‘Healing’ challenge raises money for Saskatoon single mums

Hours after sunset on Friday March 5, Dawn Dumont is going to hop on her basement treadmill and run four miles (6.4 kilometres). And she’s going to continue doing that every four hours for the rest of the weekend.

Dumont, a First Nations writer and comedian based in Saskatoon, is taking part in the David Goggins 4x4x48 Challenge to raise money for Crystal’s Gift, a local non profit that provides gently used household items to single mothers in need. She will run four miles every four hours for 48 hours to log 48 miles (77.2 kilometres).

While Dumont has run most of her life and has several marathons under her belt, this will be her first attempt at an endurance event that will see her running through the night.

Dumont was inspired to take on the challenge after reading Goggins’ book “Can’t Hurt Me,” which details how Goggin used self discipline, mental toughness and hard work to rise from a childhood of trauma to become one of the world’s top endurance athletes.

“I was never actually interested in ultra marathons or anything like that until I read his book and then I saw the value in it — the idea that you challenge yourself so hard that it builds your self confidence,” Dumont says.

“Part of it is understanding that you have personal power, because sometimes we feel that our power’s been taken away from us. And in doing these physical challenges you realize ‘No — I still have choice and I’m still able to do these incredible things that I never thought I’d be able to do.’”

Dumont is healing from an abusive relationship and says running has helped her find her breath and take her power back.

“You spend a lot of time almost in a meditative state when you’re running,” she says. “A lot of times the mind is not thinking about anything and I think that’s very healing. It really helps. Sometimes you can have negative loops because there’s a lot of self blame … running is really good for helping to re-regulate the body and make you feel strong and safe.”

Dumont will post updates on her progress on her Facebook page throughout the weekend and says people can show support by donating to Crystal’s Gift, which is run by three mothers. Etransfers can be sent to

“I really like the idea that people are able to rebuild their home and provide for their children,” Dumont says.

Crystal’s Gift is named in honour of Crystal Lee Paskemin, who had been passionate about helping single mothers before she was murdered outside of Saskatoon on Dec. 29, 2000 at the age of 21. More information about the non-profit is available online.

Do you know someone in Saskatchewan with an inspiring running story? Email Brainsport Times editor Andrea Hill at