RUN COLLECTIVE: A COACH’S PERSPECTIVE

Hey, it’s Brendan Airey aka Mercedes Brenz aka Bad Boy Bren here to tell you about this little group that runs in the heart of Edmonton.

When I started running, I saw it as an individual sport rather than a team sport. A view that I believe many new runners experience. It’s simply you versus the pavement. There is a certain mental toughness developed through this approach which I believe is important. It also allows you time and space to develop a likeness for running that is unique to yourself. But, I also believe most new runners and those who strictly run alone would feel a void for the social aspect to running – a group of individuals small or large that they can connect with. People who can relate to the shared enjoyment in running and additional things that come with it.

For me, this experience came on a mid-summer Wednesday evening. The plan was to run intervals. High-fives were flying at large, words of encouragement every few metres and an overall aura of positivity. It was that day that running transitioned from an individual sport to a team sport. A group of people pushing each other to not only run their best but to enjoy doing it. It’s an atmosphere like that where running turns into a team sport. I’ve been a frequent at this group called Run Collective ever since.

You may have heard of Run Collective through various social circles. If you’ve overheard a conversation that includes the phrases “on cloud nine”, “the best thing since sliced bread”, or even “the spice of life” it’s safe to assume they were talking about Run Collective.

Run Collective started as a handful of friends who met weekly for a run. Over the years, the bigwigs of Run Collective have made it into workshops and spent countless hours trying to re-craft it into a group that was beautiful, beloved and inclusive to all.

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was it’s running parallel, Run Collective. The small handful of people has grown into a group that wavers between 30 and 100 people.

The current version of Run Collective prides itself on being open to anyone and everyone who cares to join on a Wednesday evening. It’s free of charge but accepts verbal tips over monetary ones. The social component is equally as important as the run itself. It’s always encouraged to run with a friend, new or old. A typical fall and winter run is usually around forty-five minutes to an hour in length at a comfortable pace. A typical spring and summer run varies but is usually more of a speed workout format within the same length in time. A couple coaches lead different pace groups and sometimes even surprise detours.

Our home base is lululemon athletica Whyte Ave (10558 82 Ave NW). We meet Wednesdays evenings at 6:30PM all year round.

If you feel a tingly sensation when reading this and believe that Run Collective appeals to you, we encourage you to come out for one of runs. We would love to have you.

– Coach BA

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