Let’s talk for a second (or 3 minutes - I want you to know the time commitment upfront of reading this blog post) about teams. What teams are you a member of currently? What teams have you been a member of in the past? (friends, family, co-workers, spiritual communities, bird watching gangs, stamp collecting associations, knitting guilds, you get the idea.) How many of them support and encourage you to get after your goals?
What I have learned from being on (both successful and unsuccessful) teams in the past is that team is more than just a group of people who sometimes hang out or who have common interests. A true team has a magical energy.
Here is an example: waaaay back in high school, on the first day of cross-country practice, my coach stood in front of myself and about 45 other girls (that is a lot of female energy, btw. See photo below) and said, “This is a special team and special things happen to special teams.”
Don’t you just love when authority figures speak in vague platitudes?
Anyways, most of us were pretty clueless about what he was really saying, but we got the gist that great opportunities lay in front of us that season.
Notice what he didn’t say. He didn’t promise PBs (personal bests), or a winning record, or a state championship (spoiler alert: all of which did happen), but rather he framed it that we were a unique unit and our strength was our collective spirit.
We took that message and ran with it (literally) that season. We showed up every single day with the intention of working towards greatness.
We leaned on each other.
We supported one another.
No one was left to do all the work.
Goals were set and reset.
Egos where squashed.
Mistakes were made.
Sacrifices were freely offered.
Tears were shed.
So much fun was had.
Championships were won.
Memories and friendships for life were made.
Such incredible young women. It was an honor to train and compete with them. Many of us still run and hang out with, and support each other to this day.
Massachusetts State Champions. 1997. Unbeknownst to us, half-way through this race, we were losing. By a lot. Another team had several girls in front of us. Our teammates and coaches gave us such inspiration and timely coaching from the sidelines that we all focused on passing as many competitors as possible in the final mile. Right when it hurt the most, we focused on each other. It was so worth it.
As adults, unfortunately, it seems we have fewer opportunities to be members of teams like this. Wouldn’t it be great to surround yourself (even if done virtually) with folks who will show up with a common goal of serving one another and up-leveling our experiences in both running and life every day?
What could we accomplish individually and collectively with such selflessness and focus and open-heartedness?
If this magic is something you crave – I invite you to join our upcoming Run Your Life Masterclass and Virtual Retreat on August 15th. Tickets are available for limited time at:
Let us help you get more out of your running and life.
We will get to work.
We will get results.
And we plan on having a lot of fun in the process.
And remember, “special things happen to special teams”.
I will see you in the Masterclass!
I love this photo and this race. National Interscholastic Running Club Assocation (NIRCA) Southeast Regionals in Spartanburg, SC. University of Florida women's team placed second. Loved getting to share it with my bestie, Anne Elise.
University of Florida Running Club. NIRCA Southeast Regionals. Running is one of the few sports that brings people of all abilities, ages, and backgrounds together at the same time with the same mission. It's a beautiful thing.
UF Running Club. NIRCA Nationals. Two of these team members met on this trip. They are now married. Talk about magic.
It's a Gator thing. 😆🐊