The Power of Teams on the 3-Day

“Teamwork is the secret that makes common people achieve uncommon results.” -Ifeanyi Onuoha

The Susan G. Komen 3-Day® community is one of the most remarkable groups of people I’ve ever known or been part of. It’s a passionate pink tribe of dedicated individuals, who, together, make up a powerful force for good in the fight against breast cancer.

Within the full Komen 3-Day family, there are smaller groups of walkers and crew members who decide that the best way for them to experience the amazing journey of the 3-Day® is in the company of friends, family members, neighbors or co-workers. And thus, 3-Day teams are born.

Atlanta 3-Day’s Team 2-1-1 shared a little bit of their team’s inspirational origin story:

The foremost benefit of being part of a team on the 3-Day is the camaraderie. Sharing the hope, the laughter and the tears with people you love makes the whole experience that much more meaningful. Walking alongside people who are close to you makes the miles pass more easily, and knowing that you have someone who isn’t going to leave your side is often the very thing that gets you through. Teammates provide emotional, mental and sometimes even physical support for one another through an intense and moving three days.

Beyond these obvious benefits, in my experience, there are also some secondary advantages of being on a team:

  • Picture Partners – I take a lot of pictures on the 3-Day, but even today, in the age of the selfie, I am not IN most of the pictures I take. Not a big deal, except I do like to have some recorded evidence of my participation. That’s where my teammates come in. If my 6 teammates and I are all taking photos of each other, we all will end up in someone’s pics, somewhere. Getting together after the walk and sharing these captured moments is always a highlight.

    Komen_3Day_silly team picture

    Some of my favorite pictures are the random captures by my teammates

 

  • Raising the Alarm – Left to my own schedule and my own snooze button, I probably would be the last person in camp to emerge from my pink tent in the morning, and some days, would barely even get my teeth brushed before camp closes and I get bused off to lunch. Teammates to the rescue! I mean, we all like sleeping in, but multiple alarm clocks assures us that we’ll get up and moving in time.
  • The Power of Human Contact – Having a teammate come through with a well-timed pit stop shoulder-rub can sometimes be the difference between “I’m not sure I can go on…” and “Come on, we’ve got this!” My teammates and I never hesitate to give each other the massages, hugs or high-fives that we need to keep moving forward.
  • Sharing is Caring – When you walk with a group, you really only need one can of sunscreen, one bottle of ibuprofen, one package of moleskin and pair of scissors, one tube of Vaseline. My teammates and I split these items up among our many fanny packs, so no one person has to carry it all, and so we all have extra room in our packs for the candy we pick up through the Cheering Stations.

 

A final word about teams – No doubt, some of you will read this and say, “I walk by myself, and my experience is every bit as powerful as those who walk on teams.” To that I say, awesome! I only speak from my own experience, and my intention is not to rank the quality of one person’s experience over another’s. I certainly have known some extraordinary “teams of one” in my years with the 3-Day.

Another (for reals) final word about teams – If you are currently a solo walker and would like to find a team to join, use the 3-Day Friend Finder tool in your Participant Center. You can search by zip code to find other participants, and team captains with open teams in your area. Or check out the 3-Day calendar to see if there is an upcoming meet-up in your area, like the Pink Party happening April 5th in San Diego, or the Team Kindred Spirits meet-up on April 8th in Mulkiteo, WA.

Okay, I mean it, this is really the FINAL word about teams – Are you thinking about joining your friends who are already registered? Or are you currently on a team and looking to grow your ranks? Between now and April 16, walkers can register with the promo code TEAM20 and get $20 off their registration fee ($50, down from $70). Visit The3Day.org/register.

3-Day Participant Center –Tools for Connecting

Whether you’re participating in the Susan G. Komen 3-Day® as a fresh-faced first-timer or a wily veteran, your Participant Center on the Komen 3-Day website is packed with resources to help you prepare for your 3-Day® journey.

I could fill a dozen blog posts going into detail about all of the nifty tools on the Participant Center, which empower you in your fundraising, training and event preparation, but for today, I just want to focus on a few that will help you connect with your fellow walkers and crew members. The first two resources below can be found under the “Connect” header in the left-side navigation menu on your Participant Center homepage:

komen_3Day_participant center_connect
Message Boards – Do you have a question that you want to ask your fellow walkers or crew members? Are you curious about other walkers’ reasons for getting involved in the 3-Day? Are you looking for creative fundraising ideas? The Message Boards are a great place to post your questions or comments where other 3-Dayers will see them. The boards are divided up by 3-Day location, and then further divided into categories, making it easy to navigate the postings.

Komen_3Day_participant center_message boards

Friend Finder – The 3-Day Friend Finder an online database that registered participants can search to find other walkers or crew members in their area. You search the Friend Finder by zip code, and can also filter the results with other criteria, such as walking speed or gender, and if you’re looking for a team to join, you can also sort the results to find team captains with open teams. Participants don’t show up in the Friend Finder search until they’ve visited the Friend Finder page for the first time (and have checked “I am willing to share my contact information…” in their profile) so if you’re registered for the 3-Day, be sure update your Friend Finder profile so people can find you too!

komen_3Day_participant center_friend finder

Training Walk Calendar – So you’ve connected with your fellow walkers online and now you’re ready to hit the pavement and train with them. Under the “Train” heading on the left-side menu, registered participants can access the training walk calendar. This is another list that’s sortable by zip code, making it easy to find walks that are close to you. Training walks are also a wonderful place to meet new 3-Day friends.

Komen_3Day_participant center_training walk calendar

Your Participant Center is packed with amazing resources, so take some time to log in and explore! If you ever need help finding something you’re looking for, the coaches are ready to point you in the right direction. Give them a call at 800-996-3DAY!

Meet-Up Round-Up!

The Susan G. Komen 3-Day® coaches have been putting in some face time with participants in each of our seven cities, hosting Get Started Meetings, meet-ups, coffee chats and reunions. Here’s our round-up of some of the activities from January and February!

Twin Cities 3-Day Reunion

Walkers and crew members from the Twin Cities 3-Day got out of the cold to warm each other’s hearts with stories and memories, speeches and 3-Day bingo.
TC reunion 2TC ReunionTC reunion 3

Atlanta 3-Day Meet-Up

New and returning 3-Day participants gathered in Atlanta!

ATL meet up 2 Philadelphia 3-Day Reunion

Even in spite of the nasty weather and traffic, an amazing 150 past walkers and crew members—coming from as far as Connecticut, Cleveland and Washington, D.C.—reunited in frozen Philadelphia for this participant-run event. The festivities, which included dinner, raffles and games, went into the wee hours of the morning. What fun!

PL Reunion

The Philadelphia 3-Day reunion

4 Teams PL

Members from four different teams jumped into a friendly photo together.

PL love connection

Everyone here met on the 3-Day!

PL Too Twisted

16 year old Nicholas (center) didn’t think he’d be able to join his team, Too Twisted, to walk in San Diego this year, but they surprised him at the reunion by telling him they’d cover his airfare in November.

Twin Cities Get Started Meeting

Meet two newly registered Twin Cities walkers: Jenn B. (right), who will be walking for the second time in the Twin Cities, and Amy E. (left), a breast cancer survivor who raised an incredible $1,300 in her first two weeks.

TC GSMSeattle Coffee Chat

Of course the Seattle 3-Day community meets for coffee! These friends, young and old, joined for a casual get-together. SE coffee chat

These are just a few of the many events that our coaches, training walk leaders and team captains have hosted, and there are many more on the calendar in the coming weeks. Click here to find one near you!

 

Not registered yet? Have a friend who’s ready to sign up and join you? You can register at a 3-Day meet-up event, head over to the 3-Day website, or call the coaches at 800-996-3DAY to get registered for just $50 by February 28. Don’t wait! Your journey toward a world without breast cancer starts today.