Brainsport Times

Weekly updates on running news in and around Saskatchewan.

Brainsport Times Jan. 18, 2017

With relief from the deep-freeze conditions it's getting a lot easier to envision this year's upcoming racing season. The Brainsport Running Academy is offering a robust line up of courses this winter and spring to help you meet your running goals in 2017. If the Saskatchewan Marathon Event is in your sights, you'll surely want to check out the courses being offered. Whether you're a beginner, or an experienced marathoner, there's a course for you! 

In this week's Q&A we're speaking with the coach of the Standard Marathon course, Pat Sommerville. Pat has an extensive background helping runners meet their goals, and has dedicated many, many hours to runners who have come through the Brainsport Running Academy.

Q&A with Pat Sommerville


Tara: The Brainsport Academy Marathon Course gets underway next week, and there are still some spots open. For those who may be considering it, but aren't quite sure it's for them are there some words of encouragement, or advice you could give them?

Pat: Everyone has different reasons for running a marathon. Many want to see if they can actually complete the 26.2 miles, others want to lose weight, improve their self-confidence and increase their overall exercise level. While others want to improve upon their last race time and set a personal best. If you’re one of those people contemplating running a marathon, get off the couch and just do it. Personally I like to run marathons as then I can eat a little extra cheesecake or have that huge cinnamon bun after a long run. With the Brainsport Running Academy you will be amazed how you will push yourself to limits you never knew existed within yourself.  It’s so much easier to complete a training program with a group of like-minded individuals.

Tara: Is this course aimed at preparing runners for a specific marathon?

Pat: This program is designed to prepare you for the Saskatchewan Marathon, however I can offer you advice as to how to alter the program for other dates, as well as other distances. I would also like to invite others who don’t want to complete the marathon distance, but are comfortable running for an hour, to join this group as well. I know Brainsport offers other Academy groups, however if Tuesday is your best day to run. I would invite you to join our group and I can also offer a half marathon training program to you as well.

Tara: What can runners expect in terms of training load? And what kind of knowledge will they gain?

Pat: All runners have different amounts of experience and time, dependent upon family, work and the like. Running a marathon is a big commitment, however it does not have to be a daunting experience. A person can run or cross train, based on the program, as much as they like. Obviously the more one is committed to the program, the more success the person should have. The 18-week training program will also include eight interactive 20-minute sessions, educating members on injury prevention, core stability, running technique, nutrition, and yoga for runners.

Jan18 17 1
Pat running the 2016 Queen City Marathon. Photo supplied

Tara:  What is your hope for the runners you coach in this course?

Pat: Everyone has a completely different reason for running. I ran my first marathon, the Saskatchewan Marathon as a challenge, after someone told me that I couldn't run a marathon.   I wanted to prove them wrong. Others are interested in running a marathon, as they have completed the half distance and want to see if they can complete the full marathon distance.  My hope for the group is that they can learn along the 18 weeks how to train smart. Running smart is difficult at times; family, work and stress, amongst other things get in the way of completing workouts. It is important to listen to one's body, as well as life's demands and determine which workouts should be completed. My hope is that every person can enjoy the training; yes-it sounds crazy; but training and running a marathon, can actually be fun! And it can be a whole lot more fun, training in a group, rather than by yourself.

Tara: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Pat: Running has to be fun. I believe that anyone who has been in my training group likes to have fun. If you’re unsure of completing the marathon distance, sign up. You can always run a half marathon or another distance of your choice. Running in a group will reveal the inner strength you have within yourself. You will be surprised at how much strength you have within yourself  when you train in a group atmosphere.


Brainsport Running Academy - Spring Courses


Below are brief descriptions of this year's spring courses. For more information, including dates and registration go to:

Performance Marathon Course:

Coached by Jason Warick, this will be an intense training course for the experienced and serious runner wanting to reach a competitive edge. Jason is a very high qualified coach and knows what it takes to be an extremely competitive runner.

Standard Marathon Course:

Coached by Pat Sommerville, you will be training with like-minded athletes as you work toward taking on 26.2 miles. Pat has coached countless running courses at the Brainsport Running Academy and is known for his coaching technique and ability to help you reach your goals.

Half-Marathon Course:

Coached by Jen Kripki, this will be a fun, interactive training time with athletes wanting to do their first half-Marathon or raise their running to a higher level. Jen Kripki is a very experienced runner, personal trainer and coach.

10k Course:

Coached by Tarrant Cross Child, this will be an engaging and interactive course. Tarrant will bring both his knowledge of running, and his personal desire to see people excel to the group. This course is designed to take you to a new level of running and is geared at the beginner and established runner. Tarrant will have a training program for everyone.

Learn To Run Course:

Coached by Cara Mazurak, the Learn To Run course is designed to accommodate those from a non-running background, or someone coming back to running after an extended time away. This is an 8-week course, which will culminate with a 5km race. The Learn to Run course will give you a solid foundation for your future running goals. 

Volunteers for Track & Field

Volunteers are needed for track and field events at the Field House. During track and field meets volunteers are needed to fill positions on the track, at long jump, high jump and shot put. By attending a training session for only two hours you will become a valuable member of the volunteer officiating team. The bonus is you get to see the growth of many young athletes.

Register today for one of the following Introductory Officials Clinics: January 27 at 6:30 p.m. or January 28 at 9:30 a.m. Register by email with This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Just Tri-It - Triathlon Training

Ladies, have you ever wondered what it would be like to do a triathlon? Are you looking for a fun and challenging spring training program? The Just Tri-it program gives you eight weeks - starting on March 19 - of swim, bike and run training, plus entry into the
Makin It Happen Triathlon, where you can show off your new skills. Registration is now open, and it always sells out! Learn more and register click here.

Wintershines Blizzard Triathlon

Up for a winter triathlon? This mix of ice skating (or snowshoeing), cross-country skiing and running can be done solo or as part of a relay. There are family events and a youth, and junior challenge event at shorter distances as well. There’s also a non-competitive citizen event at half the distances of the ones listed below.

Event distances:
- Skate 4k or snowshoe 1.5k
- Ski 8k (classic or skate ski)
- Run 5k

The event gets underway at 8 a.m. on February 4 at the Clarence Downey Oval and Holiday ParK Golf Course ski area. Cost is $15 per person. For more information click here and to join the Facebook group click here. Volunteers are still needed to help out with preparation of the event and for the day of. If your interested in volunteering click on either of the links and send a message.

Brainsport Brainfreeze


The 9th Annual Brainfreeze, in support of the U of S Cross Country Team, is set for Sunday March 5, 2017! This year there will be the addition of a 5K race, along with the 10K and half-marathon distances. Start time is 10 a.m. in front of Brainsport (also the finish). Register by going to

Breath Move Be - Yoga for Runners

Breath Move Be is back with more yoga for runners in the new year. Join in this runner specific yoga class starting January 10 through February 28. Classes will be held at Namaskar Yoga Studio on Tuesday nights from 6:05 to 7:05. For more information and to register email Leanne at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or text 306-251-2964.

Triathlon Training

Transition Sport and Fitness is offering Distance Group, or Personalized Coaching for anyone wanting to take their swim, bike, or run training to the next level. 

 www.transitionsportandfitness.cafor more info on all programs.



Every week, at one of Saskatoon's community schools, volunteers and children come together for a running and reading program called Start2Finish. The program aims to break the cycle of poverty by providing ongoing educational support to Saskatoon's at-risk children. You run, read, and share a word of the day with the group of kids. Start2Finish not only allows you the opportunity to give back to the community, and gain a rewarding experience, but also allows you to help children grow in a positive way. If you are interested in giving a couple hours of your time email
 http://This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or http://This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.For more information on the program go to

Product of the Week

Endurance Tap Energy Gel

Jan18 17 2

If you're planning to run a race that takes longer than 90 minutes don't forget the fuelling factor! It's important to start practicing early on in training, so you aren't met by any unpleasant surprises on race day. Endurance Tap is a simple and delicious Canadian-made product. It delivers well-balanced nutrition and electrolytes in a tidy, resealable package.


Thanks for reading the Times this week . .  gotta run . . .Tara
Brainsport Times Jan. 25, 2017
Brainsport Times Jan. 11, 2017

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