|Scott Cannata gets back to running after pausing for refreshments at the 32 kilometre mark of his marathon run through Ottawa.|
If you look up the word perseverance in the dictionary, you won't find Scott Cannata's photograph, but you should.
Mr. Cannata, 25, is currently running across Canada to raise money for cancer research.
Mr. Cannata started his run on May 1 in St. John's. N.L. He plans to finish his adventure, some 5,000 kilometres later, in December in Port Renfrew, B.C.
"We have conquered five provinces out of 10 so far, so we're pretty excited," said Mr. Cannata, in a telephone interview from a hotel in Ottawa last night.
Other runners have either tried to do this before, or have done it and Mr. Cannata acknowledges this.
"This is a silent tribute to Terry Fox."
With his support crew of two, Mr. Cannata is running a marathon (42.2 kilometres) per day.
"Everyday I feel reassured of why we are out here," said Mr. Cannata. "We have all been affected by cancer. We are learning more stories as we go. That's what is fueling this whole journey. I'm kind of on a mission right now. I am out here for the right reasons," he said.
Mr. Cannata lost his grandfather to cancer several years ago and his mother is a cervical cancer survivor.
There have been several highlights along the way so far.
"A gentlemen drove up in front of me (in Québec) and asked if he could join me," said Mr. Cannata. "He didn't know what I was doing, but after I told him, his family gave us bread from the bakery they had just bought and then they donated money online. We have encountered so many people who are so willing to extend a hand and offer their help. It has been refreshing, actually," said Mr. Cannata.
They have gone one-third distance so far and he admits much of it is a mental game.
"At the end of the day, I feel like I ran a marathon, and the next morning, I feel like I ran a marathon yesterday, but I am not out here for me. There are people who are going through much worse circumstances than I am so I just suck it up and plug away," said Mr. Cannata.
Mr. Cannata is a student at Trent University in Peterborough, ON. He is one credit shy of obtaining his Bachelor of Science. He is also a personal trainer.
What does he want Canadians to take from this coast-to-coast run?
"I want to inspire kids to go out there and give it a shot," said Mr. Cannata. "Everyone has something to offer, and this is what I am able to give."
Mr. Cannata is grateful for the support he has received so far, either from emergency services workers who have escorted him, runners who want to run a few kilometres with him, or people who give him cash donations along the way, once they learn about his goal.
Nike has provided him with clothing and shoes.
"I have completely annihilated four pairs of shoes so far," joked Mr. Cannata.
Friends and family helped him to get started through local fund raising. He is hoping that corporate Canada and the public will continue to contribute to this cause.
Want to get involved, or obtain more information? Click here: http://www.theruntolive.com/
|Scott Cannata poses beside his truck while taking a break from his marathon run through Ottawa.|
|Scott Cannata with some of the firefighters who escorted him through Ottawa.|
|An Ottawa fire truck escorts Scott Cannata (right) and local runner Brent Eritou as they run down Richmond Road near Carling Avenue.|