Endure It! Team 10K Relay; A Race for a Coach

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Endure It! hosted it’s second annual team 10k relay this past week at North Central College, running in a competitive and energetic atmosphere.

Team 10K Relay

Sara: It’s a great training day for those not as competitive. But for the elite runners and the high school runners, the fact that they were winning 500 dollars and that we had this big prize purse, brought that elite way out.

500 dollars for interval training? Most runners would happily oblige. Many did… at the Endure It! Team 10K Relay.

Amanda: It was a lot of fun, there’s a good energy here, it was a good interval training I think. That’s really what it was. And surrounded by a lot of really, really good runners, so it was a blast.

Runners alternated… running around the 400 meter track before handing off, grabbing a drink and cooling down.

With multiple heats, including two open races, a kids race and the elite runners race, the Team 10K is a unique event.

Nolan: (not being a college event) It really takes away that pressure. In a lot of races, you’re comparing to races in the past or set expectations for yourself. But really, coming into a race with no expectations is a really cool thing.

Origins of the Race

The race came to be after a year of doing the tandem 10K as a fun thing for the athletes at Endure It. Inspired by his former high school coach at York, Joe Newton, Endure It employee Dan Dzuibski became the lead man.

Sara: Dan was the first employee at Endure It, which Endure it opened 13 years ago. He was the first guy to walk in the door to get a job here. He’s worked here for 13 years, this was his idea. And the fun in just supporting him and being able to do it with him and support something he loves so much, gives me a lot of joy.

Newton passed away in 2017, spurring Dzuibski to put on the race.

In total, Newton won 29 state championships, became the first high school coach to be on an Olympic coaching staff, and wrote four books.

The Reception

And in the two years since his passing, the 10K relay has already blossomed, attracting runners from the area, and across the country.

Nolan: It’s real low pressure, we’re all friends here, there’s a lot of camaraderie in the running community. Just to come out here and have fun running, that’s what this sport is all about.

Amanda: I’m training for a half marathon, so I was hoping to stay around some times that would be pretty close to my half marathon time. And I ended up going a littlee bit faster today, so it felt good.

With cash prizes, the atmosphere is already charged… but the energy received a bigger bump from…  

Sara: The DJ, I think that was it. The DJ brought the music and definitely, it livened things up. 

Blasting music inside North Central’s Benedetti Wehrli Stadium, the event was a hit. Especially for former NCC runner Nolan McKenna, who – much like Newton’s old runners – knows what it’s like to be apart of a dynasty.

Nolan: It’s just being apart of that legacy. The North Central legacy of running for fun and personal bests. It’s not just while you’re in college, it’s really a life-long thing to effect future runners.

Reporting for Sports Story Sunday, I’m Kevin Jackman