Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Why I'm Proud To Be Part Of Team Bear

I’m part of a club, part of a team, a member of a group that goes by the name Team Bear. I used to be part of a “traditional” running club. A combination of reasons, which I’ve written about in the past, meant I left and never joined another club. Until now.

So why this one? Well it’s a bit different. Members of Team bear are not united by geography or particular sports. Although the trinity of running, cycling and swimming are core you aren’t required to practice all three and without the aid of some serious logistics we’re unlikely ever to all meet. Instead what unites us is our desire to push our limits. Rather than gunning for rankings on a leaderboard we share an ethos that it’s the effort you put in that counts, regardless of the outcome. 

We’re a mix of wannabe’s, try-harders and high-fliers. Our motto: “Suffer But NEVER Surrender”.
To make up for our lack of physical club HQ we have a strong presence on twitter and Facebook. We share our race plans online. We race together and support on the side-lines where possible. We have team kit, and like any club worth its colours, share a love of cake. The only other group of people I’ve come across that are quite as supportive, in all walks of life, are RMR.

Team Bear is the club I hoped I’d find and although sometimes I think it’s a shame it’s only a virtual, it doesn’t seem to matter. I have actually met a few other members in real life and plans to meet others in due course. The nugget that I keep coming back to is that I’ve never been given the impression that I’m not good enough to be part of this. Some of us are accomplished Ironmen or ultrarunners, some of us aren’t. As long as you’re challenging yourself you’ll be supported and encouraged and everyone's seen as an equal.

In these last couple of weeks leading up to the Gatliff I’ve voiced concerns. My training hasn’t gone to plan. I’m scared of the unknown. What if have to walk most of it or end up crying in a ditch somewhere? What if I’m not good enough? The response to this has been the equivalent of a gentle shake of the shoulders and a group hug. A Bear Hug if you will.

“You will be glorious. @TeamBear_Tri will be behind you.”

“The Fear is part of what makes it amazing. Pushing yourself is what makes YOU amazing.” @Rach_2_Oh
I’ve got a well-stocked 2015 race calendar having had my arm twisted by team mates to enter new and exciting events. I will be continuing to push myself thanks to in no small part to my team mates. I have a stronger belief in myself.

I had a conversation with one of our partners, Jason at PerformanceCoaching, the other day. He kept referring to me as an athlete. At the time I felt like pulling him up on that. I’m not a professional sportsperson, a member of Team GB. I don't compete for a running club or place in my events. I think of myself as pretty average by many standards. But then I had a realisation. I sort of do compete for a club; for Team Bear and against myself. I put the effort in to my training and I wear my kit with pride.


  1. Wow, sounds like a great team and a great fit for you.

    PS - they're right, you ARE amazing x

    1. Aw shucks... It does make so much difference finding the "right" team or group for you.

  2. Great write up Vikki!! You're just as supposrtive as the rest of us too!! Glad to have you aboard! Hope to see you at some events next year!

    1. Thanks :) I need to check out the team calendar again to see which events I can get to for support and cheering duties. I'm sure we'll cross paths!