The 2023 Run Ottawa Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew

The Run Ottawa 2023 Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew is a dedicated group of runners and walkers who share helpful training experiences, excitement about their upcoming Run Ottawa events, details about training, post-run recovery, yummy recipes, cool routes, and more!

Check out the crew members below!

Kristel Gauthier Ottawa, ON

2022 Power Crew Alumni

Run Ottawa member and mother of three, Kristel wrapped up her 2022 fall racing season by finally achieving her goal of qualifying for the 2024 Boston Marathon and surprising herself with a 5K pb along the way. She is a long time runner with K2J Fitness, the Arboretum Hill Club and Mill Street Milers where she has met many incredible people who have now become her closest friends.

Kristel is a dedicated advocate for mental health and openly shares her personal journey with bipolar disorder. Running has and continues to play such an important role in her recovery, and she hopes to inspire others to share their stories too.

Chris Huddleston Ottawa, ON

2022 Power Crew Almuni

Chris has been running in sports most of his life, but his first two races were the Canada Army Run in 2012 and Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend in 2013, where he really got into racing!

More recently, Chris has been getting involved in local running groups, finding the great social side of the sport. He believes the running community in Ottawa is so much fun and he has learned so much by talking with others who are also passionate about running. The running community is such a diverse group of people and he feels it’s fun to meet new runners and get different perspectives.

For Chris, running is a mixture of physical health, mental wellbeing, a love of getting outdoors, and the drive to compete and develop into a better runner. Chris wants to be able to model all of these things to his two teenagers.

He is excited to be a part of this year’s Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew.

Stephanie Leyland Ottawa, ON

Stephanie grew up in Ottawa as a competitive dancer. Running had always been part of other activities she participated in on the side, but never something she thought about doing solely on its own.

Her take on running drastically changed after running her first 10K race in 2016. The sense of community she felt was similar to that of how she spent her childhood at the dance studio and she knew this was something she couldn’t get enough of. It took a mere two years to be convinced to run a marathon and now Stephanie has completed six. Her goal of qualifying for Boston is alive and well, and she is hopeful to achieve it in the coming year.

Stephanie is excited to be part of Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew and cannot wait to share her journey with other runners. Her mantra: If you can believe it, you can achieve it.

Vivian Luk Ottawa, ON

Vivian ran her first 5K race in 2012. Since then, she’s ran numerous 5K and 10K races, and has completed a half marathon. Unfortunately, after suffering a knee injury, she was forced to take several years off from running. Instead, she focused her energy on her love for volleyball, spinning, and weight training – but the idea of running again was always at the back of her mind.

During the pandemic, Vivian discovered the Arboretum Hill Club where she found the perfect trifecta of movement, the outdoors, and a sense of community. Surrounded by Ottawa’s amazing active community, this is where she re-discovered her passion for running.

Vivian can’t wait to share both her experiences as a runner and a cheerleader as a member of the 2023 Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew!

Déborah Parent Ottawa, ON

2022 Power Crew Almuni

Déborah started running back in 2009 and it has been a wild journey for her ever since. Running accompanied her when she started her teaching career, when she married a member of the military, had her first child, moved due to her spouse being posted, had her second child, moved again, had baby number three and moved once more.

For Déborah, running is a calm place where she can be alone with her thoughts, and connect with herself (the part of her that sometimes gets lost among the mother, the employee, and wife). Many times, it’s how she made friends when moving to a new place and to this day, it’s how she stays connected with them. She loves how running makes her feel joyful and energetic.

Kristin Paterson Ottawa, ON

2022 Power Crew Almuni

Kristin was not interested in sports or very active growing up. It wasn’t until she was in her early thirties and had four small kids that she gave running a try. She really wanted to lose the weight she had gained during her pregnancies, and felt that the fresh air and time to herself would help to clear her mind. To her, running seemed like a good fit and it didn’t take long before running became so much more! Kristin ran her first road race at the Great Big Cookie run in November 2018 and it changed her instantly! Since then she has ran two marathons, two half marathons and multiple 5K and 10K events. Running makes her feel happy, strong, challenged and calm. Kristin runs because it brings her joy!

Kristin believes Ottawa has the greatest, most supportive running community you’ll ever meet! She is so grateful to be a part of it and she is honoured to be a part of the 2023 Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew!

Matthew Timms Ottawa, ON

Matthew is originally from London, England and moved to Ottawa in 2016. He lives here with his wife and two cats and works as a 2DFX animator, making fun TV shows for Disney and Netflix.

Matthew has been running for over a decade. In the UK, he ran numerous half marathons and completed one marathon. After moving to Ottawa, running reminded him of home and during a difficult time when his mum was battling cancer, he couldn’t bear to go running, it was too difficult and he stopped for a few years. After working through the grief of losing his mother, Matthew decided that he was ready to become a runner again and has since fallen back in love with the sport. He rebooted his running journey in 2021, started seeing a dedicated running physio and built himself back up from the classic 1 minute on 1 minute off to start, he is currently running up to half marathon distances.

Matthew thinks it’s been amazing getting to know the running community in Ottawa. He is pretty new to the community but has already met so many great people. He often runs with West Ottawa Run Club, K2J and the Ottawa Trail Crew.

Most of the year you can find him getting ‘run lost’ cruising the greenbelt or numerous pathways here in Ottawa. He is looking forward to sharing all the fun and excitement of being a part of Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew!

Winston To Ottawa, ON

Winston has been living in Ottawa for two years after growing up in Hong Kong and Toronto. He gained sprinting experience by playing rugby at the University of Windsor, but began running longer distances during the pandemic.

Winston can now run up to a half marathon distance without stopping and completed in his first road race at Tamarack Ottawa Race weekend last year, the 2022 Ottawa 10K presented by Otto’s Ottawa.

He loves fitness, the outdoors, is always up for trying new things and going on new adventures. He is the current Canadian beach flags champion in Lifesaving Sport and was part of the Canadian National Development Team for Skeleton.

He looks forward to being part of this year’s Otto’s Ottawa Power Crew!