of culture. And then it’s us looking for ways how to incorporate Guatemala culture into who we are and reminding ourselves how proud we are of our family, our heritage, our culture and being able to be extensions of that. To be role models for each other, for others from Latin America, and to make our dad and family proud to be Latinx.

For me, Gaby, receiving this DM after being on Tara Slone’s Top of Her Game on Sportsnet was that reminder of how important it is to have that representation and to be a proud, vocal Latina and celebrate our Latin American heritage and culture all day, everyday! Translation: “And that you too are Chapina [slang for someone from Guatemala – Chapin/Chapina/Chapino] like us…”.

Here are ways that you can celebrate Latin American Heritage Month in Canada this month (and every month):

For more ways on how you can celebrate this month, check out this blog post by Good Good Good and this one by Forbes!

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CLOSED Now Hiring: Workshop Facilitator (French) https://fastandfemale.com/now-hiring-workshop-facilitator-french/ Thu, 15 Sep 2022 22:40:07 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=4170 WHAT IS FAST AND FEMALE? 

  • Fast and Female is a Canadian charity on a mission to keep self-identified girls aged 8-14 healthy and active in sports and physical activities. Founded in 2005, Fast and Female believes in the power of positive sport experiences and role models to give girls leadership, teamwork, and resiliency skills. 
  • In our endeavour to foster lasting involvement in sports, we host national and local events and programs in collaboration with community partners and like-minded individuals. Fast and Female provides opportunities for powerful connection with REAL (Relatable, Empowered, Active Leaders) Role Models from within the girls’ communities. 

OUR VISION 

  • Harnessing the power of sports, movement, and role models to forge a new generation of women leaders. 

OUR MISSION 

  • Keep self-identified girls healthy and active in sports and physical activities.

OUR COMMITMENT TO ANTI-RACISM AND RESPECT 

  • Fast and Female was created in 2005 to tackle the inequalities and systemic barriers for girls and women in sports; however, we are also aware of how these inequalities reach far beyond sport culture and how they affect racialized and marginalized populations more than others. 
  • We recognize that Fast and Female’s values of Inclusion and Social Change cannot be fully realized until we address these injustices and oppression and make meaningful change. ● We are committed to hiring staff and contractors who, in addition to possessing the desirable 

experience, values and skill sets, contribute to meaningful and intersectional representation among our team. 

ROLE

  • Workshop Facilitator 
  • Reports to Executive Director 
  • Works collaboratively with Program Coordinator 

KEY GOALS 

  • The Workshop Facilitator plays a key role in delivering a successful, safe and inspiring Fast and Female event, virtually, for youth participants. The person in this position shares our vision for a positive, empowering culture for girls in sports. The role consists of preparing and delivering two (2) 60 minute virtual workshops in French, meeting Fast and Female’s event quality standards, and offering a unique and empowering experience to all participants. The candidate is accountable for building relationships with key stakeholders including REAL Role Models, presenting event partners, fitness leaders, sports clubs, provincial sports organizations, and national sports organizations.

ACCOUNTABILITIES

  • Event preparation
    • Reviews and learns workshop curriculum and schedule with Fast and Female staff
    • Accesses Fast and Female Workshop Facilitator Google Drive to familiarize themselves with curriculum and tools Establishes key contacts with stakeholders as necessary
    • Partakes in all event meetings where necessary
  • Event communications & marketing
    • Supports Fast and Female staff and presenting partner in the promotion of the event if necessary
    • Support social media efforts (take photos/screen shots during event)
  • Event hosting/delivery
    • Supports in the preparation of workshop materials
    • Reviews the incident reporting process
    • Ensures Incidents reports are completed if required during the event and submitted to the Executive Director after the event.
    • Act as a Fast and Female spokesperson and MC at the event (public speaking/talk about Fast and Female, introduce REAL Role Model)
    • Delivers curriculum to a group of 20 participants, virtually through zoom, in French.
  • Event wrap up
    • Participates in event debrief with event committee
    • Creates a post event report to share with Fast and Female team and presenting partner ○ Provides any additional feedback to Executive Director and Program Coordinator

DESIRED KNOWLEDGE & SKILLS

  • Strong workshop facilitation and public speaking skills 
  • Familiarity with Zoom platform
  • Strong interpersonal/people skills
  • Strong communication 
  • Must have access to strong wifi
  • Must speak fluent French and English 

TOOLS OWNED BY CONTRACTOR 

  • Laptop Computer with video camera and microphone 
  • Zoom account
  • Access to strong Wi-F 

DESIRED WORK STYLE

  • Strong ability to work independently 
  • Self-directed 
  • Team Player 
  • Attention to details 
  • Can-do attitude 
  • Flexible mindset 
  • Dependable 

COMMITMENT 

  • Contractual, part-time work. Approximately 10 hours of work, including two (2) 60 minute sessions for workshop delivery. 
  • Must be available on Thursday, October 6 and Thursday, October 13 between 5pm – 7pm EST 
  • Must be willing to work on weekends and evenings.

COMPENSATION 

  • $200 honorarium. Must invoice Executive Director

Applications due September 23, 2022.

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CLOSED: Fast and Female YXE REAL Role Model Coordinator (Saskatoon, SK) 2022 https://fastandfemale.com/fast-and-female-yxe-real-role-model-coordinator-saskatoon-sk-2022/ Wed, 03 Aug 2022 00:04:12 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=4118 WHAT IS FAST AND FEMALE?
  • Fast and Female is a Canadian charity on a mission to keep self-identified girls aged 8-14 healthy and active in sports and physical activities. Founded in 2005, Fast and Female believes in the power of positive sport experiences and role models to give girls leadership, teamwork, and resiliency skills.
  • In our endeavour to foster lasting involvement in sports, we host national and local events and programs in collaboration with community partners and like-minded individuals. Fast and Female provides opportunities for powerful connection with REAL (Relatable, Empowered, Active Leaders) Role Models from within the girls’ communities.

OUR VISION

  • Harnessing the power of sports, movement, and role models to forge a new generation of women leaders.

OUR MISSION

  • Keep self-identified girls healthy and active in sports and physical activities.

OUR COMMITMENT TO ANTI-RACISM AND RESPECT

  • Fast and Female was created in 2005 to tackle the inequalities and systemic barriers for girls and women in sports; however, we are also aware of how these inequalities reach far beyond sport culture and how they affect racialized and marginalized populations more than others.
  • We recognize that Fast and Female’s values of Inclusion and Social Change cannot be fully realized until we address these injustices and oppression and make meaningful change.
  • We are committed to hiring staff and contractors who, in addition to possessing the desirable experience, values and skill sets, contribute to meaningful and intersectional representation among our team.

ROLE

  • Fast and Female YXE – REAL Role Model (RRM) Coordinator
  • Reports to Program Director

KEY GOALS

  • Fast and Female is seeking a RRM Coordinator to coordinate the successful execution of the Fast and Female program part of the Fast and Female YXE events on September 11 and September 24 in Saskatoon, SK.  We are looking for someone who is self-motivated, highly organized, detail-oriented, and has a flexible schedule leading into this event on September 11 and September 24, 2022. The person in this position shares our vision for a positive, empowering culture for girls in sports. The candidate is accountable for ongoing e-mail communications with our role models and other event contractors, organizing the Run of Show for our programming, recruiting physical activity leads and role models, support with post-program evaluations, Eventbrite and other remote and administrative duties.

 

ACCOUNTABILITIES

  • Program and Event Development and Planning
    • Works closely with the Program Director and other core team members (as necessary) by providing input and support in the planning and delivery of the Fast and Female programming as part of the event day
    • Help to develop and maintain all program and event digital resources, including the Google Drive folders, workback plans/critical path and run sheet documents for the event
    • Collaborates with the Fast and Female Communications team to ensure effective and proper pre-program and event communications to key stakeholders and role models, as necessary.
    • Liaise with partners, Role Models, guest facilitators and other external support to collect relevant information and items related to communications and marketing – i.e., partner logo, Role Model photo, Instagram information, etc. 
    • Attend meetings with Sask Sport (as needed)
  • Travels to the event site in advance to complete site walk, meet with event committee and confirm any final event details 
  • Regularly attend meetings with the Programs team
  • Program and Event Delivery and Evaluation
    • Oversees the maintenance of Eventbrite registration pages, including running event reports, reviewing responses, etc.
    • Ensure that all insurance policies and procedures are followed, including having waivers signed and retained for the safe execution of the program or event.
    • Supports the collection and analysis of data on participation, including contact information of partners and Role Models, and post-event survey results – this includes support in creating new surveys through Survey Monkey and/or Google Forms.
    • Liaison with role models and physical activity leads 
    • Liaison with FF Inventory Coordinators to receive all materials to bring onsite (swag, banners, tent, etc.). Items to be shipped to RRM Coordinator’s place of residence
    • Oversees the on-site delivery of the Fast and Female YXE – from on-site set-up, potential MCing, coordinating Role Models, liaison with event photographers, onsite sales, take down, etc.
    • Assists in the creation of post-program and event internal and external reports (i.e., for donors and sponsors).
  • Program and Event Administrative tasks
    • Supports creating new and/or updating current templates, resources, and procedural documents for the event
DESIRED KNOWLEDGE & SKILLS

  • Strong Eventbrite event page creation and management skills are a requirement
  • Experience using Survey Monkey and Google Forms
  • Spreadsheet management a requirement (Excel)
  • Strong communication skills
  • Strong events project management, planning and hosting experience
  • Program creation and delivery experience
  • Google Drive knowledge
DESIRED WORK STYLE

  • Strong ability to work independently
  • Self-directed (takes action as a leader)
  • Team Player
  • Attention to details
  • Can-do attitude
  • Flexible mindset
  • Honest
  • Dependable
  • Positive

TOOLS OWNED BY EMPLOYEE

  • Personal Laptop/Computer
  • Access to Wi-Fi
  • Access to a vehicle for event day

 

COMMITMENT AND WORK ARRANGEMENT

  • Contractual, part-time work
  • Location: Saskatoon area – primarily remote work with on-site needs leading up to event day and on event day (Civic Centre & Victoria Park)
  • Ability to work up to 20 hours between August 11 to September 30, 2022
  • Must be available on September 11 and September 24 in Saskatoon
  • Must be willing to work on weekends and evenings on occasions

 

COMPENSATION

  • $400 for 20 hours (potential for additional hours of work – must be approved by Program Director)

Applications are due Wednesday, August 8 at 11:59 CST.

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CLOSED: Whitecaps FC Women and Girls Day Event Coordinator (Vancouver, BC) 2022 https://fastandfemale.com/now-hiring-whitecaps-fc-women-and-girls-day-event-coordinator-vancouver-bc-2022/ Tue, 19 Jul 2022 18:11:50 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/now-hiring-content-marketing-coordinator-copy/ WHAT IS FAST AND FEMALE?
  • Fast and Female is a Canadian charity on a mission to keep self-identified girls aged 8-14 healthy
    and active in sports and physical activities. Founded in 2005, Fast and Female believes in the
    power of positive sport experiences and role models to give girls leadership, teamwork, and
    resiliency skills.
  • In our endeavour to foster lasting involvement in sports, we host national and local events and
    programs in collaboration with community partners and like-minded individuals. Fast and Female
    provides opportunities for powerful connection with REAL (Relatable, Empowered, Active
    Leaders) Role Models from within the girls’ communities.

OUR VISION

Harnessing the power of sports, movement, and role models to forge a new generation of women
leaders.

OUR MISSION

Keep self-identified girls healthy and active in sports and physical activities.

OUR COMMITMENT TO ANTI-RACISM AND RESPECT

  • Fast and Female was created in 2005 to tackle the inequalities and systemic barriers for girls and
    women in sports; however, we are also aware of how these inequalities reach far beyond sport
    culture and how they affect racialized and marginalized populations more than others.
  • We recognize that Fast and Female’s values of Inclusion and Social Change cannot be fully
    realized until we address these injustices and oppression and make meaningful change.
  • We are committed to hiring staff and contractors who, in addition to possessing the desirable
    experience, values and skill sets, contribute to the meaningful and intersectional representation
    among our team.

 

ROLE

  • Whitecaps FC Women and Girls Day – Fast and Female Event Coordinator (Vancouver, BC)
  • Reports to Program Director

 

KEY GOALS

  • Fast and Female is seeking an Event Coordinator to coordinate the successful execution of
    the Fast and Female program part of the Vancouver Whitecaps FC Women and Girls Day in
    Vancouver, BC on August 27.
  • We are looking for someone who is self-motivated, highly
    organized, detail-oriented, and has a flexible schedule leading into this event on Saturday,
    August 27, 2022. The person in this position shares our vision for a positive, empowering
    culture for girls in sports. The candidate is accountable for ongoing e-mail communications
    with our role models and other event contractors, organizing the Run of Show for our
    programming, recruiting physical activity leads and role models, support with post-program
    evaluations, Eventbrite and other remote and administrative duties.

 

ACCOUNTABILITIES

Program and Event Development and Planning

  • Works closely with the Program Director and other core team members (as necessary) by
    providing input and support in the planning and delivery of the Fast and Female
    programming as part of the event day
  • Help to develop and maintain all program and event digital resources, including the
    Google Drive folders, workback plans/critical path and run sheet documents for the
    Girls Run
  • Collaborates with the Fast and Female Communications team to ensure effective
    and proper pre-program and event communications to key stakeholders and role
    models, as necessary.
  • Liaise with partners, Role Models, guest facilitators and other external support to
    collect relevant information and items related to communications and marketing –
    i.e., partner logo, Role Model photo, Instagram information, etc.
  • Attend meetings with the Vancouver Whitecaps FC
  • Travels to the event site in advance to complete site walk, meet with event committee
    and confirm any final event details
  • Regularly attend meetings with the Programs team

Program and Event Delivery and Evaluation

  • Oversees the maintenance of Eventbrite registration pages, including running
    event reports, reviewing responses, etc.
  • Ensure that all insurance policies and procedures are followed, including having
    waivers signed and retained for the safe execution of the program or event.
  • Supports the collection and analysis of data on participation, including contact
    information of partners and Role Models, and post-event survey results – this
    includes support in creating new surveys through Survey Monkey and/or Google
    Forms.
  • Liaison with role models and physical activity leads
  • Liaison with FF Inventory Coordinators to receive all materials to bring onsite (swag,
    banners, tent, etc.). Items to be shipped to Event Coordinators place of residence
  • Oversees the on-site delivery of the Whitecaps FC Women and Girls Day – from on-site
    set-up, potential MCing, coordinating Role Models, liaison with event photographers,
    onsite sales, take down, etc.
  • Assists in the creation of post-program and event internal and external reports (i.e., for
    donors and sponsors).

Program and Event Administrative tasks

  • Supports creating new and/or updating current templates, resources, and procedural
    documents for the event

DESIRED KNOWLEDGE & SKILLS

 

DESIRED KNOWLEDGE & SKILLS

 

  • Strong Eventbrite event page creation and
    management skills are a requirement
  • Experience using Survey Monkey and Google
    Forms
  • Spreadsheet management a requirement
    (Excel)
  • Strong communication skills
  • Strong events project management,
    planning and hosting experience
  • Program creation and delivery experience
  • Google Drive knowledge
DESIRED WORK STYLE

  • Strong ability to work independently
  • Self-directed (takes action as a leader)
  • Team Player
  • Attention to details
  • Can-do attitude
  • Flexible mindset
  • Honest
  • Dependable
  • Positive

 

TOOLS OWNED BY EMPLOYEE

  • Personal computer and internet access

COMMITMENT AND WORK ARRANGEMENT

  • Contractual, part-time work
  • Location: Vancouver area – primarily remote work with on-site needs leading up to
    event day and on event day
  • Ability to work up 25 – 30 hours between August 2 to September 9, 2022
  • Must be available on August 27 in Vancouver
  • Must be willing to work on weekends and evenings on occasions

COMPENSATION

  • $20 an hour for up to 25-30 hours (potential for additional hours of work – must be
    approved by Program Director)
    Applications are due Wednesday, July 27 at 11:59 PST.

]]>
Fast and Female Youth Advisory Council’s Brooke Ailey on Prioritizing Nutrition https://fastandfemale.com/fast-and-female-youth-advisory-councils-brooke-ailey-on-prioritizing-nutrition/ Thu, 16 Jun 2022 15:35:52 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=4096 Content Warning: Eating Disorders

We had the chance to sit down with Fast and Female’s Youth Advisory Council member, Brooke Ailey from Thunder Bay, Ontario. As an athlete she has been working to reshape her perspective around food and nutrition, and shared her journey battling and eating disorder. Brooke’s goal is to bring awareness to the pressures that young self-identified girls in sport face, and we recommend reading through this post with an adult in your life to help navigate any reflective questions you may have.

 

Please introduce yourself
My name is Brooke Ailey, I am 17 years old and live in Thunder Bay, Ontario. I am a competitive cross-country skier with Lappe Nordic. I joined Fast and Female’s Youth Advisory Council last August, with the goal of bringing  awareness to eating disorders and disordered eating in sport and help girls avoid and recover from them in order to live life to the fullest. I want to show girls that there is room for them in sport, to grow, learn, make mistakes and succeed!! 

Why is it important for you to bring awareness to eating disorders and disordered eating in sport?
In the past, I struggled with an eating disorder called orthorexia. It was debilitating and all-consuming, and a lot of it stemmed from wanting to be what I perceived as a “true athlete.” I had this strong idea in my mind that an successful athlete was lean, and muscular but skinny, and that 1. I was not that, and 2. If I cared about my performance, I needed to become that. This is an incredibly harmful lens to view your body and your athleticism through, but also very very coming. So many young girls, especially athletes, struggle with unidentified eating disorders or body image issues because to everyone around them, it can just look like a noble effort to improve as an athlete. Especially as an athlete, you are often praised for being lean, thin, conscious about your nutrition, healthy, etc. I was very lucky to have an extremely supportive ski community and family, and I never felt this pressure from them, but I was still conditioned to have this ideal athletic body in mind. 

In the athletic community, we need to get away from this idea of “looking” like an athlete. If you do any type of sport or physical activity, at any level, you are an athlete. Point blank.  

 

Why was Fast and Female the avenue for you to spread this message?
I have been a part of Fast and Female since I was a young girl, and so I think it was a natural progression. I have always been passionate about engaging girls in sport, and have always wanted to work with Fast and Female. Struggling with an eating disorder as a female athlete, I felt really alone, but in recovery, I realized how common this issue is, specifically in the young self-identified female athletes. As this is Fast and Female’s main demographic, and as we have previously focused mainly on physical activity, I feel there is room for growth in terms of nutrition and helping girls create a healthy relationship with food.  

 

You did an interview with CBC about your experiences. Can you tell me a bit about why you chose to do that?
For sure. I was approached by my high-school principal, who had a connection with a former student and CBC journalist looking to write an article about eating disorders. I sat on the proposal for a few months, mostly because I was nervous but also because I was worried about how people around me would perceive me if they knew what I struggled with. I ended up doing the interview only because I knew I could have a positive impact on other young girls, and help them avoid or get help for similar issues. I want to be the role model I wished I had four years ago because I really think that could have changed things for me.  

What do you want people to understand about eating disorders or disordered eating? 
I feel people have a very limited perception of what an eating disorder looks like. For the majority of my eating disorder, I was still in the “healthy” range for BMI, but internally, I had never been less healthy. I think people often associate eating disorders with an extremely malnourished, feeble young girl, either with anorexia or bulimia, as the only types of eating disorders. In reality, well these are two very serious ED’s, they actually make up a very small portion of all ED’s, and only 6% of people struggling with an eating disorder are classified as “underweight.”  

Anybody can struggle with an eating disorder. It doesn’t matter where they may land on the gender spectrum, it doesn’t matter their age, or how they look. Or how “strong” they are. Just because you are strong doesn’t mean you aren’t struggling. Eating disorders can be very secretive and private, and people can be very good at hiding their destructive behaviours.  

 

How did you seek out help?
My mom urged me to. During the first few months of the pandemic, I began treatment virtually with St. Joe’s Hospital here in Thunder Bay. I saw a few therapists for about 6 months, and after that, my symptoms finally went away.  That was just what recovery looked like for me, but it varies from person to person.  

 

What would you say to young female athletes struggling with disordered eating or an eating disorder.
I believe eating disorders also come in a range of severity, and this idea of “not being sick enough” needs to go. I know personally, I deferred treatment for years because I didn’t view myself as sick enough to get help. Why do you need to be severely underweight and in a terrible mental state to get help? If you are struggling, in any way, in any capacity, you deserve help. You deserve to have the best relationship with food, exercise and your body as possible.  

Anything else you’d like to add?
At Canadian Ski Nationals this year, I got to meet Jessie Diggins. Jessie is an American Olympic Gold Medalist in Cross-Country Skiing, and also a survivor of an eating disorder and an advocate for seeking help for issues surrounding eating. When I met her, I thanked her for her role in helping me seek help for my eating disorder. It was a really emotional moment for me, and a full-circle moment. She gave me a big hug, and I think that’s a moment I’ll remember for the rest of my life. Recovery is worth it.   

National Eating Disorder Information Centre
(416) 340-4156
nedic.ca

 

Our Youth Advisory Council is made possible by the support of the Calgary Foundation Doc Seaman Amateur Sports Grant

Fast-and-Female-Youth-Advisory-Council-supported-by-the-Calgary-Foundation-Doc-Seaman-Amateur-Sports-Grant

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Tammy Cunnington’s Cooking Passion https://fastandfemale.com/tammy-cunningtons-cooking-passion/ Mon, 02 May 2022 18:57:04 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=4003 By Muskaan Walia

If you are new here, allow me to introduce you to the one and only Tammy Cunnington. A long-time supporter of Fast and Female, REAL (Relatable, Empowered, Active Leader) Role Model, Canadian Paralympian, and now an avid cook. I had the pleasure of “meeting” Tammy through a Zoom call today and got to gain a little insight regarding her passion for the kitchen and how she combines nutrition and taste to ensure a healthy lifestyle. 

 

Have you always enjoyed cooking?

Yes, I have always had a passion for cooking. I especially like to experiment with meals I try at a restaurant that my husband and I both like. Then I come home and add my own twist to it to make it more nutritious. I love doing this because it prevents us from eating out too much because I’ll make our cravings at home. However, I would say my liking for cooking grew once the pandemic hit because it helped keep me sane at home. It was a great way to pass the time and ensured we weren’t eating out all the time. 

What do you usually make at home?

Just about everything! I prefer to make my own breads and grow my own herbs (as we were speaking Tammy adjusted the oven that her bread was baking in.) I have an AeroGarden that I grow my basil in and use that for pesto and I prefer baking bread at home because I know there aren’t any preservatives inside it. Bread at the store usually spoils after a week, that’s because they add additional chemicals to keep it fresh longer, I don’t do that so mines will only be good for 2 days. I feel better knowing that what I’m eating isn’t full of preservatives. I have even experimented with Indian and Jamaican curries! Currently I am working on Mexican.

Do you focus more on nutrition or taste when you cook?

I combine both! I make my food more nutritious by not adding salt, sugars, and fats but will use lots of spices instead (at this point Tammy opened her spice drawer to show me rows upon rows of spices and told me this wasn’t even all of it!)

How do I encourage others to eat healthily?

Encourage others to eat healthier by modelling. I do this by being consistent in eating healthy so no one can say they saw me eating otherwise and use that as an excuse for themselves or against me. I would also encourage others to cook their cravings at home. 

Best dish you make?

People love my cheddar broccoli soup.

The worst dish you have made?

I made this seafood lasagna once that did not taste good. Currently I am working on macaroons. Those are tough!

Any advice for the girls of Fast and Female?

Girls have to find their own way when it comes to nutrition. Shut out what social media and society say to you. You have to figure out how to do it in a way that feels good for you and that’s going to look different for every girl. Most importantly find balance in your life, you can still have foods you like. 

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Tammy Cunnington PLY 🇨🇦 (@tj_cunnington)

It truly was a pleasure to sit and converse with Tammy. She had so much kindness and wisdom regarding nutrition to share. Something else that she stated that really sat with me was “In order to have the best quality of my life, I need to eat like this.” Her words meant that in order to do all the activities she loves best, to look her best and feel the best, she has to eat like this. It’s not just about eating healthy to fulfill your fruits and vegetable intake of the day, it’s about doing it for yourself so you can live the best version of your life! 

And you deserve that.

 

If you would also like to support Fast and Female please click here https://fastandfemale.com/donate-now/

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Discrimination or fair play: How New Track Rules Exclude Black Women? https://fastandfemale.com/discrimination-or-fair-play-how-new-track-rules-exclude-black-women/ Fri, 29 Apr 2022 18:30:50 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=3999 By: Jessica Henry

 

Right now there are a lot of opinions about women’s sports, people who would never have even deigned to watch women compete are giving their thoughts and voices as to what a woman is and which women should be allowed to compete. With more people than ever paying attention to women’s sports, it seems that every day there’s a new opinion on the bodies that get to compete on women’s teams. But when too many people think they have a say, it feels like too many hands in a cookie jar, hands that are unqualified to make the assessments that they are. One such topic that is being debated is the level of testosterone allowed to be in a woman’s body while they are competing: specifically Black women. 

Black women naturally have higher levels of testosterone than normal.  Some findings say that this is thanks to their skin colour, as testosterone works synergistically with UV light, promoting melanin. In 2018 the World Athletics organization lowered their testosterone threshold to five nanomoles per litre, citing that most women’s levels are around 2 nanomoles per litre, and by doing this, they were levelling the playfield for fair competition. This implies that women with naturally high levels of testosterone are unfairly advantaged, which isn’t true. They admit women who have higher levels are not cheating, but this ruling implies otherwise.

Luckily this ban only applies for races from 400 metres to 1600 metres, allowing them to compete in shorter races. However, the runners that have been affected by this ban all run the longer sprints, in the 400 metres and the 800-metre races. Though it may seem straightforward, Track is a delicate sport. Where one might dominate in a longer race such as the 800m, they might not do as well in the shorter 200-metre race, and vice versa. This is because the races are run differently, in longer distances you have to conserve your strength for the final stretch, and in shorter races, it is easier to go all out throughout the entire run. In longer sprints, you need better control of your speed and stamina in longer races, and you have time to gradually gain speed. Forcing these women to do shorter races goes against their training and gives them a disadvantage over their opponents who have specifically trained for these races. 

Khamica-Bingham
Image courtesy of Khamica Bingham, Fast and Female REAL (Relatable, Empowered, Active Leader) Role Model, Olympian

People like to use the phrase, natural-born athletes. Take Micheal Phelps for example; at 6’4” he has a large wingspan of 6’7”, a disproportionate size as most people’s wingspan equates to their heights. His hands, feet and torso are also the sizes that would be found on a man of 6 ‘8”. He has double-jointed ankles, along with hyperextension in his joints, giving him a range of motion that others cannot naturally measure up to. With these natural gifts, he has won 28 Olympic medals and is the most decorated Olympian in modern times. He has never been subjected to bans or disqualification due to this natural edge he possesses. The ban on women with higher levels of testosterone is selective at best and discriminatory at worst. 

Natural advantages are a part of the sport. They allow children to show promise, opening doors for them to hone their skills and become the best that they can be. Having a rule that excludes almost exclusively Black women from competing on the world’s biggest sports stage is not only discriminatory but disheartening. It is a disservice to all of the young Black girls to see these changes in the rules, wondering if they will affect them. Discouraging them from their passions, as they would not be able to compete unless they go to the extent of changing their physiology.  This should not be the message that is sent to Black girls or women. Black women, or any women for that matter, should not be penalized or removed from competition because of how they were made. Making these rules and saying they’re in the name of levelling the playing field isn’t good enough. Athletes go to the Olympics to compete with the best of the best, but to disqualify the best because of arbitrary conditions diminishes the integrity of the sport altogether. 

 

To learn more on this issue visit these sites:

https://www.11alive.com/article/news/verify/olympics-namibia-runners-disqualified-testosterone/536-64b05c61-7be2-4ca0-9768-d6250df17c19

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-57748135

https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/06/us/black-women-athletes-treatment-olympics-spt/index.html 

 

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World Health Day – 30 Reasons to Get Moving https://fastandfemale.com/30-reasons-to-get-moving/ Thu, 07 Apr 2022 07:00:07 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=3979 By Muskaan Walia

Cover photo by Maria Dalton – Photography

Today is World Health Day! Ever wondered why you should get moving and just can’t seem to find a single, good reason? Well, here’s 30!

1) Helps strengthen bones.

2) Improves cognitive abilities.

3) Lowers chance of depression.

4) Decreases feelings of anxiety.

5) Gives you a sense of accomplishment.

6) Can help you learn a new hobby like dancing!

Fast-and-Female-in--person-and-virtual-hybrid-events-for-girls-in-sports-canada
Have you registered for the Fast and Female Girls Run Presented by Rocky Mountain Soap?

7) Reduces risk of type 2 diabetes.

8) Improves quality of life.

9) Improves balancing skills.

10) Prevent injuries.

11) Show off at parties.

12) Reduces risk of heart disease.

13) Increase flexibility.

14) Improve sports performance.

15) Be the most athletic parent at games.

16) Inspire your loved ones to do the same.

17) It’s fun!

18) Can help make new friends.

19) Reduces risk of high blood pressure.

20) Affordable and often free way to pass time.

21) Keeps the brain young.

22) Improve the quality of sleep.

23) Builds leadership skills.

24) Increases confidence.

25) Makes you happier.

26) Great way to bond with family.

27) Great way to bond with self.

28) Boosts self-esteem.

29) Become a role model for your kids.

30) Improves lung function.

Have another reason? Let us know in the comments below, why you do feel motivated to get active?

Learn more about Fast and Female’s events and programming and our impact on self-identified girls ages 8 – 16 through our about page.

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Participant Story: Emma’s Virtual Summit Experience https://fastandfemale.com/participant-story-emmas-virtual-summit-experience/ Mon, 04 Apr 2022 07:31:21 +0000 https://fastandfemale.com/?p=3974 By Jessica Henry

As we enter into a new year of planning for events and programs ahead to continue in our mission of keeping self-identified girls healthy and active in sports across Canada, we find ourselves reflecting on the success of our previous year.

In 2021 we were able to reach over 300 girls nationally, through both our virtual and in-person events and programs. Introducing hybrid programming in 2021 allowed us to engage girls in a whole new way, including 10-year-old Emma. Emma is from Esterhazy, a rural part of Saskatchewan. She is an active fifth-grade student and this is her second year participating in Fast and Female activities. Emma was recently interviewed about her experiences with Fast and Female. 

Emma beamed throughout her interview, which highlighted how she engaged with her community, how she’s stayed active, and her favourite parts of the Fast and Female Summit. In regards to engaging with her community and neighbours, Emma told of how she “shovels the neighbour’s driveways, and helps and participates in spirit days and Empower Hour at her school”. She also “does all of her sports in her community”, actively engaging with community members. 

 

Emma has been staying active during the pandemic, taking part in a plethora of sports, including but not limited to soccer, gymnastics, skiing, and swimming. 

Her favourite new things that she learned in the Summit were Boxing and Jingle Dancing. Jingle dancing or Shawl dancing is a type of native Canadian dance. Both activities are not offered in Emma’s small community, which goes to highlight the importance of being exposed to different activities and cultures.

Fast-and-Female-Virtual-and-In--Person-Hybrid-Events-for-Girls-in-Sports

When asked what she wanted to share about her summit experience, she answered that the key message she took from the summit was “confidence in doing all sports”, which is an amazing feeling that we hope all of our participants leave with. 

Along with Emma, her parents Alison and Gavin were also interviewed. They spoke about how the summit kept Emma active and excited during Covid. They talked about the importance of Emma attending the summit, stating that the preteen years are formative, and the best time to adopt healthy habits. By encouraging Emma in sports that are also hoping to promote habits such as “teamwork, communication, and making friendships”. 

When asked to speak to the donors/potential donors about the importance and impact of hybrid Fast and Female Events, they explained that having the events as hybrid gave Emma something to look forward to when so much had been cancelled. It allowed her to stay connected, and also gave her a look at sports that were not available in her community, opening doors to new interests for her. Lastly, they commented on having Emma stay healthy and active during the pandemic. They spoke on how it provided Emma with social interaction, an integral part of life that’s been limited in these past two years. 

Emma is only one of the hundreds of girls who have had their lives positively impacted by the Fast and Female programs in 2021, and we look forward to continuing this trend in 2022. 

To learn more about Fast and Female’s upcoming in-person and virtual hybrid events, check out our events page

 

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