By: Kim Bergeron, Pace & Mind runner
It’s a common belief…
It is a common belief that running is a solitary sport. After all, I am the one lacing up my shoes to go out and run, I am the one putting one foot in front of each other, I am the one getting the workout done, I am the one moving forward when my mind is telling me to stop, I am the one deciding to keep at it with the training, I am the one competing with myself during the race. No one else is going to get it done. While all of this is true, as the saying goes, no (wo)man is an island, and there is such a thing as teamwork when it comes to distance running.
My recent experience with Pace & Mind made me discover the power of synergy, which basically means that you are much more capable with others than alone. It’s the creation of a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Basically, it means: 1+1 = 3. It has been a humbling to be part of a community of people who, instead of competing with each other, support each other through training, push each other by pacing others at races and celebrate each other with cheering.
As much as I enjoy running alone, I have found that I became much faster and more motivated when surrounded by the sound of other feet slapping the sidewalk right next to me. I have found it more manageable to go through gruesome workouts, not quit and stay focused on my goal. I have found it enjoyable to get up early to run for hours on ends. Seeking out to run with people who are faster than me, slightly or significantly, has pushed me to try to catch up. Being surrounded by peers who have reached superior goals makes me eager to improve. Challenging my own notion of where my limits are keeps me motivated to strive for more.
Whenever I talk to people about this team, they are always flabbergasted about my experience. May it be because some runners will voluntarily pace others at races, whether it is for 10k or 32k. May it be because some team mates will drive to others cities or sacrifice a weekend sleep in to cheer on. May it be because some friends will give each other tips and advice through social media connections. It is not just the level of excellence of our runners that make this team special, it is that we all make each other stronger by being together. I feel lucky to be a part of it.
Pace & Mind is an advanced coaching service for distance runners. We offer advanced and highly customized 5k, 10k, half-marathon and marathon coaching for runners to improve their performance both on and off the road. Our coaching is based on the principles founded by Head Coach and Co-founder Rejean Chiasson, a Canadian marathon champion, 4x half-marathon medalist and NIKE+ NRC Coach. He is supported by our Online Run Coach, Kate Van Buskirk, an internationally accomplished track and field athlete, bronze medalist at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and Brooks Elite Ambassador. Unlike traditional ‘cookie-cutter’ or ‘clinic’ approaches to coaching, our Coaches first assesses, then customizes each runner’s training program based on:
INDIVIDUALITY * PROGRESSION * RECOVERY * MOTIVATION * COMMITMENT * COMMUNITY
Coaching programs are powered by TrainingPeaks software to ensure data accuracy. No runner’s program is the same and it constantly changes season by season, cycle by cycle. Our Coaches review your plan in detail each week, then adjust based on your progression and listens to you in terms of changes in nutrition, mental state and cross training efforts. Each runner also receives a cross-training plan and a racing singlet as part of the program.
You have one life to live. Run for your life