Hapnot students rack up kilometres during school walking challenge

To walk across Canada, you’ll need to hike over 6,000 kilometres. Hapnot students cruised way past that for a school challenge last month.

Over 70 Hapnot Collegiate students went for walks and logged their walking totals in May, ending up with nearly 10,000 total kilometres in walking distance.

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The challenge was organized by Hapnot phys-ed teachers Amy Olenick and Mackenzie Bortis.

“We got way more participation than what we were expecting,” Olenick said.

“Especially with 21 teams. It was super awesome. We had weekly challenges as well.”

Weekly challenges included filling up a bag with litter as you walked, climbing to the top of the Bakers Narrows tower, or the boardwalk around Ross Lake.

“We basically walked from Flin Flon to Vancouver and then back to Flin Flon, then to St. John's and almost all the way back,” Olenick said.

“We did span the entire country.”

Olenick said she got the idea of tracking kilometres by comparing them to a cross-country trip from Sal’s Fitness, who track kilometres by circumnavigating the world.

“It was just something fun to put it into perspective of how far those kilometres actually get you,” she said.

The top individual walkers in the school were Dax Lawrence, who went 186.35 kilometres in total, Lori Lawrence who went 128.8 kilometres and Eli Plamondon who went 95.86 kilometres.

The top three teams were The Walking Warriors, Not Fast or Furious and The Meat Packers.

The Walking Warriors - Alyssa Leslie, Sydney Wesner, Matthew Wesner and Maddy Streamer - logged 1151 total kilometres. Not Fast or Furious, made of Michelle Reitlo, Chloe Reitlo, Michelle Faktor and Sarah Faktor, logged 1107 kilometres. The Meat Packers logged 1037 kilometres and were made up of teachers and administrators Brett Unrau, Brent Bedford, Jordy Dumenko and James Dumenko.

Olenick said the walking challenge was the perfect way to mark in the start of summer, with the COVID-19 pandemic keeping people cooped up inside for most of spring.

“Knowing everyone was kind of stuck in the house for the majority of March and April, with the weather being so kind of cold, May 1 comes in and it seemed like everybody wanted to get out of the house,” she said.

“We thought May would be perfect, not just to do this but also boost wellness and mental health and all of that kind of stuff.”

Hapnot students weren’t just competing with each other. Olenick and Bortis challenged schools across northern Manitoba to also participate in the walking challenge. Hapnot was joined by Gillam School in racking up clicks.

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