Like so many of us, the path that we envision ourselves embarking upon is often quite different from the one we eventually discover under our feet. So, too, in our case—however, the life-experiences we’ve had thus far have all contributed their own part to the life-lessons we’ve needed to learn. It’s all good!
Robyn’s running career spans 17 years on the Canadian National Team. Her remarkable longevity speaks to her simple joy of running. As she says, “I just loved running on the trails in nature—it was a meditative process for me.” Her love of running resulted in some impressive accomplishments—2 time Olympian, World Cup and Commonwealth Games Silver Medalist along with dozens of other national, provincial and local championship titles.
Undoubtedly, one of her most memorable races was her Silver Medal performance in the 1994 Commonwealth Games 3000 meter final hosted in Victoria, British Columbia. After a challenging winter and spring season hampered with health issues, she arrived at the track the morning of her final determined to put in the best performance she could regardless of her circumstances.
After a slow start, one lap into the race, she found herself tied for last. At the halfway mark Robyn was still sitting in the second group far back from the leaders. However, with four laps remaining she began her move. The mainly Canadian crowd, now on their feet, cheered on Robyn as she moved from 4th to 3rd to 2nd place where she finished the race behind teammate Angela Chalmers.
Jason was born into a rowing family. His grandfather, father and older brothers all rowed at a high level. Jason spent his high school years rowing at Ridley College before continuing his passion in university. Once on the National Team he set his sights on the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul.
As defending Olympic Champions, the Canadian men’s eight was expected to defend that title or at the very least medal. They didn’t. Instead they finished dead last in the final.
Much was made of that performance. The Canadian press held nothing back in their assessment of the young Canadian crew and their coach. Jason was unprepared for the feedback that filled national and local papers. It would prove his last race for Canada.
Decades later, Jason defines that experience and the troubled years that followed as the greatest gift he ever received. “It changed everything for me. Up until that moment, I was all about the prize. Now, I get it—how we travel our life’s journey is more important than where that journey leads us.”
After retiring from running, Robyn earned her Masters in Education and opened a practice as a Registered Clinical Counselor. For more information on Robyn’s work as a Clinical Counselor & Health and Performance Coach, please visit her website here.
Jason helped start an organic food business in 1996 in Vancouver after earning his degree in Graphic Design from The Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design. He then returned to university where he received his degree in Education before entering the teaching profession where he taught and coached high school for fifteen years.
Jason and Robyn were married in 2001 and currently live in Victoria, British Columbia with their young family. They are now pursuing their passion for utilizing the many lessons they’ve taken from their Olympic Journeys to support others in the pursuit of their dreams.