Congrats Marianne!!

Marianne won a silve medal at the World Police and Fire games in Ireland. She competed in an 8 km mountain run. 


Vanessa Brown, Leaderpost - While she left 75 pounds of firefighting gear behind, competing in the World Police and Fire Games still was not an easy feat for Marianne Boychuk.

Accustomed to running long distances on flat terrain, the 47-year-old Regina firefighter battled steep inclines during an eightkilometre mountain run recently at the 10-day event in Belfast, Ireland. She powered through and brought home a silver medal for her efforts.

She even stopped a few times along the way to photograph the "gorgeous" view.

"It was just incredible," Boychuk said Thursday at her home in Regina. "I was competing, but at the same time I wanted to enjoy the moment because I knew I probably wasn't going to get there again."

Held every two years, the World Police and Fire Games bring emergency services workers together for "friendly competition" and a chance to network and experience the camaraderie of 7,000 officers and firefighters from across the world.

Boychuk's husband, retired firefighter Dwayne Thurmeier, also competed (golf), as did retired assistant fire chiefs Miles Forsberg and Rollie Gemmell (golf), and retired firefighter Brian Desjarlais (weightlifting), Boychuk said.

A veteran firefighter and lifelong athlete, Boychuk already looks to be in great shape, working out six times a week to stay fit for her job. In order to train for a new event, she had to tweak her regime slightly in the weeks before leaving for the Games.

She found herself running through Douglas Park in southeast Regina, as well as driving to Echo Valley Provincial Park in Fort Qu'Appelle to simulate more mountainous terrain. During her downtime while on duty, she would hop on the treadmill and raise the incline. Boychuk said she relished the challenge, and now has even more variety added to her workouts.

"I'm a very goal-oriented person," she explained. "I like setting a goal and then the journey is the greatest part of it.

"You have a training program that you stick to. It makes me feel good that I'm in better shape for my job, and that I'm just healthier for myself."

She struck another goal off her list four years ago when she completed her first marathon in Vancouver.

Boychuk has also competed in triathlons, half-marathons and half-Ironman events over the years in numerous different locations. Part of her motivation is her 13-year-old son, Jory, for whom she said she wants to set a good example.

"I would rather that we be active together, and we can be healthy together," Boychuk said, noting Jory has also begun to enter into triathlons.

Next up for the family? Getting back into training mode before hitting the pavement Sept. 8 in the Queen City Marathon.