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Running for local hospitals, Victoria marathoner raises $20,000 in 10 days

After doubling her $10,000 fundraising goal, Yana Hempler has extended her marathon challenge to 12 days

Photo by: Twitter/ourvichospitals

When Victoria’s Yana Hempler started her personal challenge of running 10 marathons in as many days, her goal was to raise $10,000 for the Victoria Hospitals Foundation (VHF). She started on July 24, and after nine days, Hempler had smashed that goal, more than doubling it with over $20,000 raised. Before starting her challenge, she promised her followers and supporters that she would run an 11th marathon if she surpassed her fundraising goal before the end of Day 10. She’ll stay true to her word and follow through with that 11th day of running, but after passing $20,000, she announced another adjustment, and now she will be running a 12th marathon as well. 

After a Victoria hospital staff saved the life of one of Hempler’s close friends in October 2019, Hempler decided to thank them by raising money for the VHF. “She’s now alive and well because of those doctors and nurses,” Hempler said before her run. “This is really the best way I can think of to give back to the community.”

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Hempler has been a runner since elementary school, and she ran her first marathon in 2012. She has a PB of 3:18, and she has qualified for the Boston Marathon multiple times (and raced there once, back in 2015). She has had a lot of success in her marathon career, but going into her 10 days of running, she said she wasn’t “trying to set any records.” Her only physical goal was to get through all 10 marathons, and if she managed to raise $10,000 before that final day, she would add an 11th. 

“If people want to torture me, they’ll donate to the charity,” Hempler said. “Even if I have to walk that entire 11th marathon, I’ll do it.” She started her 10th day early Sunday morning, and now, with $20,200 raised for the VHF, she will run (or walk, if she has to) on Monday and Tuesday mornings as well. 

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To follow Hempler as she completes the final legs of her challenge, she can be found on Instagram here. To learn more about her fundraiser and to donate, click here