By Marcus Hill | 50th Space Wing Public Affairs
SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — The Joggernauts, a running club developed by 50th Operations Support Squadron and the 4th Space Operations Squadron, returned Wednesday for their first run following COVID-19.
Joggernauts run Wednesdays at 3 p.m. at the Schriever Fitness Center and Saturdays at 8 a.m. at various locations throughout Colorado Springs.
Normally, Joggernauts stop running around November and return in March. This year, however, due to COVID-19, Joggernauts delayed their comeback.
“It’s been slow starting,” Master Sgt. Micky Sederburg, 50th OSS superintendent said. “We’re not [running] as fast as we were last September and October. But it’s great to be back. We’re a support network to get people outside and motivated to have fun.”
Sederburg hopes anyone, regardless of skill level, who wants to participate joins the group.
“We’re here to motivate, educate and get you moving,” Sederburg said. “Every chance we get, we talk about how [running] makes us happier and reduces stress. Everyone comes in at a different level. We have people who are every shape, size and ability. It’s really just to get out and have fun.”
The Joggernauts held a watermelon run Wednesday at the fitness center with 10 participants. Throughout the 3-mile run Airmen would “pass” the fruit.
To pass the watermelon, Airmen would place it on the ground for the next runner to grab to adhere to physical distancing guidelines.
“It’s something we’ve done before and it’s something fun to do instead of, ‘OK, we’re going to go out and run three, really hot, really slow miles,’” said 1st Lt. Jenna Ervin, 4th SOPS wideband orbital analyst. “It makes [the run] less of a slug and more of a team effort, which is what we’re going for.”
Ervin also mentioned the importance runs have on physical and mental health. While Joggernauts stressed the importance of enjoying the process, they also discuss the benefits it provides Airmen.
“I think if we could start getting more people together where we could all go running, or walking or jogging or whatever your skill level is, it’d be a good way for everyone to get out of their office and put a team effort into something,” she said. “It goes so far into improving your physical and mental health. Even though some people say, ‘I’m not a runner,’ or ‘I could never keep up,’ that’s not true. It’s a good way to support a healthy mind.”
The Joggernauts also watch motivational videos once per week during lunch at the 50th OSS break/student lounge area to boost morale. Anyone is welcome to join the lunches and Sederburg said runners watched movies such as “Unbreakable,” “Spirit of the Marathon,” “World’s Toughest Race” and “Without Limits.”
Sederburg also said they provide runners with resources such as links to local races, online running logs, workouts and training plans for 5k, 10k and half marathons.
“We talk about pacing and how do you run for pacing,” he said. “Maybe not so much diving into how it affects muscles, but the technique of running. If you go out too fast, you’re going to come back slower. The idea is to go out 15 minutes at the same pace and come back exactly the same. We talk about how to run on trails and how to hit hills. Everyone comes in at a different level. It’s great to hear how they’ve improved. It builds energy and excitement.”
For more information about Joggernauts, email Sederburg at firstname.lastname@example.org.